Matchbox Monday moves into 2024's Moving Parts

After last week's little adventure into the past, which I think is looking like being successful, this week we are back up-to-date again.  It's about time I made a start on the new set of Moving Parts.These get 8 batches over the course of the year, and batch B is with me ready to work my way through soon.  

So, let's get the elephant in the room out of the way.  There is a brand-new package style for Moving Parts in 2024.  Visually, this is a nice looking pack.  The 1 thing I instantly notice is that the model is at the bottom again.  Do you know how tough it was to carry these in bulk?  You grab them off the pegs, and because there was nothing else to buy, you are trying to make your way to the checkout with models that are halfway up the pack in a blister. It wasn't easy.  This is so much better.  Of course, there is no blister.  It is more cardboard, and one half is exposed. That's weird.  

But this is all part of Mattel's attempts to make things environmentally friendly. It is something that should be applauded. They are making their way to recycled materials in the construction of the models, and the package here is all cardboard.  A recyclable item.  However, there is a downside.  Some models sport interior variations.  Variations that are visible through the rear.  A rear that is now completely hidden.  This makes it a lot tougher for the completeist like me, who will want both variants to the many models with rear variations.  Mazda MX-30? VW Golf Mk3? How am I going to see what is in there through this?  I can see it leading to a lot of ripped packages as people simply tear off the front end to see the back of the model.  That could be a downside.

I do like that the package can stand up.  It is almost like we are back with the old window box again.  I think that is cool. So, positives and negatives with this new package.  For most, the positives will outweigh the negatives, and from personal experience in finding old window box models to add to my collection, I often find ones with the plastic window part either cracking, turning brown or just falling off entirely.

Another daft negative is the very pale numbering system. Who came up with an idea to put the numbers on the package in a pastel orange? On an orange background!That should have been either black or white.  Make it stand out.  Some people didn't even notice they have numbers.  Like this number 4 of 54 MB1307 '22 GMC Hummer EV.

But, I do like that you can stack the models up very easily for carrying.  Anyway, let's open up the Hummer and see how it is held inside.

As you can see, this model is packed into a PaperFoam insert.  This was first seen with the exclusive Tesla Roadster that appeared in 2021.  A special 200-piece run using all recycled materials.  The PaperFoam is the same salmon colour as was used on that Tesla in white, and as such, is moulded around each model.

What you find is that during production, they simply slot the models into this PaperFoam piece, and the wheels will click into place. This means that the model doesn't just pop out.  You have to open the package and take the PaperFoam out and push the model back out again.  

However, I am not entirely convinced about this PaperFoam.  I know it is a carbon-neutral product.  Again, great for the environment. However, I did notice that on this model, it was already cracking.  Will it eventually disintegrate?  Of course, mine won't get the chance, as they have already been disposed of in the recycling, and are on their way to being made into something else.  But, this is a new product, and there hasn't been long enough to see how well it holds up in the long run. There are people out there who, for some reason, leave models in the package. I wonder how well the PaperFoam will hold up in 10 years time.     

Because, as I pop the model out, the first thing I notice are loads of little salmon dots over the model.  Pieces of the PaperFoam are still with the model, meaning I had to wipe it down after removal. I mean, in all honesty, I just wiped it on my sweatpants I was wearing at the time.  It took all of 2 seconds. It's not a big deal.  Just a small annoyance. It does lead to more worry over the longevity of this insert.  For now, we will just have to see how it pans out.  For me, it is about the model anyway.

This is only the Hummer's second outing in the regular Moving Parts series, after debuting in 2022.  For 2024, the model comes in a lovely shade of blue. GMC refer to this as Supernova Metallic. It is a genuine option for the real vehicle. This is the first time that Matchbox have done an official colour for the real vehicle.

The model sees a simple rear print, and quite a complicated front print.  It may appear simple, but remember that they tampo print parts before construction.  

This means that the front of the body section was tampo printed, the opening hood was tampo printed, and the interior was also tampo printed, as it formed a part of the front, with a colour break. That means they tampo printed the front 3 times in total.  People often don't notice that sort of detail.  I do.  I appreciate all the effort that is made to make a model like this. And I love the colour.  It may be a dark blue, but it is still a very vibrant dark blue.  Simple front and rear detailing, and this is a perfect 10 from me.  I hope they do either the Afterburner (metallic bronze) or Deep Aurora (muddy green) looks in the future.  Although a simple white will also look good.  I still wonder if we will ever see the SUV variant of the new Hummer?  Perhaps in the basic range?  

