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RtC: It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

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  • RtC: It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

    Originally published on November 11, 2011... I have added photos of the 2013 Christmas Cars that have been found at Meijer in the US, at Toys R US in the UK and in Europe, and at Big W stores in Australia.

    As part of the expanded Cars universe, Mattel released a book entitled Mater Saves Christmas... part of the Cars Story Tellers series, this book talked about how Mater saved Christmas... Is it more than just another one of Mater's tall tales? With Mater, you never know... In this article, we take a look at some of the diecast Cars featured in the story.

    Mater Saves Christmas: the book

    Many of the Cars from the book have been released as either singles and/or in boxed sets... without wanting to give away too much of the plot, we still haven't seen Flo, Lizzie, Sarge, elves, reindeer, and the troublemakers... Hopefully we'll see at least a few of these in 2011... A boxed set with Santa Car, 2 elves, and 8 reindeer would make an awesome set... however, I think we all know better than to think Mattel would release a set with 90% new Cars in it.

    If you don't have the book, I highly recommend it... I hope that Pixar releases Mater Saves Christmas on DVD and/or Blu-ray.

    Boxed sets

    Due to the popularity of Cars, stores were eager to get merchandise to sell... in the US, both Target and Toys R Us received exclusives... In 2009, Target received a very nice boxed set:

    Reindeer Mater was advertised as an exclusive Car... and until October 2011, when it was released as a single, it was... the 6 Cars in the set were Christmas Cruiser Ramone, Decked Out Doc Hudson, Snow Day Sally, Holiday Hotshot Lightning McQueen, Reindeer Mater, and Holiday Spirit Sheriff... If I remember right, this set retailed for $29.99.

    Here's a close-up of Snow Day Sally and McQueen:

    In 2010, both Target and Toys R Us had exclusive boxed sets... Collectors were more excited about the TRU set, which featured 2 brand new Cars, Santa Car and Whee Hoo Winter Mater:

    I love the detail on Santa Car...

    Here's the set out of the box:

    This TRU 3 pack sold for $19.99... The Santa Car is definitely a Deluxe size Car... the Mater was a lot like the Mater from the 2009 set, only it was lighter and had a different accessory on the head... In what has come to be something Mattel does all too often, the McQueen was the exact same McQueen from the 2009 Target set.

    Here's the 2010 Target boxed set... While the box was the same size as the 2009 version, Mattel downsized from 6 Cars to 5... 3 of the Cars were new to the Mater Saves Christmas series: Guido with present, Luigi, and Fillmore... Ramone and McQueen were identical to the 2009 versions... Collectors were not nearly as happy with this boxed set as they were the 2009 version, as the price per Car was much higher and there were fewer new Cars - Guido and Luigi are often packaged together, but in this set, they counted as 2 Cars.

    Here's a closeup of the 3 "new" Cars from the set:

    Toys R Us has released a 2 pack boxed set for 2011... It contains Snow Plow McQueen, which was a single in 2010, and the Whee Hoo Winter Mater from the 2010 Target boxed set... I saw this for $14.99 at a TRU I visited on Kmart 7 day (October 22, 2011) but as I'd spent too much money on Cars at Kmart and already had both of these, I did not purchase it that day, and I'm not sure I'll purchase it in the future.

    There is a rumor that Target will have an exclusive box set this year, 2011... however, it is not yet confirmed... the box set has not yet appeared in stores... It would be logical to me that the box set would be available before Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving in the US), but as many of us know, Mattel distribution of Cars is usually not logical.


    In addition to the boxed sets, Mattel released Cars as singles... I believe they were Toys R Us exclusives in 2009 and 2010... in 2011 they have been located at TRU, Target, and Meijer thus far... the singles are usually $6.99 each... I did not buy all the singles when they were released the first 2 years and I'm not going to go back and pick up the older ones...

    Here are photos of some of the Mater Saves Christmas singles:

    Snow Plow McQueen (2010 TRU exclusive single)

    Holiday Spirit Sheriff (2010 TRU exclusive single - green tint)

    The case of 2011 singles came with 6 Cars per case... there were 2 Holiday Hotshot Lightning McQueen, and 1 each of the remaining 4 Cars... I did not but a Holiday Hotshot Lightning McQueen yet, as it's the same Car from 2009 and 2010 boxed sets.

    Fuel Tide Cheer Fillmore and Christmas Cruiser Ramone (2011 singles)

    Decked Out Doc Hudson (2011 single)

    Reindeer Mater (2011 single)

    Reindeer Mater and Holiday Hotshot McQueen singles

    Most collectors were very happy to see the Reindeer Mater single, and it had previously only been released in the 2009 Target boxed set and had been selling for a lot of money on eBay.

    The backs of the singles are interesting - there is a "paper" ornament in the back... here are photos of the backs:

    Reindeer Mater and Decked Out Doc



    Holiday Hotshot McQueen (2011 single)


    Snow Plow McQueen

    Early Cars Christmas ornaments

    I received a message from Rippers that there were some early Cars Christmas ornaments back in the days of the Supercharged and World of Cars cardback series... I did an eBay search and found a Radiator Springs McQueen ornament at the following link:

    I also have some special ornaments that I received from a friend in Maryland a little over a year ago... I will look for them and will add photos if need be... I can't remember if they are Halloween or Christmas themed... I found another eBay listing - I have some of them... the Car is in a Christmas bulb...

    I found 2 of the WOC 2 packs of Cars in Christmas bulbs... here are photos...

    Sheriff & Lightning McQueen

    Flo and Hydraulic Ramone

    I am missing one of the 3... I'll try to find out which one I am missing.

