Ferrari was on an upswing in the early 1990s, having weathered the storm of emissions vs. performance that had hit the industry throughout the late 70s and early-80s. In 1994, Maranello rolled out the successor to the 348, with a larger V8 engine, mildly smoother styling, and a new name: the F355. The car was a serious performer, with up to 380 horsepower available from the midship V8, now toting a trick 5-valve head, Motronic fuel injection, and exotic internals. The combination was successful, and the wind-tunnel proven Pininfarina design — which ultimately sported the first-ever F1-style shifter in a production automobile — became one of the best selling Ferraris ever. Hot Wheels Elite’s mold set shows some true finesse; the doors, vented and screened rear hatch, and the “frunk” (front trunk … “froot” if you’re on the other side of the pond) all open on great shut lines. With button-activated pop-up headlights, lensed neatly with faux projector bulbs and bezels, neat taillights, and real metal discs passing through the “Ferrari” brake calipers at all four corners, the model pops on display like a much more expensive piece. The proper buff-color interior is crisp, with a deeply-gauged dash, a scale-textured floor, and fabric safety belts; out behind the curvy rear glass partition, the 3.5-liter V8 is very nicely and neatly done with sharp, cleanly painted and built-up castings visible both above and below the model. The hardest decision to make? What color to grab. They’re all sweet. — Joe Kelly, Jr.
1:18 | $120