FOUND > Rare 'Hot Wheels' Toy Worth $150,000

In 1969, Dad tells Son; "It May Be Valuable Someday."

Goya print
The 1969 Hot Wheels Beach Bomb prototype.


April 5, 2017
By James Massey, What Sells Best News

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH (VIDEO) – A man brought a vintage toy Hot Wheels car he received as a boy, from his dad, to Antiques Roadshow for an appraisal. Turns out it's a rare prototype worth up to $150,000.

The car, a 1969 Hot Wheels Beach Bomb prototype came from the man's father, a foreman at Mattel in the 1960s. He gave the prototype car to his boy after it failed a play test... suggesting his son keep it safe, because; "it may be valuable someday." His son did just that. And the car sat in a trunk, in near-mint condition, for almost 50 years.

The Flaw that Made the 'Holy Grail' of Hot Wheels

The 1969 Hot Wheels Beach Bomb prototype (also known as a Rear-Loader Beach Bomb), was modeled to resemble a surfers VW Bus, with two surfboards hanging out the back window. An unforeseen design flaw led to a very small number being produced.

When the prototypes were built, Mattel play tested them to make sure they would work okay with their play sets and stunt tracks. Unexpectedly, the Beach Bomb prototype failed testing. Because the car was top-heavy and unable to negotiate high-speed corners, it was also too narrow to effectively roll on the Hot Wheels track.

Shortly thereafter, Hot Wheels modified the vehicle, lowering its center of gravity, by cutting away the roof and installing a full-length sunroof. They also extended the side fenders to better fit the track and provide a new way to store the plastic surfboards on the sides of the vehicle. The updated design is known as a 'Side-loader' among collectors.

Because of the changes, only a small number of the original 'Rear-Loader' Beach Bomb prototypes are known to exist. Roadshow appraiser Grant Zahajko illustrated this well by saying; "Well, we've done a lot of research on this. I have also spoken to one of the expert Hot Wheel collectors in the country today. And what we know about this actually is that there's 40 different variations of the prototypes from this line. All various colors. However, the most popular one being the pink rear loader. If you've seen pictures of that one before."

All added up, this makes the car in near mint condition, extremely rare. But, according to Zahajko, this car, a red version with clear windows may be among the rarest of them all.

Estimated Value: $100,000 - $150,000

A pink Hot Wheels 'Rear Loader' made an appearance on History's Pawn Stars (Season 11, Episode 22) back in 2015. When a man brought his 1969 Beach Bomb prototype into the shop to sell it to famed Pawnshop owner Rick Harris. Pawn Stars toy expert, Johnny Jimenez, valued the car at $100,000. The seller offered to sell at $140,000, however, Harris was only willing to go to $70,000. They were unable to make a deal.

Antiques Roadshow appraiser Grant Zahajko, indicated the added scarcity of this particular prototype being near mint condition, with its provenance, red color and clear windows... literally made it, the "Holy Grail of Hot Wheels." He then gave it a $100,000-$150,000 auction estimate.

See The Full Appraisal

The full appraisal video, transcript and additional photos of the Hot Wheels car can be seen at the PBS Antiques Roadshow website here.

Top 25: Vintage Hot Wheels on eBay

The following list today's current Top 25 active Hot Wheels auctions sorted by highest-bid on eBay, worldwide (Top 25: Diecast Vehicles).


WATERMELON HOT WHEELS REDLINE CUSTOM MUSTANG SALESMAN SAMPLE

High Bid: $2,200.00
Bids: 22
Time Left:
3d 12h 43m


1975 HOT WHEELS - CUTOFF CANYON - COMPLETE REDLINE TRACK SET RARE BLUE SUPER VAN

High Bid: $1,200.00
Bids: 8
Time Left:
5d 19h 17m


2016 Hot Wheels Toy Fair Porsche 934 Turbo RSR. Beautiful, brand new in case.

High Bid: $960.00
Bids: 11
Time Left:
2d 16h 43m


Hot Wheels Toy Fair 2016 Porsche 934 Turbo RSR in original acrylic display case

High Bid: $860.00
Bids: 35
Time Left:
4d 15h 18m


Redline Hot Wheels Custom Mustang w/ Rear Louvered Window( Orange)

