While it’s not uncommon for multiple companies to hold a license for products at the same time, it’s less common for multiple companies in the same industry to hold the rights to make what is essentially the same product. One of those rare occasions is on the pegs right now as the Dodge news van from the Will Ferrell classic ANCHORMAN has been produced by both Mattel (as part of their Hot Wheels Retro Entertainment line) and Greenlight Collectibles (as part of Greenlight Hollywood). While both have their merits, it’s interesting to see how vastly different two design teams can take the same thing. So which one wins in this diecast battle? Take a look…
Here’s the real van as seen in ANCHORMAN:
The actual van in the movie is a 1981 Dodge News Van, this according to Picture Car Warehouse, who actually owns the van used in the movie. But, since the movie was set in the 70s, it’s diecast counterparts are based on models from 76-77 respectively, with Hot Wheels opting for a “’77 Custom Dodge Van” and Greenlight using a 1976 Dodge B-100. While the Hot Wheels model should be around $5, the Greenlight version comes in around $7.
As much as I love Hot Wheels and the Retro Entertainment series in general, Greenlight wins this one, turning in a true 1:64 scale “replica,” while the Hot Wheels version takes a beefier stance like a toy. Greenlight gets the body style right, along with detail in the top ladder and even includes the rear ladder, which is absent on the Hot Wheels version. A trade-off is that Hot Wheels gets the rear door tampos (artwork) right, while they’re omitted completely on the Greenlight version.
Both of these ship assorted, and are best found in the diecast aisles of your local retailers.