2002 First Editions #13
First off, here's a Happy
New Year's wish, and hope that the new year is filled with joy and happiness for everyone.
The latest classic Grand Prix racer to be immortalized as a Hot Wheels car is the Ferrari P4.
In the mid 1960s, the two top racing teams were powerhouses Ford and Ferrari. For the 1967
racing season, Ferrari decided to update the very successful 330 P3 model from the previous year.
The new 330 model was designated as the P4. A rear-mounted 450bhp V12 fuel-injected engine,
with twin overhead camshafts and three valves per cylinder, supplied the power. The body was
tubular steel with sheet alloy reinforcements to maintain stiffness. The dry weight was 792
kilograms, or 0.82 tons, and the top speed of the P4 was around 192 mph. The year started off
well for Ferrari, finishing 1-2-3 at Daytona, followed by a win in the Monza 1000 Kilometers.
In the big race at Le Mans, however, the P4 lost out to the superior Ford Mk IV, which topped out
over 207 mph. Ferrari followed with another second place finish at Brands Hatch, and finished
first overall for the year in the Manufacturers Championship.
The Hot Wheels model appears to be an accurate representation of the famous Ferrari racecar.
The die-cast body is painted red enamel, and sports authentic looking racing tampos. The
chassis is black plastic and features moderated suspension detail in the rear. The interior
seats and rear spare tire are part of this component. The remainder of the interior and the
rear-mounted engine are chromed plastic, as well as the oil pan that protrudes through the bottom of
the chassis. The glass is clear plastic. The car rides on gold chrome-plated standard
five-spoke wheels and is manufactured in Malaysia.
The detail on the Ferrari P4 body is a little heavy, but not overly so. Nicely done
are horizontal parallel accents on the rear fenders and the lower running boards. The clear
glass thankfully allows an unobstructed view of the interior and fits snugly into the body.
I don't like this new practice where portions of the interior are part of the chassis component, but
it is not that evident here. The headlights unfortunately are part of the body and not the glass
component, but over the
years most of the Hot Wheels models of Grand Prix cars have had the headlights represented this
way. The rear tire protruding through the back end and the chromed oil pan are nice
touches. As with most of the Ferrari models that have debuted in recent years, there is no Hot
Wheels flame logo anywhere
on the body. One of the most impressive features on my example is the near-perfect
alignment of the multi-colored herald and sponsor tampos, especially over the curvy complex surface
areas of the body. The car is too light due to all the plastic components, but it looks
exceptionally good due to the body accuracy and the above average painting and printing.
Hot Wheels released a model of the Ford Mk IV back in 1969. It's nice to see them
release a model of the other prominent Grand Prix racer from 1967. The Ferrari P4
may not perform well due to its lighter weight, but it does look good standing still.