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In-depth guide on different types of American car toys

In-depth guide on different types of American car toys

Ever found yourself mesmerized by the miniature world of toy cars? Well, you're not alone!


Whether it's the sleek lines of a diecast race car or the rugged charm of a toy ride-on truck, there's something undeniably magical about these small-scale vehicles with big personalities. One thing is for sure - they're not just playthings but gateways to vast worlds of adventure and imagination, thrilling the hearts of both the young and the young at heart.


Let's take a closer look at what makes these car toys for kids so special.

The Timeless Appeal of Car Toys for Toddlers & Up

Can Am Maverick 2-Seater Ride On

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Right from the get-go, there is something inherently fascinating about toy cars that draws our attention from an early age. Is it their realistic look, the sense of speed, the freedom they represent, or something more? Just think back to those magical days when a simple toy car, a gift from your parents, would transform into a superhero vehicle in your hands, you played with it nonstop for days on end, mimicking its engine sounds and embarking on daring adventures right from your living room. 


Fast forward to today, that same sense of wonder lives on in your kids' playtime. From vintage car models that remind us of our childhood to modern toy vehicles packed with the latest tech, car toys have revved their way from one generation to the next, fueled by a shared sense of wonder.

Evolution from Vintage Car Toy to Modern Toy Vehicles

The journey from the first American plastic toys to today's high tech models mirrors our own love affair with automobiles. Brands like Hot Wheels and Little Tikes have become household names, synonymous with quality and endless fun. But it's not just about nostalgia; the enduring appeal of these classic miniature cars lies in their immaculate attention to detail, infinite replayability, and the ease in which they spark joy in young minds.


Consider the iconic Hot Wheels track sets that have thrilled children since 1968, blending high-speed action with the thrill of competition. Similarly, Mattel's introduction of characters and storytelling into their car toys, such as the popular Disney Pixar's Cars series and Mario Kart sets, has enriched the play experience even further, connecting emotionally with both kids and adults.

Hot Wheels 20 Car Pack

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Here's an interesting tidbit: the earliest American toy cars were crafted by real car makers, shortly after their European counterparts first introduced them in the 1920s. Believe it or not, these made-to-scale replicas were initially used primarily for promotion, not as toys! Made out of pressed steel, cast plaster, or even wood & clay, these in-house models from the big car brands appeared at auto shows and in advertisements.

Cast Iron Model T Ford Coupe

It wasn't until the 1950s that the use of model cars began to be widely recognized as toys, leading to a collectibles market starting in the 70s.

Matchbox Mercury Police Car, 1970

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Meanwhile, the first pedal ride on (aka, the ones powered by foot, Flintstone-style) actually predates the model toy car, all the way back to the 1890's - around the same time as the first cars. They were made from wood and metal, and eventually plastic pedal cars in the 1970s.

Vintage Pedal Car

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The Italian manufacturer Peg-Perego - yep, the one famous for its baby strollers - holds the honor of launching the very first battery-power ride on car in the 1960s. It has since grown into the modern ride on car market, with a dizzying array of choices appearing on every suburb sidewalk.

Vintage Pep Perego MAGICA from 1990s

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Car Toys for Kids: A Gateway to Imaginative Play

Every car toy, from the humble plastic sedan to the most blinged out, battery powered SUV ride on, shares a vital trait: they ignite worlds of exploration and imagination. 


Observing any kid pick up a toy car for the first time is like watching magic unfold - their surroundings instantly transforms into a sprawling city, rugged mountain trails, or winding race track!

Kid playing with model car toys

The same goes for the bigger ride-ons, where young boys and girls' eyes light up as they grasp the steering wheel. In that moment, they become real drivers cruising down the road, just like their mom and dad. The giddy feeling of unlocking new freedom is both palpable and real. It's not just play; it's an adventure.


These toys also offers a unique educational angle, serving as a fantastic way to introduce concepts like mechanics, speed, and even physics, in a super fun and engaging way.

