Rare and Collectible Hot Wheels: Which Should You Buy?

7 min read

Last Modified 5 March 2024 First Added 10 January 2024

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Author Heather

Welcome to the world of zooming cars and iconic loop-de-loops with Hot Wheels!

These cars are the miniature toys that fuelled childhood racing fantasies. Have you ever wondered about the untapped value in your old Hot Wheels collection? Or have you considered diving into the collector’s realm?

Well, this article will be your pit stop for rare and valuable Hot Wheels collections, and all the tricks to understand the collector’s trade!

Which Are The Most Expensive Hot Wheels?

1. 1969 Pink, Rear-Loading Beach Bomb – $175,000

An icon born in 1969, this pink gem wasn’t as popular as the other Volkswagen Bus variations made by Mattel however, only 2 are known to exist in the world, so if you are the lucky person that has one, it could see for more than $175,000 USD (approximately £138,000)!

Classic Hot Wheels beach bus in pink.

2. 1968 Over Chrome Camaro – $25,000

While there are a variety of Hot Wheels that have a bright lime-green colour, this Camaro with a chrome finish was first used for advertising purposes and appeared in commercials. Only 20 Hot Wheels cars with this special finish are known to exist and can be worth $25,000 USD (approximately £19,700)!

3. 1969 Mad Maverick Base on Mighty Maverick – $15,000

The Mighty Maverick Hot Wheels collection is still highly favoured, but this collection has a special history. This collections original name was, “Mad Maverick”, due to a copyright issue with rival toy manufacturers, Mattel then rebranded to Mighty Maverick.

The most important part of these Hot Wheels is the base where “Mad Maverick” was cast into the baseplate. Check your Mighty Maverick collection – you might have an original worth $15,000 USD (approximately £11,800)!

4. 1969 Brown Custom Charger – $13,000

The Custom Charger was a very popular model between 1969 – 1971, however the brown variant was off putting for many customers and therefore only a limited number of Hot Wheels were produced in this colour.

However, for a brown Custom Charger in perfect condition, collectors can receive a whopping $13,000 USD (approximately £10,200).

5. 1971 Purple Olds 442 – $12,000

The Purple Olds 442 is considered by many collectors as one of the rarest Olds Hot Wheels cars and the rarest in all production redline Hot Wheels! This car was manufactured exclusively in Mattel’s Hong Kong facility in 1971 and can now fetch collectors a hefty $12,000 USD (approximately £9,400)!

6. 1969 Ed Shaver Blue AMX – $10,000

Exclusively released in the United Kingdom, this blue model of the AMX was part of Mattel’s sponsorship deal with the racer, Ed Shaver. According to experts, the only thing that differentiates this model from other common models is the graphics found on the side panels.

If you are a lucky collector who has their hands on this model, be sure to check the stickers to ensure they are authentic, if they are, this model can sell for $10,000 (approximately £7,900).

Are Hot Wheels Worth Collecting?

While the potential to find valuable collections may be tempting, remember that collecting Hot Wheels should be a joy ride! And not just for financial gain.

Collecting Hot Wheels should feel like a thrilling hobby that will awaken your inner child, though we understand some gems can fetch a hefty prize.

How To Start Collecting Hot Wheels

Understand Your Motivation

We recommend reviewing why you would like to start collecting Hot Wheels. Is it due to aesthetics, do you like specific car models, is it about the community, or are you trying to find those collections for higher resale values? This will help you get started and help you understand why you want to begin a collection.

Buy What You Love

Passion will always fuel the journey and help you stay motivated while building your collection. It will also provide a sense of achievement and satisfaction when you locate the cars you want. Collect cars that ignite your excitement or nostalgia.

Pick A Theme

Many collectors encourage newcomers to navigate the Hot Wheels universe by focusing on a particular collection or car type. This will naturally enhance satisfaction and be great fun throughout. Whether you focus on the Japanese collections, only pink cars, Corvettes, 70s cars, 80s cars, or 90s collection; there are several models to choose from. Check out all the Hot Wheels cars styles with The Entertainer today!

Join the Community

Many collectors recommend joining the Hot Wheels Collectors community as it is a great place to check out cars, discuss any collections and receive amazing tips and tricks for where to find rare collections from experts who have been collecting for over 20 years!

Child plays with Hot Wheels cars..

Which New Hot Wheels Are Worth Something?

Discover the thrill of new Hot Wheels car editions while anticipating which models may be of value in the future. Many collectors take part in these new hunts that sometime hold gems hiding in plain sight.

We recommend keeping an eye out for the Treasure Hunt Series and The Super Treasure Hunters. How can you spot these? Look no further.

Treasure Hunt Series

There are approximately 250 models that you can purchase as Mainlines, also known as basic series, from these models there are a few mainline cars that would be harder to find as they were produced in fewer quantities and are called Treasure Hunts.

Starting in 1995, Treasure Hunts are usually easy to spot. They would have a flame in a circle logo somewhere on the panels or spoiler of the car; and sometimes hidden in colourful graffiti art or some stripy decal.

You can also find the logo featured on the blister box behind the die-cast model.

The Super Treasure Hunt Series

This series is more interesting and much harder to locate as production numbers are even smaller. The easiest way to spot these cars is typically by their better paint jobs, more strips, artwork and by the Real Riders (wheels that are rubber rather than plastic). Sometimes these tires will also have Redlines.

Look for the letters ‘TH’, which will be located somewhere on the body of the car, if you spot the letters, you have found a Super Treasure Hunt!

How To Spot A Fake Hot Wheels Car

  1. Check the logo: Check the packaging for brand errors and check any details on the bottom side of the car. Most fake Hot Wheels cars present flaws in the packaging inscriptions which suggests it is a fake Hot Wheels piece.
  2. Check the box for car details: Model and year should be present on the box, if not, then it is most certainly a fake Hot Wheels piece.
  3. Bottom inscriptions: Hot Wheels have inscriptions which include the Hot Wheels logo, the car’s manufacturer and model, the country of manufacturing, and the year the car was created.
  4. Check against the official collection: This will tell if you the details match the official record of that model. Remember, there can also be manufacturer errors, which can be more valuable than the originals. So be sure not to throw away your Hot Wheels finds if you are unsure!

Should You Unbox Your Hot Wheels?

Lots of collectable toys (like Barbies) are even more valuable when unopened as you can authenticate them by having all the information on the packaging. If you’re looking for old/rare cars, then you might only be able to find them unboxed, as they were probably bought as toys originally before people started to establish collections. It’s up to personal preferences, but many people like to unbox and enjoy!


Whether you are a prestigious collector or a newcomer, let the thrill of the chase and joy of collecting steer you on this journey. You could be finding old treasures or awaiting the next hot release, let the world of Hot Wheels swerve you off your feet! Happy collecting! Explore revving up your engines and explore the latest models and tracks with Hot Wheels and Hot Wheels Track Building.

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About the Author

Heather profile picture


Our most experienced copywriter, Heather Aqel uses her broad knowledge and astounding vocabulary to write in-depth and enchanting pieces about fun activities, tips and tricks, and our products.

Heather also moonlights as a children’s author, writing magical stories to inspire and bring wonder to little ones.

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