Collectors have begun receiving the 2021 RLC sELECTIONs: #’69 Dodge Charger R/T and the response on social media has been overly positive. This spectraflame purple HELLEPHANT beast is technically the 2nd release of this restomod ’69 Charger casting, but 3rd in-hand as collectors received the orange convention release at the Nationals finale in the spring. RLC #sELECTIONs vehicles have always been voted on by collectors, and made-to-order — taking about 1 year to receive after order window closes. Suffice to say, those collectors that voted for this ’69 Charger in the “runner-up bracket” in 2021 have eagerly awaited its arrival. I was one of those collectors that voted for this casting with this color so I am stoked to have finally received my #1 option as it joins the casting’s two other stellar releases. This is easily my new favorite #Muscle Car.
It has been no secret that I looove Hot Wheels Chargers from this era. I have written about them here on OTD and even did a timeline of ALL the Hot Wheels ’69 Charger castings on HotWheelsCollectors.com. Plain & simple: if I was forced to choose one 1:1 muscle car as my daily driver, the ’69 Charger would be it! To me, Hot Wheels designer, Brendon Vetuskey nailed the design of this casting. I remember writing about how awesome it would be to have the Custom Charger back in the RLC, but am now thrilled Brendon took the modern approach instead.
Not only did Brendon somehow manage to make the “coke-bottle” body of the ’69 Charger more sexy, but he also infused this casting with the only logical choice for an engine in a Hot Wheels restomod: Dodge’s 1,000 horsepower Hellephant crate engine. I mean, what screams Hot Wheels more than enhancing one of the most popular muscle cars of all-time with the most powerful engine of the modern day, and having an #Opening Hood to showcase it?!?!? Yes, I realize the “engine” is nothing more than painted plastic, but the idea here completely sells me on how cool this car is.
Speaking of how cool this car is… its great to see that Mark & Jennifer at Collectors Event Unlimited (CEU) embraced the idea of it being a convention car at the 22nd Annual Nationals this past spring. As soon as I saw collectors at Nationals posting this one from the Finale in Charlotte, I had to text Brendon to share my excitement with him. I was already going to collect this casting with the black RLC one in hand (and the purple one on the way), but collecting the Finale release in orange was a must, even knowing it wouldn’t come cheap. I fully expect the value of this release to climb once folks fully get behind this #’69 Dodge Charger R/T casting. It’s technically limited to 4,000 but the number of these out there is far less. The precedent is that a decent quantity of each finale release get opened, striped, re-painted, and converted into “code 3” prizes for upcoming conventions.
The collection all started with the first release in spectraflame black two years ago. The matte black roof and tail stripe over a spectraflame black body was ultra-cool and very sinister. I didn’t think anything could top it. Two years later — and after having the Convention & sELECTIONs releases in hand — I don’t know how to pick a favorite. I mentioned above that if I could have a 1:1 #Muscle Car it would be the ’69 Charger. Well, I have NO IDEA what it would look like. This is why I collect Hot Wheels … so I can have all the colors!
Given that this #’69 Dodge Charger R/T casting is ultra-premium, you won’t see this Charger being released in the mainline — or even in premium. This casting is strictly limited to the RLC, conventions, and maybe even a promo/collab. Ultra-premium casting collections are a blessing and a curse. On one hand: you don’t have a bunch of obnoxious, heavily tampo’d variants (some good, some bad). On the other hand, the casting collections tend to be very small for ultra-premium castings. In that case, three variants would be a good run for an ultra-premium tool.
Categories: Collection Update