Collection Update

Collection Update: Famous Le Mans livery recreated for 2020 release of PORSCHE 917 LH; Casting variants now at 5

One of the most epic Le Mans liveries of all time comes to the Hot Wheels mainline in 2020. The famous 1970 Martini Racing deco dubbed, “The Hippie” makes an appearance — unofficially. See, since Martini Racing is a motorsports team that is sponsored by its parent company, Martini & Rossi — a distillery in Turin, Italy — Hot Wheels can’t actually put the Martini logo on the sides since there can be no attempt for Mattel to partner with an adult beverage company. Its something that Mattel has made very clear.

With that said, there have been examples of Mattel recreating famous racing liveries that had an alcohol sponsor. So the precedent has been set that either the beverage company logo must be changed OR completely removed. Removal is the case with this #2020 Hot Wheels #Porsche 917 LH which will be released starting in the 2020 “B” case assortments, as part of the Porsche segment series.

Orange Track Diecast

Hot Wheels Porsche 917 LH from the 2020 Porsche series (on orange track)

Martini Racing is known for some pretty wild — and therefore memorable — paint schemes over the years. Some may argue that the most memorable of all time would be this psychedelic paint scheme that came in second at the 1970 Le Mans, and held the fastest lap time for decades. The Hot Wheels version of “The Hippie” is a pretty solid replica of the all-time favorite #3 Martini Racing racing livery and now it can be yours for a buck!

So that leads me to the addition of this #2020 Hot Wheels #Porsche 917 LH to my collection. When I first saw the prototype of the #Dmitriy Shakhmatov Designed, Hot Wheels Porsche 917 LH, I figured it to be a premium model considering the level of detail in the casting and the fact that the massive headlights were engineered to be part of the window piece. Shortly after, I learned it was actually a new mainline casting for 2018. I couldn’t help but be excited about its initial release. Committing to collect it from the beginning was an easy choice.

This long-tail version of the 917 has only been around since 2018, and this is already its fifth variant. Even better is that all the variants so far feature racing graphics, and at least two of them are replicas of actual Le Mans cars. The future of this casting collection looks bright as its already a staggering group at five cars deep.

Orange Track Diecast

Hot Wheels Porsche 917 LH Casting Collection (Family Photo, October 2019)

A sixth variant is already on the horizon as this 2020 Porsche series release will be recolored in an upcoming 2020 case assortment, exclusively for Walmart. ZAMAC looks great on just about any Hot Wheels car, but it will be hard to top this replica racing livery. Kudos to Hot Wheels Graphic Designer, Leeway Chang for making this happen. I have a feeling that the #3 Martini Racing release — and any aforementioned colorways — will be awfully tough to find in 2020. Best of luck in finding this piece to all my fellow collectors, and happy hunting!

Oh, and as for how I obtained mine…. check those 9-packs! This one can be found now if you’re a loose collector. Cheers!

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4 replies »

  1. Great article, can’t wait to get this 917 LH, HW 2020 looking great so far based on all the previews. Going to keep an eye out for those new 9-packs, need that yellow Z too and the orange RX-7

  2. I’ve been hyped for this one as soon as I saw it sneaked by the designers. 60’s-80’s race cars are probably my favourite type of cars and having replicas of real life liveries is a bonus! It’s just a shame that a lot of the best ones were tobacco or alcohol! We’ll never see a Rothmans 962! 😦 I’m not collecting every version of this casting but I’ll definitely get future releases if they look as good as this one!

  3. Like Marlboro or Martini, for example?
    Yeah.. seems tobacco & alcohol companies were great contributors to motorsports in some way, shape or form. John Player, Budweiser, Jägermeister & Camel among others, made for really awesome & recognizably attractive liveries.

  4. GREAT looking “long tail” 917! An ICONIC race car! I have the four other so this 5th one will be in my collection for sure!

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