Hasbro Transformers Mini-Spies Blue Jeep Hasbro, 1985
Day #1,917: March 9, 2018
Mini-Spies Blue Jeep Blue Jeep Variant Pack-In
Transformers Promotional Pack-In
Item No.: Asst. n/a No. n/a Manufacturer:Hasbro Includes:Packed with another toy as a freebie Action Feature:Transforms from car to robot, pull-back motor Retail:approx. $3.99 Availability: 1985 Other: Collect all 24 Mini-Spies!
As a kid I loved Transformers, and now they're a part of my day job. I always dug the promotional toys, and the Mini-Spies Blue Jeep was one of the two pull-back pack-in cars I got as a kid. They were introduced to promote the gimmick of the rubsign sticker. In 1984, figures were stickered as Autobots or Decepticons - but in 1985, we saw silver squares with black shields instead. You put your thumb on them, and the heat would reveal colored faction symbols that faded away as it cooled. In warmer clients, they stayed "on" for months at a time.
Packed as a small vehicle, it's about the same size as a big Mini-Con or small Legends/Legion-class toy. The toy is largely unpainted save for tehe robot mode's face, so the hubcaps are a metal pin and plastic wheel cover. The detailing is pretty decent with a jointed spare tire that rotates up for transformation. Little seats are visible, but the driving force of this toy is a pull-back motor. Those were pretty popular in the 1980s, giving this toy an actual action feature during the early days when merely converting was considered to be a huge deal. Getting a bonus, second toy that can actually do something was a heck of a great bonus.
To transform him, just tug out the arms and fold down the legs. You should be able to figure this one out quickly and easily, as it's one of the simplest transformations short of one that has no steps.
The nameless robot - with no real appearances in the comics or cartoons worth mentioning - has a nifty LaForge-esque visor and horns. The body is completely flat with a few grooves in it, as the original Japanese toy would had a sticker on it to give it a little more color. For the US freebie, it was just plain black. It says "TAKARA 84" on the bottom - there's no Hasbro logo in there - and he has the best wry little smile. The little robot has jointed arms and is a smidgen taller than a modern Prime Masters Decoy Armor suit at about 2 1/2-inches high.
Sold in red, white, or yellow with an Autobot or Decepticon symbol, a complete set of this figure could be up to 6 different toys. I just have the one, and I quite like it. I'd love to see this head adapted to some modern toy as it's a great look, but I assume without a name or any fan club we'll never see this little guy again. Unpackaged Mini-Spies are pretty cheap on the secondary market, but be sure the motor still works before paying the big bucks. Packaged samples are less common - I have to assume everybody just opened them back in the day. If the price is right, it's a charmer.
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