High Bid: $730.00
Bids: 35
Time Left:
20h 7m


Hot Wheels Employee Holiday 2009 Volkswagon Drag Bus

High Bid: $660.00
Bids: 12
Time Left:
17h 2m


>> Hot Wheels 1995 Treasure Hunt '67 Camaro THE HOLY GRAIL OF TREASURE HUNTS !!

High Bid: $660.00
Bids: 51
Time Left:
3d 1h 38m


Hot Wheels 2007 Factory Sealed Mainline Set #210 of 500

High Bid: $645.00
Bids: 1
Time Left:
10h 28m


First SWEET 16 Hot Wheels Redlines Lot Vintage Original

High Bid: $590.00
Bids: 1
Time Left:
2d 21h 7m


HOT WHEELS Mattel Vintage Redline CUSTOM BARRACUDA Purple HK UK Rosebud Card MOC

High Bid: $433.33
Bids: 14
Time Left:
9d 14h 36m


HOT WHEELS Vintage Redline UK Twin Pack VOLKSWAGEN BEACH BOMB LIGHT MY FIREBIRD

High Bid: $433.33
Bids: 19
Time Left:
9d 14h 43m


HOT WHEELS Mattel Vintage Redline CUSTOM VOLKSWAGEN White Interior NO SUNROOF

High Bid: $424.95
Bids: 8
Time Left:
9d 14h 27m


1969 Hot Wheels Redline Volkswagen Beach Bomb Rare Brown Blister Pack Original

High Bid: $415.00
Bids: 21
Time Left:
2d 21h 1m


2015 Hot Wheels RLC '55 Chevy Bel Air Gasser Pink Candy Striper 2850/4000 1 owne

High Bid: $410.00
Bids: 9
Time Left:
2d 17h 34m


Hot Wheels Redline Lot Of 19 Original Owner

High Bid: $405.00
Bids: 8
Time Left:
3d 19h


Hot Wheels redline Orange Custom Camaro blister pack

High Bid: $399.00
Bids: 1
Time Left:
9d 19h 32m


2015 RLC Hot Wheels HOT Pink Candy Striper '55 Chevy Bel Air Gasser RedLine Club

High Bid: $380.00
Bids: 38
Time Left:
5d 19h 32m


Hot Wheels Redline 1971 Olds 442 Yellow 

High Bid: $350.00
Bids: 12
Time Left:
2d 22h 20m


HOT WHEELS LIBERTY PROMOTIONS MUTINEER BAY REBEL RUN VW DRAG BUS 38/50 VERY RARE

High Bid: $346.00
Bids: 17
Time Left:
2d 18h 47m


Hot Wheels Redline 1971  Aqua Boss Hoss #6 in the blister pack

High Bid: $319.00
Bids: 15
Time Left:
1d 20h 32m


Hot Wheels 2017 Super Treasure Hunt Complete set #1087/1200

High Bid: $310.00
Bids: 2
Time Left:
2d 21h 8m


Very Rare Hot Wheels Color Racers Automagic White Corvette Stingray in Blisterpk

High Bid: $310.00
Bids: 12
Time Left:
3d 20h 36m


Hot Wheels VHTF 2004 Snap-On Tools Promo Nissan Skyline GT-R R32 Non Mint Card

High Bid: $305.00
Bids: 29
Time Left:
5d 21h 40m


   ORIGINAL Hot Wheels Mustang REDLINE Olive US

High Bid: $300.00
Bids: 11
Time Left:
2d 20h 1m


Hot wheels 55 chevy bel air gasser spectra pink color unspun/unrivet RR

High Bid: $290.50
Bids: 52
Time Left:
10h 1m