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Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: It’s What to Collect (2008 Winter Update)

Once upon a time, the rules were pretty simple – a hit popcorn movie or a hit animated movie meant toys, action figures & more toys … well, of course, since the lead time to make the toys was close to a year before the movie came out – you would have problems if the movie bombs or worse as photo below prove, when you frankly don’t care that much … yea, I’m pretty sure the IMF Team drove around in a big black vans that featured MISSION IMPOSSIBLE in giant stencil lettering – I mean, who hasn’t seen the CIA driving around town in those vans stenciled CIA!?


Or here is an action figure from the first Mission Impossible movie – pretty uncanny – huh?


Or not. But of course, the other reason are that kids are moving from toys to electronic games faster and faster so none of the old rules really applies – even in the best of times, it was rare for a tie-in to last much longer than the theaterical & DVD release, after that it was all downhill – there are obviously some notable exceptions (Starwars, have you heard of it?) but now Mattel’s Pixar CARS diecast Cars might join that short list and have some longevity including help Mattel make materials gains in the quarter.


If you haven’t started, it’s not too late. Unlike some other toy lines where once you miss the beginning boat, it’s an eBay struggle to catch back up but since Mattel has continually re-released every car from the film, you can still catch up.

For once, Mattel did not just cheap out and just slap a CARS sticker on some Ford Taurus but actually created nice renditions of the CARS cars – capturing the essence of the characters in the animated movie. I’m sure Pixar also made sure Mattel wasn’t just throwing anything out there.


And because of the impatience of some and the fact that Mattel Hot Wheels have some rabid collectors, on occasion, some of these $3.29-$3.99 cars have hit close to $90 … as shipments show up in difference places at different times and Mattel cleverly holds back releases of one or two … the movie & cars first came out in June 2006 and has pretty much been flying off the shelves since then.

PLAYSETS (without diecast CARS)

There were 5 playsets (4 of them replicas of the town) that are feast and famine. Right now, ALL OF THEM have returned to TRU shelves as EXCLUSIVES!


This is the Curio shop under the new WORLD OF CARS banner motif as with Ramone’s and Luigi’s … the contents are exactly the same – only the outside design has changed.

Note, the photos are pictured with CARS but the playsets did not come with a diecast CAR/CARS (except for the Kohl’s Luigi).


NOTE: This photo is a pre-production model – they probably omitted the ramp for the final release for two reasons a) to save on costs and b) make it more in line with the movie).

The other playsets are: Luigi’s Casa Della Tires, Radiator Springs Curio Shop & Ramone’s House Of Body Art




Each take a couple AA batteries and the sign lights up on each. Also note, Flo’s lights are in a timing sequence to a Chevy V8 … just a little attention to detail.

There is also this early set called Radiator Springs Mountain Challenge and included 1 CAR – what was then called “Willy’s Butte Dirt Track McQueen” which was re-packaged later (to the chagrin of some collectors 🙂 as “Dirt Track McQueen” in wave #2.



The history of the playsets – even though it’s only been 18 months is turbulent. Like most playsets, they appeared in great numbers during the initial release of late Spring in 2006 along with the first wave of CARS plus a few other items to form a solid wall of CARS. The general pattern is the cars or smallest items would sell off and then eventually, they would start discounting the remaining playsets a little, then more – until at some point, the box is so beat up – it’s like 75% off. Because in 99.9% of licensed lines, no one really cares that much about playsets – other than Star Wars which is generally the exception to the every rule, playsets generally are laggards in sales and even in the secondary market – there’s some action but frankly, most people don’t care that much. But of course, CARS is rapidly becoming the Star Wars of diecast …

So, in the beginning, Flo’s Cafe sold out quickly – while its price was a few dollars more than the other ones, it seemed larger and a better value. The Mountain Challenge playset also sold out quickly – both probably were made in smaller quantities since they took up more room and retailers didn’t want to order as many … basically Mattel figured if the line lasted 8 months of solid sales, they would be happy – that would take them from the release of the movie to the DVD release in November and then some holiday sales for 2006. Discount and markdown the rest by January and maybe like Buzz Lightyear, continue with a few additional releases a couple times a year (probably one reason the Easter Egg release at Target had cards with ZERO artwork on the back) – maybe taking up one or two pegs at most retailers but the playsets would be just a memory. How little they knew.

