Congrats Johnny! It is a "chase" version, or was there a general release?
About the hoods on these, they come up really easy. Just put up-pressure in the middle and lift. I have several of them, and I have never dammage a hood. One is about 10 years old and you would think that the plastic would be brittle, but it comes up fine.
Give it a try! I wonder is Ertl has upgraded the engine with wires on these?