Matchbox Monday doubles up with Retro D and Cruisers B

I have decided to rush this particular set of models to the top of my list, as a month or so ago, I showcased the 2022 Retro Batch C assortment from Matchbox.  I hypothesized that this may be all, and the final batch might not surface.  This was because Target, the recipient of the series in the USA, had pulled pegs for Retro before seeing them surface, in readiness for their new 2023 "exclusive" items, which will revert to the old style of being mixed in with basics.  Well, as it turned out, a small run was completed of the fourth and final batch of Retro for 2022.  But with Target not wanting them, where will they end up? The answer?  Indonesia.  I have not heard of any other market seeing them outside of Indonesia.  So, in essence, this does sort of make them an Indonesia exclusive.  Unless they do surface anywhere else.  So, what to do?  Luckily, I have a friend in Indonesia.  So I gave a shout-out to Aldy Prayogo, who goes by @matchboxindonesia on Instagram. He was very helpful to me, in managing to obtain a set and send them over to me in the UK. Many, MANY thanks, Aldy. If you remember, Aldy was instrumental in me finally getting the Toyota Land Cruiser in batch B that was just so tough to find in the USA. Without Aldy's help, I highly doubt I would have been able to get this set, so I am extremely grateful for his assistance. So, with the thank-yous done, I guess I should showcase the models. As that is what you are here for.

Now, before I get into the models, can I just say, each batch this year of the Retro series, has been packaged in different blisters.  The first batch was a yellow grid style, reminiscent of the mid 1980s US style packaging.  The second batch was dark blue grid style, which was reminiscent of late 1980s ROW style packaging.  The third batch was a simple plain yellow, more in line with the really classic Lesney stuff.  This batch has the blue with red and yellow stripes look of the mid 1980s ROW packages.  I love that they went to all the effort in replicating looks from the past, and this batch has, in my opinion, the best look of the lot.  I remember this blue style from my childhood so well, and this really brought back cherished childhood memories.  It is such a shame that they left the best until last, and they are so hard to find.  But, I have to admit, I didn't reminisce too long.  Rip, tear, destroy!!!!

Taking the number 9 slot in the series is the return of the MB302 '69 Chevy Camaro SS-396 Convertible.  Except, is this the return?  Something is looking a little different here.  But before I get to that, I will start by pointing out the look.  Orange with blue and yellow flames.  This is definitely giving me retro vibes, as many models in the old days used to sport flames.  The '62 Corvette, Flareside Pickup, Datsun 126X, IMSA Mustang, '57 Chevy.  The list goes on.  

So I do think this is a really cool job they have done with this one.  This, to me, is what Retro is all about.  Giving us classic vibes in the models.  But, I did mention this casting looking a little different.  

Confirmation that this is indeed an updated casting.  Well, I think I might need to clarify that.  Updated?  More like, thrown away and started from scratch. Seriously, this model appears to no longer be anything like how it was.  

I guess, to compare, I really need to bring in the original for some side by side shots.  Any one. They are all the same.  It seems logical to show off the debut.  The MB40 from 1997. It started in blue with dual white stripes.  Something I found was good for shades.  Bang!  I am on the shades immediately.  

So, yes, when putting the new one side by side, it is nothing like the old one.  Really. For starters, let's check out the front end.  The standard SS package for the Camaro would feature 2 hood vents.  The original casting has those hood vents in place.  However, for $79 (at the time), you could replace it with a cowl induction hood vent with the opening at the rear towards the window.  The new casting has changed to this option.  The lights?  Standard round headlights are the norm for the vehicle, and the new casting has these in place.  But for $132 at the time, you could change the standard headlights for the hidden headlight RS option.  The older casting had that optional extra in place.  So it appears that we have switched optional extras.  But that is just the nerd in me, noticing these things.  But what you may also be noting here, is that the new model is thinner. Yes, it appears to have lost mass.  The interior now becomes the front grille area.  The base section is also forming the front bumper too.  The window section is much more streamlined, and no longer had the visors in place.  

