Hot Wheels are viewed by most people as fun, innocent toys. Some of us might remember receiving them as gifts and playing with them as children. But what if we said that some Hot Wheels cars are worth more than real, new cars today? While this might seem like a completely unbelievable statement that makes no sense, we have to remember that truth is sometimes stranger than fiction. The truth is that there are actually quite a few Hot Wheels cars that are worth thousands of dollars – more than the average used car. A couple of them are even worth over a hundred thousand!
While these Hot Wheels cars are extremely rare, some of us might just have one hidden away in our basements or attics. Why not take out that old collection after reading this article? On the other hand, with the knowledge that Hot Wheels raise in price so dramatically as the decades go by, why not choose to invest in Hot Wheels cars today? Who knows what they could be worth 40 or 50 years from now... What's clear is that there is something special about these cars, and collectors are willing to pay top dollar to get their hands on the rarest Hot Wheels out there.
20 Custom '38 Ford C.O.E. Autographed By Larry Wood - $70
Starting at the low end, the Custom '38 Ford COE is the least valuable Hot Wheels car in this article, at a measly $70. But even $70 is still a surprising amount of money to pay for a so-called "toy car." Collectors will know that there is a reason this car is priced slightly higher than your average Hot Wheels car today. It was sold from 1998 until 2009, and is marked by many collectors to be a great investment. Even though it was made quite recently, this car has the potential to be worth a few thousand in a decade or two.
19 2013 Retro Scooby-Doo Mystery Machine - Up To $80
Everyone loves Scooby-Doo, and this one of a kind Hot Wheels car is definitely one of the rarest available today. This is another car that ranks quite low in terms of value – priced at just $80. But again, this is still a stunning amount to pay for something like this. With some versions being released as late as 2017, it's hardly a "retro" Hot Wheels Car, despite its name. But collectors are once again buying these up with the expectation that they will one day become rare and extremely valuable.
18 1976 Poison Pinto - Up To $150
As we dial back in time a little bit, the prices start to jump. But even this Poison Pinto is still relatively cheap, despite it being made all the way back in 1976. This fan-favorite Hot Wheels car can fetch prices of up to $150, although few collectors are willing to part with this particular car. This is because there is something special about this car that collectors love, with a unique visual style that really appeals to Hot Wheels car enthusiasts. Like we said, it's a fan favorite.
17 1968 Custom Volkswagen Without Sunroof - $1,500
As we move down the list, we see a significant jump in price with the 1968 Custom Volkswagen. This is a Hot Wheels car that is extremely old, dating back to the first year of the company's existence. As a result, it's extremely valuable. But the true value of this car comes from the fact that it does not have a sun roof, a peculiar manufacturing detail that was only seen on units sold in Europe. This makes them much more rare, and therefore much more valuable – at a whopping $1,500 each.
16 1971 Purple Olds 442 - Approximately $1,500
This particular car is somewhat well known among Hot Wheels enthusiasts, and there is a very interesting reason for its high value. Most collectors know that color makes a huge difference when it comes to assessing the value of Hot Wheels cars, and this a great example of that. The 1971 Olds 442 is valuable in any color, but it's only the purple varieties that fetch prices as high as $1,500. Be careful not to buy a magenta 442 by mistake – they're not worth nearly as much.
15 1968 Copper Custom Camaro - $2,000
Another car that is valuable based on its color is the 1968 Custom Camaro. This is a car that is still very popular to this day, although the car (in real life) has gone through some huge changes. The classic cars are always more charming, however, and this is true in the Hot Wheels world as well. The 1968 Custom Camaro is another Hot Wheels car that was first made during the first year of the company's existence, but it's still only the rarer copper variants that are valued at over $2,000.
14 1972 Red Open Fire - $2,000
Although the 1972 Open Fire was re-released in 2008, the original units from back in 1972 are the only cars worth anything. This was the only year that the cars were ever made, making them extremely rare today. Going one step further, the red variants are even rarer than the others, and they're valued at about $2,000 today. These cars are legendary in the Hot Wheels world, and the whole reason the Open Fire was re-released was because fans voted for it overwhelmingly.
13 1971 Pink Classic Cord $2,000
Believe it or not, Hot Wheels actually predicted the fact that people would be collecting their products decades from their first few releases. They knew that there would be those who would buy their cars not to play with them, but to carefully store them away as collector's items. The 1971 Pink Classic Cord was designed and constructed with these kinds of people specifically in mind, and the car is very rare today. It was only produced for two years, and the rarest color of them all is pink. This variant can sell for well over $2,000.
12 1968 White Custom Camaro - $2,500
Some Hot Wheels experts consider the 1968 Custom Camaro to be the first ever Hot Wheels car to be produced. This makes it a piece of history, and an exceedingly valuable one at that. But like many Hot Wheels cars, not all of them are created equal, and it is the white enamel color variant that is considered the most valuable. This is because the white enamel version is considered to be a prototype (as in the first ever prototype of the first ever Hot Wheels car). The reason for its $2,500 price tag is pretty much self-explanatory.
