Variants and rarer pieces. It seems as if every toy line has their fair share of them. Here are some variations, as well as harder to find (if not near impossible) M.U.S.C.L.E. items, some of which are considered to be Holy Grails of M.U.S.C.L.E. collecting by many.
The Hot Wheels M.U.S.C.L.E. Hauler
The M.U.S.C.L.E. toy that almost was! We learned of this Ultra Rare prototype from our good friend and M.U.S.C.L.E. enthusiast Corey. His father is a Hot Wheels collector, and spotted this Hot Wheels "M.U.S.C.L.E. Hauler" at a Hot Wheels collector convention. The owner of the M.U.S.C.L.E. Hauler stated that there are only 5 prototypes in existence, and it is valued at $1,000.00 minimum. In the end, Corey's Dad actually ended up buying that Hot Wheels piece. It's definitely awesome knowing that the Hauler is in the hands of collectors who are familiar with, as well as fans of M.U.S.C.L.E.! A Big Thanks to Corey and his Dad who filled us in, and sent us this picture for our site!
Nestle Quik Tin w/Free M.U.S.C.L.E. inside
This is a 1986 Nestle' Quik tin featuring a M.U.S.C.L.E. cross promotion. Contrary to popular belief back in the day, this promotion did not feature an exclusive or limited edition M.U.S.C.L.E. figure. Below is the figure that came in this particular tin.
The promotion wasn't limited to just one sculpt. Rather, you could have gotten any of the 233 M.U.S.C.L.E.'s made by Mattel.
The Nestle' M.U.S.C.L.E. Pack Tube
Nestle' and MATTEL's cross marketing promotion apparently didn't end with the M.U.S.C.L.E. QUIK can. Here is yet another promo from Nestle'. I got this scan from Marie M. Soulet back around 1998 and shared that she received this promo tube filled with M.U.S.C.L.E. figures at a school in Rio Piedras Puerto Rico back in the 80s.
M.U.S.C.L.E. Battllin' Belt Box variation
So as you can see, the front of the variation box shows a close up picture of the belt rather than the traditional plastic window, revealing the belt inside of the box. The variation was most likely made as a means to cut costs, as cardboard was more likely cheaper than the plastic used for the viewing window.
M.U.S.C.L.E. Store Shelf Tag
They were mounted on shelves in the toy aisles to grab the attention of passers by. Both sides of the tag have the same picture on it, so people walking from either direction could see it. One of the insides of the tabs displays the MATTEL copyright and address, while the other shows directions on how to mount the display piece.