Tag Archives: 1990s

Twin Turbos

Suggested by a reader, these two Porsche 911 Turbos come from Petey Bird of Flickr, who has captured the 1990s incarnation of Porsche’s iconic sports car beautifully in Speed Champions form. Curve bricks are used in abundance to replicate the famous shape, with some rather clever side-windows too, and there’s more of Petey’s Porsches to see at his photostream via the link above.

EuroVan

This is the Volkswagen EuroVan, or the T4 Transporter to most of the world, produced from the early-’90s to the early-’00s, and available as a van, passenger vehicle, kombi, chassis-cab, pick-up and camper.

This one, being called a ‘EuroVan’, is the North American version, where the T4 Transporter was sold from 1992 and 2003, almost exclusively with VR6-power. In Europe we could get a 1.9 naturally-aspirated diesel with 60bhp, so really we think the ‘states should’ve got that one…

Anyway, this EuroVan comes from previous bloggee Danifill, who has recreated the ’90s Volkswagen brilliantly in Technic form. There’s remote control drive and steering via a BuWizz bluetooth brick, independent front and live axle rear suspension, working head and tail lights, and brick built VR6 engine under the opening hood.

There’s more to see at the Eurobricks discussion forum – make the jump to all the details, imagery, and a video of the van in action via the link in the text above.

My Other Car’s a Mustang

America likes naming cars after animals. Thus this viper is borne of a horse, being constructed solely from the pieces found within the excellent Creator 10265 Ford Mustang set.

Besides a few mis-coloured clips you’d be hard pushed to tell that Marcin Majkowski’s Dodge Viper is a Mustang in disguise, plus the doors and hood open, there’s a detailed interior, and a lifelike V10 engine too.

Building instructions are available and there’s more to see of Marcin’s 10265 B-Model on Flickr – click the link above to swap one animal for another.

‘That’ Toyota Supra

If there’s one car responsible for the over-hyping of an entire model line-up, this is it.

Brian O’Connor’s ’10 second’ Toyota Supra from 2001’s ‘The Fast and the Furious’ took a fairly fat, mostly automatic GT cruiser and turned it into a 1,000bhp legend. Complete with orange paintwork and the stupidest stickers, millions of teenagers suddenly had a new hero car, and the internet has been full of arguments about 2JZs ever since.

However even TLCB Team, convinced though we are that the ‘Fast & Furious’ movie franchise is one of the worst Hollywood has ever produced, have to admit that LEGO is on to a winner by turning the films’ star cars into official sets.

The Technic 42111 ‘Dom’s Dodge Charger’ set is rather good, and LEGO have now shrunk the big bald baby’s car to Speed Champions scale as well. But LEGO don’t just have a license with Dodge. They have one with Toyota too…

We’re pretty sure that an official LEGO ‘Fast & Furious’ Toyota Supra set will follow, but ArtemyZotov of Eurobricks couldn’t wait, and thus has built his own ‘Brian O’Connor’s Toyota Supra’ from the first ‘Fast & Furious’ movie, matching the scale of the official Technic 42111 Dodge Charger set.

So good is Artemy’s Technic Supra that we think LEGO will struggle to top it, and not only does it really look the part (stupid stickers included), it features remote control drive and steering, opening doors and hood, and a modular chassis and body.

There’s lots more to see at the Eurobricks forum and via the video below, plus Artemy has made building instructions and a download for the decals available too, so you can build this Supra for yourself at home. If you own the Technic 42111 Dom’s Dodge Charger set and a LEGO train, you know what you need to do!

YouTube Video

Pink & Slippy

This is resolutely not this TLCB Writer’s kind of car. But the rest of the staff are ‘busy’ in the corridor doing something with a remote control bulldozer and some Elven ‘volunteers’, so it falls to him to write about a pink drift-pig BMW.

That said, whilst this model is based on a real and eye-searing car, Fuku Saku‘s brick-built homage to the sideways E36 is thoroughly excellent, being both instantly recognisable as an E36 3-Series Coupe, and managing to replicate the drifty modifications of the real thing.

The doors and hood open to reveal further cleverness within, and there’s more to see of Fuku’s E36 Drift Car at his album of the same name on Flickr. Click the link above to go sliding about in something pink.

Prowler

In the late ’90s to mid 00’s, American car manufacturers went nuts. There was the Chrysler PT Cruiser, the Pontiac Aztek, the Chevrolet SSR, and this, the Plymouth Prowler.

