While the 1960s may have been one of the most divisive decades in world history, it also saw a man set foot on the moon and an automotive industry dominated by Detroit's Big Three. As such, it should come as no surprise that few things defined the positive side of this golden age like Star Trek and Hot Wheels. Both were birthed alongside bell bottoms and Beatlemania, each looking toward a brighter and better future. A future that would one day hopefully see us set aside our differences and use advancing technology to better our world before eventually taking to the stars.
And yet, for all that parallelism, it would take four decades to bring them both together!
That said, we live in a world where scale sized Star Trek ships are now a thing. Since 2009, Mattel has churned out numerous miniature models based upon some of the most iconic ships to ever explore the final frontier - along with more than a few unique oddities and one-offs. And fans just can't seem to get enough! But, what do you expect when two of the world's most collected brands merge together to create something so perfectly logical?
This list of ten Star Trek Hot Wheels may not include items as coveted as a 1974 Magenta Roger Dodger. Nor may they be as special as the 1977 Z-Whiz Datsun. However, when it comes to shrinking down the majesty of Starfleet, there are no finer wheels on the road...
#10 - Captain Kirk Quick D-Livery
Let's kick things off with a vehicle created in celebration of Star Trek's 50th Anniversary. Part of the Pop Culture vehicles assortment released in 2016, it takes the quirky 1/64 scale Quick D-Livery model first introduced back in 2013 and gives it a futuristic makeover complete with a metalflake paint job, Real Rider tires, and two huge portraits of Captain James T. Kirk adorning both sides! The retro chic 2023 VW Microbus inspired design hearkens back to the days of tie dye and turtlenecks, while at the same time offering up enough modern flair to fill a starship!It has now been about five years since the Captain Kirk Quick D-Livery model first hit stores, so you'll need to do some searching on the secondary market if you'd like one of your own. Originally, they were priced between $4.99 - $7.99, however nice examples still packaged on the original blister card are fetching upwards of $25 nowadays. Check Amazon, eBay and Facebook Marketplace if you must, but may I also recommend you visit the Hot Wheels Collectors community? Sure, you might snag a deal on these other sites, but sometimes it's just better to deal with fellow collectors if you have the option.
#9 - Spock '59 Chevy Delivery
Next up, we have an entry from the 2014 Pop Culture vehicles series. It takes the 1/64 scale Chevy Delivery casting first released in 2011 and gives it a Starfleet approved slapping of metallic green paint and a custom silver hood. As if that's not cool enough, it also features graphics inspired by the classic Gold Key Star Trek comics that ran from October 1967 until March 1979. Overall design aside, the model's popularity is only increased by the stylized tampos of Spock himself. Portrayed by the late Leonard Nimoy, Spock is regarded by many fans as the very face of the Star Trek franchise; it should come as no surprise that any and all merchandise featuring the character's iconic visage is snapped up at warp speed - scale diecast Impala delivery cars included!
Again, it has been a few years now since this particular diecast car was released. So, spend some time perusing Amazon, eBay, and any number of Hot Wheels collector sites if you're wanting one. Back when it was first released, you could snag one for between $3.99 - $6.99 depending on the retailer. Currently, you should expect to pay around $30 for a really nice one still affixed to its original blister card.
#8 - Lt. Uhura Ford Transit Supervan
Of course this specialty version of the Hot Wheels Ford Transit Supervan, emblazoned with twin portraits of the beloved Lt. Nyota Uhura, had to be included on this list! The 1/64 scale model features a metalflake paint job, Custom V8 and Star Trek tampos throughout and Real Rider tires. It also happens to be one of the most sought after pieces from Mattel's 50th anniversary Star Trek assortment, and is considered by many a collector to be one of the nicest examples of the Ford Transit Supervan casting since its premiere release back in 2015.While this model has proven to be a little more difficult to track down compared to other entries on the list due to Uhura's popularity, nice examples still sealed on their original blister card have popped up on more than a few Hot Wheels collector sites of late. Originally priced at around $4.99 - $7.99 when released back in 2016, they're now going to run you closer to $40 if you're looking to procure one of your very own.
