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Sunday, January 3, 2016

Hot Wheels 1967 Chevy C10 Pickup and Custom 1972 Chevy LUV pickup

Here's an interesting review because both of these trucks appeared in the same batch for 2016.  Both wear the same bowtie and share the same V8 motor, but otherwise they are totally different.  On one side is the classy 1967 Chevy C10 pickup and on the other side is the compact truck from Japan the Chevy LUV pickup.

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Both trucks have the lower stance, slightly-raked rear end, wide rear tires, and a useable pickup bed, despite the large wheelwells, and a fuel cell next to the tailgate that supports the rear rivet post.  The C10 was released in 2013 as a reprive from the custom 1969 Chevy pickup that has no resembalance to the actual truck save for some bodylines.  The 1967 version also uses the sought-after short-bed fleetside bed area.  The front has a chrome split grille with bowtie logo and signal lights inside the lower grille slot, round headlights in square housings, and all of this has a forward lean for an aggressive look, also tied in with the hood scoop on the hood that nicely blends in.  I applaud Hot Wheels for going back to the simple side graphic over the flames of the 2015 version: it makes the truck look great in black, and coming soon blue, and shows off more of the exterior details.  All looks good on 5-spoke wheels as well.  The rear area has the vertical taillights and dual exhausts that poke out just below the rear bumper.  The interior does carry-over from the 1969 pickup as it uses the same interior and window piece; not a bad idea since the interior has the correct layout with a bench seat, dashboard with tri-gauge pod, and central radio and HVAC controls.

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The newest member of the block is the custom 1972 Chevy LUV pickup, which stands for Light Utility Vehicle.  This was GM's quick way to get into the small pickup market to challenge the Japanese automakers and to offer a fuel-efficient alternative for the gas embargo's in the 1970's.  GM source Isuzu's Faster pickup for their new small truck.  This Hot Wheels version is based on custom versions that often enhance the shortcomings of the stock truck.  The front has a lower stance with large chrome grille featuring quad headlights and center bowtie, and a bumper that is smaller and tucks below the grille.  The hood has eight exposed throttle pipes instead of a scoop, while the roof has a pop-up sunroof no doubt a trait borrowed from last year's VW Caddy.  The sides show the fleetside look, but like typical Japanese trucks of the day the upper portion of the bed flares outward and the B-pillar has some sort of trim details.  Another problem with Japan trucks is the rather plain rear-end where the taillights are usually mounted on the bumper.  Here, Hot Wheels revises the taillights to the corners of the bed (you'll have to look close to see two slots) since the bumper is completely removed and thus allows the dual exhausts to come on out.  The tailgate also has CHEVROLET stamped on it as well.

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The interior is pretty similar to the C10 with a flat dashboard layout with tri-pod gauges and central radio controls, but instead of a bench seat uses supportive racing buckets for seats with 5-point harness and strangely for a drag pickup an automatic shifter on the column instead of the floor-mounted slap-shifter.  Surprisingly both trucks have the exact same base details, though there are some differences: The C10 uses a coil rear live axle with track bars over the LUV's leaf springs and the LUV's smaller surface area leaves a few details out, but overall both have the exact same exhaust system!  Both are powered by V8's, and yes that includes the LUV as a popular option to ditch the weak I-4 in the stock LUV's, plus not to mention when the S-10 succeeded the LUV people were still slipping in the V8 motor's.  Both are likely the 283 CID V8 that produces 200 hp and likely more.

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So, in conclusion both are nice custom trucks that still carry most of the stock look of the exterior and the interior, but the LUV looks rather awkard with it's front bumper pushed in.  With that in mind I still prefer the C10 pickup.

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