Freddo Raider Ride On

From Diecast to Digital: The Innovation of Toy Cars

The world of car toys has shifted gears dramatically over the years, cruising from the classic diecast model cars to the high-tech digital era. It's an evolution that's as exciting as a Formula 1 race, bringing unbridled joy to countless people of all ages.

Ready for a zippy ride down the memory lane? Here're some of the innovative changes in our beloved car toys over the years.

Diecast Wonders: Vintage Car Set Collectors and Mattel Hot Wheels Model Cars

While early model cars were designed to simply look like the real automobiles, they quickly became collector's favorites. The thrill of hunting down a rare vintage car or snagging the latest race cars is a thrilling hobby for many. From the sleek lines of a vintage car to the aerodynamic design of modern race cars, each model car is a piece of art waiting to be discovered and displayed.

Did you know? The title of the world's most expensive model toy car goes to a 1:8 scale Lamborghini Aventador, weighing a whopping 25 kg thanks to its entire body carved from a block of gold, It's worth over 6 million dollars! That's more than the actual supercar. Then again, when was the last time you saw someone driving a Lambo made out of gold?

Lamborghini Aventador Model Car in gold

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Remote Control Revolution: Bringing Car Toys to Life

The innovation didn't stop with static models. The last 50 years has seen a steady array of improvements to make the American car toys more exciting and realistic to play with. 


From Mattel Hot Wheels on tracks, which can be raced among multiple players, to the portable red & yellow Little Tikes Cozy Coupe pedal cars found at every daycare; each new iteration brings us more action and interactivity. Gone are the days of manually pushing toy cars around (unless you choose to). 

Little Tikes Cozy Coupe Foot to Floor Ride On

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The biggest innovation by far, is the introduction of remote control, together with high capacity batteries that can power large toy cars for hours, This game-changer turned passive admiration into adrenaline-pumping play sessions. These remote controlled vehicles zip, zoom, and even drift with the touch of a button; opening up whole new levels of play for every age, including older kids, teenagers, and even adults.


And for parents, the remote control offers a newfound sense of security and participation, allowing them to be part of the action without any worries. Now, fun is truly a family affair, with every push of a button bringing smiles and laughter.


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Freddo Toys: Bringing You the Best in American Car Toys

For over a decade, Freddo has been fueling fun in American homes with our exciting and innovative ride-on car toys.

Freddo at 2024 New York Toy Fair

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The Freddo Collection: Lamborghini Race Car Models, GMC Toy Trucks, Construction Vehicles, & More

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Whether it's adorable push cars, officially licensed ride-ons from automotive brands like GMC and Corvette, or rugged ATVs & UTVs built for any adventure, Freddo makes sure kids of all ages find their dream ride. Our collection is all about bringing the thrill of driving to the playroom and beyond.

What Sets Freddo Apart

Why do families keep coming back to Freddo? It's our mix of cool designs and pure playtime fun, all backed by our commitment to top-notch customer care. Simply put, we're obsessed with creating car toys that our own kids want to play with, and wish we had as kids. Our latest lineup includes high-end features such as brushless motors, 4x4 drives, spring suspension, and real rubber tires.

Rear Suspension on Freddo Beast XL Dune Buggy Ride On

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Cassie's Record-Breaking Adventure

Exciting news! Tiktok sensation Cassie Aran and her friend Lauren, chose Freddo and the Freddo Rocket for theirbid to enter the Guinness World Record for the longest trip by a toy car - a 500 mile journey that covers the entire coast of Florida! 

Cassie & Lauren Drive to Save Animals

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While your own backyard adventures might not break records, it's cool to know your ride-on is built for the long haul.

In the Driver’s Seat

So, are you ready for an imaginative journey? With Freddo's American car toys, every ride promises fun and adventure. No matter if it's circling the living room or traversing the backyard, there's a perfect ride ready to make those moments magical.

Looking for American toy cars for sale that combine fun and learning? You've found the right place. We're here to make every playtime an unforgettable journey. After all, it's not just the destination that counts, but the joy of the journey.

Let the adventures begin!


Freddo GMC Denali Ride On

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