#7 - USS Reliant NCC-1864
Now, we move away from the pop culture cars and into some slightly more familiar territory — Starships! Making its debut in 1982's The Wrath Of Khan, the U.S.S. Reliant was part of the first wave of 1/50 scale Star Trek ships that Mattel released back in the summer of 2009. Formerly commanded by Captain Terrell, it was later commandeered by Khan Noonien Singh before being critically disabled in an engagement with the Enterprise and ultimately destroyed. Mattel's model is constructed from high quality diecast and sits atop a very handy flight stand for easy display. In addition, the Miranda-class vessel features a strong amount of surface detailing and is easily one of the very best examples of the popular ship available on the market today. A battle-damaged version was released in 2010 with additional surface details, but if you ask me, nothing beats that factory fresh look!
It has now been over ten years since the U.S.S. Reliant was available at retail. Originally priced at $29.99, premium examples still sealed in the box can fetch over $100 on sites like eBay and Amazon. If you'd like to save some coin, there is always the option to buy loose — which will still set you back over $80 depending on the model's overall condition — and the battle-damaged version is going to run you even more.
#6 - U.S.S. Excelsior NCC-2000
Next up, we have The Great Experiment. Conceived as the first vessel with transwarp drive, the U.S.S. Excelsior was commanded by Captain Styles. It was also the ship assigned to pursue a stolen Enterprise as its crew attempted to rejoin Spock's katra with his regenerated body. The ship would eventually come under the command of Captain Hikaru Sulu, and would later aid the Enterprise-A crew in preventing the assassination of the Federation President. Mattel's 1/50 scale model perfectly captures the iconic ship as it appears on screen, which comes to you mounted on a flight stand and crafted from high quality diecast. Released in 2013 as part of the fourth wave of Hot Wheels Star Trek Ships, the Excelsior stands above wavemates like the U.S.S. Kelvin and D4 Klingon Patrol Ship thanks to its rather unique nacelles and some saucer detailing that really pop in person.
It was eight years ago that the U.S.S. Excelsior first landed at retail. Back then, the sticker price sat at around $25 - $30. If you want it now, expect to pay close to $90 for a mint in box example off somewhere like Amazon or eBay. Loose ones sit at around $65 - $70 depending on condition.
#5 - U.S.S. Vengeance
Jumping back into the more commonplace 1/64 Hot Wheels scale, let's now take a look at the U.S.S. Vengeance. An extremely intimidating Dreadnought-class ship commanded by Admiral Alexander Marcus in the 2013 film Star Trek Into Darkness, it is considered to be the largest ship to ever operated by Starfleet. The 1/64 scale Hot Wheels model was released multiple times between 2013 and 2019, however most collectors feel that the latest version is the best one out of them all. For the 2019 model, which was released as part of the Hot Wheels Screen Time series, surface details were improved and the ship was cast in a slightly darker grey to give it a more screen accurate appearance. Like the other Star Trek models released in the Hot Wheels line, the Vengeance comes mounted to a display stand, while it is constructed of both diecast and plastic components respectively.
Stickered between $4.99 - $8.99, the 2019 version from the HW Screen Time series still pops up at retailers like Target and Walmart from time to time. If you're not a fan of the hunt, there are plenty of these things on Amazon, eBay and other online markets. Just now you'll be paying closer to $20 - $25 if you decide go that route. Although, loose versions can be yours for around $12.
#4 - U.S.S. Enterprise (Alternate Reality)
Sticking with the smaller 1/64 scale, here we have the Kelvin take on the U.S.S. Enterprise. This is the starship seen in the three latest Star Trek movies starring Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto. Like the Vengeance mentioned above, multiple versions have been released since 2013, however it is the HW Screen Time version from 2019 that gets top marks thanks to better detailing and a more screen accurate appearance. Crafted from diecast and plastic components, this version of the USS Enterprise comes atop an included display arm and looks absolutely fantastic on a shelf.