By late summer 2006, Flo’s Cafe was pretty much gone – there were still a few stranglers and there but the general impression was that it was gone and perceived as the centerpiece, people started bidding it up on eBay – of course, cresting last holiday at over $200 … because it’s virtually unheard of for playsets to return. Sure, people can cite some examples but it’s rare and amazing … meanwhile, the rest of the playsets either languished on the shelves or were readily available but no one really cared. I think the first of the remaining 3 to disappear was Lizzie’s Curio Shop – maybe around LAST AUTUMN 2006 but no one seemed to have paid it much attention. You could pick one up for a few extra dollars extra on eBay up until probably early summer 2007. Yea, no one really cared.

While Luigi’s was probably gone from the store shelves by Spring of 2007, Kohl’s had them online until September 2007 (costing more with the 5 CARS most people had is one reason why) and if you look hard enough, your Kohl’s might still have it but again, no one paid it much mind.

Ramone’s was the last to sell out … probably this summer, you could still find a few stragglers left on the shelf – even while Flo’s was going for $140 to $250 dollars, the other playsets all hovered around $20-$30 even on eBay until September 2007.

Of course, the power of eBay is that supply & demand is almost instantly reflected … the rumor was that Flo’s was coming back and then first appearing in Canada, the SC Flo’s Cafe drove the price down from hundreds overnight to essentially match the store price of $29.99.

(the Mountain Challenge playset also returned but no one really cares that much about that one since it’s such an oddball set … plus, it doesn’t technically match anything from the movie … if they had a oval shaped flat mountain course, people would be more excited …)

And then in late summer, early fall 2007 as the last Ramone was plucked off and the last Kohl’s Luigi was sold off online, prices of the three playsets have headed skyward.

The Curio Shop has returned as a TRU exclusive for $19.99 (today is 12/31/2007) and so has Ramone’s and Luigi’s Della Casa Tires under the WORLD OF CARS design/wave motif so no more insane eBay pricing of $90 to $200 for the playsets!

Mattel knows that 2008 will be the key – if they deliver what people want at the right times – they can actually create a THIRD diecast line that is EVERGREEN … and honestly, CARS probably has passed the MATCHBOX line in revenue and perhaps even in actual numbers in terms of cars sold … so I believe they are going to try and bring back the playsets and presumably add one or two more … I am just speculating but Mattel is usually pretty good about NOT leaving money on the table 🙂 … in this case, greed can be good (but enough already with the McQ & Sally MM packs, okay?)

NOTE: I am using generalities in noting when each playset sold out – clearly, there were stores that sold out quickly and conversely, someone will always find some store in some county that land & time forgot, right?


For once, every CARS car is still in production so if you’re just interested in getting one of each and display them out of the box, it’s a great line not just because they look great but because you can still jump in and catch up in a matter of weeks.

Mattel did change the front and back design of the cards so if you’re a competist collector who keeps everything in a minty, mint shape and you want one or more of EVERYTHING – you have some work to do to catch up … so good luck to you – whatever your goal, this line deserves to continually sell out.

If you want to skip ahead, we have a checklist/spreadsheet online – with different versions depending on how you are collecting them, by waves, as a completist or as an opener type.

So, here’s your basic checklist (in order of release):



“Desert” Front Artwork – Each CAR had its own illustration on the back along with a personalized paragraph. 12 Cars are featured on back of the card. This was the initial wave that arrived a few weeks before the movie arrived. How simple it looked to collect these 🙂

Chick Hicks
Doc Hudson
Lightning McQueen

Some other CARS were available in multi-packs – also with the desert artwork and with personalized descriptions on the back.


Boost & Snot Rod
Flo & Ramone-Purple
Luigi, Guido & Tractor
Red & Stanley


WAVE 1.5

“Desert” front artwork – every CAR from Wave 1 was re-released with same front artwork on card but 16 cars are now featured on the back. In addition, the 4 NEW cars added (below) are only available as 16-back versions with desert artwork.

Dinoco McQueen


(repeats from Wave 1 – though now featured as part of “16-cars” on the back)

Chick Hicks
Doc Hudson
Lightning McQueen

BUYING STATUS – No longer available in most retail stores. There are some rare sightings – either a return or they were cleaning out the back stock room. Of course, in some small dusty indie toy store you might still spot one or two … oh yes, there’s this place called eBay. Take note when some people call them them the original or series #1, they are often wrong as they either don’t look closely, don’t understand or just try and gloss it over. For 12 of the original CARS, there are TWO desert artwork versions – wave 1 and wave 1.5. Of course, if the CARS themselves are more important to you than the back of the cards, then it doesn’t matter – but just so you know.

At the end of wave 1 & wave 1.5, your collection would look something like this:



NEW CARD DESIGN – now called “Supercharged,” artwork features Flo’s Cafe at nightime on the front – from @October 2006 to October 2007, this was the main front design and “Supercharged” was the designation Mattel applied to almost EVERY CARS related merchandise.

