Here’s a rare chance to look behind the scenes! We’re pulling back the curtain and giving you a sweet snapshot into the Mattel Design Center. Graphic designer Steve “HWC Van” Vandervate lays out some future plans – Hot Wheels releases – on his desktop.
You’ll find FEPs of a few HWC offers, plus some pieces from 2015 Entertainment line. There are several items from the 2015 Pop Culture series, and a look at one more piece from the highly anticipated Heritage series. Take a look, and plan accordingly!
Hot Wheels are awesome cars at any size. Thanks to the Automobile Driving Museum, here are three special chances to get a look at some of our 1:1 vehicles and pick up Hot Wheels die-cast for the kids*!
When: Saturday, 10/4, 11/1, and 12/6 at 10 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Where: Automobile Driving Museum, El Segundo, CA
More info: Automobile Driving Museum
That’s right – there will be an “open garage” on the first Saturday of the month for the rest of 2014. And to kick it all off, Larry Wood (“Mr. Hot Wheels” himself) will appear for the ribbon cutting on 10/4. There will be a screening of Team Hot Wheels: Origin of Awesome and other activities for the kids, too, so make sure you come out and bring the whole family!
*Free with ticket purchase while supplies last.
More than just a great time, events produced by Collector Events Unlimited raise funds for important children’s charities. At the 28th Annual Hot Wheels Collectors Convention Charity Auction tonight in Los Angeles, Mattel will donate some spectacular items to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Here’s your first look at the prime goods available tonight. Note that these are not production items, but mostly EP (Engineering Pilot) items. Not exactly prototypes, this a proof stage prior to producing the piece. Check ’em out!
One of the best things about Red Line Club membership is attending the RLC Parties! Here’s everything you need to know for the RLC Party on 10/3 at the 28th Annual Hot Wheels Collectors Convention in Los Angeles.
What: Red Line Club Party
When: Friday, October 3, 2014
Where: Westin Los Angeles Airport Hotel – Los Angeles, CA
Info: Please do not line up prior to 8:45 PM. (We want to keep the hallway clear for those exiting the Charity Auction.)
Since it’s a membership benefit, only 2014 Red Line Club members are allowed to enter the party and purchase the party car.
If you recently joined the Red Line Club (September 18 or later), make sure you bring:
- Your RLC membership Order Summary print out. Go into your “My Account” section in the Hot Wheels Shop, and go to the Order Status page. Print out the Order Summary which reflects your purchase of the current year’s membership. Alternately, you can print out the Order Summary email. You will have received both an Order Confirmation and an Order Summary email when you purchased your membership. The Order Summary email — which should be the second email you received and also includes your name in the information displayed — is the one to print out.
- Your Collectors Convention badge.
- A photo ID.
Party Car/Raffle Tickets
As you enter the party, you have a chance to purchase the always-hot RLC party car for $10.00 (cash only!).
Also, we’ll be raffling off some very cool Hot Wheels prizes later in the party. When you enter the party, you’ll be given one raffle ticket for free. More RLC raffle tickets will also be available for RLC members to purchase if you like.
If you want more RLC raffle tickets and more chances at winning a prize, don’t forget to bring HWC and RLC cars — still packaged — to open. Why? Because if you want to earn a few more RLC raffle tickets for free, you’ll have a chance to open the packaged HWC Series cars, RLC sELECTIONs cars, or RLC membership cars that you bring (limit 10 per guest) at the “Opening Party.” For each one you bring and open at the party (again, up to a limit of 10), you’ll receive one RLC raffle ticket!
Frequently Asked Questions
What do I need to bring?
- Your Convention name badge (the badge you receive when you register)
- $10 (cash only!) to buy the party car
- Your RLC membership Order Summary and a photo ID (if you joined after September 18)
Only 2014 Red Line Club members who have a paid ticket to the 28th Annual Hot Wheels Collectors Convention will be admitted. You can’t join the Red Line Club at the event. But you can join now.
I have five RLC memberships. Can I bring four people to the party?
No. You can only use one of your memberships to get in, and you can only buy one car regardless of how many memberships you have.
If your friend/spouse/parent/child has an RLC membership in your name, you can both come in — but you can only purchase one party car.
Can I bring my kids to the party?
Yes. However, they won’t receive any of the RLC benefits (even if you have a membership in their name). RLC members have to be 18 or older, so we can’t honor a membership for a minor.
Yes, but we try to keep it a secret until the day of the RLC party.
The party car is $10 each (cash only!) and is limited to one per person who must be an RLC member.
The eligible cars must be HWC or RLC editions. You can bring them from home or possibly buy them in the room-to-room trading or elsewhere at the show.
You’ll receive one ticket per car, up to 10 maximum. You can open as many as you like, but we’ll only give you 10 tickets maximum.
Do I have to be present to win a raffle prize?
The party is always a great time and a great reward for RLC members. Looking forward to seeing you there!
Get ready for things that go bump in the night: ghosts, monsters, skulls and more! Hot Wheels takes its annual dark road with the 2014 Halloween series, featuring five scary castings with spooky deco.
Beginning in September, you’ll want to start haunting your local Kroger stores for these eerie editions. Put the creepy into your collection!
‘57 Plymouth Fury
Ford Gangster Grin®
|Ghostbusters Ecto-1||Rigor Motor®|
It felt like having Wonka’s Golden Ticket. Being admitted to the factory from which so many legendary cars emerge fills me with wonder and awe. We’re going in, but you should know in advance: Ferrari doesn’t allow any photos to be taken inside. Top secret!
