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Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?

My physics teacher always told me that a person who tries to juggle too many things at once won't become a master of any of them. And this applies in so many areas of life, including Hot Wheels collections. The best way to go about the hobby is to pick a casting or a series you like.
Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King? 36 photos
Photo: Lamley Group
Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport: Who Is the King?
Of course, that's easier said than done. Some series are so massive that it will take thousands, if not tens of thousands, of dollars for you to gather the complete collection. I've seen many collectors taking an interest in Mattel's new Team Transport line of vehicles. It started in 2018 and features Premium items with Real Riders wheels, and the theme is self-explanatory.

Each pack contains two (rarely three) collectibles: a transporter and a race vehicle (primarily cars) with matching liveries. The diecast manufacturer used to release three mixes yearly until 2020 but has increased production to four per year starting in 2021. There's also the occasional special package, so let's look at the bigger picture here. So far, we've had 21 mixes and five special releases.

That adds up to 66 teams and 135 items since the start of the series. At an average price of about $20 per team, you could have bought all the collectibles for less than $1,500. Notice how I said, "could have." Prices have since risen for most of the Team Transport vehicles thanks to the glorious ways of modern economics. Some are downright expensive but not utterly unobtainable if you set out to own the complete collection.

In a recent story, I looked back on 17 years of Hot Wheels Super Treasure Hunt cars to see which automotive brand was the "King" of the series. And it would be interesting to do the same about the Team Transport Series. Fantasy castings aside, you'll find replicas of cars from over 20 manufacturers. Europe is tied with the USA with 29 vehicles each, while Japan is slightly behind with only 15 models.

Mattel hasn't included any Lamborghini, Audi, Mitsubishi, or Subaru castings yet, but all that might change in 2024. I've already seen some sneak peeks of upcoming models, and I can tell you that the following ranking will suffer some changes starting next year.

5. Volkswagen

Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport\: Who Is the King\?
Photo: Ministry of Diecast
Vee-Dub/German Engineering takes P5 on this list with seven appearances in the past six years. You can credit three of those to the Volkswagen Transporter T1 Pickup, which was up for hauler duty in 2018 (with the Porsche 356 Speedster), in 2019 (with the Porsche 356 Outlaw), and in 2020 (with the Volkswagen Classic Bug).

The latter is the first non-hauler VW in Team Transport, and Mattel delivered two more variations of the Baja Bug next. Ask me about my favorite VW casting from the series, and I'll promptly point to the ID R. It's not that I have an affinity towards EVs, but I'm just a big Pikes Peak fan. The best part is that you can still buy this item for less than $30 (Aero Lift hauler included!)

4. Chevrolet

Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport\: Who Is the King\?
Photo: Lamley Group
Chevrolet was the King of all Hot Wheels Super Treasure Hunts, with impressive appearances in that series. However, the North American manufacturer has to settle for fourth overall in the Team Transport lineup. You'll find eight Chevy Collectibles here, one of which is the '72 Chevy Ramp Truck hauler. It started with the '66 Super Nova in Mix 3 of 2018, and the Custom Corvette Stingray Coupe followed suit.

I'm sure 1/4-mile (402-meter) fans will instantly remember the '74 Chevrolet Vega Pro Stock with its massive rear tires. Two more Corvettes followed, the latter being part of the Walmart Legends Tour Exclusive set alongside the Carry On hauler. Unsurprisingly, Mattel adopted a similar strategy for the special set of 2022, and the Custom '70 Chevy Nova was a big hit. Luckily, you can still pick one up for less than $25. If all this doesn't feel like enough for you, keep an eye out for the '66 Chevelle coming in 2024.

3. Porsche

Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport\: Who Is the King\?
Photo: Ministry of Diecast
My new yellow Hot Wheels 911 Turbo just arrived today, and I'm ecstatic about the whole thing. There's only one Team Transport Porsche in my collection, and I should focus on getting more. There are eight different models to look for, and it all started with the 356 Speedster. The red Momo-themed 962 was next, and it's almost impossible to find one for less than $30, while some people ask as much as $90 for it.

The 356A Outlaw came third on this list, but the best was yet to come. The purple RWB 930 has generated wave after wave of excitement in online groups as it's one of only two variations of the casting. If someone offers it to you for $60, take it, as most sellers will try to charge you twice as much. I've mixed feelings about the 917 LH, but Gulf fans will surely disagree.

