Haha, oh Tracks… you’re certainly one of the more “entertaining” characters in G1. Yeah, the whole “Tracks is gay” thing got played out way too much by the fandom and it kinda got run into the ground. Even still, he’s probably one of the more memorable second-series Autobots. He’s kind of a douchebag, really. I wouldn’t say he’s quite as haughty as Highbrow, but he’s up there. And you know, sometimes characters like these can be fun. Let’s be honest, you have to love Tracks’s voice. You gotta love that “upper-crust” snobby douche persona!
Tracks’s new vehicle mode is… a sports car! What a surprise! I don’t think I like this as much as his old alt-mode. I think the old Corvette Stingray was such a great vehicle mode, you can’t really replace it. This one seems a bit more European-inspired, likely so the mold could be better suited for the just-released Wheeljack figure.
Yes, the flames on his hood are different from the G1 figure. I believe this has more to do with hiding the Autobot symbol for the “Reveal the Shield” gimmick. They don’t bother me too much, but after the Voyager-class Strafe (who’s essentially a giant Autobot symbol), one has to wonder why they didn’t just give him the classic flames in the first place…
Tracks still has that silly flying car mode… and it doesn’t work as well right here. While the original one at least kind of looked like it could get off the ground, this one looks like it’ll need to flap its door wings really hard to even try. I just tend to ignore this like Straxus’s cannon mode.
His transformation involves quite a few slide joints and really tight squeezes. It’s not too difficult but some might confuse you a bit on your first try. When putting him back into car mode, make sure to peg his forearms into the interior of the back of his car mode, otherwise it won’t close properly.
This robot mode is… kind of stumpy, actually. It’s a weird contrast to his original figure, who was probably the sleekest of all the Diaclone-derived Autobot cars. It doesn’t look too bad, but it makes it a bit more apparent that this mold was designed with Wheeljack in mind. I just feel that the stumpiness could’ve easily been avoided with something as simple as a longer neck or waist. The back half of his car becomes a giant backpack. It’s… kind of unsightly.
Despite these shortcomings, however, it is a very good update of the original design. While the wings looked godawful in the “flying car” mode they actually look really nice here—maybe even better than the original. The head is a great update of the original character model, even adding a nice touch with the knight visor. Unexpected, but very, very cool.
His articulation in the arms is really, really good… shame the same can’t be said for his legs. It might just be my copy but the knees on mine are kind of inconsistent and can’t do a 90 degree angle. The ankles are very nice, and allow him to hold poses with minimal effort. It’s not bad, but could use some improvement.
Also, be sure to keep an eye out for one with a straighter rubsign… mine looks like it got misapplied once then misapplied again. I would’ve made sure to get a better one if I weren’t so caught up in the fact that I found this guy and Jazz at the same time.
Tracks comes with slimmed down versions of his classic shoulder launchers, naturally, and it looks like he traded in his old beam gun for Wheeljack’s shoulder-mounted rocket launcher. All of them utilize the 3mm clip system and store away pretty easily in the vehicle mode.
While he’s not perfect by any means, Tracks is definitely one of the better Deluxe-class 1984-85 Autobot Cars in the Classics line. He’s not as good as Jazz or Sideswipe/Sunstreaker/Red Alert, but there’s certainly some interest there for non-completists. If you’re looking for a good car Transformer, Tracks is worth it, so grab him if you see him at FPNYC!