Inspired by hot rods of the ’40s and ’50s, the Chrysler Corporation hoped the Prowler would reinvigorate the dying Plymouth brand, and the wild two-seat rear-wheel-drive sports car certainly made headlines upon its reveal in 1997.

Sadly though, like everything else coming from the Chrysler Corporation in the late ’90s, it was also complete crap.

A 3.5 litre V6 from Chrysler minivans – making just over 200bhp – mated to a four speed automatic gearbox (four!) did not an invigorating drive make, whilst interior and build quality was, well… typical ’90s Chrysler

Less than 12,000 Prowlers were sold before its demise, along with the entire Plymouth brand, in 2002, whilst Chrysler itself filed for bankruptcy just seven years later.

But here at TLCB we still applaud the Prowler, as we much prefer interesting cars to good ones (which is probably why we’re writing about cars and not managing a car company…). However it probably would’ve been better for everyone if the Prowler had been built by anyone other than late-’90s Chrysler.

Oh yeh, the model! This superb Speed Champions scale Plymouth Prowler captures the outlandish design brilliantly – no mean feat at this scale – and there’s more to see courtesy of Thomas Gion of Flickr. Click the link to take a look!

Caprice Classic

TLCB’s home nation didn’t get to the enjoy the delights of ’90s full-size American sedans. And by ‘delights’, we mean oversize bodywork, fantastically lazy engines, and the plastics quality of a Kinder Egg toy. This is one such car, the Chevrolet Caprice Classic.

Launched in ’91, the fourth generation of Chevy’s full-size sedan wore new aerodynamic but unpopular bodywork, carried over V8 engines from the previous generation, and rode on a chassis from 1977. Which unbelievably was enough to earn it Motor Trend’s ‘Domestic Car of the Year’, showing just how rubbish American cars were in 1991.

This excellent 6-wide homage to the early-’90s American barge comes from aaref1ev of Flickr, who has captured the Caprice Classic brilliantly, also rendering the design in NYPD and Taxi Cab flavours. Head to aaref1ev’s photostream to jump back to the early-’90s, and be thankful that automotive era is long over…

Proper Off-Roader

We love a proper off-roader here at TLCB, and they don’t come much properer than this; the Jeep Cherokee XJ. Particularly when they’ve been outfitted for proper off-roading like this one has.

Builder filsawgood has equipped his fully remote controlled Technic ’90s Jeep Cherokee with a snorkel, lifted suspension, wide arches and oversize tyres, a winch, roof cage, and a differential locker, and there’s lots more to see of his off-road modded Jeep (including a video) at the Eurobricks forum.

Click the link above for some proper off-roading.

Pre-SUV

Mazda have just launched their most powerful production car ever. And it’s a crossover SUV. Because of course it is. Is anything not a going to be a crossover SUV these days?

Back in the ’90s things were far more varied, with a whole array of sports and GT cars available from mainstream brands. This was one of the most interesting; the rotary-engined Mazda RX-7.

Powered by a 1.3 litre twin-turbo twin-rotor wankel engine, the third generation RX-7 was produced from 1992 to 2002 during which, in TLCB’s home market at least, only a few hundred were sold. Sigh, perhaps we only deserve crossover SUVs…

Of course subsequent popularity meant thousands more RX-7s were ‘grey imported’ from Japan, and the car now enjoys a cult following with prices that go along with it, so the closest most of us will get to one now is in brick form.

Fortunately Flickr’s Fuku Saku has got us covered, with this glorious Speed Champions style third-gen. Mazda RX-7 for which building instructions are available so you can create it too. There’s more to see at Fuku’s photostream and you can take a look via the link above.

Poor Man’s Ferrari

The second generation Toyota MR2 wowed the world when it arrived in the early 1990s. There was simply nothing more exotic looking for even twice the price, earning it the status as a ‘Poor man’s Ferrari’.

We’d say a ‘Sensible man’s Ferrari’ too, as – being a Toyota – the MR2 was infinitely better built (and – dare we say it – better engineered) than anything coming from Maranello, and the turbocharged version was even pretty quick.

After a period of ‘banger’ status, SW20 MR2s are rapidly becoming sought-after classics, and Daniel Helms (aka danielsmocs) is the lucky owner of one in real life.