Again, there have been multiple versions of this particular ship released over the last few years, so there are plenty of them out there for those looking to add one to their collection. Priced at around $4.99 - $8.99, the latest release does still show up at mass market retail from time to time. Online you will be able to grab one for around $20 - $25 still on the factory blister card, while loose ones can be had for $10 - $12.
#3 - H.M.S. Bounty
Alright, let's jump back over to the 1/50 scale line for a moment and take a look at one of the most beloved ships in the Star Trek franchise — the H.M.S. Bounty from Star Trek III: The Search For Spock. A battle-damaged version of the regular Bird-Of-Prey model released by Mattel in 2009, the H.M.S. Bounty was released in September 2010 as part of Series 3. One of the most recognizable designs within the Star Trek franchise thanks to its unique coloration and avian inspired wings, the Bounty was released as part of a six-ship set bundled with the Star Trek Scene It? Ultimate Fan Pack Limited Edition game. Available exclusively through Costco in North America, this is certainly one of the harder Hot Wheels ships to track down, and one of the few models to not see a re-release in recent years. As with the other larger scale ships on this list, it comes mounted to a display arm and is crafted from high quality diecast.
Given the ship's special release, they're more often then not packaged alongside the other six models in the wave and going for over $150 - $200. They do pop up on their own from time to time on a variety of sites ranging from Amazon to Heritage Auctions where they can go from as low as $30 all the way up to $125. Of course, price depends on condition and whether or not the ship is still sealed in its original box.
#2 - San Diego Comic Con Exclusive U.S.S. Enterprise (Refit)
Now we’re getting into the really coveted stuff. Convention exclusives are the sort of things certain collectors will go to great lengths to obtain given their limited numbers, and Star Trek Hot Wheels are no exception to the rule! Mattel released its first Star Trek convention exclusive at San Diego Comic Con 2009, just a few months before their first wave of 1/50 scale ships landed at retail. It was a special version of the U.S.S. Enterprise featuring a refit deco. It's a really sharp piece to behold in person, especially when combined with its included partially-transparent spacedock display case! For those who couldn't make the convention, Mattel also made the special release available in a very limited number to non-attendees through their official website.
As this piece was made exclusively available through San Diego Comic Con, you won't be able to track this one down in store. It's limited release also means that there aren't very many of them out there for sale. Priced at $29.99 upon initial release, they do pop up online from time to time on eBay, throughout the Hot Wheels collector community and Heritage Auctions. They tend to vary in price depending on condition, with loose ones still netting their original sticker price and boxed examples bringing in close to $200.
#1 - San Diego Comic Con Exclusive Spock '64 Buick Riviera
Released at San Diego Comic Con 2016 in celebration of the 50th anniversary of Star Trek, the set is closely based on the iconic photograph of a costumed Leonard Nimoy leaning against his then new all-black Buick Riviera outside of the Desilu Star Trek soundstages. Mounted on a special display base, and featuring a very cool miniature figurine of Mr. Spock (or, is that Leonard Nimoy?), the 1/64 scale set was crafted from plastic and diecast metal components and made available only through the Mattel and Hot Wheels booths at San Diego Comic Con 2016. For those who could not attend the event, a very limited number were also put up for sale through Mattel's MattyCollector website days following the convention.
Given this model's limited release and what it represents within the world of Star Trek, there are not a whole lot of these sets available. However, they do show up online through Amazon, eBay, Heritage Auctions, Hakes and a number of Hot Wheels collector sites from time to time. It is simply a matter of tracking one down. Originally, the set retailed for $20 through Mattel. Nowadays, you're going to have to come up with a little more cash if you'd like to add one to your collection. Recently, I've seen a handful of these sets sell for around $225 - $285 online still sealed in the original box. Loose examples are bringing closer to $80 - $115 by the time all is said and done.
John DeQuadros (he/him) is a writer and toy photographer based in Ontario, Canada. You can find a portfolio of his work on Instagram & Twitter right now @RipRocketPix