The interior piece also stretches out to the back too.  However, this does keep all the detailing for lights and the SS badge that the original had.  You probably notice that the tonneau cover is also a lot smaller on the new casting.  

As well as being thinner, the model is actually shorter too.  Not by much, but it is a slightly smaller model in general.  This is why I am saying this is an all-new casting.  I can't see how they used any parts of the original to create the new casting.  In fact, let's bring something else out.

The MB629 Chevy Camaro was recently tinkered with by Matchbox, and the 2021 arrival of the updated casting appears alongside these 2.  This looks very VERY familar.

Same width, same length, same part pieces being used in the same way.  It looks like instead of taking the MB302 casting and attempting to update it, they took the MB629 casting and altered it into a new MB302.  I honestly think this is a much better way of doing it.  I was never a fan of how the MB302 and MB629 castings looked so different, considering they were in essence the same vehicle.  And the MB629 was always my favoured casting, so by bringing the MB302 more in line with the MB629 casting, to me, this has actually vastly improved the model.  I am very excited about this development.  With both a hardtop and convertible '69 Camaro both being worked on recently, all I see is lots more issues of both castings in the future.  I am very excited for this.  I do love a Camaro, and hopefully this is the beginning of seeing more Camaros again.  Fingers crossed the MB336 '71 Camaro Z-28 and MB366 '98 Camaro SS Convertible are still at the factory and have potential to return too.  

You know what?  As I had the MB302s out for a little show and tell, I am going to do a dive back on them.  Aside from the blue basic, if you lived in the USA, you would have been able to participate in the 75 Challenge.  Each of the 75 models (I say each, a couple were left out, appearing in 10-packs instead) in the range was found randomly inserted in cases in plain gold.  

For 1998, the model moved to MB33 in the basic range, for a second and final issue at the time.  It was dropped after 1998.  Now it was in white with dual black stripes.  

We also saw a red with dual white stripes release in 1998.  This model was a part of an Adventure pack that year.  They were the equivalent to the current Hitch & Haul packs, featuring 2 models and some plastic accessories.  In this case, it was being towed by a Chevy Breakdown Truck in the Roadside Assistance pack, and included were 2 men, a jack and a road sign.

1998 also saw the model receive 2 premium outings.  Pictures is a dark green from World Class series 17, and (as I don't have it yet, I can't show it), a dark orange was later added to the World Class series 20, featuring the same tampo.  

But what I do have, is the 1999 Open Road 5-pack release.  This too was orange, but the striping was in black, not white.  And obviously, this is a core range issue, so not as detailed as a premium.  

For some reason, this casting was not really fitting with the direction they were taking.  2000 saw a couple of premium releases.  One was in a Coca-Cola themed series sold under the Collectibles banner.  This, I picture.  The other one is not a model I plan to own.  Also sold under the Collectibles banner was a series of Character Cars.  This set of 12 models featured a vehicle with a massive character stuck on top.  The Camaro was in white with I Dream of Jeannie on the side.  Sitting on top, was a giant oversize Jeannie herself.  Due to the size of Jeannie, this model would not fit in my carry cases, so I have no desire to get it.  

After this, the model lay dormant for 2 years.  2001 and 2002 saw nothing.  However, in 2003, we saw a new release.  It came in a licensed 5-pack for Nickelodeon.  It was in red with Rugrats on the side.  It was also chosen to be one of the 3 models from the 5-pack to then get a single release a few months later.  For that, they switched the red to blue.  

This somehow reminded them the casting existed. It started getting more and more outings.  In 2004, a Haunted House 5-pack saw a black release with ghosts on the side.  Oooo!

And again, a licensed 5-pack was issued with the model included.  This time it was a Looney Tunes pack, and the model featured Wile E. Coyote on the side of a teal vehicle.  Again, with 3 of the 5 also coming as singles in alternate colours, the Camaro was chosen and switched to green for the single release.

And we finally saw a real livery again, as it was added to the new Superfast series that was launched in 2004.  It was number 40 in the set in green.

