I should just jump right into this, shouldn't I. I am still in Albuquerque as I write, so there is not going to be an awful lot of faffing about. I want to get back to the fun and action.
Abe Lugo from Mattel was on hand again this year to run through plans for the 2024 model year in Matchbox circles, and after showing us some pictures of the dinner model, and reminding us of their Instagram handle (@matchboworld), he was straight in with the first sizzle reel of what to expect in the way of new basic range castings. Now, remember, this is all subject to change. Each year something may end up dropping out. New licences may be able to sneak in to replace. Some may just get nudged into a following year. Licences are a fickle business. One company may opt to have a lovely licence setup, and things can work swiftly in any direction. Some may have certain stipulations. Sometimes, they may just not work out. These things happen. Kia didn't work out. We won't be seeing a Kia at any point soon. It looked okay for a while, but sadly, it did not work out. A couple of planned 2023 new castings are now nudged into 2024 due to various reasons. This is the name of the game. What we are seeing at this moment in time is simply a snapshot of where they are at this present moment. By the time of Dirk's Leipzig Convention in October, things may have been tweaked a fraction. 99% is done, but you can never say it is guaranteed until those models are rolling off the production lines. So always remember, that this is a planned scenario, and not set in stone. With that in mind, let's get on with some new castings. We began with the basics. These will be the ones with no moving parts to them.
We start with the Morgan Plus Four. About time we saw this one. I am very excited to see it.
We then saw the Porsche 911 Targa. This will be produced with the roof on. They have been trying to work out the window scenario, but this was the easiest solution.
A 2020 VW Golf GTE. I wonder if this will have a parcel shelf variation?
A 1977 Jaguar XJ6c. Always happy to see a classic Jag.
The new Jeep Wagoneer. They are liking the Wagoneers this year.
A Ford Fiesta Mk2. No word if it will be an XR2, or a general version. This is a later 2024 model, and at time of preview no print had been prepared yet.
2022 Infiniti QX80. Another large SUV for the lineup.
Alfa Romeo Tonale. Nice to see some Alfas again.
2023 Ford Interceptor. They felt this model needed an update.
With their new Indiana Jones licence, we are going to be seeing a number of Indiana Jones themed models across various ranges. We know the first are filtering in for 2023, but in 2024, an Indiana Jones specific Tuk Tuk will be included.
1964 Jeep Wagoneer. As I said, they are going all-in on these. I love this classic first look for the vehicle.
1968 Chevy C10. They do like their C10s, and this is a new style.
Porsche 911 Cabriolet. Yes, a Targa and a Cabriolet are coming for 2024. I am so excited.
1985 Nissan Pathfinder. An older SUV look, and quite a distinctive one. I like the side window style.
Mercedes-Benz EQB. There are few electric vehicles. They felt that the percentage of electric vehicles in the range is sufficient.
A 1970 Ford Bronco. This model looks really nice. I am so happy to see a stock look.
2023 Toyota Supra. I love this one, and after 2 previous Supra castings, I am loving getting the latest.
2022 Citroen e-C4. Similar to one coming in Moving Parts this year, we will also be getting a basic range release in 2024.
1966 Ducati Scrambler. Again, this is down to the Indiana Jones licence.
1963 Mercedes-Benz SL W113. A classic Lesney era throwback. Very nice.
1964 Lincoln Continental. As is this. Another classic Lesney vehicle resurrected. Excellent.
2022 Opel Astra. They did mention they are trying to build up their quantities of European castings more at the moment, hence us seeing more Euro stuff. I love getting a new Opel. Or Vauxhall? No, it is the German version.
Radical Motorsport SR8. Yes, this was a big surprise. Not a model I expected to see from Matchbox. Way cool.
That was all they showed for basics. Obviously, not everything is set in stone. Those without mockups at the Gathering are still at the early stages, and we may see a random model drop off, and another random model drop in. Nothing is 100% guaranteed.
Beyond basics, we are getting 9 new 5-packs. Those shown are still subject to change, as is their pack names. This is, as I keep mentioning, where their thoughts are at this time. A lot can happen over the next 16 months.
Pack 1 - Electric Drivers - Tesla Roadster, Ford F-150 Lightning, Renault Twizy, Karma GSe and Porsche 918 Spyder.
