I flipped my lid when I saw this in the store back in 2012, and it immediately went into my shopping cart..
Superb details like real rubber tires with treads
The new release gave extra attention to details like tires, rims, paint, and overall quality. The attention to detail was not wasted on me for sure. I never really grew up, and while I love to collect toys, I don't collect for the sake of collecting. I require the toys I buy to look good and be of the utmost quality, while still bringing that childhood thrill of excitement involved in owning the toys.
This was a reunion that filled my heart with joy, because as a child in 1975.. this was one of the most coveted Hot Wheels of the time. My brother gave me his Red Baron as he started outgrowing toys, and started getting interested in other silly things like girls and music.
I carried that little car with me everywhere I went. During the summer I acquired the car, I dreamed of playing with it in the school sandbox. Therefore, I eagerly took it to school with me on my first day of kindergarten. During recess after about 5 minutes of playing with it, a kid came up to me and asked if he could see it. When I obliged, he immediately threw it onto the roof of the school. I was absolutely crushed. I tearfully ran up to the janitor and told him what happened and asked if he could get it down for me, but he just shrugged and walked away.
I did buy my son a Toy Story themed Hot Wheels track back in the 90s that came with a authentic looking Red Baron car inside the package. I almost pilfered the car for myself, but he loved it so much I couldn't do it.
Then.. in 2012, I learned good things come to those who wait. I now have a Red Baron Hot Wheels car in my collection that blows away my original. From the real rubber tires with treads, to the black and white Maltese Cross painted on the side of the helmet, it's a mini work of art. It may not be the most pricey car in my collection, but it's definitely one of the most prized.