For 2005, it returned to the basic range for a random outing.  MB21 was in blue, and what are those?  Flames!  Yes, this too was a model that has seen flames in the past.  

A Halloween 5-pack appeared in 2005 too.  A number of models in the pack were the same as 2004 ones, just in alternate colours.  the Camaro saw the same ghosts design as the 2004 Haunted House pack, but now on a red model.  

2005 was also a Superfast year, and this time, it was split between the USA itself, and ALL other markets (now classified as ROW, not the usual US/ROW split).  15,000 models were made in cream for the USA, and 7,500 in white for everywhere else.  

For 2006, it was a part of the One Piece licensed 5-pack, and this featured Sanji on the side of a black model.  

The 2006 Superfast series was back to only being sold in the USA.  It was also the year that a special subset, known as Streakers, was added.  These were paying homage to the original Lesney tampo printed models.  The Camaro was one of the Streakers models, in red with white striping all over.  

In 2007, the model was now in the regular 5-packs.  The US Classics set saw an orange one, which I also noted was coming in some cool shades.  Was this like the earlier 1999 5-pack release?

No! That was a much brighter orange, and the tampo detailing was a little different.  The black stripe was a standard stripe, but everything else was new.  

2007 saw the full 75-set Superfast dropped for a more streamlined 20-piece set.  This was because it was now a Walmart exclusive, and they were cutting down on how many they were making.  Dubbed Superfast America, all 20 were of US classics.  The Camaro fitted the bill, so a green one was issued in the number 7 slot.

2008!  That was the copyright year on the side of this SpongeBob SquarePants issue in black.  That was also the year, that particular licensed 5-pack appeared.  It was the last of the fancy side designs on models.  It had quite a few over the years.  

After that, the model took a few years off.  2009 and 2010 saw nothing.  However, for 2011, it was included as one of the offerings in the non-exclusive 10-packs.  However, this was the year of transitioning the packs.  Until 2010 we were used to 4 batches, with each batch containing 1 all-exclusive pack, and 2 further packs with models pulled from elsewhere and an exclusive in the corner.  These exclusives would be the same models run across multiple batches, but in different colours.  However, for 2011, the all-exclusive packs were being phased out.  But in a twist, the final batch switched out the 2 non-exclusive packs for a 1st Editions 10-pack.  So we only got 3 batches with Camaros (and '65 Mustangs) in them.  The yellow was in the first batch, black was second, and red in the third.  

We then saw one more outing for the casting, in its old guise.  For 2013, it returned for a swansong in the basic range.  It was MB13 in tan.  After that, it appears to have taken 9 years off, before getting the re-tool/rebuild.  This is hopefully meaning that many more are due to arrive in the future.  I can't wait!

Wait?  Am I only getting to the second model?  Wow!  That was big. The MB1171 Subaru SVX takes the number 19 slot in the series.  

This is also new for the Retro series.  A lovely dark metallic green.  This is a lovely looking model, and again sports the standard rear detailing that we have seen in numerous others.  

The gold wheels work really well alongside the metallic green.  This is a gorgeous model.  I am impressed with this one.  

I am glad seeing this model getting some love now.  This is because it debuted in 2019 in white as MB5, and then took 2020 off.  What?  Seriously, a debut year, then nothing.  

It did return in 2021 though.  It was MB88 in cranberry, which again I saw shades with.  

So far this year, we saw a green one again.  Yes, this is the second green.  But these are totally different.  That is a much brighter green, and was fully detailed as it was in the Collectors series.  

So far, 3 of the 4 releases have seen the same Subaru SVX licence plate.  The 2021 paid tribute to Ryu Asada, who created the model at Mattel, as he had sadly passed away a short time before.  

Spoiler alert, there is another coming.  I am still to do the final batch of the year, and that contains another SVX.  I look forward to seeing how that compares.  To date, I think this green is my new favourite.  Tough, as the cranberry is so nice too, and it has that homage to Ryu too.  

