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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Quick Comparison: Hot Wheels 2016 Rad Trucks

The idea of Hot Wheels creating a truck line is no brainer; in fact, it's been done before in the mainline.  Now that Hot Wheels has a craze of putting out 8-car sets that usually sell at particular retail stores across the world (in this case for the US it's Wal-mart), the idea of a truck set has now been called Rad Trucks.  It's a nice set, though I wished for a few trucks to replace a few in this set to be considered perfect.  However, not has been all smooth at Mattel: this series was halfway started when the mysterious tape around the packages started to appear, upsetting many collectors, and it still persist today in most premium and non-premium lines (only the $1 mainlines do not have this problem).  What makes my set unique is the fact that it was the early one and all are properly sealed without any tape on the packages!  So this is why it's a brief comparison as all of them are still in package and I have already tested or reviewed these castings before.  So here's my rank from 8th to 1st place:

8th Place: 1979 Ford F-150 Pickup

Not the best place for this nicely-done truck to be, but this has more faults than the looks can show.  The orange paint with decent side graphics are a nice touch than the Camoflauge version that was released last year.  The details on the front with the large headlights and chrome grille are nice, but things go downhill when you see the plastic camper shell over the bed; not bed, but then you get to the part where it also forms the tailgate as well  Yikes!  Why not use the new F-250 casting???  The interior could use more detail, as does the base.  This truck has lots of potential, so why settle for less when it can have some more?

7th Place: Custom 1969 Chevy Pickup

Once again, another one of those "why not use the 1967 Chevy C10 casting?" situations.  The 1969 Chevy pickup is nice, and big, and gave its interior and windows to the 1967 C10, but it's well past its prime and the yellow paint with blacked-out wheels don't help as I saw lots of quality control problems with the paint from the versions that I saw.  The custom look up front with the billet grille concealing the headlights is nice, but when pared to an old-fashion stepside in the back it seems out-of-alignment with each other.  The interior and base details are still decent, but the overall character of the truck is starting to get old.

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6th Place: Nissan Titan

A casting that always surprises me, even though I try to avoid it, is the Nissan Titan.  Introduced in 2006 the Titan has lots of great, accurate details on a wide and low body for a cool look.  the chrome grille up front flanked by headlights to the rear end with detailed taillights to a nice light purple color that really looks good on this truck.  It looks nice.  The FTE2 wheels look good on this truck as well, but then we get to the negatives:  It sits too low, way to low!  The rear wheels exposed in the bed, while nice, makes the bed useless, and the interior could use more detail and less bling (I hope the passenger does not sit on the controller without realizing it's there!) .  I'll explain more in another review when I find a remedy to the Titan's low stance, but for now Hot Wheels could at least give this truck a raise!

5th Place: Chevy Silverado

As in the US being the only replica of this generation Silverado and having come off a year of a new 4x4 lifted version, the low-to-the-ground Silverado reappears in a nice dark blue color, detailed taillights, and blacked-out wheels, which seems to be a trend on this truck in the past few years.  It's got lots of great details, a useable bed, adn a useable interior, but unlike the Titan it does not have that wow factor and ever since the bike left town from the bed it also left some credible details.  Plus have I seen this color before on the Silverado?  Seems like it, but still it's okay.

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4th Place: Custom Ford Bronco

For a truck line, the Bronco seems out-of-place as its considered a SUV and not a pickup, plus the bed area has no tailgate and houses the full-size spare tire.  There's no doors and the interior is only covered by a bikini top with roof lights.  The exterior is a racing Bronco ruined by a large gap at the front wheels.  Despite all of this the Bronco has looked the coolest in the recent deco's in this green with Ford Racing decals and the new off-road wheels with gold trim to the metallic red mainline release with the 6-spoke off-road wheels.  It looks cool and it performs like it should be in the Baja 1000, and considering the lack of good trucks to use in this set its no wonder why the Bronco ranked 4th place.

3rd Place: 2009 Ford F-150

Maybe a bit too late to use the 2015 version?  Well actually that's a good thing with the 2015 and new 2017 Raptor taking in the mainline, releasing the older 2009 model would be best suit.  The look in jet black with yellow trim and detailed taillights is the cleanest that i've ever seen this truck since its introduction.  Still wish the wheels did not have that yellow outer lip.  The Ford has great details from the chrome grille to the side running boards mated to a large 4-door cab, to the large bed and detailed taillights making for a long truck despite the narrow body.  It has a nicely-detailed interior that is the best of this group, a useable bed area, and a detailed base with dual exhaust.  This truck performs well, so why 3rd?  Mostly the length of the truck does put a damper on the handling tests, plus the next two are a bit more superior.

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2nd Place: 2010 Toyota Tundra

After countless recommendations to make the 2007-2010 Toyota Tundra Hot Wheels finally obliged and introduced one in 2012.  The lifted Tundra is the largest of the group and equals the length of the (2007) Dodge Ram 1500.  The look with the wheelwell and lower trim moldings give this truck some interesting detail despite the blocky look, especially at the rear.  The bed is useful, the interior roomy despite a few inconsistencies, and the sunroof is nice, as are those wheels.  The lighter Tundra is much quicker, and it has one of the best ground clearance of the bunch, it's a great multi-purpose truck let down by a few incorrect details and a color that looks rather familiar to the 2013 version.

1st Place: Datsun 620 Pickup

If I didn''t have an aiken for this set, this would be the one coming home with me.  This is also the most popular of the set, and I can see why.  You don't have to be a truck lover to appreciate the deco that favors the JDM crowd.  It's also a nice truck.  The regular-cab, long bed truck in white sports a side deco that is reminiscent of the BRE Datsun 510's, and despite the flared fenders and chin spoiler it still looks like a stock 620 pickup from the 510-like front grille to the side bedline swipe, to the rear tailgate with DATSUN letters engraved on it, to the bed that is the largest of the bunch.  The interior may be tight, but it is simple and effective, and correct me if i'm wrong this is the only truck with a manual transmission in the group: a 4-speed to stir the 1.6L I-4 under the hood.  Not a lot of power, but for this light truck it's enough.  It also handles well, even better than the lowrider trucks in this group.  This truck has a lot of good going for it, and with the rest of the set ranging from lackluster to nice, but ok, the Datsun is the clear winner of this set and from what i've seen lately many would agree with me.

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