Friday, June 01 2018 09:00

Toy Review: Hands-on with the Hess Toy Truck 2018 Mini Collection!

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The Hess Toy Truck has been a holiday tradition since 1964, but in 1998 the vehicles spawned something... smaller. 2018 marks the 20th Anniversary of the Hess Toy Truck Mini Collection, launched in 1998 as a way to pay tribute to the holiday Hess Toy Trucks from the past. Of course, the Hess Toy Truck isn't always a "truck," but sometimes a different type of vehicle or a hauler of some type. To celebrate two decades of the minis, the 2018 Mini Collection is a limited-production set of three highly detailed, small-scale versions of classic holiday Hess Toy Trucks – the 1970 Hess Toy Fire Truck, the 1977 Hess Fuel Oil Tanker, and the 1988 Hess Toy Truck and Racer. Thanks to the folks at the Hess Corporation, we got our hands on a set early to have some play time and a photo shoot here at Rock Father HQ. Let's take a look...

Hess Mini Collection Fire Truck

While there never seems to be any defined scale for the Hess Toy Trucks, I'd say that the Mini Collection is pretty close to a 1:50 for the most part, though some skew closer to a 1:64 range like a typical diecast vehicle. These are not metal, however. Largely plastic, what's always impressed me on the Hess Toy Truck line is how detailed each piece is, and the level of quality and craftsmanship that's represented in each. 

Hess Hauler and Race Car

From a collector standpoint, they make for beautiful display pieces that would be well-suited for either home or office (and these include removable display bases), but as a parent I love the play value and durability. We're into our fifth year of collecting and the Hess Toy Trucks in both standard and mini have held-up to regular play from two very active little girls and their friends. 

Hess Hauler and Race Car Hess Tanker

Like their large-scale counterparts, the minis feature working LED lights. In this collection, the included race car also features a tiny pull-back motor. 

The 2018 Mini Collection is being sold exclusively at www.hesstoytruck.com. Priced at just $26.99, the Mini Collection comes with free standard shipping and Energizer® batteries included. As always, these are only available while supplies last - and with a limited production run (exact numbers are never revealed), you never know when they supply will run out. Bottom line - if you think you're going to want these, avoid disappointment and get your order in early! Want even more photos? Check out my full gallery on THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine Facebook Page.

Hess Toy Truck 2018 Mini Collection

James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade as Publisher of The Rock Father Magazine, he joined Adventure Publishing Group as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider—a destination for all things pop culture. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 25 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

James and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, WGN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, BusinessWire, Babble, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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