Ooh!  Another newbie.  The number 21 slot in the set is the final original issue in the set.  And a welcome return to the MB1264 '75 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible.  

For the Retro series, we see it in the classic light metallic blue.  This blue has been used on a lot of classic vehicles.  And for good reason.  It looks good on them.  The model is then highlighted with some simple pin-striping down the sides, and a grey interior, smoke window and lashings of chrome.  It's gorgeous!

I am surprised it isn't seeing more action yet.  It is seeing quite a quiet roll-out.  All 3 releases have been the same though in one respect.  All 3 have lashings of chrome, and the same simple side pin-striping to them.  You cannot go wrong with that, and this again is not disappointing.  

For those trying to remember, it debuted last year in the 2021 Cadillac series at Walmart.  Plus, other stores in other markets outside the USA.  

After appearing in brown as the debut in batch A, a pale lemon was also a part of batch B.  

Which means, to date, this model has been seen in 3 exclusive series batches.

With each one simply being an alternate colour and interior to the last.  A lovely way to keep the model consistent.  I thoroughly enjoy that.  

This now brings us to the carry forwards.  First up, we have the MB710 Dump Truck. Quite a left field choice, but when you think about it, this is a real classic.   It sort of fits in well with the whole Retro theme.  After all, MB710 is a modification to the older MB209 Dump Truck, which in itself was a modification to the MB58-C Faun Dump Truck, which first arrived back in 1977.  

It takes the number 22 slot in the range, and uses the same design that was originally used back in 2010.  This was originally in the Construction Trucks 5-pack that year.  

I am not going to do a dive back on this one.  We would be here all day.  Instead, I am simply going to pull out the 2010 original to compare against.  

At first glance, this appears to be a pretty good match.  But, this is me.  You know what I am like.  

Do you see it?  The shade?  Maybe another angle.  

Luckily, as the dumps unclick easily, I can show off much more of the red.  The new run is a darker red than it was originally.  

Although for some, the real difference is with the base.  Since the original run, the base was wiped and re-worded.  The model is officially now known as MBX Turf Hauler.  So for those who like a base variation, this is the one for you.  

Number 23 in the set is the return of the MB1038 '90 VW Golf Country.  This was originally the 2018 basic range release in red.  

However, it was also carried forward into the 2021 Advent Calendar.  That model appears in this picture.  For those who follow me on Instagram (@davidjtilley), you might have seen me unveiling this and noting that the "Country" printing on the side was lighter than the original 2018 dark blue run.  Well, this run appears to duplicate the Advent one.  

This one even came with the same chainsaw interior variation that I had picked up in the Advent Calendar.  Thankfully, a fellow collector (@nickb27 on Instagram), sent me the alternate from the 2021 calendar. So with that, I have this and do not need to open this one.

Finally, we get the MB097 Chevy Corvette T-top in the number 24 slot.  A real classic.  I can see why they chose it.  Definitely good for a retro showing. But they chose the 2021 re-birth issue?

Originally, this was a semi-exclusive release in one of the 2021 9-packs.  It gets repeated here.  The thing is, when you look at the history of the car, you do sort of see there were not a lot of choices.  The fact is, they probably have very little detailing on any of the releases from before the mid-2000s, which does sort of limit it.  Because in that case, we have a couple of Superfast releases and a 2013 10-pack exclusive to live with.  Anything from before that was actually created under different regimes.  Mattel has had the casting since 1997, but until 2004, they were based in Mount Laurel, NJ.  Things moved to El Segundo in 2004, and the model has limited use since.  

So they could have chosen another casting.  There was no significance for this to be here.  But it is a classic, and I like it being here.  So, the 2021 rebirth issue.  It was a pretty decent model.  Flames all over the side.  A bit like the Camaro.  Also, very much like a certain film.  Corvette Summer.  A 1978 film starring a certain Mark Hamill, shot after he did some little debut film called Star Wars. That is a really cool nod to the past if ever there was one.  So, yes, I can see why it was chosen.  And, as you can see, I opened this.

