2 Fast 2 Furious BMW 323is Coupé (E36)
|Base||Hot Wheels BMW M3 Race|
|Mods||Resin cast wheels, lots of decals|
|Card||5th Gen card w/rounded corners & punch, 2014, JS038, 2F2F-01|
|Qty Made||22 incl Prototype and one-off custom|
Practically the same day I first saw one of the Hot Wheels BMW E36 Race cars a Fast & Furious superfan in Germany commissioned a single copy of this BMW from the freeway chase scene in 2 Fast 2 Furious. It seemed like a reasonable request and a fun project so I got right on it! The first cars on the market were white with dark tinted glass, which I bought a bunch of in preparation for making a run of 20+ cars. Then the next wave came out with red cars and clear glass so I scrambled to find 20+ of those and then returned most of the ones I found before. You get some strange looks returning a bunch of the same cars to Walmart. But I'm certain it's not the weirdest thing they've seen that day.
The wheels were the trickiest part of the project. The 6-spoke wheel on the car was only found on the front of Pro Circuit race cars from 1992. So to do the first prototype I had to procure 2 race cars and cut them up just for the front axles. $15 worth of wheels was fine for a single car but for a run of 20 or more it was going to be prohibitively expensive!
I decided the make or break point of this project was being able to resin cast my own wheels based on the Pro Circuit ones. I bought several more race cars and made a mold, and by some miracle of experience and good luck they turned out really nice! I cast them in black, and with MANY hours of research decided on Alclad 2 to try to get them as chrome as possible at home. It's not the factory vacuum chrome process shiny but it looks pretty good considering I did it at home with my crappy old airbrush. I hear Santa is bringing me a new one for Christmas...
I chopped and used axles from the baja trucks that I had leftover from making the Tango & Cash trucks of all things. Those wheels were ugly and I was never going to use them anyway. Beyond that I had to make axle hubs and insert them into the BMW chassis AND make sure they were level. Quite a lot of work.
The decals weren't any less trouble. The only pictures of the car on the Internet were low resolution and some even appeared to have modified the car in some way or maybe a replica. My German client was kind enough to send hi-rez photos that I couldn't find before, so I managed to find or replicate every logo on the car exactly. The hardest one is the House of Kolor emblem on the rear quarter panel. I had NO idea what it was. I did searches for "Kachina chicken logo" and things like that.. it's an unusual logo. With extensive web article research I remembered reading that House of Kolor painted many of the cars in the film, Googled that.. and voila!
All in all I'm very pleased with how these turned out and I'm interested in doing more cars from this scene in the future! In the process of making this car I did a ton of research into this scene, the drivers and their character names, and that kind of thing. Most of the 'thugs' are actually the real stunt drivers, not actors! The actor who played "Max Campisi" is actually Corey Eubanks, famous for his General Lee stunts!
Really nice photo of the loose car courtesy of Sigi D. in Germany! Check out his Flickr photostream of Fast & Furious products!