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.


FIND > 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).


FIND > 1969 Hot Wheels | Beach Bomb | Prototype

Hot Wheels Redline Custom Olds 442 Camaro Estate Find  Caution!!!! Caution !!!!!

High Bid: $7,400.00
Bids: 43
Time Left:
4d 3h 22m


Hot Wheels Redline OLDS 442

High Bid: $850.00
Bids: 24
Time Left:
1d 52m


Mattel Hot Wheels Redline Rare Ribbed Window Orange Custom Mustang

High Bid: $710.00
Bids: 24
Time Left:
23h 35m


Hot Wheels 2012 26th Annual Collectors Convention 1966 TV Series Batmobile GOLD

High Bid: $660.00
Bids: 3
Time Left:
22h 16m


Vintage Hot Wheels Redlines Lot Of 24 With Case 1967 to 1970

High Bid: $560.00
Bids: 15
Time Left:
5d 18h


HOT WHEELS ORIGINAL REDLINE PERSONAL COLLECTION 25 VINTAGE RARE CARS

High Bid: $535.00
Bids: 6
Time Left:
6d 1h 39m


2015 Hot Wheels RLC CANDY STRIPER ‘55 Chevy Bel Air Gasser Pink #1482/4000!!

High Bid: $505.00
Bids: 2
Time Left:
6d 29m


HOT WHEELS REDLINE US RED HYBRID CUSTOM CAMARO WHITE INT . ORIGINAL. MINT.

High Bid: $492.77
Bids: 33
Time Left:
1d 39m


Hot Wheels Red Line Club RLC '71 Datsun Bluebird 510 BRE 2013 MORTON #1811/03000

High Bid: $435.00
Bids: 24
Time Left:
2d 22h 54m


1967/68 HOT WHEELS REDLINE CUSTOM BARRACUDA 6211 PURPLE MOC BLISTER No Reserve

High Bid: $431.00
Bids: 28
Time Left:
23h 59m


HOT WHEELS 2008 MATTEL REAL RIDERS SERIES 8 83 CHEVY SILVERADO 525/3000 RARE

High Bid: $415.00
Bids: 9
Time Left:
2d 44m


Lot Of 65+ Vintage Hot Wheels Redlines Incl Mustangs, Camaro, Cuda & Ferrari

High Bid: $415.00
Bids: 4
Time Left:
7d 21h 39m


HOT WHEELS REDLINES CUSTOM 1971 DARK MAGENTA OLDS 442.. NO RESERVE.

High Bid: $405.00
Bids: 9
Time Left:
8d 2h 14m


MINT IN BLISTER 1970 REDLINE HOT WHEELS SHINY RED KING KUDA SET

High Bid: $380.00
Bids: 22
Time Left:
1d 35m


Vintage 1968 HOT WHEELS REDLINES CUSTOM EL DORADO pink

High Bid: $370.00
Bids: 37
Time Left:
1h 4m


Rare Gem mint 1970 Hot Wheels Bradley Time Wrist Watch

High Bid: $355.00
Bids: 4
Time Left:
21h 26m


HOT WHEELS REDLINE BEACH BOMB ROSE PINK (WATERMELON) MINT EXCEPTIONAL

High Bid: $350.00
Bids: 26
Time Left:
1d 1h 3m


NEAR MINT IN BLISTER 1968 REDLINE HOT WHEELS LIME YELLOW CUSTOM CAMARO HK

High Bid: $328.00
Bids: 22
Time Left:
1d 31m


LOT OF 2 ORIGINAL 1968 HOT WHEELS REDLINE CUSTOM CAMARO -USA- RED & AQUA BLUE

High Bid: $325.00
Bids: 29
Time Left:
1h 39m


Mattel Hot Wheels Redline Rare Open Hood Scoop Gold Custom Mustang

High Bid: $325.00
Bids: 24
Time Left:
23h 31m


KILLER MINT IN BLISTER 1969 REDLINE HOT WHEELS SHINY PURPLE CONTINENTAL MARK III

High Bid: $296.51
Bids: 15
Time Left:
1d 36m


Mattel Hot Wheels Redline Rare Ribbed Window Blue Custom Mustang

High Bid: $284.99
Bids: 16
Time Left:
23h 33m


Hot Wheels RLC RedLine Club Original 16 Custom Mustang OHS -1968 replica LIMITED

High Bid: $280.00
Bids: 16
Time Left:
14h 44m


Vintage Hot Wheels Redlines matchbox tomica Lot of 200 +

High Bid: $255.00
Bids: 24
Time Left:
1d 2h 36m


Hot Wheels RLC Real Riders Neo Classics Online Exclusives Flying Customs Lot 31

High Bid: $249.99
Bids: 1
Time Left:
21h 43m