‘Transformers MP-28 Hot Rod’ Product Review
Transformers fans have been waiting an age for a decent show-accurate Hot Rod. Finally, the wait is over.
This is Takara/Hasbro’s second attempt at the one-time Autobot leader and, my friends, this time they nailed it. This figure looks like it has busted its way out of the movie.
The robot mode looks just as he should. The colors are fairly accurate and his proportions are pretty much dead-on. From the front and back, he looks amazing. From the side is still great but the backpack detracts a little. That’s not to say it’s huge and ugly but it’s certainly noticeable. The backpack is necessary, however, as part of the transformation and it’s all folded away quite well to avoid his back becoming kibble city.
On the subject of transformation, this one is fantastic. Everything just makes sense. A few parts require a little extra coaxing to get them where they need to be but thankfully, nothing needs forcing. As mentioned earlier, everything folds away nicely into a neat backpack.
Vehicle mode is an absolute beauty. It’s his futuristic sports car alt-mode from early in the movie and it’s such a sleek looking vehicle. It looks great from every angle, and rolls really nicely along a flat surface but only if everything’s transformed correctly. If something’s not tucked away where it should be, you run the risk of it catching as it travels. It’s actually surprising how close this is to the original G1 toy. Obviously there’s a lot that’s improved but he’s still got his face peeking out when you view his car from underneath. Probably not intentional but still a nice callback to the original.
The attention to detail on this figure is incredible. There is a cavity in its chest when in robot mode. This cavity is big enough to fit the Matrix of Leadership which I believe comes with MP-10 Optimus Prime. On top of that, he has some goggles that fold down out of his head.
You get the usual things you’d expect with a Transformer. Two blasters, a buzzsaw as featured in the movie and, the notable exception; a fishing rod, as featured in the sequence from the movie where Hot Rod sat fishing with his human friend Daniel. This accessory adds oodles of charm and was totally unexpected. It shows a nice change from simply having an arsenal. This Autobot enjoys relaxing.
If there are any flaws in this otherwise fantastic Autobot, they would be more to do with quality control than design or execution. Straight out of the packaging, the bot I reviewed had ever so slightly loose legs. It’s nothing major and definitely isn’t a deal-breaker but it’s a little annoying for what is considered a premium product among Transformers fans. This leads us to the other main gripe and it’s one that’s been reported among other people who have bought this product. The chrome exhausts along the arms, while very shiny, have still got flashing on them from where they were attached to a sprue before being cut off and assembled onto Hot Rod. There is no reason that these couldn’t have been removed properly, especially on such a pricey toy.
At the end of the day, this is, finally, a definitive version of Hot Rod. Honestly, it’d be nice if it could be converted to Rodimus Prime like previous versions but who knows? Maybe that’s in the pipeline. This is definitely worth getting if, like me, you’re a Transformers fan, and especially if your favorite character is Hot Rod.