MINICARS: Hot Wheels Mazda REPU prototype


Those who stopped by our booth last Sunday may have noticed a few sneak peeks from our friends at Hot Wheels, hand-delivered in a nondescript plastic bag by designer Jun Imai himself. The first of them is a brand new casting for 2017, the Mazda REPU. 


The Mazda Rotary Engine Pick Up, or REPU for short, is sure to please Mazdafarians and truck lovers alike. In real life it has the distinction of being the only rotary-powered pickup ever built and enjoys a strong cult following from enthusiasts of Mazda’s unique pistonless engine.


The specific example seen here is a very early prototype, developed much earlier in the process than the factory samples we usually feature. 3D-printed in four distinct pieces (body, grille and chassis, bed and interior, and glass), it shows how the final model in metal and plastic will fit together.


Lovingly rendered in mostly stock form, the detail is amazing. Trademark design aspects like the grille within a grille, rotor-shaped emblem, factory fender flares, and bedside battery box are all captured with incredible accuracy.


Only a slight lowering and sport exhaust reveal the possibility of some go-fast goodies under the hood. We expect the final version to proclaim ROTARY POWER in large letter on its tailgate, just like the real thing.


This is only the third Japanese nostalgic truck of Hot Wheels’ Imai Era, following in the footsteps of the Datsun 620 and Toyota Pickup. Designed by the talented and prolific Jun Imai, it will join the basic line in 2017. In the end, it’s no surprise that Hot Wheels and not a Japanese brand that brought a 1:64 REPU to the world. After all, the 1:1 version was only sold in North America.


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11 Responses to MINICARS: Hot Wheels Mazda REPU prototype

  1. Ryan Senensky says:

    Too bad Dave ate this concept at JCCS and now they have to make a 2016 Mitsubishi Mirage

  2. Kelly says:

    Finally our beloved REpu getting some hot wheels Love.
    What took so long guys?

  3. Mark Newton-John says:

    Why take so long? Well, the truck was only sold in the US, it didn’t sell particularly well, so why make a Hot Wheels car that few would buy? So someone made a business case for one, because they have to make the tooling and packaging and everything else.
    For example, there were WAY more AL10 Tercels sold, but they weren’t exactly pretty. On the other hand, maybe they should make a 1977 Datsun F10. They are as funky as the REPU.

  4. goodshow_aa says:

    I really hope they find smaller looking rims for this, or add something cool in the bed, like another rotary engine on a pallet, or tools, that would be nice to see. Still waiting for them to start adding drivers to the cars, with the technology they have now I know it is possible. It could just be a guy in a racing suit and a helmet. The loopster has people in the thing with arms up, and down, and old lensey matchbox cars had people in it hold the steering wheel. That would make the models look even better especially the roadsters. Shoot some matchbox models have dogs in them.

    • Yoda says:

      The “hubcap” wheels would be ideal. Also, maybe they’ll design the casting so that a piston pickup and/or Ford Courier could happen.

    • Kenneth says:

      I feel like they’re gonna put an engine in this one, considering they did with the Hellcat, and this is a pretty special vehicle, only time will tell.

  5. Roberto Vega says:

    Will be waiting .like coments about wheela size and center hubcaps, could use square tail pipe

  6. Adam Wright says:

    i want the prototype???

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