    There was also a release of 5 Story Tellers Christmas singles at Target... I do not have any of these... I have had 2 excellent transactions with this eBay seller...

    The Return of the Christmas Cars - 2013 Singles

    They're back... after no Christmas Cars, new or old, were released in 2012, Christmas Cars have returned in November 2013... I have found them at most Meijer stores that I've checked in Indiana, Ohio, and Kentucky... they've also been found in Australia at Big W stores... they've been found in the UK and in Europe at TRU stores... however, since Meijer only has stores in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, and Ohio, they've not been found by many people.

    There are 12 Cars in the case... case contents and UPC codes are:
    Snow Day Sally - x2 (UPC 46775 27957 8)
    Decked Out Doc Hudson - x2 (UPC 46775 27956 1)
    Christmas Ramone - x2 (UPC 46775 20784 7)
    Sheriff - x1 (UPC 46775 28519 7)
    Holiday Hotshot McQueen - x5 (UPC 46775 20785 4)

    Here are photos of the Cars:

    Snow Day Sally:

    Holiday Hotshot Lightning McQueen:

    Christmas Cruiser Ramone:

    Holiday Spirit Sheriff (black):

    Decked Out Doc Hudson:

    Notice how Doc once again has his red Fabulous Hudson Hornet rims that he had from the Dirt Track Doc Hudson release.

    As the local Meijer store is not carrying the Christmas Cars in 2013, I've made 4 road trips totaling over 700 miles in search of these... I've been in 13 Meijer stores on those trips... A few of the stores have gotten in 2 cases, but others are currently one and done... maybe it's just me, but I'd think retailers would have wanted these in stock before people start decorating for Christmas.

    A few grocery stores have gotten lenticular Christmas Cars this year, but unlike these, those are regular lenticular Cars on a Christmas cardback that will not look like Christmas Cars if opened.

    Miscellaneous Cars decorations

    Here are a few miscellaneous Cars Christmas items that I have purchased over the years...

    Tow Mater Stocking - the headlight does light up!

    McQueen "ceramic" ornament

    Ball ornament and Mater ornament

    Cars gift bag

    And if you can use a drill and insert screw eyes, you can make your own Cars ornaments out of extras and have your own Cars Christmas tree... Mine's been up since October 2009... here's a photo taken tonight (11/11/11):

    There have been some Cars2 ornaments released this year... I've seen pictures of World Grand Prix McQueen, Mater, and Francesco Bernoulli... I've yet to see them in a store, but I've not gone to a Target in several weeks.

    Six weeks to go until Christmas... I'm sure Santa Car is checking his list, trying to find out who's been naughty and who's been nice... I hope Santa Car knows that I've tried to be nice this year... I'm hoping I get the Cars Director's Edition for either my birthday or Christmas this year... I told my wife I wasn't going to buy it for myself... and so far, I haven't...

    I hope you get all the Cars that you want/need for Christmas this year, whether they are for you, your children, or your grandchildren... Thanks for reading.
    Last edited by cac1959; 11-27-2013, 12:30 PM. Reason: Added 2013 photos

    I am cac1959... I am a Cars-a-holic... and a proud supporter of Nathan's Playroom

  • #2
    nice stuff chris, we didnt get half this stuff in the uk!


    • #3
      I got the snow globe mcqueen from tru they also had filmore. And my mum got mater snow globe about 2 Xmas's ago

      Sent from my Desire HD using Tapatalk


      • #4
        Great read Chris


        • #5
          Made some trades in the last couple of months and have been able to aquire each of the Christmas cars that have been released so far except for Snow Day Sally. Opened them for the first time on Friday but held back on the Santa Car so I can get him out a little closer to Christmas. (Maybe after Thanksgiving...) Read Mater Saves Christmas to my kids on Friday for the first time also and they loved it. They have made me read it 3 more times since then. If there is a box set to be released this year, how cool would it be if it contained Sally, Sarge, Red, Flo, and Lizzie? Wishfull thinking. Great article and good timing for our house!

          signature courtesy of BomBom77


          • #6
            I added more information and photos of some of the older Cars Christmas Cars...

            I am cac1959... I am a Cars-a-holic... and a proud supporter of Nathan's Playroom


            • #7
              Like the X-mas cars a lot
              Came across some homemade X-mas decoration at a collectors fair I thought would add to the fun

              The cars they used are the chocolat/suprise egg stuff...liked it a lot...and not that difficult to do, great idea, had tocompliment the booth holder

              The Mater with paraglider had disney stickers on there...disney shop?

              Anatomical illustrations by Jake Parker


              • #8
                Thanks for this post I enjoyed the read. Managed to pick all of these myself plus a couple of extra ones. Okay to add photos to this post mate?


                • #9
                  I'm glad that you all enjoyed the article... great photos, DaFickser...

                  FirefighterUK - please feel free to add photos in a reply - let me know if I can add them to the article.

                  Added new photo(s) of Holiday Hotshot McQueen single/cardback...
                  Last edited by cac1959; 11-22-2011, 04:34 AM.

                  I am cac1959... I am a Cars-a-holic... and a proud supporter of Nathan's Playroom


                  • #10
                    I will be updating this thread to include photos showing the 2013 singles... Chris


                    • #11
                      I bough the mater saves xmas book last year. It came with an audio recording of it...and it was terrible. Unfortunately they didnt use any of the cast from the movies to do the voices. Even worse, the guy reading the book didn't even attempt at changing his voice. Monotone and boring.

                      Great story though

                      Transformers for Trade


                      • #12
                        Article has been updated to include photos of the 2013 single Christmas Cars.

                        I am cac1959... I am a Cars-a-holic... and a proud supporter of Nathan's Playroom