Hot Wheels Batmobile Changes From The Prototype

Pimp My Batmobile 9 Comments

Last year, this ad appeared in some trade magazines showing the then prototype Hot Wheels 1:18 Batmobile:

Since then, we waited patiently as the Standard, Elite and Super Elite editions have been issued. It might be interesting now to take a look at things that changed (other than the previously well-discussed rollbar/canopy revisions) as the production cars came out. (This topic was sparked by Tim, thanks)

1. Bat Ray Trim Striping
Well this is one aspect of the prototype that we all naturally expected to get carried through to production but for whatever reasons – it wasn’t. What first seemed like an error of omission has since bloomed into an obviously economics-based intentional gaffe. They had too long to fix the paint apps and too many people have been complaining for 6 months for this to be acccidental.

2. Barris & Ford Badges
When HW laser-scanned the car, they brought along many placards and badges. These seem to indicate that both the Barris shield and the Ford oval badge that lingered on the #1 car as a reminder of Barris’ Ford sponsorship was intended to be part of the final product at one time. Maybe HW was trying to get Ford to pay for some of the tool-ups and the deal never got inked. Either way – they are both gone by the time we got the toys. It has been indicated elsewhere that Barris was only paid a consulting fee for this project. Maybe they tried to sell him ad space as well. 
bat badges

3. Bat Radar  This just looks like a proto-mockup that they would eventually replace with either the plastic piece on the Standard or the photoetch piece on the Elites.

4. Rear Antenna Not a big thing but the prototype’s was taller and more accurate looking than any version that we got. Amazing because a guitar string looks better than any of their versions.

5. Non-Rader Wheel Rims This is pretty interesting because it shows that originally the rims were much closer to the ones on Barris’ car NOW (which are not Raders). One of the few times they seemed to skew toward 1966 versus the current condition of the car. (Though the new ones seem to be tri-ridge as opposed to just center ridge)

Are there more differences that we can’t see from this shot? Are there ones that YOU see and we missed? Let us know.

  1. Tim

    August 27, 2008 at 5:08 pm

    Take a close look at the front grills. These don’t look like plastic, but to me, they look more like metal grill inserts. Don’t know if they are photo-etched or just trimmed to fit.


  2. jim neanover

    August 27, 2008 at 7:28 pm

    The Bat insignia on the door is much bigger, Plus on the grill, it doesn’t have the little lite look-n things that are on the standard and elite. In the picture posted here, the Grill is Smooth!

  3. The Duel 007

    August 27, 2008 at 7:36 pm

    One other thing, look at the nose of the hood. Thanks goodness, it looks like another placard didn’t make the cut. I’ve seen that placard in pictures of the Barris Batmobile. We dodged another bullet there.

  4. diecastbat

    August 28, 2008 at 10:37 am

    Any speculation out there that the first Super Elites we are seeing are only dealer prototypes? This would be consistent with what happened with the Elites. Where preview samples were lacking detail but released early to build hype. Due to the appx. 3 week difference in release dates for preview Elites and inventory Elites, seems like this might be the case too with the Supers. What do you guys think? Is this just wishful thinking?

  5. batsarge619

    August 28, 2008 at 11:38 am

    It almost looks, from the close-up pic of the wheel, as if there was disc brake detail behind the non-Rader mag

  6. Kevin

    August 28, 2008 at 11:30 pm

    Let’s see, they removed the ‘chain slicer’ placard, the ford and BKI placards, but left the Batbeam and antenna placards. The Bat laser stripes and more correct antenna were removed. They really don’t have a clue what they’re doing do they?

  7. Tim

    August 29, 2008 at 1:05 am

    Ah yes, the infamous “Chain Slicer” placard! How could they forget that one! But they did give us the “Batiichute” x2! ;) Look closely at your Elite and Super Elite chute tags! That Barris, what a card! :)


  8. Leon Wasiak

    August 30, 2008 at 7:58 pm

    Was leafing thru Erics hotwheels update part of his 1966 batmoblie site and came across the prototype hot wheels photos ( same car in the ad ) it also had orange chute packs Leon

  9. Brett Auckram

    December 5, 2020 at 12:50 pm

    Hi have damaged my bat ray looking for a replacement can any body help ?

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *