The Cult of Cars, Racing and Everything That Moves You.
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What Was Your Favorite Childhood Car Toy?

What rolled the best on the city map area rug? Remember those?

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Photo: Delcampe

Weren’t things so nice, back when you were a kid? Before taxes, before jobs, before you actually looked forward to the end of summer and the return of the school year? People all seem to be clamoring for some bygone era, but I think what they really miss is that lack of responsibility. Well, that, and the car toys.

When you’re an adult trying to climb aboard a Little Tikes Cozy Coupe, people give you looks. They say you’re “well above the weight limit for this toy,” and that you “need to exit this Walmart™ establishment immediately.” Philistines. As a kid, however, you’ve got free access to all manner of wheeled entertainment. In fact, the hardest part is just picking what to play with.


That’s the question before you today: What was your favorite car, truck, motorcycle, or other vehicle toy from your childhood? Everything from Hot Wheels to slot cars, model kits to battery-powered ride-on vehicles is acceptable. I’m drawing the line at things like pit bikes and ATVs, though — if you need a full-face helmet, that’s no longer a toy. That’s just a vehicle.

It’s tough to pick a singular favorite from my childhood full of car-based entertainment, but there’s one toy that’s a clear outlier for impact: A red Kawasaki Ninja toy, much like the one above. I’m not entirely sure that it was a ZX-7R, specifically, but the color and Ninja graphic both match my memory. If this wasn’t it, it’s damn close.


I credit that little toy for my modern interest in motorcycling, and my continued ownership o a motor vehicle after moving to a city that’s so vehemently anti-car. Without that little Ninja, I may not have a car at all — or worse, I’d be scrambling to find parking for the world’s most beat up Volkswagen Rabbit pickup. The mind reels.

That’s my pick for my favorite childhood car toy, but what’s yours? Bonus points for something with a good story — we love a good, long comment. Spin me a yarn, and earn yourself a place in the hallowed halls of Answer Of The Day later this week.