The last series of the #2019 Hot Wheels #Car Culture line is here: Cruise Boulevard. The Car Culture / Cruise Boulevard series consists of five customized vehicles that you could expect to see driving down your local “main drag” any night of the week. Ford, Chevy, VW, Nissan, and Toyota are all represented — yes, that’s right, Toyota. Hot Wheels once again has the Toyota license which it hasn’t had since 2017. In the nearly two years that have passed since we last saw a Toyota Hot Wheels car, collectors have yearned for premium Toyota models in Car Culture — namely the Supra. This series grants that wish and so much more.
In this series of five vehicles from five different auto manufacturers that range from classic to modern, there seems to be at least something for everyone. Perhaps the largest feat though, is the fact that this series introduces two #First Edition castings, as well as introduces the #Toyota Supra to the premium range — all while bringing back two premium #Muscle Cars that collectors have asked for.
It seems appropriate to start with the car that’s garnering the most hype: the #Toyota Supra. It is also #1 of 5 in the series. 😉 Since its debut in 2013, the Supra has always been a popular car in the mainline — and all of those releases didn’t even have detailed headlights! Had it not been for the detailed Fast & Furious releases, this release probably would have caused pandemonium in the collector community as those signature headlights & taillights seem as much of a necessity on this casting as rear detail is on the Hot Wheels #Skyline castings.
This release of the #Toyota Supra is about as clean as you can get. It wears metalflake candy apple red paint, and its lone graphic outside of the front and rear detail is the black “NITTO” script beneath the doors. Ultimately, I can tell that collectors are going to love this car and all it signifies.
’69 Chevelle SS 396
If there is any kind of complaint that I see about #Car Culture, its that some collectors believe that #Muscle Cars are underrepresented in it. You can’t fault collectors for wanting more of what they collect, but if there is one thing that Car Culture does an extremely good job at, its that it certainly represents a wide range of niche groups of automotive enthusiasts.
The Hot Wheels #’69 Chevelle SS 396 has been a hit with collectors since it hit the pegs as a mainline casting in 2008. Its been a basic car in the mainline several times with regular and super treasure hunt releases. Its been in retail premium and a convention car, and it has even been a Collector Edition “mail-in car” twice. This, however, is the first time its seen the full-detail #Car Culture line. After this, I think many non-muscle collectors will see this car in a different light and this release is truly something to behold.
Custom ’14 Mustang
The #Custom ’14 Ford Mustang casting has had an interesting path to get here. This casting made its debut in the premium range as it was in the 2014 Hot Wheels #Entertainment line as the Custom Mustang that was built by Carroll Shelby in the 2014 movie, Need for Speed. Since then, there were less appealing releases in a 5-pack (2015) and a themed assortment (2016) before ultimately going on a 3-year hiatus. Collectors have really taken a liking to the entertainment release over the last 3 years so it is no surprise that this one has made it back to the premium range.
Like that Entertainment release, this #Car Culture / Cruise Boulevard release of the #Custom ’14 Ford Mustang features full-detail. The sunburst orange metalflake paint is most certainly a color I’ve seen #Mustangs driving up and down “the strip” in. The deep-dish, #Real Riders Exotic Wheels are a nice touch!
Custom ’93 Nissan Hardbody (D21)
The first of two new castings is the #Custom ’93 Nissan Hardbody (D21). Its slammed about as low as I’ve ever seen a Hot Wheels go, and it comes from a time where mini trucks reigned supreme: the ’90s. Even the deco is straight out of the ’90s. In fact, it is the same graphics scheme that appeared on the first edition of the Hot Wheels Mini Truck in 1990.
Despite sharing its “Nissan Hardbody” moniker with the #Nissan Hardbody Truck casting from 1988, the two couldn’t be any further apart. It will be interesting to see how the #Custom ’93 Nissan Hardbody (D21) is received as there is certainly a niche group of mini truck enthusiasts that are going to be all over these.
Volkswagen “Classic Bug”
Lastly, coming down the strip known as #Cruise Boulevard is the #First Edition of the #Volkswagen “Classic Bug”. For so long, the #Volkswagen Beetle had seemingly what appeared to be a stranglehold on all premium lines as it felt like the casting was in every single one of them. Fortunately, that kind of went away and a new #Beetle casting was born. This Classic Bug is of the slammed variety as the meaty back tires are almost double the size of the skinnies upfront.
What is seemingly odd about this new #Volkswagen “Classic Bug” casting is that it features a additional metal piece for the hood in the rear. It does not open, rather the deck lid’s ajar nature is actually representative of the California custom look. This metal piece actually contains the rear post that is spun after the car is assembled. In the future we could see more color breaks happen with this being a separate piece. That isn’t the case here though, as the deck lid is painted to match the body and also has the license plate tampo’d onto it. Previews from the convention in October showed us that the next release of this casting will come in a Mooneyes livery as part of the Team Transport segment of Car Culture. This release though, already seems like a classic.
So there you have it! The final #Car Culture series for 2019. Which ones do you like? Will you be grabbing them all?
It is worth noting that the Hot Wheels #Car Culture / Cruise Boulevard series is part of the Car Culture line for 2019, whereas the new Hot Wheels Boulevard line for 2020 its own line, and will be sold exclusively at Walmart. Look for this series to start appearing at retail very soon
Categories: Series Profile