Tyco Viper Electric Racing is a slot car set based on the US TV series VIPER, released in the US, UK, and other markets worldwide in 1994.
If you don’t remember the ‘Hit’ TV series VIPER with James McCaffrey and Dorian Harewood, then well, check it out on YouTube! It’s actually pretty good! I’d never heard of it honestly, so had a look and found myself unable to stop watching!
Not to be confused with the 1997 Tyco Viper Electric Racing which features the regular Dodge Viper, this 1994 Tyco Viper slot car set was released to coincide with the TV show where a futuristic Viper is a crime fighting machine with all sorts of sensors, gadgets, weapons, and 90s corn. It’s the ultimate Knight Rider rip-off, and in its own way it’s awesome!
One of very few slot car sets based on the U-TURN chassis, the Tyco Viper TV show cars can literally turn around and drive the other way!
Perfect for Good Guy vs Bad Guy scenarios just like this, U-TURN takes a little time to get used to, particularly with the cars feeling a little bit unbalanced as their back end will always drift out during corners, but it’s a nice change on the regular slot car race.
Also included are:
- Squeeze track piece
- Futuristic city decoration / tunnels
- Wire fence decoration
- Barrels for knocking over
- Track wideners for power slides
With over 11 foot of track, its larger than many of the super small figure 8 sets we’ve reviewed recently, though still a very simple easy to drive track – which is important when you have to focus on keeping the car stable around corners, to avoid unintended U-turns.
As an elongated figure 8, the track allows for a much longer straight with the squeeze zone in the center, perfect for throwing your opponents off the edge.
Finally, the red spacers around each corner together with that U-Turn functionality and carefully placed yellow barrels provide for some epic power slides if you can manage to hold it. And there are plenty of hijinks to be found if one car plays the chaser, and the other the getaway – though exactly what the rules are when a car does change directions, especially without any lap counter in sight to rule who wins, it can get a bit confusing.
Included is the star of the show, the morphing VIPER with a red LED visible through the front window for its ‘scanner’, the model is decently made and resembled the TV show car well.
And as the bad guy car, a 1994 Dodge Stealth R/T Turbo. The real life car was mechanically identical as the legendary Mitsubishi 3000GT, with Dodge providing the styling, and Mitsubishi the guts and build.
Availability and Collectability
As slot car sets based on 1990s Knight Rider rip-offs, this ones as good as they get! No but seriously, and interesting premise, with added nostalgia given the TV connection makes this a set that stands out on its own.
Complete sets, including new in box are often found on eBay, however they aren’t cheap, with typical prices between 200 – 350 USD.
If you’re a fan of the Viper Defender and/or the TV Series, don’t forget to check out the 1993 Tyco Viper Radio Controlled Car!