Some things are better left alone. Any forum on Mumsnet for example. The comments section of the Daily Mail website. Your Mom’s ‘Special Friends’ chest. However the LEGO Technic 8081 ‘Extreme Cruiser’ set is not one of them.
Reviewed here at The Lego Car Blog by reader Thirdwigg a few years ago, he noted that the 8081 set “taunts you to be creative. It screams at you to improve it; to make it better, and it gives you plenty of the space and a great structure to do so.” Which is handy because 8081 is… well, not particularly good.
Not so this version though. Taking his own advice, Thirdwigg as fully repurposed the decidedly average 8081 Extreme Cruiser set into this most excellent Land Rover Defender 110 style off-roader, complete with four-wheel-drive (which the original set didn’t have), a V8 engine (which the original set didn’t have either), working suspension and steering (which it did), and huge Fischertechnic tyres (which it definitely didn’t).
The result looks marvellous and there’s more to see of Thridwigg’s 8081-inspired 4×4 at both his Flickr photostream and the Eurobricks discussion forum (which, unlike Mumsnet, is forum which won’t leave you terrified for the future of humanity).