So let's bring in last year's model for a little side by side, shall we.

This new run is definitely a much more metallic bronzed look than the less metallic red of last year.  

The rest is a good match. But, for me, as a nutty shade variation collector, I will take it.  I got 5 out of the 6 models added to my collection.  So for me, this was a set worthy of obtaining. And again, thank you to Aldy for getting them for me.  

But, as I have mentioned a few times.  I am falling behind.  It appears there are a lot more batches of items than weeks in a year.  I need to play catch up a little.  So this week, and a few further weeks, I am enlarging my "new" content to try and catch up a bit again.  Due to this, my dive backs at the end are going on a small hiatus.  I hope you understand.  So, the perfect complement to the Retro set for me is the Local Cruisers batch B.  And that is because of 2 models being linked in a way. The first one, very obviously....

Taking the number 7 slot in the Local Cruisers series is the MB629 '69 Chevy Camaro.  

I started off the Retro batch with the rebirth of the MB302 Camaro casting, and pointed out how it appears to have been retooled to better match this one.  This was rebirthed last year.  Blue with flames is the second outing for this one.

And boy does it look familiar.  Seriously.  

Retro vs. Local Cruisers.  The Retro one is the convertible, in orange, with blue tinted windows and a blue/yellow flames design.  The Local Cruisers one is the hardtop, in blue, still with blue tinted windows, but the flames are now orange/yellow.  

This is beyond freaking awesome.  Okay, I am calling it.  This is a contender for one of my highlights of 2023.  I know technically these are 2022 models, but I am only just finding this out now.  It is too late for the 2022 Top 10s list, so I am already earmarking it for 2023.  Let's see if it gets there.  

All I need now is a yellow Camaro with blue/orange flames to complete the trio.  Do you think a modern Camaro could work with that?  Or, shall I say, get that MB336 out of mothballs.  Add a '71 Camaro Z-28 in yellow with alternate flames and finish the set.  Now do you see why I was really happy to do both of these sets together?  Can you tell I am jumping up and down in my chair like a 6-year old?  

Oh yeah, I did mention it appearing last year.  I already showed it once (in the Convertible section above), but again, the red appears to remind us of the 2 that have appeared in hardtop form since the rebirth.  Camaros.  I love Camaros.  I love matching themes.  I love all this stuff.  I am bouncing in my chair again.  

"Oh my giddy aunt"!  That is a very old English expression.  Used in the early 20th century as an exclamation of surprise.  It works for me here, as these are both classics so far in the Local Cruisers set, and number 8 in the series is the MB300 '56 Ford Pickup.

If you saw my Top 10 list of 2022, you will know that this one did make it in the "extras" section.  An additional 10 awards for various things that occurred during 2022.  This one, being red with an Edelbrock design, was one of those 10.

Because, apart from being a really cool looking design, this was also the same as another model.

The MB1166 '54 Henry J Gasser debuted this look on this year's Opening Parts release.  I thought the look was really nice when I saw that one.  

But when they added this to the mix too, I was in heaven.  I love recurring themes, and this new theme is one I hope to see on many releases over coming years.  Sadly, these were the only 2 models in this set that were actually all new.  The other 4 were carry forwards.  But you know me.  I am always curious whether they stayed the same or not.

First up is the MB810 '71 Pontiac Firebird Formula.  It takes the number 9 slot in the set of 12 in black with a screaming eagle inspired side design.  

This is a repeat from year 2 of existence.  The year was 2012, and the model was given a 2-release outing that year.  With black being the first of them.  So we know what this looked like.  

But is it different? Well, I think I should do a dive back.  I only did one for Retro, so should get another done too.  This seemed a good idea.  

The casting debuted in 2011 as MB15 in blue.  As you can see, I found 2 shades to the blue during its time in the range, and you might note these coming with smoke windows.  Important for later....

Because, later that year, it was given a version 2 release as well. It was now turned into "Rockford Files" gold.  Okay, that was not the name for the colour itself.  More that when it appeared, everybody was pointing out how it looked like the Rockford Files car.  Again I found 2 shades.  

