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Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil, 2021
Day #2,326: August 5, 2021
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
The Cheaper One

Playmobil Volkswagen
Item No.:
No. 70177
Manufacturer: Playmobil
Includes: 3 figures, cooler, removable roof rack, surf board, 3 bottles, watch, bracelet, visor, suitcase, towel, sand castle, sand, umbrella, bucket, shovel, rake
Action Feature: n/a
Retail: $39.99
Availability: January 2021
Other: The regular blue release is $40 and includes 3 figures. The limited yellow edition is $60 and includes 1 figure.


Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle If you're looking to push nostalgia buttons, selling families toys based on the cars they remember isn't a bad idea. The 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle is one of four Playmobil releases this year, and one of the few forays into licensed, non-sportscar, non-entertainment-based vehicles. And it's pretty good.

I was waffling on if I wanted the yellow one (because it's colored like Bumblebee from Transformers or the cheaper blue one. My mind was made up for me as Walmart's notoriously short attention span resulted in the toy being marked down to only $20 as of July 2021, despite no evidence of this sale appearing on a price tag on any shelf. Lucky me! Three days later the last one got marked down to $7.50. Luckier me! I still think the yellow one is probably going to be awesome, but the blue beetle is $20 cheaper and it has a lot more stuff in the box. The limited yellow car has some tools, one figure, and chrome bumpers. The regular blue car has no chrome, but it has three figures, a suitcase, a surf board, a fake beach piece with a sand castle, some tools for the kid, some drinks for the family, a cooler... it's just a better set. It's also something we're seeing a lot more of in the toy business as there's a shift away from "kid" to "adult fan" - shinier painted action figures can cost a few dollars more while offering no more plastic, and considering the toy maker has recouped their investment, it's notable that fans are not only willing but eager to pay a premium price to have a slightly better toy. This isn't mean to be a slight - I really do want a yellow Bug, and if it weren't for the clearance price, I'd probably have paid more for less. Similarly, it's worth noting this year's Playmobil A-Team van for $90 is the same basic toy as the Scooby-Doo Mystery Machine (which had 4 figures for $45-$50) or the 70575 Helicopter Pursuit with Runway Van - which is $60, and also includes a helicopter, and is $30 cheaper.

But, as usual, I digress. How's the blue regular edition Beetle? It's fantastic. And because of the $40 (or under) price - and the figures - you should probably opt for this version.

Click here to check availability at Entertainment Earth.

If you look at this set like a decent car with a "Specials" figure or three, even at $40, you get your money's worth. A typical boxed Playmobil car with 1-2 figures and seating for 2-4 figures will cost you $20-$35 usually, with the cheap 2-seater convertible 70285 Family with Car having 2 figures and 2 seats for $20. It's a nice car for the price - but the Beetle brings you the Volkswagen license with licensed VW wheel covers, plug-in rear view mirrors, clear headlights, and clear brake lights. The rear opens up so you can see the engine, but sadly the hood doesn't open nor do the doors. For those keeping track at home, most of the Playmobil cars over the years don't have opening doors - the DeLorean Time Machine is a rare exception. Most Playmobil cars are convertibles or just have removable roofs, and you put your figures in through the top.

The VW Beetle is based on a version with an actual open roof that can be rolled back, a selection which irked me until I got it in my hands. This clearly makes for the better toy with the less-obtrusive design. Once you have the roof rack on, you don't even notice the fact that the removable section doesn't match the rest of the car's body. It pops off without any real fuss, and provides ample storage for the surf board, suitcase, and cooler. It's a little tough for me to get my adult-size hands in there, but the parents and kid fit in there reasonably well. The interior is nicely detailed with an unpainted console, steering wheel, and places for figures to stick their feet so they don't fall around. (There are no seat belts. Ralph Nader was not consulted.)

Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle

The snap-in clear red brake lights look great, as do the preinstalled clear headlights. It's kind of a hassle to get the side mirrors in, but that probably means they're never going to fall out. There's a little paint on the car, which is mostly molded in color. The blue looks fine, with a little shine. A painted Beetle would undoubtedly look more realistic, but would be inconsistent with how Playmobil designs most of its toys. Most elements are molded in color (in some cases, multiple colors of plastic are molded in a single piece) which does wonders for a toy looking fresh for years. You could scrape it up and it's still be blue - but, admittedly, it won't look as good as a painted die-cast metal model. I think this is for the best, so it looks consistent with the many other Playmobil cars which have come before.

The interior is pretty spacious. Playmobil almost aways makes its cars big enough to fit any of its figures, with the only exception I've bumped in to being the DeLorean [FOTD #2,205] won't fit the Marty McFly in his radiation suit from the Back to the Future Advent Calendar [FOTD #2,255]. This one has plenty of room for some of the bigger headgear. (The buffalo hat doesn't fit due to the horns.

As is, there's not a heck of a lot I would do to make this better. To the contrary, if I ever have a shot at another one of these on the cheap I'd like to learn how to do some modeling techniques and paint it up to look old and rusted. Also if I could make the mirrors into reflective elements, that would be nice. (And doors would be nice. But again, it's not what Playmobil usually does.)

Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen BeetleThe set comes with a family's day at the beach, which arguably is what pushes it to levels of excellence. Mom's a blonde with the new-ish body type, wearing rolled-up shorts and a red and pink tank top. She has bangs. There's a bracelet and a bow in her hair, plus the usual amount of Playmobil articulation. Junior is a little boy wearing a green "Real Love" t-shirt and a matching green visor that has a habit of getting knocked loose when I try to put him in hte car. What really makes the set, though, is the gonzo Dad figure. With golden frames and orange lenses, a giant belt buckle, rolled-up jeans, and a Hawaiian shirt, I immediately thought of Brad Pitt from Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. It's not an exact match, but with the 2019 movie would have been released around the time it would be likely Playmobil would be designing the car and the figures. I choose to believe it's an intentional choice, and it looks great with big hair complete with sideburns. I'm not going to lie to you - I'd probably buy almost any set to get this figure.

Rounding out the set is an ample supply of stuff. You get a little sandy beach with an umbrella stand and a sand castle. There's a surf board in white with red and blue stripes. A big suitcase can carry Junior's sand toys - a bucket, a rake, and a shovel. A cooler rounds out the set with three clear red bottles of what I assume is soda, or something to keep Junior quiet on the drive home. Who can say?

Despite there being a collector's edition, this regular seems like the one for the adult Playmobil fan - of which there are maybe six or seven in the USA. If you need chrome on the roof rack and bumpers, get the other one. Also I wouldn't be shocked if Playmobil put this toy out in different colors every few years because it would probably sell well for quite a while. If you bought in to the whole Playmobil thing, you really owe it to yourself to get one of these - especially if it's on clearance.

--Adam Pawlus

Additional Images

Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
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Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle
Playmobil 70177 Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle

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