Capturing his car in Lego, Daniel has recreated the second generation MR2 in brick form, complete with working pop-up headlights via a switch in the cabin, opening doors, front trunk, engine cover and luggage compartment, sliding seats, and removable ‘glass’ roof panels.

There’s much more of Daniel’s build to see at both his ‘Toyota MR2 (SW20)’ album on Flickr, and via the Eurobricks discussion forum. Join us and other poor men via the links!

Fleetwood Brick

Not entered into TLCB and BrickNerd’s Festival of Mundanity contest, but gosh would it do well it if it were, is Michael217’s magnificent Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham.

The height of ’90s crappy Americana, the Fleetwood was a near six metre long, two ton barge propelled by a 5.7 litre V8 with less power than a Parish Council.

We love rubbish cars like this here at The Lego Car Blog, because… well, we’re poorly engineered, badly steered, and shoddily built too.

Despite both TLCB and the ’90s Cadillac Fleetwood sharing these characteristics, Michael217’s wonderful Model Team recreation certainly doesn’t. Both beautifully made and presented, Michael’s model captures the enormous boxy Brougham brilliantly, with a superbly realistic engine bay and interior too.

All four doors open, as do the trunk and hood, there’s independent suspension (which is likely considerably better than that used by the real thing), plus full remote control drive and steering courtesy of twin L Motors and a Servo.

It’s a glorious build and one that’s definitely worth a closer look; head to the Eurobricks discussion forum or Michael217’s ‘Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham’ album at Bricksafe for all the imagery.

Tediously Tracking

A 1990s Asian-American econobox is the definition of mundane motoring. There was the Toyota Corolla rebadged as the Geo Prizm (which was somehow even more boring), the miserable Daewoo Matiz rebadged as a Chevrolet, and this; the Suzuki Vitara rebadged as the Geo Tracker.

This Lego version comes from Flickr’s Thomas Gion, who has constructed it for the Festival of Mundanity competition, and earned some decent mundane points in the process.

However, he’s also lost a few by building his Tracker in yellow and putting a surfboard in the back. Thomas, Thomas… white with a brown box in the back would have been so much more mundane.

Despite this monotonous faux-pas it’s still a worthy entry and you can check out more of Thomas’ Tracker on at his photostream via the link, plus you can read the contest details and see the prizes on offer for the most boring builds by clicking here.

Quick Cig

LEGO’s new 42141 McLaren Formula 1 Race Car comes from a time when advertising dangerous things is no longer acceptable. Unless you’re Ferrari of course. Back in the ’80s and ’90s though, anything was OK.

Cue this giant packet of cigarettes, which – like the aforementioned LEGO set – isn’t based on one particular McLaren Formula 1 car, but rather is inspired by the Marlboro McLarens of the time.

It comes from apachaihapachai of Eurobricks, who has included a BuWizz bluetooth battery, and Buggy Motor to ensure his model has the speed to match the looks. Free building instructions are available and there’s more to see of apachai’s renders at the Eurobricks forum via the link above.

Yellow Niva

The Soviet Union was full of terrible cars. This is not one of them.

The Lada Niva / VAZ-2121 is unibody 4×4, capable of going as far as a Land Rover (only more comfortably, as it had proper springs) and able to be easily worked on with limited tools. And it’s brilliant.

Unusually, the Niva was an in-house design – rather than using left-over bits of old Fiats – and so successful is it that is still being built today. Not for long though, as the Niva’s days are numbered, after which it’ll be replaced by a re-badged Dacia Duster courtesy of Lada’s parent company Renault.

Now we quite like the Duster, but it’s not a Niva, and it certainly can’t go as far as a Land Rover off road. Which means we suspect the original Niva will become quite a sought-after vehicle once production stops, not something you might expect of a Communist-era Lada.

This rather lovely Lego version comes from previous bloggee Legostalgie, who has evolved his previously featured design and has now made building instructions available. If you like the Niva as much as we do you can check out all the images of Legostalgie’s update, and find a link to building instructions, by clicking here.

Pre-Raptor

Today’s instrument of brick-built death is this, the Lockheed/Boeing YF-22, a 1990s prototype that would eventually become the formidable F22 Raptor, beating the more interesting looking Northrop/MocDonnell Douglas YF-23 to the contract.

Two YF-22s were built, and regular bloggee Ralph Savelsberg has added a third, with this stunning Lego recreation. Spectacular surfacing, an opening cockpit, working landing gear, and some explodey weaponry make this well worth a closer look, and you can do just that via the link above.