Ask Brad

Ask Brad #5: RLC Membership, Nissan Premium Car Culture Set, Collaborations, Convention & more! Are NEOs Dead??

Another round of questions via the #Ask Brad inbox. There have been some really great questions that I think a lot of other people are also thinking about. Thanks for taking the time to ask them. Keep them coming! Below are your answers: 

Jeremie • Florida
Q: Brad, as usual, thanks for all that you do. I’m semi-new to collecting but really I’m not. Just a little confused as to the RLC members? Is there a certain time I am allowed to purchase a membership? Also, reading your other questions I wanted to let you know the “Kroger” exclusives I’ve found in 4 dollar generals. Thanks again!
A: Hey Jeremie! You’re welcome. I’m always happy to share my passion for the hobby. I’ve been an RLC member since year-one. Typically, the new membership is open for enrollment late January, early February. I will update the Upcoming Sales page when a date is announced. As far as the “Kroger Exclusives” that were released last month, they were originally intended to be Kmart Collectors Day Exclusives, but when that was changed, the cases had to be rerouted to another retailer — in this case, Kroger. I believe the cases with the now, “Kroger Exclusives” that popped up other retailers were either sent in error OR Kroger did not accept the whole allotment, leaving some to be reallocated to other retailers.

George P • Troy, New York
Q: When will the Car Culture Nissan/Datsun Team transport box set with the 240Z, the Jun Imai 510 Wagon and the Skyline be on sale? Is it a Walmart exclusive?
A: Based on what I am hearing, the Hot Wheels Premium NISSAN 4-CAR SET will be available exclusively at Walmart in January — even as early as later this month. So, SOON! Collectors have certainly been gleaming over this set since it was announced at the convention in October so I expect the initial waves to move fast. The price point on it will be $24.97 in the US.

Orange Track Diecast

Hot Wheels Premium (Car Culture / Team Transport) NISSAN 4-CAR SET … a 2020 Walmart Exclusive

David • New York
Q: Regarding the Nissan diorama containing a 240z(not sure if it’s the Fairlady or custom), a 510 wagon, Aero Lift a Skyline and some cool art work. Do you know where and approximately when that will be up for sale. I got hold of a horrible rumor that it will be sold at Walmart. I’m hoping that is not the case.
A: Are you and George in cahoots? Haha… both from New York, both men… nevermind. Your rumor is true as it was announced at the convention in October that Walmart would carry this. That still holds true, as well as the $24.97 price point. Happy hunting! It is a cool set and one that I will actually have a hard time opening with that gorgeous packaging.

“Davidstingray” • Oregon
Q: With the limited release vehicles recently Antisocial Social Club I found it frustrating that it was posted “SOLD OUT” at the designated release time of 8 AM on 11/23. I watched it pop-up before my eyes stating “SOLD OUT”. How can this be? Are these put to market prior to public release in some secretive, or selective, way?
A: What you’re feeling is similar to what most collectors are feeling when it comes to the collaborations: frustration. I know, there is enough of that going on with HWC, but at least you have a chance there, right — and especially going forward with increased quantities. The frustrating part with most of these collaborations is that the casual user/collector stands zero chance of getting one. I heard the Anti Social Social Club piece gave the Supreme piece a run for its money as it also sold out in 6 seconds — 6-freakin’-seconds?!?!? Period Correct sold out online in the US at a glacially slow 2 minutes. What you have to understand is that these sites are a different animal than what you have experienced on HWC. Their followings are crazy large and their users have been at it for every drop. They know the ins and outs of those online shops and use technology to assist them in the ordering process. Most pay for said technology and use the money from the sales to recoup those costs. They bank on the casual collector buying the item on the secondary market. So, to answer the rest of your question, these lower quantity items are available for sale at the said time, you just need to know what it will take in order to get one, or you’ll be paying secondary market value if you really want it. 

Erna • California
Q: Could Hot Wheels possibly make the new Toyota Supra?
A: I know there are some fans of the new Toyota Supra over there at the Hot Wheels Design Center in El Segundo, California. Now that Hot Wheels has the Toyota license back, I think we can all be assured that they are going to make a run at producing it. I think the question shifts from “IF” to “WHEN”.

