Updated September 2022
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Buying guide for Best Hot Wheels toys

High-speed tracks. Daring loops. Fun collectibles. Hot Wheels toys bring smiles to kids and adults alike.

There are so many great Hot Wheels monster trucks, car sets, tracks, and jumps available that it’s not always easy to choose what to buy. That’s where BestReviews comes in. We’re here to help you find the products that bring true delight to you and your loved ones.

To help you make the most of your money, we study consumer reviews, consult with experts, and test products in order to bring you the unbiased reviews you need to make informed purchasing decisions. We invite you to cruise through the following shopping guide on Hot Wheels toys, and when you’re done, check out our favorite five picks above.

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While some Hot Wheels vehicles model real cars, many are purely speculative designs. They’re often based off of animals like sharks or fictional beasts. These fun vehicles include motorcycles and racing vehicles that would never actually make it on a real track … but children have fun imagining that they would.

Choosing the right Hot Wheels toy

If you’re on a mission to find the perfect Hot Wheels toy and not sure which choice is the right one, it helps to know the answers the following questions.

What is the age of the toy recipient?

Hot Wheels toys, made by Mattel, are for kids age three and up. In addition to toys for youngsters, the brand produces collector sets for serious car, truck, and airplane enthusiasts. Because of the wide target audience, it’s wise to check toy packaging for the recommended age range for each toy. Some tracks, trucks, and cars have small parts that would be too difficult for young children to assemble.

What’s your purpose in purchasing a Hot Wheels toy?

The majority of shoppers are likely buying Hot Wheels toys for their children. But as we mentioned above, there are some collectors (older kids or adults) who collect Hot Wheels as a hobby.

If you’re a collector, we suggest that you look for toy sets that come with a stand for easy display. Mattel puts out several Hot Wheels collector sets each year. Some are movie-themed while others focus on a particular make or model of car.

How much space do you have to store your toys, and how much space do the toys require?

Hot Wheels cars are small and easy for little hands to manipulate. However, some of the larger track sets take up a lot of storage space. Before purchasing, check the dimensions of track pieces, especially loops and towers, which may not be collapsible for storage. Then check those measurements against your available storage space.

How important is toy durability to you?

Diecast metal models are durable and withstand heavy play. If used correctly, many of the diecast toys by Hot Wheels can last many years. The wheels, however, tend to be a spot of weakness. They can bend and break during rough play. You’ll need to take special care of plastic track pieces, as exposure to heat or excessive sunlight could damage the plastic.

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Did you know?
While most people picture the small, fist-sized cars when they think of Hot Wheels, the brand also makes larger monster truck vehicles – and a host of other items as well.

Types of Hot Wheels toys

Beneath the Hot Wheels umbrella, there are many different types of toys. This includes track sets, RC vehicles, and more.

Hot Wheels track sets

Hot Wheels track sets have grown more complex over the years. Today, you can buy Hot Wheels tracks that have loops, twists, and battery-powered launchers. Some track sets can be connected to other sets to expand a collection. Notably, some of the more complex Hot Wheels track sets may take adult supervision to put together.

"Airplanes make up a small portion of the vehicles put out by Hot Wheels. They range from planes that come in fictional configurations to historical planes from World War II. "

Cars, trucks, airplanes, and more

You can find Hot Wheels cars, trucks, airplanes, and more. Cars, trucks, and monster trucks are what this brand is best known for. They come as individual cars or as sets that include up to 50 cars. Sets may have a theme like classic cars, superheroes, WWII airplanes, or Star Wars.

It’s important to note that not all Hot Wheels cars are compatible with Hot Wheels track sets. Some vehicles are too tall or wide to fit on the track and make it through tight turns.

Remote control vehicles

Hot Wheels produces a line of remote control vehicles. Some have interchangeable bodies and wheels, while others come in outrageous designs. Many Hot Wheels RC vehicles are designed to be used on a special race track. Still others can be used almost anywhere.

Storage containers

Hot Wheels takes a unique approach to storage containers in that their containers double as toys. For example, you can buy a Deathstar container to hold Star Wars toys or a semi-truck container that “stores” and “hauls” cars. In this way, storage containers become part of the fun.

"Hot Wheels collector sets vary in theme, from Japanese historical vehicles to cargo carriers featuring a Volkswagen bus. "


Most Hot Wheels collectibles are classic cars. Star Wars-themed vehicles, ships, and walkers make up another portion of the collectible sets. Hot Wheels also puts out other themed sets and vehicles; Batman, Minecraft, and Marvel are just a few of the fun motifs you can find. Collectible vehicles can be played with or displayed using the included display stands.

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Hot Wheels offers STEM-based classroom kits that teach children about forces and motion. They’re available in lessons for Kindergarten through fourth grade. These kits aren’t just for teachers; they can also be purchased by parents for home use.


Q. Are Hot Wheels race track sets difficult to assemble?

A. Hot Wheels race track sets offer varying levels of difficulty when it comes to assembly. Simpler models may have a straight track with a jump that takes less than 10 minutes to assemble. Larger, more complex sets may take an hour or more to assemble. Fortunately, all sets come with assembly instructions.

If you purchase a large, intricate Hot Wheels toy set, we recommend that you save the instructions for future reference. You may want to refer back to them in the future when you assemble the set again.

Q. Do Hot Wheels track sets need batteries?

A. Not all track sets need batteries, but some do. Sets with loops, long jumps, and long tracks most often need batteries because they require a powerful launcher to reach high speeds. The extreme angles and distances of these toys require the extra power that batteries offer.

All RC vehicles and controllers need batteries as well.

Q. Are there any Hot Wheels toys for kids younger than three?

A. No. The simplest Hot Wheels sets and cars are meant for three- to five-year-olds. Because of small pieces that detach and could potentially be swallowed, Hot Wheels toys are not safe for children under the age of three.

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