As for the Shell 962, which I also own, it's undoubtedly one of the best Hot Wheels designs of all time! You'll find plenty of them going for less than $30. We recently saw the Team Transport 959, and there's one last model I'd like to discuss here: the Legends Tour Exclusive 934.5. It looks sublime with its simple silver livery and black Real Riders Aero wheels and is probably rarer than most cars here. That explains why buying one for less than $40 is nearly impossible.

2. Ford

Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport\: Who Is the King\?
Photo: Lamley Group
Most people would have expected that the dominant force in the Team Transport series would be either Chevrolet or Ford, but that's not the case. The series has 11 replicas of cars from the Big Oval, four of which are variants of the C-800 hauler. Its debut coincided with the release of the Ford Drag Team Custom '64 Galaxie 500. The matching blue and white liveries worked great for this duo, yet their prices are still in normal parameters.

Two more Ford-exclusive match-ups were next in Mix 2 for 2020, with the '69 Mustang Boss 302 and the 2016 Ford GT Race encompassing almost 50 years of automotive evolution. A Matte Orange '32 Ford came up in 2021, but most people didn't like the mismatched hauler. Mix 3 delivered an iconic performance with the legendary RS200 and an additional designated trailer for the rally van.

The '65 Galaxie that arrived in 2022 didn't quite live up to the standards imposed by the RS200. But Adam LZ's '23 Ford Mustang RTR Spec 5 came close to achieving that performance. And there is currently no information as to when the next Ford casting will become a part of the Team Transport series.

1. Nissan

Six Years of Hot Wheels Team Transport\: Who Is the King\?
Photo: Lamley Group
Currently, Nissan is the leader of this lineup of haulers and race cars, with 11 variations spread across the past few years (not counting the additional Datsun). Unsurprisingly, these are some of the most expensive models on the market. Some people have listed the '69 Nissan Skyline Van/Carry On combo for as much as $160, and it doesn't stop here.

This item was more exciting than the Nissan Laurel 2000 SGX, but the best was yet to come. Hardcore fans of the brand will surely drool over the Nissan Skyline HT 2000GT-X and the '71 Datsun 510. The Fairlady Z that appeared at the start of 2019 is also a true classic. But the masses damn near lost their mind when Mattel introduced the silver Nissan Skyline GT-R (BNR34) in Team Transport.

Someone's trying to sell a case of four of these for over $200 on eBay, and this reminds me of the Tomica Z-Tune I bought from Japan years ago. The people at Mattel are fully aware of how much collectors care about Hot Wheels Skylines, and the Advan Nissan Skyline GT-R (BNR32) was another big hit in 2021. And then, the designers in El Segundo took things one step further by bringing Liberty Walk into the equation. If a stock Nissan Skyline generates significant sales, then a highly tuned one will perform even better, right?

The red Motul LB-ER34 Super Silhouette Nissan Skyline dropped in Mix 3 for 2022, and this is the same casting that reached Chase status in Mountain Drifters. Luckily, the Team Transport is less expensive, at least for now. Be sure to look for the Fast & Furious variation, even if you disagree with the widebody kit messing with Brian's hero car. 2023 was off to a good start for fans of the Japanese brand with the KW-themed Silvia S13, but I'm sure Mattel could have come up with a more exciting livery.

The company made up for it in Mix 3 by introducing the white and yellow LB-Silhouette WORKS GT Nissan 35GT-RR VER.2, which also came with the brand-new Flipsider Hauler. Scalpers have bought every single one of these from every store in a 100-mile radius around me, and my only chance at buying one is via eBay. There you have it, a brief review of the most popular brands in Team Transport. It's a series that more and more people are becoming fond of, and I can't wait to see what 2024 has in store for us.

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About the author: Dragos Chitulescu
Dragos Chitulescu profile photo

The things Dragos enjoys the most in life are, in no particular order: cars, motorcycles, diecast cars, and drifting. He's seen (and driven) many vehicles since he started his writing career back in 2009, but his garage currently houses a 1991 Mazda RX-7 FC3S Turbo II and a 1999 Suzuki SV650-S.
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