The back no longer featured a customized card for each CAR, there were 21 to 23 CARS featured on the back and varied from release to release. Unlike the previous cards, the actual release of the CAR never quite synced with the CARS featured on the back.

NOTE – Every car from Wave 1 & Wave 1.5 were/are still available – minor changes to the line include the following got name “changes.”

Chick (previously called Chick Hicks)
Fillmore (now spelled correctly versus previous versions called ‘Filmore’)
Leak Less (previously Leakless)

Again, in addition to every CAR carried over from Wave 1.0 & Wave 1.5 with no real changes to the CAR itself. The following were added to the lineup with the new artwork. Not all the CARS were “new” new as some were previously available in the multi-packs.

Brand New Mater
Cruisin’ McQueen
Dirt Track McQueen
Fabulous Hudson Hornet
Radiator Springs McQueen

The new multi-packs also were designated ‘Supercharged’ and now called Movie Moments.

Buzz & Woody
Fillmore & Sarge
Guido & Luigi (Ferrari Fans)
Mike & Sulley
Sally & Crusin’ McQueen

Every multi-pack from Wave 1 was still available and re-released and repackaged as Supercharged Movie Moments:

Boost & Snot Rod
Flo & Ramone-Purple
Luigi, Guido & Tractor
Red & Stanley


Between wave 2 & wave 3 was the Sarge recall glitch. Just as Mattel was ready to ramp up for the all-out blitz on our wallets, the Sarge recall threw everything out of kilter. Mattel had to go back and test every car and then test all their other products so for three months, there was a huge gap of practically no CARS. But then after a long summer, Part II of the Supercharged CARS returned.

Again, in a departure from Mattel’s now SOP, NOTHING was deleted or “retired,” everything released to this point continued to be available and re-released in the Supercharged packaging.


New additions to the line included:

Bling Bling McQueen
Bob Cutlass
Bug Mouth McQueen
Crusin’ Ramone
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Darrell CarTrip
Dinoco Chick Hicks
Ferrari F430
Hydraulic Ramone
Mario Andretti
RPM #64
Tex Dinoco
Tongue McQueen

BUYING STATUS: While Mattel is transitioning to the new World of Cars design, there are many on the pegs still of the Supercharged design. Again, if you’re just interested in the CAR itself, ZERO CARS are being retired – they have simply been repackaged in the next design.

Presumably the error CAR of the Fabulous Hudson Hornet with white rims is retired as the Fabulous Hudson Hornet now is correctly “dressed” in red rims (as the CAR is issued only in red rims now). There was no name or packaging model number change. Note Doc Hudson does however come CORRECTLY in a white rim version and in 2008, there will be a red rimmed version (also as seen in movie).


As of October 2007, Mattel has introduced the new wave and card design as WORLD OF CARS. They feature the CAR on a street in Radiator Springs with the desert background (different from the first Wave). Each CAR now has a license-plate like motif and design indicating its character name on the front.

Only 14 CARS are featured on the back of the card that can be used a checklist as each photo of the CAR is accompanied by a check box. Each CAR has also been assigned a number though not in any apparent order (not alpha, not in order of release, etc, etc …)

Again, no CARS are being retired. The new ones released so far include:

Dinoco Helicopter
Pit Crew Fillmore
Pit Crew Guido
Pit Crew Hornet
Tom Race Official

With these last 6 individual CARS on blister cards, we can conclude the wild ride year of 2007.

What’s coming in 2008 can be found on our new 2008 post.

For packaging collectors, note of the above 6 CARS come with NEW snipe on the front of the card AND there are versions of Dinoco, Fred, PC Fillmore & Pit Crew Hornet that do not have the new designation.

Of course, every previously released CAR on a card with the exception of the white rimmed Fabulous Hudson Hornet has already returned as a WOC CAR or will about to be re-released through 2008. Be sure and view our checklist to get a full list of what’s out so far.


Until November 2007 this was ALL TRUE …

Mattel has surprisingly kept this a mass market line with very few purposeful or accidental variants. For those who are not rabid collectors, some toy companies like to issue “variants” to keep everyone guessing and on their toes. These “variations” on the item can be accidental or purposeful – usually invoving painting something a different color or a slightly different looking accessory – and/or usually releasing them in llmited quantities requiring a “chase” (or eBay) to get it. Some just involve a little more work or others really annoy consumers because thety might be packed 1 to every 20 cases. Fortunately, Mattel has decide not to roil a good thing and keep things everything fairly straightforward. That’s not to say there hasn’t been any hiccups as WE ALL KNOW with this line but none of the shennigans seem to be part of some evil master plan on Mattel’s part – just bad luck and at worst, laziness on their part. All this is covered in greater detail in this post.

