Probably the most valuable Z-Car is…. The 1977 Mattel® Hotwheels™ Z-Whiz….. (at least by weight it is!)… But, only if you have one in the right color.
In 1977, as one of the Hotwheels “Flying Colors” series cars, Mattel produced a 1/64th scale Datsun 240-Z and named the car “Z-Whiz”.
The model was produced in silver-grey paint with black-wall tires and a smaller quantity with the “redline” tires that had become popular on many California custom cars. In addition, a very limited number of Z-Whiz models were produced in white enamel paint with redline tires
While many of the silver-grey models can still be found, very few of the white Z-Whiz redline cars are known to still exist. With even fewer in mint collectible condition and only a handful still in their original packaging, this model, manufactured only in 1977, (at the end of the “redline era”), has become one of the “holy grail” to Hotwheels collectors.
The “toy” is worth an estimated $2000 to $7500 depending on condition. A mint one out of the package has a book value of $3500… in the “blister pack” it lists at a whopping $7500.00 — one of the priciest cars listed in the Ultimate Redline Guide.
Mattel began producing the HotWheels “California Custom Miniatures” in 1968 and based the original 16 models on what was happening in the custom car market in Southern California — redline tires, “blowers”, (turbo chargers), hood scoops and other high performance and sporty looking features. The line has included cars designed by famous California car customizers like Ed “Big Daddy” Roth, George Barris and Tom Daniels. Custom paint, custom wheels and tires, custom raked suspension and details down to the modified exhaust and window tinting set these cars apart from anything else in the market.
Today, many adult collectors search for cars like the White Z-Whiz, some just to recapture their childhood, some to remind themselves of the Datsun 240, 260 or 280 “Z” they owned, (or wished they had), and others who have just been bitten by the collecting bug.