As a quick recap, the model debuted in the 2022 series in a solid grey look.  This was not an official Hummer colour, as they do a metallic grey (known as Meteorite), with this being the second Moving Parts outing.

However, we did see the model in 2023.  It was a part of a special 70th Anniversary set in matte orange.  

So this is the third time we have seen the model.  But, as pointed out, this is the first official Hummer colour. GMC only have 7 in total, so there are 6 more official possibilities (plus others that Matchbox come up with).  I can see a National Parks look for this....

As I do these in number order, we move on to number 6 of 54 (which you can just make out on the package).  This is the MB1375 '68 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser. Again, a model on its second Moving Parts outing, this time coming in tan.

Although, if you wanted to be specific, this is more of an ecru shade, or possibly sand.  It is pretty close to an official FJ40 option of the time, as Coronado Beige was an option for the 1968 through 1971 model years.  Amazingly, they never did one like this in the basic range model's life.

The front had a lovely detail, and the roof was painted white, but I am surprised how little they do to the rear of this one.  The hinges are usually colour coded anyway, so detailing them in any way would be wrong.  But, it is a shame that they don't do anything else to the rear.  Just a little blob of red on the lights is a little bland to me.  Even if it was just to add a tough to the rear licence plate area, to help enhance it.

As I said, when the casting first arrived in 2023, I was a little sad to see they went with the exact same year of FJ that had been used in the basic range for a while. I would have preferred a slightly earlier one, with a different side window configuration.  The only real difference is the opening doors (although the basic was altered later).  I will give this a 9 out of 10.  I like the colour, but am still a little underwhelmed by it.  

The debut was a lovely Rustic Green.  Although I believe that was a colour option for the 1972 through 1979 years.  The wheels are the same, and the tampo printing is identical between the pair.

I do love consistency.  This is a great little casting.  Perfectly done.  I just wish for more variety.  As I often say, if they are coming up with a model for both basic and Moving Parts, try and make them a bit different in some way.  I like variety to the castings.  

Hubba hubba!  'Nuff said!  Next.  Oh, wait, you wanted me to talk about the MB1330 '20 Porsche 911 Carrera 4s.  This is the model's 3rd outing in the range as number 15 in the series.  It comes in a lovely dark blue.

Porsche calls this Gentian Blue Metallic.  It is a real option.  This is the only blue that is a beginner metallic colour option.  They have 4 solid colours as a no-cost option, and then 5 metallics for a small fee.  You could go with a Shark Blue, which is much brighter, but adds thousands to the cost of the car as there are 6 more metallics in the next cost bracket. Or, Porsche allows you to pay even more and paint it whatever colour you want.  Their paint to sample scheme will cover pretty much anything you want.  You want it in pink, there is a RubyStar colour option.  But, for now, Matchbox appear to be concentrating on the core options.  This is the third outing, and third time a core no-cost colour option is released.

The model comes with front and rear detailing.  You can't go wrong with a fully detailed front and rear end.  And, again, I note that the model is a slot in construction method, and they are tampo printing the licence plate on the part that pops through at the back.  

The gold wheel hubs appear to be something that Matchbox came up with themselves.  I like it. Porsche does allow for a personalized wheel colour, but gold is not an option.  However, pink is!  Ruby Star with Ruby Star wheels.  Would Matchbox make that happen in miniature?  We already saw a classic 911 Turbo in pink as a Mattel Creations, and that was a huge success.  I think they could go for it. But, in the meantime, this blue one is a perfect 10 out of 10 from me.  I bet you were not at all surprised with that outcome.

So, another dive back.  This is a really cool one, as I have managed to obtain this cool prepro.  This uses basic colours that Mattel often use for models, but the funny thing is, this is an actual colour option in the "paint to sample" section of the Porsche site.  Olivegreen is a real option.  Of course, it would not come with a bright blue interior and pink base that the model does.  But, I do find it funny that Mattel actually used an actual Porsche colour for the prototype.

It then debuted in the 2022 series in Guards Red, as Porsche calls it.  One of their no-cost paint options.