Pack 2 - Autobahn Express - 1965 Alfa Romeo Giuila Sprint GTA, Lamborghini Gallardo Policia, Porsche 911 GT3, Fiat 500 Turbo, VW Transporter Crew Cab
Pack 3 - British Drivers - Mini Cooper S Cabrio, Morris Minor, 2020 Land Rover Defender, Jaguar F-type, LEVC Taxi
Pack 4 - MBX City Life - MBX Mini Swisher, Mini Cooper Countryman, MBX Chow Wagon II, Renault Kangoo Express, Nissan NV Van
Pack 5 - MBX Construction - Dirt Smasher, 2016 Chevy Silverado X-treme, Tractor Plow (noted down as Ploverizer, likely base name change), MBX Excavator, MBX water Hauler
Pack 6 - MBX JDM - 1971 Nissan Skyline 2000GTX, 2008 Honda Civic Type R, 1985 Toyota 4Runner, Subaru WRX Impreza Police, Mazda 3
Pack 7 - Blue Highways - McLaren 720S Spyder, 1971 Chevy Chevelle, Jeep Hurricane, Kurtis Sport Car, Aston Martin DBS Volante
Pack 8 - MBX Retro - VW Golf Country, MBX Field Car, Honda Civic CVCC, Austin Minivan, VW Beetle 4x4
Pack 9 - Coffee Cruisers - 1963 Cadillac Ambulance, 1955 Ford F100 Panel Delivery, Dodge Challenger SRT8, 1932 Ford Coupe, 1965 Ford Mustang GT
Pack 10 - MBX Trucks - Rock Shocker, Jeep Gladiator, 1995 Nissan Hardbody (D21), 1975 Chevy Stepside, 1962 Nissan Junior
Next up was talk of the 9-packs. Or, as they will become part-way through the year, 8-packs. Yes, around the midway point of the year, a model will be dropped from these sets.
Current plans for batches are - A - Audi E-tron, 1962 Plymouth Savoy. B - Mercedes-Benz Unimog U300, 1971 MGB GT. C - MBX Self Driving Bus, Mercedes-Benz AMG GT63S. D - International Ambulance, 1975 Cadillac Eldorado. E - Nissan Xterra, VW Golf Mk1 GTi. F - Honda Insight, Morris Minor.
Then it is on to the Moving Parts. For many, this is the best part. More new castings.
Ford Focus RS. This was a cool way to start. Been wanting a Focus for a while, as I am on my third in real life.
1978 Ford Bronco. This one is stunning. I am loving the split rear section.
Porsche Taycan GTS Sport Turismo. Yes, another Porsche!
1969 Triumph Spitfire. Another classic Triumph. There is a nice contingent of classic British vehicles this year.
2022 Opel Mokka. Another Opel, as they have really opened the floodgates with this licence now.
1995 Chevy C10 Pickup. Yes, another C10. They love them. I told you so.
Finally, an updated Audi RS6 Avant. Plus, it has an opening rear. It looks like it will be a metal rear too.
Ford Anglia. Yes, you know the one. From Harry Potter. Guess what? It will be Harry Potter themed. Part of a licence, that will include seeing some other Harry Potter themed items in the Matchbox range.
2023 Toyota Prius Prime. Finally, the ageing Prius casting is getting an update.
1973 BMW CSL. Sweet, Another throwback to Lesney.
A Land Rover Series II forward Control Camper. Yes, a completely out of the box model, but right in their wheel house. I like it.
1970 AMC Javelin. Another sweet throwback of sorts.
2022 Alfa Romeo Stelvio. Another Alfa after the one in the basics. As I said, they are working some of the quieter licences for 2024.
Woo-hoo! Another Porsche. The 356 Coupe. Sweet.
Another imposing SUV. This time it is the BMW iX. Boy is this a biggie.
Oh yes. A 1992 Buick Roadmaster. I have had it confirmed the opening part will NOT be the rear on this one. Most likely it will be doors. I can't wait to see this with wood panel sides.
Nissan Townstar. And yes, the sliding doors do open on both sides of the model.
Corvair Rampside Pickup. And, yes, that ramp will be what will open.
Bizzarrini 5300 GT Corsa Revival. Now this is cool. What a finish!
Next up was the talk of Walmart and Target. The plan is the same as 2023. Walmart sees only 4 assortments, unless more are due and not shown
Mix 1 - MBX Country Rescue - 2015 Ram 1500 (new look), 1947 GMC Stepside (new look), Chevy Caprice Classic Police (new look), Freightliner M2 106 Tanker (carry forward), Flame Tamer (carry forward), 1956 Buick Century Police (carry forward)
Mix 2 - Mini OEM - 1964 Austin Mini Cooper 1275S (new look), 1965 Austin Minivan (new look), Mini Cooper S Cabrio (new look), '03 Mini Cooper S (carry forward), Mini Coioper Countryman (carry forward), 1964 Austin Mini Cooper 1275S (a second one, carry forward)
Mix 3 - MBX Rally - 2016 Chevy Colorado X-treme (new look0, Jeep 4x4 (new look), VW Golf Country (new look), International Scout 4x4 (carry forward), '68 Toyota Land Cruiser FJ40 (carry forward), Ridge Raider (carry forward
Mix 4 - American Convertibles…. Wait for it….
