The history of the Transformers in Latin America is even more esoteric and factious than that of Europe. Due to political and economic barriers, every primary country marketing Transformers during early Generation 1 had its own local licensee producing and branding the toys. Most of the manufacturers focused mostly or solely on the cheapest offerings (the Mini-Vehicles), and produced prolific variants to compensate for not offering a wider range of characters.
The most diverse offering was presented in Mexico by Plasticos IGA, S.A. Since IGA’s release mirrored much of the contemorary Hasbro offering, it is covered seperately as G1 (Mexico) in this Wiki.
Behind Mexico, Brazil was the next largest market, served by local toy company Estrela (who held licenses to many other familiar toy brands). Estrela, like many Latin American licensees, focused heavily on the Mini-Vehicles, producing waves of them in a myriad of colors in unique packaging, and eventually, with unique factions (the previously unknown, but now-infamous Optimus and Malignus). Estrela also secured licenses for other transforming robot toys and sold them under its Transformers banner, such as the Bat-Robô and Eletrix.
Argentina had a similar arrangment, receiving a rainbow of Mini-Vehicles from local toy producer Antex Andina S.A. Antex also included variations of the Jumpstarters, going so far as to re-issue them in the 1990s concurrent to US Generation 2. Antex also marketed Transformers merchandise, such as walkie-talkies in the visage of Godaikin God Marz. Interestingly, another Argentine company known as Comando Toys was able to produce and market a transforming Radio AM Robot under the Transformers nameplate.
The final country currently covered in this guide is Peru. Far less is known about Peruvian Transformers due to the smaller scale of their release, and low survivability of the local production. Transformers Mini-Vehicles were initially imported from Hasbro to Peru by companies Hude (now a division of Industrios Panda S.A.) and BASA (Bakelita y Anexos S.A.), and production was later transferred to local licensee Lynsa. Packaged samples of any of these Peruvian market toys are next to nonexistant, but the Lynsa production is easily characterized by their unique rainbow of colors, utter lack of chrome and stickers, and usage of all-plastic wheels when the original version featured rubber. Despite this, their quality is reported as decent, compared to other Latin American native production.
There is so often a paucity of information available on any of the license-produced toys from this region. Other than spotty production quality, jumbled licensing and importation, and socioeconomic factors, the climate of South America is probably a large part of the reason for the lack of information. The high temperatures and humidity of many of the South and Central American regions probably contributed to the destruction of the low-quality glues and paper used for the Mini-Vehicles packaging. Factored by the typical rarity of sealed original toys from this era, many of these toys have rarely, if ever, been spotted in sealed condition. Peruvian transformers (already incredibly rare), suffer acutely from this, with sealed samples only surfacing very recently in the fandom. Furthermore, the toys themselves can be affected by environmental damage, such as decay of cheaper paper-based stickers. Transformers from other countries, such as Rubiplas’ selection in Venezuela, are even more elusive.
Many thanks to Ronen Kauffman for providing so many of the images of Latin American G1 that are featured here.