Dreadnok Ground Assault Cycle (1986)

I miss the days of the big retailer catalogs. Each year around back to school time brought the beloved Christmas catalog or Wish Book in the case of Sears. Before the days of instant coverage and inside intel from the internet, the catalogs were the way that a kid like me found out about all the latest toys. I think I wore out the pages of the action figure sections by the time the holidays were over.

The catalogs often sold exclusive items that were not available through in stores. The Dreadnok Ground Assault Cycle was one of these. It was part of a series of two boxed sets of repainted vehicles available only at Sears in 1986. The set also included a recolored Stinger jeep. Both vehicles in the set shared a Dreadnok color scheme of greens and purple. The bright green parts were made of a color changing plastic, which much like the original Zartan, changes when exposed to sunlight.

The RAM cycle on which this vehicle is based doesn’t really fit with the Dreadnok aesthetic established with vehicles like the Swamp Fire and Thunder Machine, which shared a mishmashed style similar to the vehicles in the Mad Max films. This cycle looks too clean and stock, without the junkyard flourishes for which the Dreadnoks are known. Then again, maybe the ‘Noks liberated one of the Joes’ cycles and have yet to make any special modifications other than a paint job. It’s disappointing that the only two-wheeled bike the Dreadnoks had was a repurposed Joe vehicle. I always wanted to see the ‘Noks riding proper choppers, as seen in the comics.

9 comments

  • I know they’re rare, but it still astounds me that repainted Joe vehicles are so pricey on the secondary market. Gotta give props to Hasbro/Sears for featuring the “original” Dreadnok logo on these, though. And nice work dropping Buzzer on there, with his OG ‘Nok tattoo.

    • I know, the prices on all of the old store exclusives are crazy. Put it in perspective however for something new like this year’s SDCC Starscream Skystriker and its price on eBay. I can’t justify picking up new stuff for huge prices. Somehow it doesn’t hurt as much paying bigger money for something old.

  • Leave it to Hasbro to “cheap out”. It wasn’t so bad back then, but Hasbro reuses the same molds/parts adinfintum.They can’t even be bothered to give us newhead sculpts most of the time.

  • I was never too impressed with the ‘Noks’ vehicles aside from the Thunder Machine. They needed proper hogs, period. Even Mad Max had ’em! Those Sears vehicles are still pricey to this day, though.

    • I lucked out back in the 90’s (pre eBay of course) and found the ground assault set for a good price at an antique mall. $50 for the set was at the time was the most I’d spent on a vintage item at that point.

  • ”I was never really into the Dreadnoks,except for the action figures.When the dreadnok assault sets came out in the 1986 sears christmas catalog , I remember that the vehicles were of the original molds between 1982-1984. The vehicle that REALLY stood out on it’s own was:the 1986 COBRA NIGHT RAVEN S3P BLACK V.I.P.JET TRANSPORT PLANE!”

  • I had this set as a kid and got a ton of use from it. But, I used it just for regular Cobra rather than the dreadnoks as I’ve never been a Dreadnok fan.

    However, these vehicles work perfectly with the vintage Python Patrol figures. Python Officer and Troopers fit into these vehicles nicely. And, if you have Gatilho and Relampago, they are perfect fits for the cycles.

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