And then there was 2012.  MB63 saw the model in black with a screaming eagle inspired side design.  Oh, wait, this is the one.  

The new model, on top, has much brighter tampo prints all round.  You may also notice that the side indicator lights are now being depicted.  Small, but subtle, changes.  Enough to make me very happy.  

It then switched to a lime green look later in the year, for yet another version 2.  

We also saw a lovely pair of promotional issues that year too.  It was chosen to be the dinner model for the Albuquerque convention.  The first 75 produced had a screaming eagle on the front, which was removed for the remainder of production.  

The screaming eagle made a return to the 2013 issue, which was actually one of the 10-pack exclusives that year, as the model was dropped after 2 years from the basic range.  Even though it had 4 releases in those 2 years.  

Dropping it from basics didn't last long.  It was back in 2014.  Again in green, this time a much darker one (again I was finding shades), as MB11.

For 2015, it moved to 5-packs, appearing in the Classic Rides set in red.  

It did not get an outing in 2016, but for 2017,was back in the basic range.  As this stands, it is the last basic range release, but you never know, we may get another.  MB25 in orange was another sporting the screaming eagle motif, and was also another one good for a shade or 2.

We then did not see the casting until 2021.  At this time, it popped up in the Retro series in red with a screaming eagle front end again.  

It was later also a 9-pack exclusive in blue.  

This is not the only 2022 carry forward though.  Earlier this year was in the MBX Highway II 5-pack in a repeat of the debut look.  Again, just like with the 2011 debut, I found 2 shades.  

These are both lighter than the 2011 originals, but I mentioned smoke windows.  The new run has a very light smoke window, which is noticeable in person.  Almost clear, but not quite. So I am doing well with finding variations to this.  

Which could not be said of the next model in the list.  Number 10 was a carry forward of 2021's MB1226 '19 Ford Mustang GT basic range release in white.  Try as I might, I could not see anything different between the 2.  

So I am just glossing over that to move on to number 11 in the set.  A carry forward of the MB1183 '68 Dodge D-200 Pickup.  

Well, this model has been freed, so I have seen something.  It was originally the MB65 release of the basic range in 2020.  

That model was in black with a red side stripe, grey base and dark grey interior (which also forms the rear bed). But I am going to make a minor complaint here.  Obviously, I have seen a change, so this is being added to my collection, but this is about this casting and 2022 carry forwards.  

I will explain, as I do another dive back.  This casting debuted in 2019 as MB63.  It came in pale tan, with an olive side.

That model was carried forward this year to the Walmart Dodge series.  Luckily, the olive side is totally different, so I added it to the collection.  

As I already mentioned, this is the MB65 from 2020 carried forward.  

As you can see, the base is now a much paler grey than it was before.  I am not a big base variation collector.

But this does form the front grille too, so to me, it still sticks out without the need to flip over.  

The interior is also a little darker too, which is actually more evident on the rear bed.  So a double shade.  Yes, happy enough.  

Then we have the 2021 MB93 in pale blue.  

This was carried forward to the Retro series this year too.  Albeit with a darker tan interior/rear bed.  Enough for me to keep it.  

But this means that all 3 of the basic range issues for this casting have been carried forward to certain side sets this year. In all honesty, with all the hundreds of castings they could have chosen, they went with the same one, three times!  Now, I don't know about others.  I know some don't like carry forwards at all.  The whole idea to them is bad.  To me, I see the logic, and as can be seen here, I added all three of these to my collection, so I am happy enough. But, if we are carrying forward stuff, I want to see different vehicles carried forward.  And I want them to be carry forwards from a while ago.  At least 5 years.  This casting is just too new to even be considered as carry forward material.  We have loads of options from the early 2010s that could have been thrown in.  Shelby GT500?  Cadillac Escalade (original casting)?  Chevy Stepside?  I could go on.  So many choices, yet they just kept dumping this one out again and again.  Don't get me wrong.  I like the casting.  I like the looks it has had so far.  I just think it was too much, too soon, to have this constantly appearing in carry forwards.  

