Retroville: Wacky Races Get Real!

Hey! Let’s talk about Hanna Barbera/Heater-Quigley’s animated series Wacky Races.



You know it, you love it (assuming that you grew up in the era when the show was airing on TV). But did you know that some people made real life the Wacky Races customized cars?

Wacky Races Real Life Cars

Say whuuuut

Yes, you heard right. Some people made actual replicas of the various cars in the Wacky Races. So without further ado…

Wacky Racers

Let’s get WACKY!!

Wacky Races Real Life Turbo Terrific 2

First, here’s the Turbo Terrific, driven by Peter Perfect. It’s amazing how Peter’s car still manages to look stylish despite it’s phallic appearance.

Wacky Races Real Life Bullet Proof Bomb 2

Next up, the Bullet Proof Bomb (driven by The Anthill Mob). What material is this car made up of?

Italian Mobster

“You don’t know. You don’t wanna know!”

Wacky Races Real Life Convert-A-Car

Next, here’s the Convert-A-Car (driven by Professor Pat Pending). Not only is this car a hybrid, it’s a transformer!

Wacky Races Real Life Compact Pussycat

Next, it’s the Compact Pussycat, driven by Penelope Pitstop (NASCAR’s first token chick). Sure, give the only female racer the girliest car. Hey, it was a different time.


“Cute, very cute.”

Wacky Races Real Life Creepy Coupe

Here we have the Creepy Coupe, driven by the Gruesome Twosome. This comes complete with a plastic replica of Big Gruesome in the passenger seat!


“What a lovely nightmare…of transportation!”

Wacky Races Real Life Army Surplus Special

Here we have the Army Surplus Special, driven by Sargent Blast and Private Meekly. This was always one of my favorite WR cars, despite the fact that I wouldn’t last a nanosecond in the army.

Sargent Slaughter

“Cheer and wave….THAT’S AN ORDER!!”

Wacky Races Real Life Boulder Mobile

Next up is the Boulder Mobile, driven by the Slag Brothers, Rock and Gravel. Primitive, but effective.


“Those two guys are dead sexy!”

Wacky Races Rea Life Crimson Haybailer

Here’s the Crimson Haybailer, driven by the Red Max. Can’t decide between a car and a plane? Split the difference!

Photo of Jimi HENDRIX

“‘Scuse me while I kiss the sky (not “kiss this guy”)!

Wacky Races Real Life Buzz Wagon

Over here is the Buzz Wagon, driven by Rufus Ruffcut and Sawtooth (his pet beaver). Note the wheels here are fakes placed in front of the tires. The buzz saw wheels work well in cartoon form, but in real life they wouldn’t be able to support the weight of a car, not even one made out of wood.

Beavis & Butthead

“Huh-huh-huh! He sad ‘wood’! Huh-huh-huh-huh!”

“Yeah! ‘Wood!’ Heh-heh-heh-heh-heh-heh!”

Wacky Races Real Life Arkansas Chug-A-Bug

Moving on, here’s the Arkansas Chug-A-Bug, driven by Lazy Luke and Blubber Bear. It’s got a stovepipe for the exhaust. Now that’s rural!

Jed Clampett

“Let’s commence to racin!”

Wacky Races Real Life Mean Machine

And of course, we can’t forget the Mean Machine, driven by Dick Dastardly and Muttley. I’ve always dug this car’s design, and it doesn’t hurt that it’s also purple, my favorite color. Plus, it’s got a freakin’ rocket for the exhaust!

Corgi Dick Dastardly Racer

On a related note, I have to give an honorable mention to this Dick Dastardly toy car made by Corgi, which I saved up my allowance money for weeks to buy as a kid. I bought it from K&K Toys (just to give you an idea how long ago this was!). No, it’s not the Mean Machine (which kid me would have punched someone in front of their granny in order to get), but it’s still pretty cool.

A couple of minor nitpicks, though. First, why were Dick and Muttley wearing their pilot outfits from Dastardly and Muttley and Their Flying Machines here when they’re driving a race car? Second, in what alternate reality has Dick Dastardly ever worn a pink jacket?

Dastardly and Muttley

Dick’s jacket should be BLUE! Like it was on the show! But still, beggars can’t be choosers.

Wacky Races Toy Cars

And peep out these cool Wacky Races figures. Unfortunately, these aren’t real. This is detailed fan art, but someone at Warner Brothers (who absorbed H-B in 1999) should definitely get on this.

I’m going to wrap this up by showcasing another attempt to render the Wacky Racers in live action, with this hilarious Peugot car commercial, which never aired in the U.S. Yeah, I know that we’ve already shown this ad here earlier on 2 Funny, but we like it, and it’s relevant to the subject at hand, so we’re going to show it again! Enjoy.

Now that’s keeping it real! Real wacky, that is!


One thought on “Retroville: Wacky Races Get Real!

  1. You managed to find ‘real’ versions of all 11 cars. Impressive.

    I remember that Corgi Dick Dastardly Racer. Man, I wish Corgi had made a mini-Mean Machine, but then, if they had made one actual Wacky Races car, I would’ve just wanted the others, then I’d have been compelled to collect them all, which would’ve been difficult considering back then I was a kid without a job.


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