The ONLY CAR that can deemed such is a mistake CAR. This Rollin’ Bowlin’ Mater – which some people don’t consider him part of the line. The main big strike against him is that this version does not appear in the movie … but “incorrect” or not is not always a relevant argument about what is considered part of the toy release lineup because you could just as easily argue the white-rimmed Fabulous Hudson Hornet is incorrect (as Doc Hudson “dressed” as the Fab Hudson Hornet never appears that way in CARS – in the movie, the FHH is ALWAYS in red rims). Rollin’ Bowlin’ Mater has appeared in two sets in 2006: Mater’s Rollin’ Bowlin’ Game* & the BJ Warehouse Box Set (see below) and there was always some quibble about whether he was part of the lineup but at Comic Con 2007, Mattel raffled off a “2006 Factory Sealed Case” of 27 CARS that included Rollin’ Bowlin’ Mater thus pretty much ending any argument whether he’s canon or not.


* Note, there are still selling the Mater’s Rollin’ Bowlin’ Game – in fact, reader Karen points out it’s on clearance at KB Toys for $9.98. (Also note – KB is closing and starting clearance sales at 156 stores).





While not officially a treasure hunt/chase car in the normal scheme of things. On November, with the release of the Blu-Ray CARS DVD, for $3.50 (plus tax), you get a “free” CAR. It is limited to 15,000 and you have to sign up with the Disney Movie Rewards Club (signup is free).

ALL the info is available at our other post on signup tips, etc, etc.

Mattel is still accepting code numbers for the Blu Ray CAR giveaway but hurry!

They have shipped to everyone who ordered in the first few days and weeks.


World of Cars: Movie Moments. Seven multi-packs are featured on the back – the top area features a detailed description of the CARS from that multi-pack – and below, the other 6 multi-packs.

For the World of Cars: Movie Moments, there are seven multi-packs featured on the back with two different card designs – the top area features a detailed description of the CARS from that multi-pack – and below, the other 6 multi-packs.



Rusty & Dusty Rust-Eze

RELATIVELY NEW (Appearing briefly as Supercharged Movie Moments)
The King & Mrs. The King
Mia & Tia

Bob Cutlass & Darrell Cartrip
Luigi & Ferrari F430
Tex Dinoco & Dinoco Lightning McQueen


Boost & Snot Rod
Flo & Ramone (Purple)
Luigi, Guido & Tractor
Mike & Sculley
Red & Stanley
Sally & Crusin’ Lightning McQueen


Flea & Flik

Flea & Flik may be pushed back to the 2008 in the US (they are being released in the UK on supercharged cards).

Our NEW SEALED 2008 post covers all the multi-packs scheduled for 2008.

As with the single blister card CARS, none of the multi-sets are retired.

The full list so far?

Al Oft Lightyear Blimp
Barney Stormin’ (Biplane)
Bling Bling McQueen
Blu Ray McQueen
Bob Cutlass
Brand New Mater
Bruiser Bukowski (Chick Pit)
Bug Mouth McQueen
Cactus McQueen
Chick/Chick Hicks
Crusin’ McQueen
Crusin’ Ramone/Old School Ramone
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Darrell Cartrip
Dinoco Chick Hicks
Dinoco Helicopter
Dinoco McQueen
Dirt Track McQueen
Doc Hudson
Fabulous Hudson Hornet (White Rims) – Only “retired” CAR.
Fabulous Hudson Hornet (Red Rims)
Ferrari F430
Guido (Ferrari Fan)
Hydraulic Ramone (aka: Red Ramone)
Kori Turbowitz
Leak Less/Leakless
Lightning McQueen
Luigi (Ferrari Fan)
Mack (Cab Portion only)
Mario Andretti
Mrs. The King
No Stall #123
Octane Gain #58
Piston Cup Pace Car
Pit Crew Member Fabulous Hudson Hornet
Pit Crew Member Fillmore
Pit Crew Member Guido
Radiator Springs McQueen
Ramone (Blue – Ghostlight)
Ramone (Green)
Ramone (Purple)
Ramone (Yellow)
Rollin’ Bowlin’ Mater*
RPM #64
Snot Rod
Tex Dinoco
TJ (Hummer)
Tom Race Official
Tongue McQueen
Vinyl Toupee #76

Yes, NOTHING retired (other than white rim Hornet). Full checklist & options HERE.



