It’s that time of year again! A crack team of Elves was dispatched a couple of weeks ago into LEGO’s closely guarded HQ, and those successful at avoiding German shepherds have been returning to TLCB Towers over the past few days. We now have the complete range of Technic sets for the first half of 2016, so without further ado, we can bring you the brand new 2016 LEGO Technic line-up!
42048 Go Kart
An interesting colour choice for LEGO’s first 2016 set, and also one that sets the tone for 2016’s use of stickers; 42048 uses a lot of them. Underneath that be-stickered body is a model that we rather like, and one with some excellent proper Technic functions too. Working steering and a rear-wheel driven single-cylinder engine feature in 42048, which contains approximately 350 parts and will retail for an estimated price of £25/$30. A thumbs up from TLCB.
42044 Display Team Jet
On to the smallest set in the 2016 line-up; the circa-115 piece Display Team Jet. Again there are lots of stickers in evidence, but this time there’s not much substance underneath them. Retractable landing gear is the only working function here. Still, 42044 will be cheap at around $15. Next…
42045 Hydroplane Racer
There hasn’t been a Technic boat for some time (that we can remember anyway), so the 2016 Hydroplane Racer is a welcome return for anyone into water-borne vehicles. 42045 features even more stickers than its entry-level counterparts, although they do look rather nice to this reviewer’s eyes, and includes just under 200 pieces. Amongst these are a working straight-4 engine which is turned by a pair of hidden wheels underneath the bodywork. Expect 42045 to retail for around £15/$20 when it’s launched next year.
42046 Getaway Racer & 42047 Police Intercepter
We’ve not much to say about LEGO’s new pull-back racers because, well – they look like this. More stickers and nothing else to see, although 42046 and 42047 can be combined to create something that is – somewhat unbelievably – even more hideous than the two individual models above. Each will have an RRP of £15/$20 and contain 170-ish pieces. Moving swiftly on…
42049 Mine Loader
On to the bigger stuff… This peculiar looking device is a mining loader, built for travelling the subterranean roads in the world’s deep mines. 42049 contains nearly 500 pieces, including a huge turntable for central articulation, a two-cylinder engine (which seems rather small), and a manually controlled grasping clamp, meaning it has both adequate mechanical functionality and play value. Expect 42049 to cost around £30/$40 when it reaches stores early in 2016.
42050 Drag Racer
If TLCB seems a little underwhelmed by LEGO’s 2016 Technic offerings so far it’s because, er… we are. But our mood changes a bit with this; the brilliant-looking 42050 Drag Racer! Designed to resemble the ‘Funny Car’ silhouette drag racers that light up the tarmac at strips across the U.S, 42050 is the most exciting mid-size Technic set to be launched in ages. With circa-650 pieces – including some lovely new blue panels – a huge working V8 engine, lifting bodywork and working steering, 42050 is something of a supercar-lite. There’s a traditional drag racer B-Model too, which is actually rather good itself. £60/$70 is our estimate, and this is one model we hope to add to our Set Review Library next year!
42052 Heavy Lift Helicopter
The final set for 2016 sits at the top of the Technic tree; the 1,042 piece Heavy Lift Helicopter. Featuring Power Functions motorisation, co-axial rotors, a working winch and retractible landing gear, 42052 leads the 2016 range with functionality. The orange and white colour scheme looks rather nice we think, and is further enhanced with (you’ve guessed it) lots of stickerage. The new Heavy Lift Helicopter will reach stores in early 2016, with a heavy price to match; you’ll need to save up over £100/$120 to lift this set home.
Overall 2016 looks a bit of a mixed bag, much like 2015, but just like this year we can expect the really cool stuff to arrive in the second half of the year… did someone say ‘new supercar?’…
You can read our reviews of some of the sets in 2015 Technic line-up by visiting the Set Review Library – click here to see what our experts made of this year’s official LEGO Technic products.