Tag Archives: MG

Mighty Metro

It’s the early-’80s, and British Leyland has a new small (and surprisingly good) car on its hands. The Metro, first sold as an Austin and later a Rover, rapidly became a best seller, with over 130,000 sold in 1983 in the UK alone. Aiming to capitalise on this success British Leyland decided to take the Metro racing, and the pinnacle of motorsport in the mid-’80s was rallying’s monstrous ‘Group B’.

Bearing a physical resemblance (but little else) to road-going cars, Group B racers featured tubular-steel space-frames, mid-mounted engines, and trick all-wheel-drive systems, and the Metro got the lot.

Developed by Williams Engineering, the Metro 6R4 gained a mid-mounted naturally-aspirated V6 engine, loosely developed from the all-conquering Cosworth DVF Formula 1 unit, a glassfibre body, and MG badges – to better align it with the hot-hatch versions of the road-going Metro. For homologation purposes customers could actually buy a road-going 6R4 too, which must’ve been a wild thing to take to the shops.

The new Metro 6R4 rally car debuted at the end of 1985, taking a podium at its first event. However, by just the middle of the following year, it was all over.

After a series of fatal accidents, Group B was banned mid-season, and the 6R4 – along with rest of the Group B field – was orphaned. Without a global series in which to race, Rover sold the cars on, but their motorsport life wasn’t over. Rallycross and British rallying became the 6R4’s new home, and in the hands of privateers the cars became formidable opponents, winning so frequently the rules had to be tightened to restrict them.

The 6R4’s V6 engine also went on to a rather interesting new life… but you can read about that another time.

Thus, despite such a short life in world rallying, the Metro 6R4 remains one of the most iconic and fearsome cars ever borne out of Group B, and previous bloggee Samolot has paid homage to the unlikely rally star with his incredible Technic replica.

Under a one-piece removable body Samolot’s 6R4 features a mid-mounted V6 engine, all-wheel-suspension, and a remote controlled all-wheel-drive system with working steering courtesy of LEGO’s Power Functions motors. Custom decals recreate the ’80s works livery, there are opening doors, bonnet and hatch-back, and there’s more of the model to see – including photos of the trick all-wheel-drive chassis – at the Eurobricks forum.

Click the link above to take a look at the maddest Metro ever built.

B-Model Building

You’re stuck inside, we’re stuck inside, build us a B-Model to win an awesome prize! Two more TLCB readers have done just that, building alternates from the Technic 42098 Car Transporter and Creator 10242 Mini Cooper respectively. First up (above) is cleansupgood‘s pick-up truck, shown here in digital form but also built for real. Opening doors, a dropping tailgate, a working V8 engine and functioning steering all feature and you can see more of Clean’s 42098 B-Model via Bricksafe at the link above.

This post’s second entry comes from newcomer Jan Geurts, who has repurposed the Creator 10242 Mini Cooper set to build another British classic, the MG Midget. Jan’s 10242 B-Model includes opening doors, an opening hood (with a detailed engine underneath), and an opening trunk complete with an external luggage rack. There’s more to see on Flickr via the link above, and if you’d like to enter your own B-Model into TLCB Lock-Down Competition you can read the contest details here.

Mighty Metro

Lego MG Metro 6R4 Group B

The Austin/Rover/MG Metro does not have a good reputation here in TLCB’s home nation. Now almost extinct, most observers would say that’s a good thing. But this staff writer is feeling brave, and he’s going to make a case for the humble British city car…

Launched in 1980 the Austin – and then Rover/MG – Metro was designed to compliment (but eventually replace) the beloved but ageing Mini. Neat packaging, clever hydro-gas suspension, and modern looks earned British Leyland’s new product the What Car? Car of The Year accolade and buyers bought it in their thousands.

However the Metro was born at a tumultuous time for the British car industry, and the reputation of industrial action, striking workers and piss-poor quality still lingered around almost anything that British Leyland made.

This meant that the Metro was a rare success story, but whilst other good products would arrive in the 1990s cash would become increasingly tight, and the Metro would be forced to carry on for eighteen years. Over that time of course, a good car designed in the late 1970s became no longer a good car at all.

That meant the end of the Metro and – ultimately – the end of Rover too, and the Metro is now almost completely gone from European roads, despite over 2 million being sold.

Lego Remote Control Metro 6R4

However, one variant of British Leyland’s little hatchback can still be found. A version from a time when the company was optimistic about its future, and adventurous in its marketing too. The amazing MG Metro 6R4.

Built for the monstrous Group B rally era, and then becoming a dominant force in rallycross, the Metro 6R4 squeezed a 400+bhp Cosworth-derived V6 and a permanent all-wheel drive system into a space-framed version of the Metro shell, and the engine later went on to be developed for the Jaguar XJ200 supercar – which became the fastest production car in the world.

This wonderful fully remote controlled recreation of British Leyland’s most spectacular car comes from newcomer All_About_Lego, and it’s packed with working functions. Alongside the remote control all-wheel drive and steering are working front and rear lights, all-wheel suspension, and opening doors and rear clamshell. The exterior is accurately stickered in the 6R4’s period mid-80s livery, whilst the inside contains a fully detailed (and roll-caged) interior too.

A full gallery of images is available to view on Flickr, you can read more about the build and watch a video of the model in action via the Eurobricks forum by clicking here, and if you’re wondering quite why this writer thinks the MG Metro 6R4 is so cool, click this link…

Lego MG Metro 6R4 Group B

Rolling a Six

Lego Car Transporter

Discovered by both a very excited TLCB Elf* and a TLCB Reader, today we’re bringing you seven models in one! TLCB favourite (and previous Master MOCer) Nick Barrett has beautifully reconstructed six cars that he’s previously owned, plus a truck on which to transport them.

The truck steers and the trailer has a realistic mechanism to allow the cars to drive on, but really it’s all about that payload. See if you can identify all six of Nick’s eclectic cars before visiting MOCpages or Flickr to find out if you’re right!

Lego Cars

*Which did of course try to ague that 7 meal tokens and 7 smarties were an appropriate reward. It did not win its case.

A ’70s Topless Model…

MGB Lego

Rubber on the bottom, nothing on the top – let’s see the hits rack up!

Put simply, this is the best car we’ve seen all year. The Elf who found it would’ve got a hug if we could bring ourselves to. Still, we thought about it. Anyway, this absurdly brilliant creation is a ’70s MGB, and is as accurate in its Technical functions as it is aesthetically. View it on Nick Barrett’s MOCpage – it’ll be the best click you’ve made all year.