“Each includes a die-cast vehicle with launcher. It’s your favorite racers from the hit Disney/Pixar movie CARS, in the new Pit-Stop Racers Assortment. Each includes a die-cast vehicle with launcher. Connect the launchers to recreate Pit Crew Row, then send your character cars into high performance mode with a pow! Assortment includes Lightning McQueen, The King, Chick Hicks, Octane Gain, Leak Less and Nitroade.”


There are four shipments scheduled of six per box (Sealed boxes end in A-B-C-D). They will retail for around $7.99.

Here are some eBay photos …




There are at least 8 shipments versions available throughout the early part of 2008.



The 5 packs (not all are pictured above) shipping first will be:

#1 – Cactus Lightning McQueen, Charlie Checker the Piston Cup Pace Car & The King
#2 – Bling Bling McQueen (Car in photo is Dinoco McQueen), & Gold Twins Mia & Tia (NEW)
#3 – Flo, Lightning Ramone (NEW) & Lightning McQueen
#4 – Cactus McQueen, Sheriff & Dirt Track Hudson (NEW)
#5 – Dinoco Chick Hicks & Dinoco Mia & Tia

The retail price will probably be $9.99 to $12.99.

NOTE: For completists, the Pace Car has not only been given a name but apparently they forgot to paint in the red tail lights so this is an official variant.


They have even kept exclusives to a relative minimum – the WM ones are the first ones that require extra work but as we can see by eBay pricing, demand and supply seem closely matched now.

Wal Mart Exclusives

In Stores …
Al Oft (the Lightyear Blimp)
Barney Stormin’ Bi-Plane
Bruiser Bukowski (Chick Hicks Pit Crew)
Cactus McQueen
Ghostlight Ramone (Blue)
Kori Turbowitz
Piston Cup Pace Car
T.J. (Boot Camp Hummer)


Most WM’s have taken down the pallet so most likely, you will need to look around in the toy section for Wave 2 of the WM exclusives.


AND the Wal Mart exclusives come in TWO versions – one with an interstate logo on the front reading NEW and another version without the NEW! on the front. Some of you will say me’h and the COMPLETISTS out there will have to make another run to the ATM and weep silently.


Also: Kori might be worth a second look for completists or precisionists. In the illustration on the card and the movie (I checked), her PRESS pass stickered/magnetized to her left front quarter panel is level and straight. The diecast version features everything from level/straight to wildly askew … so you have to decide if:

a) you care
b) you want the straight one only
c) you consider an askew one a variant.

kiro1.jpg kori2.jpg

And for those of us who hate out-of-scale – the blimp is clearly out of scale … though kind of close to this scale – the TOMY vending machine CARS (scroll down to see the CARS). Hard to find in vending machines now but you still should be able to find them on eBay – watch out for shipping, it’s about $2 to ship including the cost of an envelope so make sure you’re not getting cheated there. You can also check here to compare pricing.

One more competist update – apparently the license plate on the back of the green TJ Hummer reads either TUF GUE or TUF GUY … if you care to collect both.

And if you’re out West, here’s why it’s harder to find WM exclusives.

Target Exclusives

Easter Eggs: Chick, Lightning McQueen & Sally. Each CAR was packaged inide a plastic Easter egg – green for Chick, blue for Sally & red for Lightning. Chick was the rare egg in the lot and the harder one to find.


For autumn 2007, Target offered three CARS with a mini pumpkin stand:

Crusin’ McQueen, Doc & Purple Ramone are the only available.


For the holidays of 2007, Target had MOCK CARS “ornaments” – note the word MOCK. They are not actual ornaments. They come on a clear “snow” tray and while the artwork makes it appears they are ornaments – they so not something you can hang on a tree.



TRU Exclusives

Also on cards are these “Movie Doubles” only at toysrus.com and in the stores (exclusive):

Speed & Tongue McQueen
Red & Purple Ramone
Young Mater & Mater
Doc Hudson & Fabulous Hudson Hornet (not pictured).

(the yellow tab allows you to ‘switch’ the billboard art).




PLUS (for completists)


Wave 1
Fillmore – spelled Filmore on some early versions (see below).
King – rear panel different in China/Thailand version.


Wave 2
Sally – Porsche & script emblem changes

ALSO NOTE for completists – almost all of wave 2 and wave 3 CARS are now ALSO shipping with a mini poster tucked underneath so if you’re a complete completist … now you have to reason to buy a new Sally. There are NO posters shipped with wave 4 (WOC cards).


So, there will be @80 different individual CARS when the last Wave 4 ships out in mid December.