11 1968 Pink Beatnik Bandit - $2,500
Even when it was first created, the Beatnik Bandit was considered a legendary Hot Wheels car. That was probably due to the fact that the real car it was based on was exceedingly cool, and a beautiful example of custom auto work. It was one of the legendary "Original 16" castings for the first ever Hot Wheels car collection in 1968, and that alone makes it valuable. The value of this car has indeed risen astronomically over the years, especially those of the hot pink variety, with prices reaching up to $2,500.
10 1970 Red Baron With White Interior - $3,000
Although this car might seem stranger than fiction, it's another Hot Wheels car that is actually based on a real car. As we move up the list, we begin to reach some seriously rare Hot Wheels cars, and the 1970 Red Baron With White Interior is no exception. Some sources state that fewer than a dozen of these cars exist. This is because the cars with white interiors are actually prototypes. They also have no markings on the helmet. With rarity comes extremely high value, and this car is priced at $3,000.
9 1971 Magenta Evil Weevil - $3,000
Having a case of Deja Vu? That's right, this car is modeled on the pre-existing 1968 Volkswagen car that we already mentioned, but this one has some clear upgrades. A blown V8 engine is added, and the car seems much more sporty and aggressive. This car was released as part of the famed Hot Wheels Spoiler Series in 1971. As with many of these cars, the color really makes a difference, with Magenta being worth the most – at a whopping $3,000.
8 1995 Custom Number 271 "Funny Car" - $3,500
Astute readers will note that this car is significantly more recent than most of the other Hot Wheels cars we've mentioned – and yet it's one of the most valuable. So what's the story here? No one knows for sure, but many collectors believe that there are only 12 of these in existence. It's extremely rare because there was actually an error in printing them, which is why they were abandoned after just printing one dozen of them. Collectors can expect to pay about $3,500 for one of these.
7 1970 Ed Shaver Custom AMX - $4,000
The 1970 Ed Shaver Custom AMX is another Hot Wheels car with an interesting story behind it – not to mention a massive price tag. Very few cars are believed to be in existence, and even buying one back in 1970 was difficult. The only people who received these cars were those who attended Ed Shavers race in the UK, and participated in a special cereal box promotion to receive the car on race day. The AMX itself is a common Hot Wheels car, but the Ed Shaver stickers push the value of this car up to $4,000.
6 1971 Purple Bye Focal - $4,000
There's a very good reason this car ranked so highly in our article. This is none other than the purple 1971 "Bye Focal," which is considered one of the rarest and most valuable Hot Wheels cars in existence. Does the shape of this car seem familiar? It's based on the iconic 1970 Dodge Challenger. The rarest color tone of all is purple, valued in the range of $4,000. The car also features a clear hood and unique decals on the side. One of these cars in good condition is rare, seeing as how this model tends to crumble away with age.
5 1974 Blue Roger Dodger - $8,000
Worth double the price of the Purple Bye Focal, the Blue Rodger Dodger is a true treasure for any Hot Wheels Collector. Worth a stunning $8,000, this is one of the most expensive and valuable Hot Wheels in existence today. The regular Rodger Dodger cars are rare enough, having been released in red, yellow, and purple. The blue is the truly special variation however, with only 7 being released worldwide. Some speculate that it might have been a release exclusive to the UK.
4 1968 "Cheetah" Hong Kong Base Python - $10,000
Now that we're nearing the end of the article, we're going to talk about some Hot Wheels cars that will truly make your jaw drop. For starters, let's consider the 1968 "Cheetah" Hong Kong Base Model, which is worth $10,000. Yes, you read that right. "Cheetahs" are legendary among Hot Wheels collectors, and they are considered one of the best cars to have. This is because only a few were released under this name as a prototype, before the name was changed to "Python" instead.
3 1970 "Mad Maverick" Base Mighty Maverick - Price Unknown
Even though this car's actual price on the market is unknown, it definitely deserves its spot at near the top of our ranking. This is because it may very well be the most expensive and valuable Hot Wheels car today. But we'll never know, because those who own them refuse to sell them. One might even say they're priceless. The Mighty Maverick series is pretty rare, but those with "Mad Maverick" written on the base are even more so. This is because Mad Maverick was the name of this car during prototype stage, before it was changed for production.
2 40th Anniversary Diamond Encrusted Otto - At Least $140,000
Even though this was clearly not meant for release to the general public, it clearly deserves a spot right near the top of our ranking. This is exactly what it sounds like – a Hot Wheels car completely covered in diamonds. Why would someone do such a thing? Well, it was to commemorate the sale of the 4 billionth car ever made. We can't find any reports of anyone actually buying this high end Hot Wheels car, but it's reportedly worth over $140,000 on account of its diamonds alone.
1 1969 Pink Rear-Loading Volkswagen Microbus Beach B - Up To $150,000
Right at the top of our ranking, we have a Hot Wheels car that some of our readers might not have expected. Yes, we're talking about the 1969 Pink Rear-Loading Volkswagen Minibus Beach B. Although this might come as a shock to outsiders, true collectors know that this is the holy grail of Hot Wheels. This is because there is only one of these cars on Earth, and it's owned by the world's biggest Hot Wheels collector. It was built as a prototype back in 1969, and is worth about $150,000 today, according to some sources.