If you think the new Chevrolet Camaro introduced at the SEMA show in Las Vegas on Oct. 29 looks like a Hot Wheels toy on steroids, that’s because the vehicle is actually based on a Hot Wheels model car first sold in 1968.
“Millions of us grew up playing with Hot Wheels,” said Chris Perry, vice president of Chevrolet marketing.
“Offering a special production model of the Camaro Hot Wheels is an opportunity to bring those memories to life, for kids of all ages.”
Jim Campbell, vice president of Chevrolet motorsports, said Hot Wheels and the Camaro were introduced at the same time back in the 1960s.
“When I am asked why Hot Wheels and Chevrolet, I say because it has brand association,” Campbell said. “The public will be able to buy two types of Hot Wheels Camaro. One is a special model that real enthusiasts can build themselves. The other is the completed kit, as it were.”
The Hot Wheels Camaro will be produced in the first quarter of 2013. Like the collectable toy on which it is based, production will be limited and once it is gone, that’s it, Perry said.
The Hot Wheels Camaro will have the Hot Wheels badge on the vehicle and its appearance echoes the cues that Hot Wheels enthusiasts recognize, including a bright graphics-accented metallic paint scheme and red-lined wheels.
The Hot Wheels edition will be available in coupe and convertible models – in 2LT (V6) and 2SS (V8) trims, blending exterior cues of the high-performance Camaro ZLI1 with a Kinetic blue exterior color and unique graphics.
The exterior model highlights include ZL1 rear spoiler, SL1 front up- per grille, a ground effects package that features a front splitter and rocket treatment, black 21-inch wheels with red outline stripes, two-tone matte hood graphics and rear taillight panel “blackout” graphics, fender “flame” graphics and Hot Wheels grille and decklid logos.
The interior will feature black leather trim that is accented with red-and-black seat stitching with the Hot Wheels logo embroidered on the front seats. The instrument panel and door inserts are black, with the Hot Wheels style flame decal on each door.
SS models feature a 6.2L V8. LT- based models feature the “LFX” 3.6L V6 engine, with dualoverhead camshafts, variable-valve timing and direct injection. It’s rated at 323 horsepower at 6,800 rpm. The original Custom Camaro 1:64-scale Hot Wheels model toy car from 1968 was one of the original 16 Hot Wheels issued and remains one of the most valuable models among collectors.