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Hot Wheels should follow Nerf's lead in serving niche audiences

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Numbskull 8/29/22

It appears as if Slanman Customs is already working on this idea.  

"We're working on developing a line of wheels for racing (printed with stronger resin and to come with nickle plated axles) The race wheels will only be available in black and will be printed with the tires."                --Slanman Customs.

Check out his Facebook page.

  • Great to hear. I hope Slanman can light the fuse! — redlinederby

OK, so hear me out.  If they release cars made for racing, then what?  The racing community will buy the ones that perform the best on the track.  They already do that with mainlines.  How many people have made custom Evos or F150s or Ferrari F40s for their racers?

So, then these new racing type cars would be the basis for customizers to make faster cars?  Again, they're already doing this with mainlines.  

It just seems extremely redundant to create a line that will be parted out for customs.  Especially when it means catering to such a small percentage of the overall community.  There is a reason Hot Wheels have maintained their $1 ish price tag for most of their existance.  They can sell them in bulk to the stores that way.  The stores typically absorb the loss by offsetting it with sales in other departments.  If you want to ask these stores to take on a highly specific line catering to a tiny percent of the toy car market, it's going to be a hard sell.  Then, if you want to suggest to these stores that they need to sell glorified mainlines for $5, $10 or more per car, you're going to price them right out of the market.  Sales executives don't stay employed based on the potential of a small market item being successful in a shrinking brick and mortar market. 

  • You bringing up the retail stores is also interesting to me...mostly because my assumption would be in this fantasy land where a racing line exists, they would just be sold D2C online. Brick & mortar wouldn't even be in the conversation, if you ask me. — redlinederby
  • You're points are all valid too. This whole thread has really dove into the "why it should happen" hole more than I expected. Yeah, we're already buying the fastest cars but my motivation here is just to see if people would pay more for targeted line, regardless of the chance of it actually happening. — redlinederby
  • This would have to be a D2C line in order to work. I think if they did it that way, there would be a market for it. It would also need to be somewhat more generic built bases and axel lengths. That would enable some good chassis swaps, weight swaps and more successful wheel swaps. I believe the initial release would be better served by using Hasbro's Haslab model. See if it can get the required backing from the consumers before releasing it. If it doesn't get backed, it doesn't get made. Consumers get their money back, and the idea ends up in the trash bin. Or, it gets backed and gets made. Then the consumers that wanted this idea get it. — CTR_Crimson_Twins_Racing
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Car_boi 8/29/22

Great topic Redline! The only way to make niche Hot Wheels in my opinon, is for the community to grow larger that Mattel sees the guaranteed profits, or for one of us to work at Mattel.

  • Ha, I'm still waiting for Mattel to give me a call! But that's why the pre-order Kickstarter model could work for this type of thing. It would be a way to show them there's a market (however small) and any losses could be minimal. — redlinederby

I'd pay an extra $1 to get faster out of box cars, because it would close the speed gap on modded vs stock as when I run races I typically run stock cars.

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FeralPatrick 8/31/22

I really want to agree with you, but there's something to be said for taking a $1 toy and making it better on your own. You develop better build skills, and you're taking something cheap and making it a one-off custom that never existed before. If everything were pre-fab, much of the fun may be lost... Kind of like a gearhead building their own real track car, but someone else shows up with a stock McClaren. I'd rather see new pre-fab racing parts/equipment than a fully-manufactured racer. That said, I'd still buy some. :)

  • I totally understand what you're saying and I'd like to think something like a racing line would do just that. It would basically be a way to get better pieces/parts for your custom builds. Yeah, it all comes built but can easily be a "kit" you use to make something new. I don't think people will stop trying to make something faster, even if it's sold as a ready-made thing. — redlinederby
  • I just want decent, balanced wheels and plated axles. The rest of the hobby is what makes it fun - the building and using creative skills. — FeralPatrick
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Plibbo64 8/31/22

I've been buying hotwheels for my son for the last couple years.

He especially enjoys the Mario Kart cars...  But from the playing we've done, I just really hate how weak the axels seem to be. They bend so easily. How about something a little sturdier? How expensive could a sturdier metal axel be? I know there are cars at different price points, but I believe a sturdier axel should just be baked into the budget for these things. Don't make them so cheap so that if you half step on one on the carpet it won't be bent, or that if you're playing 'destruction derby' you won't easily end up with bent wheels.  

It really sucks and I'm disappointed.  Also, while we're complaining, hotwheels connectors are garbage and the walls need to be higher on the track pieces. :p

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ChiefWopahoo 9/1/22
2020 Rated Rookie

I'm not sure a ready-to-race, in the package castings would do much to build the hobby simply because it would then be a matter of what someone could/would buy. There's a degree of that now with various series like FTE's that have "speed" features. Much of the appeal of the sport involves the build factor IMO.

That said the kit thought is very interesting. Imagine a casting kit that had components with different wheel/axle set-ups, (thin/thicker nickle axles) an interior designed with weight pockets to allow you to adjust balance, ride height adjustment (like they did with the recent RLC C-10), maybe even make slight changes to the wheelbase length. Include 3 or 4 methods for a builder to modify their racer and  you end up with dozens of potential set-ups. Now the builder has to create what they think is best for a specific race type and track layout. I'd pay a premium price for something like that. 

  • The kit idea is how I picture it working. Have something that is really customisable and already separated into parts so you choose how you want to build. love the idea of an adjustable weight pocket. That would be fantastic. — Chaos_Canyon
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GryphonSoul 9/2/22

I don't buy vintage or collector cars. I pretty much stick to the .99c - $1.50 off the peg. My budget don't allow for much more. On ocassion I'll grab a 5 pack or a 9 pack. If I had to pay 5,10 or more $$$ for a single car, I wouldn't be buying or racing. 

Now for accesories like a 8 pack of tires and axles to modify the cars. I can see myself paying 5-10$. But to be honest my way of thinking says that 5-10$ can buy me that many more cars.

This kinda reminds me of something I saw on eBay a week back, a 3D printed lowering kit for the Nissan patrol, the Nissan Titan, the Ford F-150, things like that. Would that be considered an UPGRADE? Or purely cosmetic?

that's an interesting question.

  • I would buy a reverse mold to pour low temp die cast in — dr_dodge
  • I think we all would honestly. But that has a lot of risk behind it. “Low temp” is still MOLTEN METAL, for instance. — 0utsiders_Street_Racing
  • 158°F lower than boilingwater — dr_dodge
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dr_dodge 2/13/23

lower temp than fryin' an egg

I love the idea of buying high end wheels and axles.  Or even a whole line of Racing Premium cars. Better open space in the casting.  Interiors that hide big weight.  Screws for assembly.

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GT_Diecast 2/14/23

There's one thing. I think it would highly benifit Hot Wheels to make screws for their cars. It WOULD be less cheap than rivets, but imagine the attention it would get! They could sell it for a little more money, but what kid dosn't whant to open a Hot Wheels car. Not only that, but there's a massive comunity of modders just WAITING for that. I think it would be very profitable for hot wheels to do that. And, if Hot Wheels is seeing this, please take action. For our sake.

  • Good idea. Plus just the fact that they’d be screws I think people/kids would then fall into modding and racing just because. — redlinederby
  • I love this idea, but I can see the lawyers starting to sweat already LOL — Bongo
  • Ha! — GT_Diecast
  • A small toy that could be disassembled would nix the age 3+ status. — GspeedR

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