In 1972, Remco released a remote-control car with a twist: it could be transformed from one type of dragster to another and back again.
Each Expand-O-Car Super-Wheelie was tethered to a remote control powered by two D-size batteries. Two buttons on the battery case controlled the Super-Wheelie. Pushing one button sent the dragster forward while pushing the other allowed the car to drive in reverse.
With a bit of patience and skill, children could also use the remote control to manipulate the Super-Wheelie even further. For example, quickly switching the car backwards to forwards caused the front end to lift off the ground. Executing a turn was done by backing it up for a few seconds then shooting it forward.
The Super-Wheelie had a few other tricks up its sleeve. Flipping a lever on the bottom of the dragster caused it to corkscrew and spin until the lever was flipped back for normal operation.
The car’s groovy flower antenna acted as a trigger to change the Super-Wheelie from a short dragster to a “long railer”. By pulling back on the wire connected to the antenna, the car expanded about 30 inches longer. Reverting the dragster to its shortened form required children to manually push the front wheels back until they latched into place.
While it isn’t difficult to locate a Super-Wheelie on the secondary market, finding one that is fully functional is more challenging. At the bare minimum, look for one with a clean battery box, minimal signs of wear, and the ability to change between configurations fluidly.