The three Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour France finalists revealed

The three Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour France finalists revealed

Who will come out on top in the French version of the Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour contest? The final will be held during the 24 Hours of Le Mans (12–16 June 2024).

A superb final at the 2024 24 Hours of Le Mans

Last February, Hot Wheels™ announced the launch of the second French edition of the international Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour competition. Hot Wheels™ invites car enthusiasts, vehicle transformation geeks and fans of the iconic brand to take part in this unique contest. Candidates are asked to submit a creative, authentic custom build that harnesses the Hot Wheels™ spirit – one that is worthy of being immortalised as a die-cast model.

After receiving a sackload of outstanding applications, the French panel made up of members of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO), Etienne Moustache – content creator and competition ambassador – and teams from Mattel got together to judge the entries. The public was also invited to vote this year. Visitors to the world-famous 24 Hours of Le Mans will have the chance to see the three outstanding finalists during race week.

So who are the three finalists?

The entries were judged on strict criteria covering authenticity, creativity and degree of customisation and, as a result, three extraordinary builds that best capture the Hot Wheels™ spirit were selected.

The winner of France’s second edition will qualify for the international grand finale that will wrap up the 2024 Hot Wheels Legends Tour. The participating countries’ finalists will then face off to win the ultimate prize: seeing the build produced as a genuine Hot Wheels™ 1:64 scale model and join the famous Garage of Legends collection.

The French judging panel will gather again for the national final on Saturday 15 June during the 24 Hours of Le Mans! On this occasion, Hot Wheels designer Craig Calum will provide input to help select the French representative. This year, racegoers will also be invited to vote for their favourite vehicle!

The Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour France winner will be revealed at 18:00 on Saturday 15 June in the presence of the judges and their ambassador Étienne Moustache!

The historic 1972 Volkswagen Beetle

Petrolhead Mathieu Planquette bought a modified Beetle from a long-standing friend four years ago. His plans to simply repaint the car soon turned into a radical transformation including cutting off the roof, shrinking the car by 13 cm and raising the chassis by 13 cm. Entirely repainted by hand, the car is a tribute to the first Beetle to cover 400 metres in less than 10 seconds in the 1970s. Mathieu even managed to contact the son of the original driver who has since given the project his seal of approval.

The builder is a great fan of scale models with a particular soft spot for Hot Wheels™ Volkswagens. So much so that his modified Beetle has qualified for the final of the Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour France. His determination and respect for automotive history are reflected in every detail of the car, making him an ideal candidate for this prestigious competition.

"This project and this car are all about being able to ride in a full-scale toy!"
Mathieu Planquette, Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour France finalist

The amazing Citroën Traction V12

Two brothers, Kevin and Jérémy, share a passion for mechanical engineering, metal artwork and sculpture. The ambitious project which began in 2021, ending a year later, is a true fusion of their respective talents combining Kevin’s eye for detail and design and Jérémy’s technical prowess. They documented their adventure on their YouTube channel devoted to cars and to sculptures created from old car parts.

Their unique prototype was put together without any precise plans, with each stage of the project evolving as it was built. They retrieved the shell of a Traction from a field and, demonstrating tremendous creativity and adaptability, fitted it with a V12 engine. The brothers have been avid collectors of model vehicles – and particularly fans of Hot Wheels™ – since they were young boys. Their love of these small cars has naturally driven their unique creation to the Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour France final.

"We’ve collected Hot Wheels™ since we were little kids, so taking part in the Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour means everything to us"
Jérémy and Kevin Lashermes, Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour France finalists

The iconic 1981 Delorean

Alexandre Claudin has always dreamed of owning a DeLorean, Michael J. Fox’s emblematic co-star in Back to the Future. In 2018, that dream came true when he purchased two of them in Pennsylvania and brought them back to France. He sold one of them to fund his plan to completely modify the other. After driving it for a while without any alterations, he spent three years transforming the car, replacing all the parts except the coachwork and upholstery. Today, this DeLorean has a Corvette engine topping 500 horsepower, built to racing standard – it could almost compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans!

As a lifelong Hot Wheels™ fan, Alexandre has hundreds of models – from the most basic to the rarest examples – and gets his hands on a new one most weeks. He shares his passion with his son. Alexandre followed the Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour in the USA and contemplated sending over his DeLorean before the contest came to France. He is also a drift specialist and official Monster Energy driver and, of course, draws his inspiration from the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans.

"I wanted a car that everyone knew but no-one had seen. It's the world's only DeLorean with such a transformation - it's unique. It's so iconic, people are afraid to touch!"
Alexandre Claudin, Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour France finalist

Hot Wheels™ in the Fan Zone at the 24 Hours of Le Mans

From 11–16 June, 24 Hours of Le Mans racegoers can admire the three finalists of the 2024 Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour and enjoy stacks of other exciting events in the Family Fan Zone. Fans of all ages can visit the Hot Wheels™ pop-up store throughout race week and vote for their favourite build. An autograph session at 11:00 on Saturday 15 June will give them an opportunity to meet Etienne Moustache – ambassador of the French edition.

The winner of the second Hot Wheels™ Legends Tour France will be revealed at 18:00 that day in the presence of the French judging panel and their ambassador.

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