Cliffbee.com: Movie Swerve Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Swerve
Series: Movie Tie-ins (sort of... he wasn't really "sold", but fits that aesthetic)
Allegiance: Autobot
Alternate Mode: Chevy Aveo Car



Note: This toy isn't really a movie toy, although the design style clearly fits in with that series. It wasn't sold as a Universe toy, but the instructions it came with are labelled as "Universe". There was already a Universe Swerve anyway, and this one fits in with the licensed Movie toys, so it is often lumped in with the movie toys. This mould was developed to be given away in Europe to customers who took the Chevy Aveo for a test drive. Some were briefly sold online on Chevy's European website and quite a few ended up in the hands of East Asian toy dealers (which is how I got mine). No matter how you look at it, this one's an outlier.

CAR MODE
Height: 5cm Length: 14cm Width: 5.5cm

   A rather realistic red sedan with transparent blue windows and headlights, Swerve has silver on his grille, doorhandles, front indicates and taillights, which also feature red and orange. The tyres are black plastic with silver hubcaps. There's a red Autobot logo stamped on his hood, which is pretty easy to miss against a backdrop of red plastic. The front doors and the area around the rear window are painted over transparent blue plastic - they're a little lighter and slightly more matte than the rest of the car, but the illusion still works. While I'm getting a little sick of Hasbro naming almost every red car Swerve (except for the Bumblebee repaints being churned out as Cliffjumper), this toy is an outlier so I can deal with it here. The G1 fan in me still wishes this one was maroon, however. The colours are pretty good, despite the slightly mismatched shades of red.

   As with most movie toys, this one is big on realism and accuracy while low on play value. Swerve has very detailed taillights, Chevrolet badges on the front and rear, a detailed grille and moulded wipers on the front window. There are even black painted seams on the windows. Swerve's play value is limited to rolling wheels, although he doesn't roll too well. There are no gimmicks here.

   A good licensed car mode for a deluxe, if something static. Swerve would certainly make for a decent freebie with your test drive, and I like the fact that he looks like a regular car rather than the usual procession of high end sports cars Hasbro is so fond of. The play value is almost non existent, but considering this one is more of a bonus for adults than a kid's toy, I can live with that.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Split the rear section, pull the front doors out to the side, splitting the roof. Rotate the waist, rotate the rear doors inwards to form boots, fold back the feet and flip the door panels themselves out again, fold the feet forward and stand him up. Fold the hood down to form his chest, revealing the head. Rotate his head into position, swing down the arms and rotate the roof panels back. Swerve has no weaponry options.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 14cm Width: 10cm

   A red robot with grey arms, thighs and feet, Swerve has black hands and a black groin. The rear windows form his shins and the blue headlights are on his chest, while the Robocop-style eyestrip is also transparent blue, with a fairly mediocre lightpipe. The Autobot logo is now on his sternum. The simple colour layout, which relies on red car pieces, is very reminiscent of the movie designs.

   I really like the layout of this robot mode. The front doors sit on the outsides of his upper arms as shoulder panels, which match the shins nicely. The hood slopes down on his chest and looks really food there, too. This robot mode really has used the car elements as its main features, and Swerve looks great as a result. His hands are sculpted open, which works well enough since he doesn't carry any sort of weapon.

   Swerve's poseability is impressive, even if there are some restrictions. His neck, shoulders and hips are ball joints while the elbows and knees are hinged. His wrists rotate and the feet fold back. While there are no rotators in his knees or elbows, the waist turns nicely. Thanks to his well designed waist and large footprints, Swerve is stable in a range of poses. The lack of any sort of a weapon does limit the action poses a little, but I can understand why a toy given away at car dealerships wouldn't come with a weapon.

   A fairly straightforward robot mode in concept, but one that works very well. Swerve makes great use of the visible car elements, in a way that reminds me of G1 in a good way. His colour scheme is simple yet well executed, the poseability is good despite some lacking joints. There are no real weak points here, aside from the missing weapon, and even then that makes sense in context.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. They'd be worth a fortune!

OVERALL

   A tricky toy to come across, since Swerve was never exactly released - but he's out there if you're willing to pay for him. Swerve combines a great movie-style mould with simple early G1 aspects in robot mode, a clever transformation and great use of jointing to give him a wide range of poses. The reds on the car are a shade off, but it's close enough to not really be an issue. The lack of a weapon is unusual, but understandable in context, so I can't really call it a flaw. While this is a great deluxe, I'll stop short of recommending a toy that's likely to cost as much as a leader - if not more - 9/10

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