Sometimes licenses that are really popular are still a challenge to make toys. I've worked on the NASCAR brand in three companies now, and these are by far my favorite NASCAR toys to play with. Shout out to Fraser Paterson, Patrick Sheridan & Ichiro Ishikawa! Toy Stories Chapter 16: NASCAR Bashers!
At Spin Master we wanted to get in on the vehicles business, so we pitched hard and won the license for a top tier brand to get us there. Key issue was that getting kids to want to play with NASCAR has always been a challenge, as it tends to be only a collectors’ brand. We figured everyone loves the crashes, so let’s make the most insane crashes on cars ever seen in toys. The internal innovation teams like SMART and ACT – Spin Designers always had the best acronyms – came up with some amazing concepts, but in the end we went to the same development guys in Japan that made Bakugan, and got some really explosive designs. And like Bakugan, they are as much fun to put together as they are to blow up. A bit pricey though, at $9 to $10 per car! So, while they were not the most successful toys on the business side, they remain some of my favorite desk toys in the office, and I still play with them!