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Hot Wheels Rip Rod Comes to Life with Ford 1.0L EcoBoost

It's always a treat to see a Hot Wheels toy car translated into a real-life, full-sized vehicle, and Ford has done just that with the Hot Wheels Rip Rod. The automaker first showed off the Hot Wheels Rip Rod at last year's SEMA show, but has since continued work on the project vehicle to take it from a static show car to a race-ready beast.

The Hot Wheels Rip Rod was designed and built by Mattel and Bandito Brothers, a Los Angeles-based media company. Ford Racing joined the project after the 2013 SEMA Show to bring the car to life. Powering the Rip Rod is Ford's 1.0-liter EcoBoost inline-three. The engine is small enough to fit in a suitcase and appears to be a perfect fit for the tiny project car. The turbocharged engine is currently used in the Fiesta SFE, where it makes 123 hp and 125 lb-ft of torque and returns a respectable EPA-rated 39 mpg combined.

Detailed performance specs aren't available, but it's safe to assume that fuel efficiency wasn't a concern for the Hot Wheels Rip Rod. Instead, the tiny EcoBoost mill is tuned for performance and it sounds absolutely rowdy in the video below. The Rip Rod is shown tearing up a dry lake bed, with plenty of clips of it drifting and kicking up dirt. Hot Wheels-inspired cars are nothing new, but this one might be the most fun yet.