A brand new 1963 Chevy Corvette Casting. Yes! Walmart always gets an exclusive new casting. This is joined by the 1975 Cadillac Eldorado (new look), 2016 Chevy Camaro (new look), Kurtis Sport Car (carry forward), 2018 Ford Mustang Convertible (carry forward), 1953 Buick Skylark (carry forward).
For Target, “red” continues. Every other batch again. This time the 6 planned castings are the 1959 Dodge Coronet Police, Lamborghini Gallardo Policia, Mazda MX-5 Miata, 2020 Honda E, Dodge Charger Pursuit and Holden Ute SSV.
Working Rigs was up next. A new MAN TGE City Bus is planned, along with a new Airport Fire Truck of some sort (Still TBD). 4 mkixes are planned. A lot of carry forwards, with only new looks marked. If not marked, it is a carry forward. As always, this is not 100% set in stone, and things can change. Models move batches, switch from new look to carry forward or the other way round. It is just state of play at this time.
Mix A - MBX Crop Sprayer (new look), Road Grader, International WorkStar Box Truck, MAN TGS Flatbed Hauler
Mix B - Western Star Dump Truck (new look), GMC Attenuator Truck, Garbage King XL, Cement King HD
Mix C - MAN TGE City bus (new casting), International WorkStar Dump Truck, GMC 8500 Top Kick (plus a 4th TBD)
Mix D - new Airport fire truck tool, Pierce Velocity Quantum Ladder Truck (new look), International WorkStar Dump Truck, GM Brightdrop Zevo 600
Next up was Skybusters. 4 new tools. An Airbus a320neo, 1950s era Racing Stunt Plane, Airbus A300-600ST and a Ford Trimotor Plane as used in the Indiana Jones films.
There will be 4 mixes and 33 models. Carry forward unless noted.
Mix 1 - Air Grabber, Bi-plane (Indiana Jones themed), SpaceX Falcon, Boeing 747-400, MBX 6-2 Airline (new look), Chinook CH-47, F-35 Lightning (new look), Cessna Caravan
Mix 2 - Stunt plane (new casting), Airbus A300-600 (new casting), Jet Fueler (new look), Super Hornet FA18E, Personal Airplane (marked as new, but not listed in the earlier new tools list), 2010 Airliner (Indiana Jones themed), SpaceX Starship, Rescue Helicopter
Mix 3 - Crop Duster (new look), Bubble Helicopter, Twin Engine Blaze Buster, Cessna Citation X, Ford Trimotor (Indiana Jones new casting), Hypersonic Jet, Boeing 747-400, Twim Boom
Mix 4 - Airbus A300-600neo (new tool), SpaceX Dragon Capsule, Super Hornet FA18E, Explorer Helicopter, Boeing 747-8, MBX eHeli, Sky Sentry, Thunderbolt
Finally, we move on to collectors.
A 1970 Oldsmobile 442 will be new in the series. A moving parts model.
A 1970 Toyota Celica GT will also be a moving parts model and new for Collectors.
And an Aston Martin V8 Vantage (1977) will be a moving parts model. But there are more. You see, they are liking the Jag/Porsche metal base double diecast thing, so another 3 will be double diecast vehicle. A look at upgrading some toolings.
We are getting a Subaru BRZ. Sorry my hand moved! Doh!
A 1973 Mazda Savannah RX3.
And finally, a Mercedes-Benz EQS.
Batch A (the first 5 of 20) was shown on slide. A 1955 Ford F100 Panel Van, Bugatti Divo, Mitsubishi 3000GT, Lexus LX and Nissan Z. B, C and D are still TBD. And that was it. When shown the model previews, there were a couple of anomolies.
They never mentioned anything about the new electric Mini.
Or a classic Audi 100 Coupe. As I said, things are still in flux, and it looks like a couple of new items are just being squeezed in as they were setting things up. These are cool additions.
So that is it from me. I hope you enjoyed it. Next week I am back to normal. Until then, I hope everybody has a safe and happy week.