I wrote a fairly critical article when Matchbox’s 918 Spyder first hit the market in its gray and gold deco. While I stand by my comments in that article, some things have changed since then that have allowed me to really appreciate this new yellow version.
One of my biggest criticisms was the casting choice – the 918 Spyder had already been done quite well by Hot Wheels, so why waste one of the limited new casting slots on another one when we could have gotten other interesting Porsches. As luck would have it, we’ve since gotten nearly every Porsche I was wanting to see from the Mattel brands. The new Matchbox Cayenne Turbo was my model of the year last year, a Macan is on the agenda for this year, the new 911 came out in Moving Parts, and Hot Wheels just released the Cayman GT4. Now that I know we are getting those models, I can enjoy the 918 Spyder for what it is: a well executed replica of a quite cool car!
Well executed though it is, the debut deco did not do any favors for this model. The gray color was nearly identical to one done by Hot Wheels, and the gold wheels looked more like a Subaru than a multimillion dollar hypercar. This new yellow version fixes both those issues, giving the car a bright and sporty appearance while really highlighting all the detail in the casting. Plus, it has the silver wheels that are much more appropriate for a car like this.
On the gray version, I didn’t notice the mesh tampo detailing above the engine as it was hidden by the dark paint color. It looks great and adds a lovely bit of detail to the built in color break of the engine cover/exhaust section.
The Porsche logo and 918 Spyder script stand out much more on this model too. Matchbox’s printing finesse really shows here…it’s hard for me to imagine Hot Wheels pulling off that level of logo detail. Sadly, the tail lights still look too flat to me. The 1:1 918 has a pretty crazy LED light signature with a hollow section in the middle, which doesn’t come through here. Instead, it just looks like a single red lens, hardly befitting of a supercar.
Let’s be honest: when my biggest complaint is a tail light tampo, it’s a darn good model. Frankly, I’m glad the 918 finally got the chance to be great, and I hope we get to see more of it in the coming years! My fingers are still crossed for a pearl white version…
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