Cliffbee.com Masterpiece Tracks Toy Review

Individual Review




Name: Tracks
Series: Masterpiece
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: Warrior
Alternate Mode: Chevrolet Corvette



CAR MODE
Height: 4cm Length: 15cm Width: 6cm

   A metallic blue 1980s Corvette with a yellow and red flame motif on the hood. Tracks has clear windows with a slight blue tint, tiny sculpted and painted Corvette logos on the front and back, painted lights and black paint on the front air intakes. He has black plastic tyres with silver painted mag wheels. Being a licensed Masterpiece toy, all the normal panels and seams you'd expect are present, including headlight covers & little rear vision mirrors with silver on the actual mirrors themselves. There is visible robot bits inside the windows such as his head (no visible face thankfully), and low clearance underneath because of his wings, but overall this is a very attractive vehicle mode that's both a good Corvette & 100% Tracks.

   There's a great level of detail here, including the aforementioned seams & little Chevrolet logos. That flame logo on his hood features an integrated Autobot log, there's gaps on the front and rear for license plates and side air intakes. I know some prefer rubber tyres, but I'm perfectly happy with the plastic tyres as some rubber tyres crack over time. There is a sculpted tread on Tracks' tyres,

   As you's expect, he rolls on his wheels - although only on flat surfaces as there's not much clearance. The wings can fold out along with a set of vertical stabilisers cleverly integrated into the rear end - they're white but with the leading edge painted blue so they're inconspicuous in car mode. Combining these two sets of wings with an add-on nozzle gun for the front of the vehicle, Tracks can turn into the flying car mode seen in the cartoon (as opposed to the G1 toy's flying car without vertical stabilisers). The hood lifts up to reveal a silver painted engine block area, although the doors don't open. Tracks comes with a stand allowing you to display the flying car mode - if you have the display room, I suppose.

   Aside from the visible robot stuff inside his windows, I have no complaints here. The entire vehicle has a visually appealing metallic blue sheen; the flame logo really nails this as Tracks. The play value centres on the flying car mode which works well.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   It's fairly involved being a Masterpiece, so I'll summarise. The front of the car rotates and flips down to become his legs, with the feet tucked under the engine. The roof becomes his chest - there's a flip over panel which reveals an Autobot logo on a yellow background (this can be displayed in vehicle mode if you wish). The doors actually fold behind the toros, forming his back. The arms are hidden under the back end of the car, as are overhead missile launchers - which end up on top of the "hood" formed by the back end of the car. The wings end up behind the shoulders - as you'd expect.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 18cm Width: 16cm

   The same metallic blue of the car mode is the main colour on his torso and the outsides of his boots. The shins, thighs, forearms and hands are grey while his head, upper arms and wings are white. Tracks has a red head with blue eyes. The front and side windows are on his chest, the rear wheels are on his shoulders; in front of the wings. There's a good level of painted detail - including on his feet, knees, wrists, wings and waist. This robot mode is very much G1 Tracks - he's based on the cartoon version of Tracks specifically.

   It's an attractive robot mode. The colours are well balanced and the wings and overhead launchers work well. He's well proportioned, if a little slimmer than many Masterpieces - a consequence of him transforming into a rather sleek vehicle. The hood behind is head is quite gappy; it's the hollow rear end of the vehicle and the arms and launchers tuck away inside it in vehicle mode. It DOES clip firmly in place mind you; although it looks like it'll come loose. There was a similar gap in the same place on G1 Tracks - which is why it doesn't trouble me - a hollowness behind his head kinda feels like Tracks to me.

   Tracks has good poseability; with one caveat. The head is on a ball joint, but the transformation joint below it doesn't clip into place, relying on tension. So you have to be careful to not push his head into the chest while posing. His shoulders rotate (limited by the wings, of course). His arms can also swing out to the sides. The elbows swing and have rotators, his wrists rotate and his fingers are hinged as one. The hips swing and lift out to the sides and his waist rotates. His knees have ratcheting hinges, but no rotators. His ankles are hinged and there's another joint in there allowing for his feet to tilt. I don't mind the lack of knee rotation, but that joint under the neck should have been handled better.

   Play value focusses on the poseability and his accessories. He comes with a silver handgun that he holds quite firmly as well a mini Blaster cassette deck, and Raoul mini statue. There's no real wait for Tracks to interact with Blaster; Raoul stands with Tracks which is about all you can expect of a statue. The missile launchers - well faux launchers - can position up and down.

   A visually attractive robot mode that really captures the character. The gap behind his head will bother some - I'll admit it doesn't bother me. The neck transformation joint should have had something securing it into robot mode as it's a bit of a nuisance when posing his head. Despite the flaws I still think this is a great robot mode - it will depend on how you feel about that gap.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. Loudpedal is a repaint while Road Road shares the basic mould with different sculpting on many robot mode pieces like her head & waist.

OVERALL

   Visually, this is G1 Tracks without question. I'm a big fan of the character and I have to say that the blue colour is bang on and visually attractive. The flying car mode works very well and the Corvette mode looks great. I"m not 100% satisfied with the way his neck transforms and I know some will dislike the gap behind his head; but neither are these are dealbreakers for me. If you'e a fan of the character - and Masterpiece in general - I'd recommend Tracks - 8/10

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