It then turned into the Agate Grey Metallic look for the 2023 range. This is from the beginner range of metallic options.  This was also given the same gold wheels that are seen on the new one.  This gold does suit the model.  Porsche should look at gold as a wheel option.

These make for a great trio. So far, they have used some of the basic looks. I do wonder at what time they will start looking at some of the more unusual options.  There are so many to choose from.  This model could get some amazing looks for many years to come.  

Well, this didn't take long to return.  The MB1321 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IV was only in the final batch of 2023, and it crops up again in the first batch of 2024.  I've barely got used to having the blue one, and now I have a black one as well.  It is number 27 in the 2024 series.

I have to admit, it does look really nice in black.  Mitsubishi refers to this look as Pyrenees Black Pearl.  Again, just like the blue in the last batch, this is a genuine option for the Evo IV.  And as we have seen with all releases to date, this model sports a lovely front and rear tampo print.

The details look really cool.  They stand out really well.  The spoiler matches very well, but it is black, so it was pretty easy to get a match between the plastic and metal parts.

And, as with all the previous issues, the engine is highly detailed when you open it up.  This model is proving to be very popular.  I can see why.  It looks stunning.  I am very happy with all the ones released so far, and this black one just looks the part.  This is another perfect 10 out of 10 from me.  I can't wait to (spoiler alert) "chase" down the next release.

As is the case with a lot of the Moving Parts models, this doesn't have a big history.  Again, this was first in the range in 2022.  It was also a part of a special Japanese series, but both were the same silver look.  

And, as I mentioned, it was only 1 batch ago that we had the blue release, as part of the final 2023 set.  The black was produced only a matter of weeks later.  

So there you have it.  The first 3 releases in stock looks and plain colours.  I do love the stock looks for vehicles, but I have seen a sneak peek of the next one, and it looks stunning.  I can't wait to get it soon.  

The MB1306 '19 Ford Mustang Convertible is next on the docket.  The lovely green model takes the number 31 slot in its 3rd year in the range.  Yes, another model that debuted in 2022.  

Ford calls this Eruption Green.  It was something new for the 2022 model year, but that's close enough.  It replaced a certain "Bullet Green" that had been around previously. Sadly, green is not in the 2024 option list in real life, but we get the model to make up for it.  I really like it.  Green is always a cool colour for a car.  You don't get that many green ones.  I don't know why.  I think it looks great on most vehicles.  It appears everybody wants grey, or black or white.  Where is the colour palette?  It would be too boring if everything was in black or white, or a shade in between.   I like black and white, but I grew up in the 1970s, where "technicolor" was big.  I like a wide range of colours in vehicles.  Daft fact, I have never owned a black, white or grey car.  Okay, I am sidetracking.  Back to the Mustang.

This is back to the regular front and rear prints that we saw in the 2022 debut, before it had a little fun in 2023.  I love the simple look, and the rear lights are really what make this car.  There's something about the way a Mustang rear light cluster looks.  It harkens back to the classics from the 1960s, and I love that Ford kept that going, and that Matchbox continues to add them.

I can't fault this model.  I love it.  Mustangs are always a big pleaser for me.  There is something so iconic about a Mustang, and I will happily take any generation.  Yes, even the 3rd generation.  I mean, Mustang had a T-top from 1981-88!  What do I have to do to get a 3rd gen Mustang T-top made in miniature? So, this one gets an easy 10 from me.

It joins the 2022 debut in burgundy as a simple front and rear detailed model, and both look amazing.

2023 saw 2 very unique releases.  We had a Super Chase release in black and a platinum 70th Anniversary special.  

This now puts us at 4 releases to date.  Not bad going, and hopefully this is far from the end for this model.

Hell yeah! We get another Hellcat.  The MB1316 '20 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat takes the number 34 slot in the series in a fantastic yellow look.

I have tried, but I don't think this is based on a real look for the SRT Hellcat at the time.  It looks very nice.  It suits it well.  I am very much enjoying that they are now marking it down as the Hellcat, as the debut was just an SRT.  It does mean we now have that little Hellcat logo on the side.  And on this release, it really stands out.  It is a tiny thing, but it means a lot to some car nuts.  Like me!  

