Hot Wheels cars are one of the most beloved toys in the world. They’re a perfect gift for car lovers both young and old, they’ve been around forever, and they can be found just about everywhere. The designs are both realistic and a bit crazy-looking, so they’re suitable for almost anyone. With a typical price tag of less than a dollar, collecting Hot Wheels cars isn’t usually an expensive endeavor, which adds even more to their charm. But did you know that some Hot Wheels can be worth thousands of dollars?
We’ve compiled a list of Hot Wheels cars that are worth a pretty penny. The high cost comes from incredibly low production numbers, strange colors, limited distributions, and the fact that only a small percentage of them are still in their original packaging. (Have you ever known a kid to keep their toys in the box?) Rare Hot Wheels are worth much more if still in their original blister packaging, and of course you have to pay attention to condition.
1971 Olds 442 in Purple
While the regular 1971 Olds 442 Hot Wheels car is not necessarily a rare item, if you find one in purple you’ve got a gem on your hands. That’s unlikely though, because very few were made. Most 1971 Olds 442s were painted magenta, but purple cars can be worth as much as $5,000. The salmon or hot pink versions of the car are quite desirable as well, but only command prices of $1,400 to $2,000.
1968 White Enamel Camaro
The 1968 White Enamel Camaro is said to be the first Hot Wheels car ever made, and it is now incredibly rare. Good luck finding one loose, much less still in the original packaging. A loose version of the 1968 White Enamel Camaro can fetch as much as $2,500, and one still in the packaging would probably be considered priceless. Other 1968 Camaros can be quite pricy as well.
1970 Mighty Maverick with the “Mad Maverick” Base
This Hot Wheels car owes its value to a re-branding that happened right after it was released. Hot Wheels changed the name of the car from “Mad Maverick” to “Mighty Maverick,” but a handful of cars were shipped out as Mighty Mavericks but with the words “Mad Maverick” still engraved on the bottom. Due to rarity, the value of these cars is almost impossible to calculate.
1968 Python with the “Cheetah” Hong Kong Base
When this Hot Wheels car was first released, it was given the Cheetah name, but it was soon discovered that the name had been trademarked by a GM Executive for his Corvette-powered race car. The name was changed to Python, but a handful of Pythons were released with the name “Cheetah” on the metal base. Only a few of these Hot Wheels have ever been found, and they usually retail for at least $10,000.
1969 Pink Rear-Loading Volkswagen Beach Bomb
The most expensive Hot Wheels of all time is the 1969 Rear-Loading Volkswagen Beach Bomb in pink. There is only one that has been confirmed to exist, and it is owned by the biggest Hot Wheels collector in the world, Bruce Pascal. The car was a rejected prototype and never made it to mass production because it wouldn’t fit in a Hot Wheels Super Charger. Apparently, Pascal spent $72,000 to get his hands on this little toy car, making it the most expensive Hot Wheels car of all time.