Saw this on another site.
After a beautiful 44 years history and several owners, Johnny Lightning life's comes to an end. It's last owner, Tomy Toys (owner of many brands including Tomica) said there are no plans to produce more cars on this brand, and they will only sell the remaining cars produced on the last months.
The brand was released in 1969 to compete on the hot market of 1:64 scale cars, where Hot Wheels and Matchbox were already playing. In 1994 the brand was sold to Playing Mantis, that refreshed their products and showed the world some great castings. In 2005 it was sold again to RC2 Corporation (previous Racing Champions) and it was changed hands again recently when Tomy bought it. This last period of its life changed their concept, and the cars become less interesting than before.
Collectors from all over the world will miss one of the most realistic brands in this scale, with such charismatic and beautifully made cars. Johnny Lightning introduced some great Hollywood cars replicas, and some cars that never appeared on other brands. Now we can only count on Auto World (from former Johnny Lightning owners), Greenlight and M2, with the same or close level of details in this scale.
What's happening behind the scene is that the costs to manufacture small cars had raised on the last years, and today it's almost impossible to produce cars with great quality and small prices. Labor costs raised on China and Asia, and transport and logistics costs are very high today. Sum the fact that children want other kind of toys today (tablets, cell phones, videogames), and adult collectors are pressed today with the global crisis that maybe it's far away from an ending. That same scenario shut down great brands recently, like Yat Ming and GMP.
The only hope now is that some good company buys Johnny Lightning, so the production can be back to life again. But as you can imagine, this will be very difficult to happen.