However, I notice that at the rear, the licence plate has STGR YLW. This is a nod to the colour option that was sometimes used on various Dodge cars.  Stinger yellow is actually a solid yellow, not metallic.  So, where we go up, we go down again.  Why was this not in a solid orangey yellow look, better matching the official Dodge Stinger Yellow colour option?  I tell you, I am extremely picky.  Yes, I am complaining about something put on a licence plate.  Seriously!  

I do notice there is no detailing to the engine.  Is this due to the addition of the Hellcat logo on the sides?  It is not overly important, but it is pretty common for those with opening engine bays to details said engine bay.  I am not going to mark it down for the lack of engine details, as you do have to lift the hood to see that.  But, I can't get past the licence plate issue.  As I said, a tiny gripe.  But, for that reason alone, I simply cannot give it top marks.  9.5.  So close.  Had the licence plate not made mention of "stinger", this would have been a perfect 10.  It looks fantastic.  I just don't like that it wasn't technically 100% correct.

Again, this was a 2022 debut.  But, since that first model, an orange SRT (no Hellcat logo), it has adopted the Hellcat signature.

I do like last year's Hellcat in blue. That one looks awesome!  

The yellow should have just had Hellcat on the licence plate like the blue did.  That was all it needed for perfection.  So close, and yet so far.

This batch was pretty loaded.  We now reach the 7th and final model in the set.  Yes, a box of 8 models has 7 different ones.  That means one was doubled up in the assortment.  What would I think would likely be the least popular out of all these?  Perhaps the Hummer?  Checking.  Yes, that was the one that doubled up in the assortment.  Oh dear!  I have been hearing how the Hummer has created a backlog in some stores in the USA.  I can't comment from personal experience, as they are not sold near me.  I would have doubled up the Evo!  Or better still, make them in the same quantity, and put a random extra as a double in each box.  I don't know why Mattel don't do things that way.  Having twice as many of 1 model that all the other 6 in a batch doesn't feel like the best way to box things up.  But, I am wandering off-topic again.  The MB1317 '21 Ford Bronco 2-door. Let me check.  Yes, this was a casting that debuted in 2022.  This means, that out of the 7 models in this batch, only the FJ40 was not a 2022 debut.  That was a 2023 debut.  So all of these are pretty new castings.

However, considering this model is only on its third year, this red number 45 out of 54 is its 5th release.  This one has been getting a lot of attention from the Matchbox team.  I can understand why.  I think this is a lovely little casting.  I liked the 4-soor when it arrived in the basic range.  But, there is something special about the shorter wheelbase 2-door variant in Moving Parts.  It is such a lovely casting, and I am a long way from being bored of getting new ones.  Keep them coming!  Ford calls this Race Red.  Yes, this is a real colour option.  As we have seen with all the Moving Parts releases, this sports a simple tampo design.  The front is lovingly detailed.

As does the rear. I love red.  It is my favourite colour.  So, it makes no sense for me to give this anything less than a 10 again.  

Getting a lot of use is not affecting this casting.  The doors are smooth to open and close, and everything still looks razor sharp.  I also have noticed how all the models in this batch have opening parts that appear to be a great match for the rest of the body.  I know there have been a few issues with parts not matching that well in the past.  Have they turned a corner with that little issue?  I hope so, because across the board with this batch, the opening part has blended in perfectly with the rest of the model.

As I said, this now brings us up to 5 for this casting.  I am not doing a dive back, as I only did it for the Mattel Creations release in my blog 3 weeks ago.  The final batch of 2023 Moving Parts was showcased 8 weeks ago (2 months), so that was long enough ago to redo the Evo IV.  If we can't talk in months between showcasing, I really don't feel the need to rehash things.  

And that brings me to the end of the batch.  I do notice that over half were American vehicles.  And all modern ones at that.  However, this shows that not everything looks like the same blob yet.  These all have very distinctive looks to them.

The other 3 consisted of one modern German vehicle and 2 classic Japanese vehicles.  Again, 3 different looks.  I do enjoy the variety, and that all Moving Parts are licensed vehicles.

I hope you enjoyed my latest ramblings.  As I bid adieu to these, I start to think of next week, and a return to more basics.  There are 12 batches of those each year (at the moment) so I do need to try and keep on top of a monthly roll-out of reviews on them to not get too far behind. Until then, I hope everybody has a safe and happy week.

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