In 2012 we went to the SEMA Show in Las Vegas and saw lots of hot rods and custom cars that shops built specifically to exhibit at SEMA. The big automakers also had customized cars in their booths and one headliner was a current-generation Camaro tricked out to look like a Hot Wheels toy. They even made a giant-sized Hot Wheels track to go with the car.
Until last night, we never realized that Chevy actually introduced a Hot Wheels package for the production line Camaro. Such a car owned by Tom Cieslewize of DePere, Wis. showed up at the Tuesday night cruise at the Cruise-In Diner in Manawa, Wis., so we had a photo opp and a learning experience.
Cieslewize bought the car new in 2013 from Stasek Chevrolet of Wheeling, Ill. He traded in a Pontiac Solstice convertible and says the dealership gave him a “pretty good deal” on the Hot Wheels Camaro ragtop.
The Hot Wheels Edition Camaro was a 2013-only appearance package that included the special metalflake blue paint, side skirts, a front splitter, a Camaro ZL1 grille, 21-in. Hot Wheels style rims with red pin striping, special badging on the grille and fenders, red pin striping around the grille, red stitching on the seats and steering wheel, Hot Wheels seat logos, a ghost flame treatment on the rear quarters and a Hot Wheels grille sticker.
Cieslewize recalls that the package cost $7,000 or $8,000. You could get it on a hardtop coupe or a convertible and with a V-6 or a V-8. According to Cieslewize, only 1,524 cars got the package.
There is a Hot Wheels toy version of Tom’s car. He says the salesman who sold him the Camaro was meaning to give him one, but forgot to. There’s probably another owner of the car that has dozens of the toys. Maybe he or she will hear Tom’s story and tell him how he can get one. After all, you know what they say about men and their toys!