Price Point/Size: Deluxe
Retailers: General (K-Mart, Toys R Us, Wal-Mart, Kay Bee)
Release Date: November 2004
Transformation Difficulty Level: 3
Purchased at: Target (Linden, NJ)
Accessories: Missile Launchers x 2, Missiles x 2, Roadhandler Mini-Con
From the distant past of the Transformers line comes a name that most haven't heard in a while: Swerve. Originally a Mini-Bot truck, this Swerve is a sleek redeco of Armada Blurr. Read Blurr's review for detailed information on the toy mechanics. This review will focus on the changes made to the toy for this release.
Roadhandler's deco was made to match up with Swerve's deco. Utilizing the primary colors of red, black and silver, Roadhandler is mostly red, with a silver cockpit and black on the tires, spoilker and rear. This reminds me a lot of the G1 Micromaster Roadhandler (hence the picture of the two together above). G1 Roadhandler was also mostly red with black details. In robot mode, the association becomes a bit stronger as you see the visor eyes, chest and waist all colored yellow, a color that G1 Roadhandler also had in robot form. This is a really nice deco pattern that sets this guy aside from his Armada predecessor.
Red, black and silver are always a winning combination for me when it comes to vehicles or action figures. It's just such a dynamic, yet simple set of colors that it looks good on jets, trucks, cars...virtually anything you can think of. Swerve is mostly red, with black used for details such as lines on the side, the angled details on the car's front section and the front end. The missiles are also black, contrasting well with the red. Silver is found on the hubcaps. The translucent parts (headlights, windshield etc.) are all translucent orange, which is subtle and looks great.
Functionally Swerve has everything Armada Blurr did. Two Mini-Con pegs are on the top of the rear section. Insert Roadhandler into the slot in the back of the vehicle and the sides fold down to deploy as wings. The gimmick works just fine, but I have one minor quibble: the hover fans that are revealed were left plain red. While the detail is obvious, it would have been nice if they were painted in as Armada Blurr's were to differentiate them from the details around them.
Quite simply, Swerve looks freaking awesome in robot mode. Red still remains the primary color, but silver and black are used a lot more here. His upper legs, fists, upper arms, robot head and part of the chest are all black. Silver is used for detailing on the robot head, the waist, lower legs and feet. Matching with Roadhandler, Swerve has yellow parts, mostly the circular details that look like missiles. In another nice touch his robot eyes are blue, the "traditional" color of Autobot eyes (from the G1 cartoon anyway).
Functionally, Swerve retains all of Blurr's abilities. His missiles still fire fine (with Mini-Con support) and in the age of Energon, you can attach Energon weapons to him too! However, this also means that he suffers from Blurr's limitations in posability too, but the toy looks so awesome this is easy to forgive.
Swerve is an awesome redeco. Whether you own Armada Blurr or not, this guy should be in your collection. Highly recommended.