Especially as 2022 also saw 2 different 5-pack releases.  The Off Road Rally saw this awesome looking orange one, in the recurring "Matchbox Team" look.  This was awesome!  Especially as I found shades again.

And it appeared in the Coffee Cruisers III 5-pack in white, with a throwback design paying homage to a classic 4x4 Chevy Van from the 1980s.  Absolutely awesome. 2 fantastic looks for 2022, slightly overshadowed by the fact we kept getting duplicates thrown at us.

It did get a 2020 Superfast release too.  This was black with a Skyjacker Suspensions theme to it.  Again, awesome, but it is a premium, so is highly unlikely to see a carry forward.  

Which brings me to the last model in the set, and in my rundown of items.  The MB097 Chevy Corvette T-top.  Yes, number 12 in this set is the same casting that was number 24 in the other set.  Again, is this too much of the same casting?

This one is much better, though.  It carries forward the 2013 9-pack exclusive in red.  That was from pre-casting update.  

So this is definitely much cooler than the Retro one.  The one thing that struck me with this one.  The 2013 9-pack issues all had a 60th Anniversary logo on them.  This one carries forward, and the logo is still there.  I am quite surprised with that.  Was there a legal hiccup that meant if it was removed, this would have to be classified as a new look?  The fine print in these contracts for the models can vary, and they might haver thought they could sneak it off, but had they done so, a new issue for a new look would be created, negating the carry forward status.  The Firebird managed to sneak in a little indicator light tampo.  Deals between different companies, even those under the same umbrella, might have different clauses.  Chevy still exists, and likely they deal with current personnel.  Pontiac doesn't exist, and may end up with a different person setting up different deals for models. We don't see how this all plays out behind the scenes.  We only see the end results. My hypothesis (it is not fact, just my educated guess work) is that they were likely attempting to remove the 60th logo, but in doing so would have to classify it as a new look.  By this time, it was a little late to drop it and get something else, so just left it on.  At the end of the day, is it really THAT important?

So, let's bring in the original 2013 issue for a few shots. Again, this is too big to do a dive back one.  

Confrimation of the new base details and copyright dates.  2013?  Still showing the original 1979 copyright date. The new one?  The new 2020 date.  So this means the casting is the new, updated one.  

So the new one no longer has Corvette cast into the rear.  It has a smaller rear window.  

The side window frame no longer exists, and the side exhausts are prominent again.  They had pretty much faded away to nothing.  

Oh, and the new one is darker.  I am surprised I didn't mention that in the beginning.  I am slipping.  Hmm!  And I am also done.  

12 models.  2 batches of 6 from 2 different series.  I hope you don't mind that I am doubling up for a short while. It is the only way I can think of to try and get back on top of things again.  Once I have caught up, I think I may aim to do random doubles throughout the year, just to try and keep things simpler.  

The Retro series gave us 3 more new looks.  

Along with 3 carry forwards.  A 50/50 split.

Whereas the Local Cruisers set only gave us 2 new looks.  

Along with 4 carry forwards.  A 33.33/66.66 split.  

But, as I said, I wanted to pair these 2 sets up for these 2.  The Camaros being so closely matched, it just screams awesome!  And a pair of Corvettes, making me wonder if there were perhaps more castings that could have been looked at instead.  If it were me, I would have pulled out the MB630 Chevy Corvette C6 casting, and carried forward one of those. The 2008 Modern Rides 5-pack issue in orange with dual black stripes? Again please!  

But for me, the lack of variety to carry forward models is my only gripe.  I have enjoyed getting these.  Out of 12, I kept 10.  The 5 new ones are the obvious keepers, but I eked more out.  I hope you enjoyed this week's report.  Next week, you might want to get a cup of coffee on.  I am going big!  I took some days off work to incorporate it.  Be prepared.  Be VERY prepared!

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