If you’re collecting just one of everything that is not a repeat – the “basic checklist” above is essentially your list to go by. Our forthcoming list broken out by shipment BOX CODE is here. If you need a “real” checklist, visit our online spreadsheet at EditGrid. We have included three different checklists depending on what you are collecting.

Now, if you’re attempting to assemble a complete, complete with many repeats of the same cars but in different packages? Keep reading but note that the listings below features the EXACT same CARS – just packaged differently so if you want everything and all of it 🙂 Read On!

If you are really curious about the different versions of card backs, here’s our way-too-indepth analyses 🙂

PLAYSETS (with Diecast CARS)

There was also a version of Luigi’s Casa Della Tires that came with 5 CARS: Guido, Luigi, Sally, Lightning McQueen & Doc Hudson. This was/is a Kohl’s Stores Exclusive and can still be found on the store shelves.

Another tough one to find is the Piston Cup 500 Playset and comes with a Lightning McQueen but unless you are a completist, it’s now available with 4 other CARS at TRU under the same name.


Under the (Wave 2) SUPERCHARGED banner are these playsets with CARS:

There is a Lightning Fast Speedway Track Set with Lightning McQueen


There is a Mack playset which the trailer opens to reveal a service bay & car wash area – technically not matching anything from the movie. Mack and everything is all plastic. Also comes in “original” and Supercharged packaging.


and a Radiator Springs Playmat that included a Sheriff.


Now shipping: a more-to-scale Dinoco Helicopter (all plastic) – it comes with a pullback Mater (plastic) and looks like it can fit from 1-4 diecasts. The 14″ helicopter features spinning blades, and sounds and phrases from Mater (of course, helicopter’s don’t talk, silly you 🙂


Just out now, a not-very-to-scale Mack that folds out called the Mega Mack Playtown. Comes with Lightning McQueen, Doc Hudson and the street paver, Bessie. Note, the street paver is all plastic and is incorrect in scale and according to reader “Matt”, Doc & McQueen are also ALL plastic so you can decide if it’s what you want:



The Mack Mega Playtown TV Ad:



Way back in early summer of 2006, BJ’s Warehouse released two Box Sets, the first contained: a Blue Mater (Rollin’ Bowlin’ Mater), Doc Hudson, Ramone-Purple, Sally, Sheriff and Wingo. The second set contained: Chick Hicks, Fillmore, King, Lightning McQueen, Lizzie & Sarge. These sold out quickly but seem to have made a brief return in November 2006 – and selling out again quickly. It doesn’t appear there was was any packaging change.

In Summer of 2006, there began a series of more exclusive box sets starting with this one from Target: a Mack Transporter Set which was essentially “Mack” as a car carrier. The set came with Mack (of course), Lightning McQueen & Sally. NOTE: Mack was all plastic and not diecast. His cab portion was in scale to the other CARS but his hauler portion is definitely not to scale.


When the DVD came out last Autumn, Best Buy offered an exclusive: The DVD packaged with: Doc Hudson, Fillmore, Lightning McQueen, Mater.

There was a Target exclusive but is now available everywhere – the Race Case and Track, which is an oval shaped carrying case that holds 16 cars. (Now with “Supercharged” logo treatment – first versions with desert art backing like Wave 1).


Then several Wal-Mart exclusives (SUPERCHARGED label):

Mack Transporter Set now with: Chick, Leak Less & Lightning McQueen. (Same Mack as previous – all CARS diecast).

A Radiator Springs Shopkeepers set featuring: Fillmore, Mater, Ramone-Green & Sarge.


A Cruisin’ Couples set: Flo, Lightning McQueen, Ramone-Purple & Sally.

A Courtroom Crew set: Doc Hudson, Sally & Sheriff.

Then a few Target exclusives followed (SUPERCHARGED label):

These two sets are still on Target shelves if you look hard enough …

Tractor Tippin’: Lightning McQueen, Mater & Tractor.

Tunerz Vehicles: Boost, Snot Rod & Wingo.


Lastly, there are two Toys R Us exclusives that you can still find on the shelves:

The current version of the Piston Cup 500 Track playset now comes with Lightning McQueen, Chick, Leak Less & King. (see way above for what track & set looks like opened).


There is a “booster” (two spinning discs) that sends the cars racing around the track. Seems like fun though apparently one should keep it away from the windows as it can just send the CARS flying off the track.

Out now, there is Radiator Springs 5-Pack: Doc Hudson, Lizzie, Mater, Sally & Sheriff (pretty certain this is a TRU exclusive).


