I’ve been looking for this latest rendition of the Hot Wheels VW Drag Bus for a while now and Lenora was lucky enough to find one the other day while walking the aisles of Walmart. If you’re a beginner collector or not a collector at all, the Drag Bus might not mean anything to you. You have to go all the way back to 1996 to truly understand and appreciate the significance of the Hot Wheels Drag Bus. You can learn everything about it by clicking here! I’ll just give you a quick summary. When the Drag Bus was released as part of the 1996 First Editions series, it was an instant hit. I believe it was the heaviest Hot Wheels ever produced. It didn’t do well on the Hot Wheels track, but it was something different and everybody wanted one. So much so that people started hoarding them and selling them on sites such as Ebay for hundreds of dollars, yes, hundreds. They became impossible to find because most of them never hit the shelves. Even department store employees hoarded them to sell for a profit. I was patient and Lenora (she has much better luck than I do) finally found one at a Walmart and not long after, my niece found one at a Walmart as well. So I have two of the original Drag Buses. This spectacle went on for months and months. Hundreds of other companies recognized the popularity of the Drag Bus and commissioned them as giveaways/purchase with their company logos. Cereal companies, oil companies, automotive part companies, everybody jumped on the bandwagon. There were/are so many variations and paint schemes for the Drag Bus, I don’t think anybody knows exactly how many. Besides the two original First Editions Drag Buses that I have, I probably have 8 or 9 company promo Drag Buses as well. I only collect the ones that appeal to me. The Drag Bus remains as popular today as it did in 1996, prices now are more reasonable. You can even pick up a carded, 1996 First Editions Drag Bus for around 12 to 15 dollars. Earlier this year, Mattel re-released the Drag Bus as part of their 50th Anniversary Favorites series. There are some changes to this release, paint scheme is different, it has Real Riders (rubber tires) and now it sports windows around the roof line, making it a 21 window T1 Drag Bus. The same phenomenon that happened back in 1996 didn’t happen this time even though it sorta started that way with this release. People immediately started hoarding them up and selling them at inflated prices on auction sites. That only lasted a couple of months, then finally died down. Though they aren’t readily available on the toy aisle pegs, if you’re patient, you’ll find one. Lenora found ours last night.
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