Powerglide's mold was very likely originally designed by Masaki Maruyama to be included in Takara’s Microman: Microchange line, but was never released in this capacity due to the line’s cancellation in early 1984. Unlike Diaclone, the Mini CAR robo assortment of Microchange (of which Powerglide was presumably to have been a part) were intended to represent toy vehicles rather than real ones, causing many of the figures to have somewhat distorted proportions. Powerglide's US Patent, titled Reconfigurable toy airplane (aka Transformers G1 Powerglide) was filed on October 25, 1984 (U.S. Patent No. USD290480 S).
Powerglide transforms into a red A-10 Thunderbolt II. Is proportions are somewhat distorted, but otherwise features many recognizable sculpted details. Other than his rubsign placed in a shallow square indent between his engines, he features one sticker on the top of the fuselage. Two large gray blocks hang from his wings where the real plane could mount bombs or droptanks. In jet mode, he rests on three molded pegs in the place of landing gear. Powerglide's transformation involves pulling the tail down to form the legs, rotating the cockpit around to reveal the face, and rotating the wings up along the forward fuselage. The gray bombs / droptanks under the wings unfold to form his Popeye-like arms. His robot mode is rather tall compared to his Mini Vehicle peers, and has a different layout than the other 1985 Minis.
Powerglide is a fairly sturdy figure, and not prone to any particular breakage. However, the metal pins that hold his wings to the body tend to work their way out over time. They can simply be tapped or pressed back in. However, due to the tight fitment of the joint, the pin can fall out completely, but the wing can stay in place, appearing intact - until it is moved, and comes loose completely.
Powerglide does not have any domestic variants. However, the version produced and sold by Greek licensee El Greco's, Keravnos (Thunder) is molded in a lighter shade of red.
Redecos & Retools
Powerglide was recolored as Bad Boy in the e-HOBBY exclusive G1 Gobots set.