And a 7-pack version. I’m think the 7-pack is a Wal mart exclusive but I’m losing track 🙂


And a Piston Cup Racers


And yet another Mack Playset with “Bonus Car,” meaning whatever Mattel has left in the warehouse? (NOT OUT YET)


The Mack Lightning McQueen Runaway set seems to be a Disney Store exclusive, Apparently, if you press a button, Speed will come shooting out of Mack. As with the other Macks, he’s all plastic – making this item seem a little spendy if all it does is shoot LM out the back … high price not so unusual since it’s at the Disney stores (should be available in Disney retail stores also). (Thanks to readers, Harry B & Tina for the update and link).


Also Note – the Disney store carries “CARS FIGURINES” and they are just that – they are NOT diecast so look carefully! The Disney store also sells a line of 1:64 diecast CARS that are NOT part of the Mattel 1:55 scale lineup so again, look carefully!

JC Penney and maybe others now have a “Meet at Flo’s” set which is another version of the Townies CARS.

There are two “new” 6-packs at BJ’s Warehouse for 2007 – new only in the sense the box label & name is new, it’s the same Radiator Springs townie CARS and/or the Piston Cup racers out just re-packaged AGAIN. Just going from photos they look very similiar to the look and feel of the current box sets – CARS visible with a scene backdrop matching the box theme …

Cruise Night: Mater, Doc Hudson, Sheriff, Sally, Purple Ramone and Crusin’ Mcqueen.

Speedway 6: Ferrari F430, King, Chick Hicks, Nitroade, Dinoco Mcqueen, and RPM.

This TARGET exclusive has arrived … “Dinoco 400.” The three “new” CARS are: Octane Gain, Vinyl Toupee & No Stall. The price of the box is $29.99 in stores. There are only three “new” CARS of which Octane Gain will also be available as a “launcher” CAR (see above) and honestly, no Target exclusive is really all that exclusive … every exclusive of theirs while selling out at first or slow arriving eventually does – my local Target has plenty of the older 3-packs that were hard to find for the first 3 months … AND Mattel has re-released every car in the CARS line in one form or another so unless you want a pristine box of the racers this week, DON’T PANIC! 🙂



The latest box appear to be a Sam’s Club exclusive, the “10-Pack Value Box.”

(You can see what CARS are included – other than three of the more recent WM CARS, same old-same old – though a decent starter set for someone just joining, It’s $29.87).



And it is honest … only Cactus, Ramone & the Blimp are sniped “NEW.” There is no artwork on the back.

At least at this Sam’s Club, I don’t think they will run out anytime soon.

Also at Comic Con 2007, Mattel held a drawing for this set of 27 CARS called 2006 Factory Set‘ (everything up to Leak Less was the description). While no one has cracked it open (2 were raffled off – leaving @498 available when Mattel gives the word), it looks like they are the original/desert design cards.

Mattel will put up the other 498 on sale 11/27/2007 at the HotWheels Collector’s website 9 AM Pacific US Time For $149.99 plus shiping + membership costs.

Details can be found at our Mattel Factory 2006 Set post.

It has shipped to many who were able to get one (sold out in 3 hours) – our unboxing photos are here – if you’re interested, check eBay.


Holds @12 CARS (includes SNOT ROD) and has a “launching” feature plus ramp. Mattel also sells a version for Speed Racer & Hot Wheels.



In stores now & also online at Amazon.


What’s great is you’re an opener or your kids will actually be playing with them (or kids at heart), you can jump in anytime. eBay prices for all but the newest cars are all reasonably priced now (there are still some gougers out there but hey, that’s the beauty & beast of eBay) 🙂 You can still be caught up in a matter of weeks if all you want is just one of everything. The “town” playsets will take a little more time but all are available at TRU except for Ramone’s if not today then fairly rapidly in the next few weeks.

And other than the two original 2006 BJ Warehouse Club box sets, the other sets are usually available at near the original retail selling price on eBay since they were all re-issues of CARS already out – many “openers” don’t find much value in re-collecting them … of course, for completists, it’s another stake in their bank account 🙂

Now, I’m only collecting the Mattel 1:55 diecast line but there are probably close to 200 different other CARS cars out there from pullbacks to ripcords to tiny vending machine ones. Other than the Mini’s, you are on your own there – sorry – good luck!

It’s a great line – if you missed out, it’s not too late to jump in … (We have added some buying tips).


If you collect packaging variant, don’t forgot Flo & Ramone – available three ways (um, adults, make your own joke here)


KISS VERSION (First Supercharged version)






dinoco1.jpg be0d_1.jpg

Skip a few meals! 🙂 Buy a great custom display case! No, I’m not affliated with any of these sellers but if you need a classy way to go … our HOW TO COLLECT post offers some display choices at the end of the post.