Jon • Fenton, Michigan
Q: I don’t know if you can help me out but, in the last 2 months, I’ve been to 9 Kroger stores in or around my area. 2 stores had those Q case shippers. NO Q case cars. They were filled with K & L case cars. 5 other stores had blue 2-sided cases with the same K & L case cars. The other stores only had side stacks. I would like 4 white Range Rovers, 4 blue Electro Silhouettes, 4 red ’56 Ford Trucks and 2 black Rivieras. Can you help me out?
A: Hey Jon. I hit up a couple of my local Kroger affiliate (Fry’s) here in Phoenix. I was beaten to all the shippers except one where I did find the Q case exclusives and even a super treasure hunt. It was a four-sided display that was mostly prior case codes — some as old as 2018. I have no idea how these shippers were packed but it sounds like the exclusives were in short supply. Out of the fresh shipper, there were only 2 complete sets. I kept a set for myself and offered the extra exclusives to collector friends who repeatedly help me out. In this day and age of store exclusives, it is the best way to share in the wealth. Make friends around the country who you can help when your area receives plenty. Compare notes, have friendly conversations about collecting, hook each other up. I had never enjoyed the success I had until I made the friends I did.

Aaron G • Texas
Q: Hey Brad! I recall you saying you handed out these super cool cards featuring the Datsun at the legends Tour. Only 500 made if I remember correctly, is that something you’ve personally made? How can we snag one? What does the future hold for that endeavor? Thanks!
A: Speaking of cool guys that have helped me out, what’s up, Aaron!?!? I have your new address, check your mailbox in about a week or so. I think I have one I can spare. Yes, you are correct, I only made 500 of each card. They were just for fun (not for sale) and I hope to do them for most of the upcoming Hot Wheels events I attend. Collectors have really responded well to them.

Orange Track Diecast

OTD / Hot Wheels TRADING CARDS at the Phoenix Legends Tour Event at Walmart in Tempe, AZ on September 7, 2019

Cullen Lane • Michigan
Q: I have a few questions for you.
1. What made you decide to start OTD? I think it’s great all you do with it and it was one of the first sites I found once I started collecting.
2. What is something you know now that you wish you had known when you started collecting HW?
3. A little while ago I saw some Barbie HW cars including a Range Rover for sale of eBay. They were from a very reputable seller (typically sells of Larry Wood cars) and was wondering if you knew anything about the backstory on these. They were said to never have been released and only had a handful made. Is it any way related to the Barbie Hiway Hauler? I saw something about them deciding they did not want to release anything with Barbie back in the 90’s and wasn’t sure if these other cars like the Range Rover were never followed through with because of this?
Thanks for your time Brad
A: Hey Cullen… great questions…
1: I started OTD back in 2015. Before that, I helped build the Hot Wheels Wiki from the ground-up starting in 2008. When you build a database of that magnitude, you learn a lot. It’s a great resource but it wasn’t mine. I would write things and create pages only to have to justify to other users why I created what I did. I have always been a creator, I love sharing things I love. I felt like with a database, there were so many untold stories that were hidden behind the cold hard facts on those tables. I was also inspired by what John had done over at the Lamley Group when he started that site in 2012 or so. I pushed myself to take better pictures and write better narratives, and it sounds like you are enjoying the results. You’ll be seeing more of me soon as I am working on an upcoming project with Mattel. Stay tuned for details.
2: I don’t think there is any one thing that I would tell myself 25 years ago. I have kind of always adhered to the, “collect what you like” motto. If there is one thing that I struggle with in terms of balance is patience. Sometimes I have zero patience when it comes to new releases as its easy to come down with the “gotta-have-it-now” sickness. Other times, I exercise too much patience and miss my window. If I could pass anything down to my 11-year-old collecting self, it would be more of the state of mind I’ve developed when it comes to collecting. That is the true asset.
3: There are so many stories behind certain rare Hot Wheels cars. I try to show the ones I have in my collection via the showcases I do. What you don’t see are the endless amount of research hours that go into gathering information. I don’t know the exact story behind the cars you are referring to but I’m sure it’s a good one. So many great prototypes from former employee collections have popped up for sale as of late. They are all usually out of my price range so I usually don’t do the research needed to truly establish a price for one of these. With the newer stuff, I usually have some sort of beat on what happened so its easier, but still, research before you buy is key… ah, there is one thing I could pass down to a younger version of myself!

