Transformers Generation 2 1993 Toy Reviews: Rapido

in 1993, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Generation 2

Transformers Generation 2

General Information:
Retailer: General (Toys 'R' Us, Bradlees etc.)
Price: $5.99 (Depending on retailer)
Accessories: Gun/Engine

Images:

*Tech Specs courtesy of the Hartman brothers at The International Tech Specs Archive.

Generation 2 began with a slew of redecos and retools of Generation One toys, but that could only last for so long. By the time Generation 2 went into full swing, new molds had to be introduced. Sticking to convention, the first new set of Autobots were cars. Rapido was one of these new warriors.

Vehicle Mode:
Rapido is a futuristic sports car in vehicle mode. He really isn't shaped like any one car that was on the market at the time, and instead is more of an original creation. The sculpt is not heavily detailed since he relies on stickers and deco for that, but it still does the job. The front of the car has headlights and the hint of a grill, and if you look inside the windshield, you'll find two seats, a steering wheel and a separater between the seats. The most detailed part of the vehicle is the engine, which has eight cylinders and two exhaust pipes in the back.

Rapido is mostly red. The tires are black and the windshield/windows component is translucent dark green with black detailing on it. The number "19" is printed in big letters on the side of the car (though what it references I do not know). On the windshield, the "Optimus Prime Autobot symbol" with the word "Autobot" is printed along the top. So much for "robots in disguise".

The "Optimus Prime Autobot symbol" also makes an appearance on the hood in the form of a sticker. Four other stickers can be found on the back, featuring alternating pink and black colors.

This is an interesting vehicle design. If the front end had been more slanted and angular, it would have been more "sporty" looking. Instead, it looks more like a regular car that was modified to be a street racing car. It could have used a bit more sculpted detail however.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Detach the engine and set it aside.
  2. Swing the rear of the vehicle back to form the robot legs.
  3. Flip the car over and swing the robot arms out to the sides.
  4. Swing the front of the car down to form the robot chest.
  5. Rotate the windshield section on the back around.
  6. Place the engine weapon into Rapido's fist.

Robot Mode:
Rapido's robot mode is a bit of a throwback to Generation One in it's own way. Some of the high posability that Generation 2 would spawn later on had not yet come into play, so Rapido's articulation is about the same as a typical G1 toys', with four points of articulation. The arms and knees can move, that's it.

Also, in terms of aesthetic, he borrows a bit from G1 toys transformation-wise. His arms have the doors on them, something G1 bots like Sideswipe featured. The front of the car becomes his chest, but instead of folding all the way down, it faces forward, much like G1 Prowl and Smokescreen had.

The best part of the sculpted parts revealed here is the robot head, which has a cool design. While it has the familiar "crest/eyes/mouthplate" design, the
mouthplate itself is in three layers that move downward in triangular patterns. The mid body and upper legs are also "newly revealed" parts here that have a
good amount of detail on them. Unfortunately, there is one glaring problem with this design. The chest piece obscures the head, and not only does this look oddly unfinished, but since Rapido does have a cool head sculpt, it subtracts from what that piece could add to the toy visually.

The use of the engine as the robot's gun is neat, and works well. There's a psychological bond people have between engines and "power", and merging those into the use of the engine as a powerful weapon is cool.

Rapido's head is painted silver with dark, smokey gray plastic for the eyes. This translucent piece winds up on the back of the head too, indicating this was originally intended for light piping. But why such a dark color was chosen for such a "bright" feature is hard to explain. The mid body to upper legs and the lower arms are aqua green. It's an interesting color choice, and actually works better than it sounds. The gun itself has a layer of silver on it, but the one on mine started rubbing off a good two years ago. However, I will say that my Rapido saw pretty heavy play and display activity in the 90's, so if you get one that hasn't been abused as much, the weapon should look fine.

Final Thoughts:
Rapido is a neat little toy that serves as a very basic trooper for your Autobot army. There's nothing amazing about the toy, and the designers could have done a better job, but if you're short on troops (and cash), this isn't a bad addition to your army. Mildly recommended.