If you want a recap of the Mattel Pixar CARS line from the beginning.

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: It’s What to Collect

Unlike other toys/hot items that stay hot for a few weeks or months – this Mattel Pixar CARS diecast line has pretty been SIZZLING for 16 months – not just rare but almost un-heard of.

The post below outlines why the line is so difficult and some solutions. There is a list of the main retailers, some online options and for international customers,s ome options.

Mattel Pixar Cars: I Want to Buy But Where?


First, one way to skip the driving around is to buy sealed cases, here is a brief rundown on what that is AND what are the CARS coming this holiday season (the last two months of 2007):

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: New Sealed Boxes

And what’s coming in 2008 by the sealed case:

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: New Sealed Boxes Holiday 2007 & 2008

Or what’s the latest on the shelf cards & CARS look like?

Mattel Pixar: What’s in Stores Now

If you wish to plot out what CAR will make its first appearance & in what box in 2008, a friend of 2aDay has thoughtfully provided a spreadsheet you can download or it’s also been added to our online checklist/spreadsheet.


For those on the intermediate & advanced stages of this obsession (yes, I has the fever! I has the fever 🙂 ) … you’ll want a “field guide” to spotting what’s what:

A Basic Checklist (in spreadsheet form)

The checklist offers a few versions on how you like your poison 😉

Then of course, a more indepth guideline on how to collect them – just one of each? one of each available on a different card?

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: How to Collect

As you progress further, you might need or want a guide to understanding what do the three different designs on the front indicate and how complete of a collector you want to be:

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: Card Backs

Info on the Blu-Ray Dinoco “Blu” CAR

The LIMITED & EXCLUSIVE Disney Blu-Ray “Blu” Dinoco McQueen


Of course, by now, you’ll want to know everything and plan your budget carefully … Mattel will definitely release 35/36 of the Piston Cup Racers in one massive collector’s set but will they release them in smaller sets? Our speculation on why rioting is probably not necessary:

Mattel Pixar Cars: All the Piston Cup CARS-Speedway of the South Box Set

If you prefer to see some of the cardbacks in a larger file size or to view the two posters for a visual look at the CARS to collect, our FLICKER page is here.

Did you know the Blu-Ray DVD (for HDTV’s) will include a “name-spotter” feature that will let you see the names of 217 CARS within the movie?

Mattel Pixar Cars Checklist: It’s What to Collect-Part II – 217 CARS?

And while we’re at it – pure speculation on our part as to what might be coming next?

Mattel Pixar Cars: What’s Coming in 2008 or 2009

Mattel Pixar Cars: What’s Coming in 2008 or 2009? Part II

Mattel Pixar Cars: Mia & Tia – All the Possible Variants

Whether you want a nice display case or a plastic box to keep it night and sealed/unopened, here are some links that should point you in the right direction.

How to best display your CARS?

Here’s what my collection looks like so far … just on a bookcase now because I’m too scared to look at another “easy assemly” instruction 🙂 though that Ikea glass case looks like nice and at a great price

Our Photo Blog


Details on the Mattel sponsorship & CARS charity auction for CAAF (Children Affected by AIDS Foundation):

Mattel Pixar Cars & Children Affected by AIDS Charity Auction

While Frank the Combine on eBay seems enticing, you might want to know that he’s very small and all plastic but there are some other options …

Mattel Pixar CARS Movie: Frank the Combine – eBay Warning

The 2006 Mattel Factory Set …

The Scoop & Our opinion of it and thanks to Noel, some great unboxing photos

Too much money in your bank account – starting collecting the other CARS line …

NEW Mini Adventures CARS & Playsets

The Sarge Recall:

Mattel Recalls Pixar CARS Sarge Diecast Metal Car

Nothing very insightful about what’s coming but still good to know that CARS is bringing in money and everything is looking smooth.

Mattel Pixar Cars: 3rd Quarter 2007 Earnings-Financial Numbers


Yes, more speculation & answers on our part but the stars and other things seem to be syncing up for a 2011 sequel:

Pixar CARS 2 Sequel: Rumors, Rumors, Rumors

«  »
23 April 2007 Film, Gadgets, Retail, Toys One Comment

One Comment

  • Ghostlightcharlie says:

    Hi all.
    Just joined up. Does anyone know where there is a good range of cars available in the UK, only most that I have picked up have been from e-bay, mainly the states, and I am s little fed up of being stung because I buy them for my son to play with and there tends to be a lot of collectors on e-bay, plus the pay for but no delivery bandits.A bit of a mammoth one to kick off with. cheers all.

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