May '07 News Archive

5/31/07 - Go Speed Racer, Go!
USA Today has revealed a pic of the Mach 5 from the upcoming Wachkowski-directed film.  It's good to see they haven't messed with the classic design.  Rumors of Keanu Reeves playing Speed Racer proved unfounded.  Emile Hirsch (right) has landed the role of Speed and Christina Ricci will appear as Trixie.  John Goodman has been cast as Pops and Matthew Fox will don the mask of Racer X.  Click HERE to read a USA Today online article on Speed Racer.

Johnny Lightning will be re-releasing their Speed Racer line in 2007.  They may be shipping as early as June.  If you missed out on these, now is your chance to catch up:


5/31/07 - For Your Eyes Only
Longtime contributor Craig Mueller sent me a link to an eBay auction featuring a James Bond car I've never seen before.  Apparently, a company called Norev released an exclusive in France in the 80's.  The Citroen 2 Cv (pictured above) is 1:64 scale and was featured in the James Bond film For Your Eyes Only.  Pics have been added to the Bond gallery.  To see every 1:64 scale die-cast car from all the Bond flicks, click HERE.

5/26/07 - A Long Time Ago...
May 25th marked the 30th anniversary of the release of Star Wars in theaters.  I celebrated by watching the original, unaltered version on DVD.  It brings back a lot of fond memories of growing up with that movie.  I still remember seeing it for the first time like it happened yesterday.  It was at Beacon East theater in Harper Woods, Michigan.  I was 10 years old and I remember pulling into the parking lot and seeing Star Wars on the marquee and I was giddy with excitement.  I wish I could be at Celebration 4 in Los Angeles right now, but I just couldn't pull it off.  While browsing the coverage of C4 at I spotted a very cool display of Hasbro's Titanium vehicles, old and new.  Check it out by clicking HERE.

5/25/07 - Our Fine Four-Fendered Friend!
I wish I had a million dollars.  One of my all-time favorite cars, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, is going up for auction on June 2nd.  My friend Denver sent me a link to a Detroit Free Press article.  Click HERE to read it.

6/5 UPDATE:  AUBURN, Ind. - The red-and-yellow winged roadster that starred in the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang sold at auction for $505,000 to a Florida collector Ralph Spencer of Jacksonville, Fla., bought the car during a sale Saturday at 16th annual Auburn Spring Motorfair at Kruse Auction Park. Spencer, owner of Mulch Manufacturing Inc., already owns a 1966 Batmobile and said he had his eyes on the winged car for the past few years. "I've always liked this car," Spencer said. "I was a fan of the movie." The car was previously displayed in a Chicago restaurant formerly known as JR's Retreat. Jim Rich sold the car to help pay off a bankruptcy debt, according to postings at the auction. Auction company President Dean Kruse appraised the car in 1998 at $980,000.

5/23/07 - Another Cool Custom!
I like this current trend of people imagining what certain famous cars would look like done in the style of Cars.  There's a very cool thread going on right now in the Forum featuring some nifty artwork.  Bill Jenkins of Germany took it one step further and created the Dodge Charger from Joe Dirt.  He writes:

I enjoy checking your site for updates on available cars.  Great resource!!
Here's a fun project I did.  Note:  The King was not sacrificed to make this car, although a Snot rod did have it's wheels stolen.  I started with a Hot wheels caricature which was short, narrow, and had a large "Zinger" style engine up front.  It was disassembled and cut into eight pieces; lengthened and widened to the proportions of the King.  A new hood area was molded using auto body filler.  This was a cool diversion from my normal model building.


5/19/07 - Cool Custom!
Wow, this ranks among the coolest customs I've ever seen.  Do you remember seeing this car featured on the Pink Panther Show on Saturday mornings?  Well, the only toy version I'm aware of was a plastic version made by Dinky.  No one has ever tackled this beauty in die-cast, UNTIL NOW!  Huw Eastwood of Wales decided to craft his very own version.  Here is his story:

"Up until a week ago I had spent the last 3 months or so working on a small 1:64 metal alloy replica of the Pink Panther Show Rod - That was until a serious dig-in on the milling machine wrote off  about 250 hours work, at a stage when 99% complete and working on details that if I hadn't been so clever/fussy I could have settled for and left. Totally gutted to say the least, the reason I started it in the first place being that it seems a die-cast model of this wild car has NEVER been produced anywhere in the world!!!  I  had previously spent about 120- 150 hours having a go on a #1 trial model and that turned out complete, but was quite limited in shape/details by the methods I machined it from solid- Hence #2 to get it better and which, at the time of destruction was as close to perfect as I could get. The thought of starting all over again doesn't really appeal at the moment so please tell me there is a 1:64 or 1:43 METAL one out there!!!!! I've attached  a picture of my #1 effort.  In some ways it looks the part but there's plenty of faults. The #2 car was almost perfect- cant believe this one is all I got left!!!

Beautiful work, Huw!  Sadly, I'm not aware of a die-cast version of this car.  Maybe someone out there can correct me.  We'll have to depend on companies like Reel Rides to correct this oversight!

5/19/07 - Recent Finds
Found a few of the newest releases from latest Cars wave.  Toys R Us had just filled up their pegs when I discovered Dinoco Chick Hicks, Ferrari F430 and Hydraulic Ramone (above.)  I also spotted the single-carded Snot Rod, but passed on it, since I already have him in the two-pack.  The helpful stocker at TRU told me they haven't received the other new releases yet, including Tex Dinoco, Bling Bling McQueen and RPM #64 (pictured at right.)  I also couldn't find the Fabulous Hudson Hornet with red rims. 

"Kim" sent me an e-mail about an interesting find.  She said she found a Hydraulic Ramone with no eyes.  I told her it's probably an error and not necessarily a variant, but it does kinda look like he's sleeping (below.)

5/8/07 - This Just In!
Thanks to Rodney of Movie Car Mania for the above pics.  Here is your first look at the second release of Johnny Lightning's The Dukes of Hazzard series.  Starting at the top left we have General Lee, Gray Ghost, Hughie Hogg's VW Convertible, Enos' Cruiser, Sheriff Little's Cruiser, Daisy's Jeep (dirty), General Lee (black) and General Lee (Zinger.)

5/4/07 - POW!  That THAT Batmobile!
A replica of the General Lee auctioned off by John Schneider himself went for nearly $10 MILLION DOLLARS on eBay.  If it wasn't some sort of hoax, that figure is astronomical.  Even if I had that kind of money, I can't imagine spending it on a car, not even the Batmobile! (Well, MAYBE the Batmobile.)  But who am I to judge?  Click HERE to read the story on

5/10/07 UPDATE:  Apparently, it WAS a hoax:

The General Lee's owner actor John Schneider, who played the blond heartthrob Bo Duke in the 1980s television series is upset that the $9,900,500 winning bid appears to be a hoax. The bid set an eBay record last week.  "If this guy was just doing it as a prank or to ruin someone else's chances, he deserves to be hit in the pocketbook," said Stockman, who gave the winning bidder a negative rating in eBay's feedback forum.

5/3/07 - Collectors' Collections
Pascal Salgado of Germany sent me photos of his collection of 1:18 scale cars and impressive assortment of Eagle Transporters from Space: 1999.  Click HERE to see his collection and scroll down to view past submissions.