Skip to product information
1 of 3

Unless otherwise noted, videos are courtesy of YouTube.

  * If you receive an error when viewing a video, please reload page. (known error with Shopify)

Exhibit:  Video Games       Other Exhibits
View:  Next Item      Previous Item

Mattel Auto Race & Mattel Football (1976-1977)

Mattel Auto Race & Mattel Football (1976-1977)


Models on Display

First:  First fully electronic hand-held video game

Media:  Mattel "Electronic Football" commercial.

Mattel Auto Race

Often referred to as the first fully-digital handheld video game console, Mattel's Auto Race was released in 1976. Mattel pioneered handheld video games, and this handheld is often forgotten because of the success of Mattel Football released a year later in 1977. Similar to Football, the characters (in this case, cars), were represented by small, moving, red LED lights and had simple sounds. Mattel, who was known for producing Barbie dolls and Hot Wheels cars, was first unsure about entering the electronics market, but the success of Auto Race and Football led to the Mattel Electronics division of the company, which was, at a point, highly profitable.

Source: eBay Auction 


Mattel Football

Mattel Football was released in June 1977, and sold through Sears retail stores. After less than 100,000 were made, Sears decided that they didn't think the game would sell, and production for both Football and Auto Race were stopped. Later, Sears realized their prediction was inaccurate, and when production started again, 500,000 were selling a week! 

Obtained from: Elephants Trunk Flea Market

View full details

Does this item bring back memories?
Have some interesting fact or history?
Leave a comment or review for this item below!