Japan Booster

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

First Look: Hot Wheels '71 Datsun 510 Wagon Super Treasure Hunt...

A few of you have said we have been integral in helping set the hype on the Datsun Wagon at fever pitch, making it become the latest lust for scalpers and the like.

Ya' think?

Of course we have.  Not because we wanted to.  We didn't start out showcasing the Datsun Wagon last year with the Pitchfork-like intentions of creating hype.  We showcased it because it is easily one of our favorite Hot Wheels models...well...ever.  Any news on the Wagon, we report it.  Any time we are writing about a model that reminds us of the Wagon, we get it out and photograph it.  And anytime we learn that the Wagon is going to be a Super Treasure Hunt, we sure as shit are going to showcase it.

Like we said in our post earlier today, the Wagon would easily be a popular model because of the fact that it is well-done, unique, and part of a red hot car culture.  And those are the reasons we love this model.  But because of how hard the Boulevard was to find last year, and because of the resulting skyrocketing prices on ebay, the buzz around the Wagon took on a life of its own.

So if you look back at what we like to showcase, you will see an abundance of posts dedicated to models like the Hakosuka and Kenmeri Skylines, the Toyota 2000GT, the BMW E36 and 2002, the Porsche 993, and the Ford Gran Torino Sport.  But those models aren't living on the "rare" plain that the Wagon is.

So if we have inadvertently made the Datsun Wagon the next Drag Bus, Chevy Panel, or '67 Camaro, we are sorry.  We promise we didn't mean to.  We just like it a lot.  And we know many of you share that same opinion.

And speaking of hype, the 510 Wagon Super TH lives up to it.  When a friend of mine called me to tell me he had it, his first comment was how amazing it looked in person.  A couple of days later we had ours, and we cannot agree more.  This model is a beauty.

Sure, the Boulevard is a classic.  Having a soft spot for olive green, and for wagons, and for JDM, Jun Imai's Boulevard is an all-time fave.  But the Super is not as far behind as I thought it would be.  The spectraflame red is rich, the wheels menacing, and livery just right, and not just because it mimics the deco of Jun's real 510 Wagon (or at least did).

The Super gives the Wagon a whole new look, much different than the Boulevard, and the red mainline for that matter.  It emphasizes its stance and length more than anything, making you appreciate the casting just a little more.  Yes, it is a hot model because it is a Super, but what makes it great, especially when the hype dies down, is how good-looking it is.  I have no idea if our photos do it justice, but we will do our best.

We hate to say this about a model that is going to be very tough to come across, but it is a must-have.


Hot Wheels '71 Datsun 510 Wagon (2014 Super Treasure Hunt):

The family:

First Look: 2014 Hot Wheels '71 Datsun 510 Wagon (Standard Version)...

Does this model even need an introduction?

We could probably write a book on how a mini replica of a '70's Japanese Wagon became one of the hottest Hot Wheels models around, but there is no need.  Most of you probably know why.

It could be described as the perfect storm in our hobby.  A mix of a great model, released while a particular car culture is red hot, and then becoming nearly impossible to find.  If the Datsun Wagon's debut was in the mainline, and was easy to find, it would be a different story.  It would still be a popular model, because all vintage Japanese Hot Wheels are hot right now, but the rarity factor puts it over the top.

Most collectors spent almost the entirety of 2013 trying to find the Boulevard version.  It is crazy to look back at how things materialized.  The Wagon was originally released to hobby dealers just after New Year's in January 2013.  There was already a lot of buzz about the Datsun since its unveiling at the 2012 JCCS, but most collectors figured they would pick one up when it arrived in droves at Walmart.

That never happened.  Due to poor sales of the previous year's Boulevard line, the big box stores didn't want the 2013 line.  Somewhere around April, a very small number of Walmarts got the line, but it wasn't many.  As collectors started to realize that the Boulevard line might be a little more difficult to find than expected, the price of the 510 Wagon on ebay started grow from $2.99 each to $10.99 to $14.99 and on and on.

Finally the 510 Wagon did show up in stores, but not until September, and only in West Coast TJ Maxx and Marshall's stores, as well as some Shopko's.  Those who were lucky enough to find them gobbled them up, and that was that.  The Datsun Wagon was officially a rarity.

So if you want to take a model that is already highly desired and shoot it into the stratosphere, make it a Super Treasure Hunt.  And that is what Mattel did.  So just like the debut of the Toyota 2000GT last year, Mattel is making another JDM model that most collectors haven't seen debut as a Super.  So there you go.  Super Duper Hype.

And the Super TH lives up to it.  It's pretty.  But we will be featuring that later today, so for now let's have a gander at the overshadowed counterpart, the standard mainline version.

While Malaysian sellers are putting up loose Super after loose Super, the regular hasn't really appeared anywhere.  So we will give it its due prior to showing the Super.  And to be honest, if there was not a Super to take most of its attention, the standard would be buzzworthy as well.

We don't need to tell the story of the design of this model, as Japanese Nostalgic Car has already done a nice job of that.  So here it is in photos.

Yes, the Super is going to be very difficult to find, but the regular is a very nice consolation prize...

Hot Wheels '71 Datsun 510 Wagon (2014 Mainline):