Maranello is a 20-minute cab ride down the road from Modena. It was Monday morning, so I got an early start. Yes, they have traffic in Italy, too. No, they don’t all drive Ferraris… some of them drive Maseratis, Alfa Romeos, Fiats…
Arriving at Ferrari, the cab driver pointed to my left. There it was – the famous entryway to Ferrari. I got out and walked into reception (a Ferrari-red desk with Ferrari-red accents) and announced my arrival. I was seated in a waiting area with a few other guests (Ferrari owners, unlike me). There were a few miniature Ferrari models on display as well as an F1 car on a wall.
One of the first things you notice throughout the Ferrari factory is that it’s clean and orderly. They run a tight ship. These people are serious about their product, and the conditions provided for workers reflect that. They began an initiative in the 1997 they call “Uomo.” With this plan, the factory was upgraded to provide both safe and sustainable conditions. It’s well-lit with natural light, and it’s filled with trees and gardens. The temperature remains comfortable, and the decibel levels are low. They’ve reduced CO2 emissions and conserved energy. Bicycles are provided for employees to get from building to building on the campus. And employees are both heard and rewarded.
In the mechanical workshop, we took a look at the engine building process: materials, assembly of cylinder heads, cylinder blocks, crankshafts… There are three work shifts, with no more than 75-80 workers on a shift. We met “Romeo and Juliet” – a pair of robots (well, two pairs, actually – one for V8 and one for V12) that handle fitting cylinder heads into valves. Engines on display were not just for Ferrari, but also for Alfa Romeo and Maserati. Turns out Ferrari provides quite a bit to Maserati.
There’s also a model in this building of Ferrari World. Ferrari World is a huge amusement park in the middle of the desert in Abu Dhabi. It boasts the fastest roller coaster in the world at 250 km/hour.
Between buildings, we visitors rode a shuttle bus. We passed the wind tunnel building, where they test the single-seaters for F1. We also passed the paint shop, where they paint 30 Ferraris a day. (They paint Maseratis, too.)
In the engine assembly building, there are two workshifts. They assemble 54 V8 engines per day for Ferrari and Maserati, but only 9 V12 engines per day. Our tour guide pointed out with pride that the Ferrari engines have about 100 hp more than Maserati. The LaFerrari clocks in at 963 hp!
Back outside, you can hear the sound of excitement: the Pisto de Fiorano race test track. Someone was giving it a good run today.
We finally reached the moment we’d been waiting for: the body assembly building. No matter what you expect, you aren’t prepared for the breathtaking sight of a variety of sweet, brand-new Ferraris rolling off the line. The 458 Spyder, the California T and more in colors of red, black, white, yellow, gray and blue. I’ll take one of each, in each color, thank you.
They complete 24 or 25 cars per day on the first floor (V8), with about six per day on the second floor (V12). They produced 6,922 cars last year. Every single car is street tested locally. Imagine driving around Maranello in that kind of Ferrari traffic.
The cars move through the line, each on its own platform, on a giant conveyor belt. The platform can raise or lower, and rotate 360 degrees. It makes it easy to access and work on every spot of the car. There are several stations, like the station for “marrying” the transmission into the car, another one for where the wheels and tires are put on (Station 27, for the record) and one for the windshield installation.
On the second floor, we see an FF (Ferrari’s first four-wheel drive) in production. We also get a good look through the upholstery department, where they’re cutting patterns out of South American leather, used by Ferrari beginning in the 1960s on their F1 cars. Other materials include Kevlar!
F1 and Museum
Another building houses a very low quantity of the F1 cars produced, and they also sell used F1 cars after the seasons are through. There are also racing versions of Ferrari’s street cars. None of these are street legal. The cars in this building are way more expensive than the “average” Ferrari (Michael Schumacher’s ’04 car went for EU 3 million!). Not only that, but in order to purchase, you have to have a special garage, certified mechanic, and your own track to drive them on. It’s like your own life-sized Sizzlers driving. Note that you’d also have to replace the engine about every 3,500 km, at a cost of EU 3-400,000. You can, however, pick up an engineless replica for a mere EU 150,000.
The Museum, of course, is filled with the sort of wonders you expect from Ferrari. They had a special “California Dreaming” exhibit (in my honor, of course). Turns out that California is a big market for Ferrari (no surprise). In fact, Ferrari credits the California market as playing a large role in the rise of Ferrari and its success as a manufacturer. Also displayed are several F1 cars, helmets of former Ferrari drivers, a display of some of the wind tunnel models, and a huge assortment of trophies.
You’re in a daze when you leave after the tour. Maybe that’s why they don’t let you test drive one on the Pisto de Fiorano. They do, however, turn you loose on the factory store across the street. And you can practically go nuts in there – from clothing to accessories, it’s all less expensive than the cars.
Wanna see more fabulous Ferrari pics from the Museum at the Maranello factory? Check out our Facebook page to see all of the awesome pictures!
What happens when the worlds of two iconic brands collide? The Hot Wheels Star Wars series happens! These beautifully-decorated cars pay tribute to the Star Wars universe of film and television.
With stunning card artwork, each of the eight editions takes you to a galaxy far, far away. But you only have to get to your local Walmart store to find them! Start scouting around at the end of the year, just before the holidays.