Mike Daly • Trappe, Pennsylvania
Q: Hi Brad, I’m the guy with the Kroger cars: the white Land Rover, black ’64 Riviera, and red ’56 Ford Pickup. I don’t think it is either one of your guesses [from Ask Brad #4] in this situation because I got the cars in two different Target stores 30 miles apart and we don’t have any Krogers up here at all. Not sure, but I got like 6 or 7 of each just not sure what to call them. Thanks, Mike.
A: Hey Mike, they are Kroger Exclusives as that is what they are intended to be. I mentioned above that it appears some got shipped to other retailers for a reason unbeknownst to me. Regardless, it’s cool that you were able to find them elsewhere. Cheers!

“WILLIEB47” • Jagville, Florida
Q: Will their ever be anymore RLC Cars with NEO’s again? Seems like NEO’s are going the route the DINOSAURS went. Say it ain’t so BRAD??
A: NEOs are not extinct like the dinosaurs. In fact, the Holiday Edition Volkswagen Drag Bus that goes on sale next Tuesday will have them! As far as what the future holds, NEOs will be around, just in a more limited fashion. Since I joined the HWC/RLC in 2001, I’ve seen it go through several movements — like anything that spans nearly 20 years. NEOs have been a big part of those years and you saw the culmination of that movement for the 50th anniversary in 2018. This latest movement is a push for more realistic cars with opening features and real riders — its what the collector masses are demanding. More SKUs will be dedicated to that, but the RLC team also realizes that NEOs are important to club members as well. They aren’t gone, there will just be less. 

Wilbert Johnson • Concordia, Missouri
Q: I’ve been seeing monster jam trucks with half of the body missing and I found out that they were chase trucks. Do you know anything about this? And if you do, can you tell me more about them and possibly a list of some sort?
A: Those new Monster Jam Trucks are being produced by Spin Master, not Mattel. Hot Wheels own Monster Trucks line doesn’t have any chase pieces that I know of yet — well, maybe there is one. Trying to get details on that.

Nathan A • North Carolina
Q: Any info about the Convention to be held in Charlotte, North Carolina?
A: There is so much info when it comes to conventions. When, where, how much, what to do, etc… Your best bet is to start with the Collector Events Unlimited Hot Wheels Collectors Nationals web site. 

Eric • Gilbert, Arizona
Q: Not so much a question but a statement…Thank you for all you do Brad, I’ve never posted here before but your news section and “upcoming sales” have been huge for me this year so I wanted to take a moment and thank you for this blog and page, please keep doing what you’re doing!
A: Thanks, Eric! There is always so much and I try to capture it all, but I’m only one guy with a family and a full-time job. I would do more if I physically could. Thanks for sharing the aspects of the site you like best. I will keep doing what I am doing (and maybe a little more). Cheers!

THANK YOU ALL for your awesome questions! Keep them coming. To be part of the #Ask Brad segment, please fill out the form below.

 

Categories: Ask Brad

6 replies »

  1. BRAD thanks for the quick and fair answer about our NEO’s. A few is better than none. I am sure that the HOTWHEELS DREAM TEAM can come up with something great with NEO’S. RR’S are popular but NEO’S are what makes being an RLC MEMBER different from others. Being able to only buy them in the whole world only on the HWC/RLC Site at a very good price makes our club very different than others. Again thanks BRAD for your response. Your comments are
    “” TRUSTED ONES “”.
    👍🏾👍🏾👍🏾👍🏾

  2. I appreciate your response. I’m seen the monster jam trucks with half the body missing on Ebay and I’ve also bought some. Keep doing what you do!!!!! I’ve found a good friend off here as well as stayed up to date on my collection.

  3. Do you have any information on the Tanner Fox Porsche 911 GT3 RS? I had to make a quick decision on buying one and all I really know about it is that it went on sale unexpectedly sold out quick next day. Some confusion if it has real riders and production numbers. If you don’t know anything I guess I’ll find out when it gets delivered thanks either way.

  4. I strongly relate to the patience dilemma. Do I go for it now when they’re readily available, but the recency is driving prices up? Or do I wait and risk missing my opportunity? Over the years I’ve made the wrong decisions on both ends of the spectrum.

  5. Store exclusives are funny, we had tons of the Q Kroger exclusives here (Ohio) I seen white Velars just a week or so ago. Only one of the Q shippers around here didn’t have Q in them. Also several blue Jaguars from GameStop at Walmart and Meijer this week, assuming those were returns though.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s