Review by JoshB
Shinkansen Robo was one of a handful of Machine Robo toys to not get brought over to Tonka's Gobots line. Perhaps it was because there is no bullet train in the US? Perhaps it was too simple looking? Who knows. But it never came out in the US which means tracking one down is a little harder than the others.
Released in 1982, Shinkansen Robo is a "0 Series" Shinkansen, and was available in two colors. The blue version came out first in 82, and his color meant He serviced the Tokaido route, and the green one came along in 83 servicing the Tohoku route.
He's got a simple transformation, just pull down the legs, pull out the arms and twist the head. Because this is a used sample, one leg is a little loose on mine.
They say that the green version is the exact same toy, but with a different color scheme, but there is one big difference.
Can you spot it?
The thighs are completely different. Note the detailing on the blue version that is gone from the green version. I've heard rumors that there are also early versions with silver painted thighs, but the only evidence I can find of it is a photo in the legendary Machine Robo Wedge book. So until I see one in the wild, I will consider it a myth.
As you can see, both of mine are a little beat up. But they are hard to find, so I will take what I can get for now.
Train modes are nice and compact, and they roll freely on wheels. Each train is supposed to come with a little hook connector that fits in the gap in the back that can allow the trains to connect to each other, much like they would in real life. Each also included a sticker sheet.
Because the little hooks are always missing, finding one mint in box is rare and expensive.