Tag Archives: Miniland

Box Clever

Japan has two car markets; one for ‘normal’ cars like Corollas, Crowns and suchlike, and the other – the kei class – for vehicles such as these two.

Designed to ensure that car ownership in Japan’s tight streets and congested cities doesn’t completely break the road network, kei cars must measure less than 3.4m in length, 1.48m in width, and have an engine no bigger than 660cc (if powered by an internal combustion engine).

Denoted by their yellow number plates, kei cars benefit from lower taxation than regular cars, but they must comply with reduced speed limits too. Although that’s probably so they don’t fall over.

Over one in three cars sold in Japan are in the kei class, and the specs can be wild, with turbocharging, all-wheel-drive, and even convertible sports cars available.

Most kei cars however, look like these two; a box measuring exactly 3.4m long and 1.48m wide, precisely maximising the interior space within the permitted exterior dimensions.

The Daihatsu Move Canbus and the Honda N-Box Slash pictured here are both the work of Flickr’s Ralph Savelsberg, who has constructed them in his trademark Miniland style.

Each packs as much detail as possible into a tiny package, which is appropriate, and there’s more of each build to see at Ralph’s photostream. Click the link above to see what’s inside the box.

VeeDub WooWoo

Ah, LEGO’s ‘Light & Sound’ system. Before Control+ Apps, Code Pilots, and third-party SBricks, a simple 2×2 brick with a little battery in it that went either ‘Niiii!’ or ‘Wooo!’ depending which way it was turned was the only thing available. And it was marvellous. If a little annoying for every parent of a child that owned one.

Ralph Savelsberg has dug out his thirty-year-old LEGO ‘Light & Sound’ bricks to fit them to his thoroughly modern Miniland scale Dutch police Volkswagen Transporter, and they duly give it ‘Niiii!’ and ‘Wooo!’ abilities as well* as they did to models three decades ago!

Ralph hasn’t left it there either, installing a Power functions remote control drivetrain to his Transporter, cunningly concealed in the back.

There’s more to see of Ralph’s excellent ‘Niiii’-ing and ‘Wooo’-ing Dutch police van on Flickr. Click the link above to annoy your parents.

*’Well’ is a relative term.

Le Mans 2018

This spectacular array of racing cars is the entire Le Mans 2018 GTE Pro grid, just one of the four categories that compete side-by-side at the world’s greatest motor race.

Built over two years by Lasse Deleuran, all teams and driver combinations from the GTE Pro class of 2018 are present, with Ferrari, BMW, Aston Martin, Chevrolet, Ford, and the race-winning Porsche squad recreated brilliantly in Miniland scale, many of which have featured here individually over the last two years.

Instructions for every single GTE Pro car are available for free, and you can see more of each racer and find the link to recreate your very own Le Mans 2018 GTE Pro grid via Lasse’s photostream by clicking here.

Alright M8

How every text received and sent by this TLCB Writer began back in the 2000s. What happened to text-speak? Anyway, this M8 isn’t shorthand, being BMW’s Le Mans GTE racing car from the 2018 24 Hour race. Previous bloggee Lasse Deleuran is building the entire grid of Le Mans racers and there’s more to see of this superb Miniland-scale recreation of BMW’s GTE endurance racer on both Flickr and at the Eurobricks forum, where free building instructions are also available. Click the links to take a look, and where you can LOL, OMG, YOLO, and all the rest.

Limey

We’re not really sure why the British are named after fruits. Australians call them ‘Poms’ (short for pomegranate) whilst in the U.S. they’re ‘Limy’. Whatever the reason (probably something to do with boats and avoiding scurvy), it’s a good fit for today’s post, which is both British and very lime indeed.

These two searingly-coloured creations are Aston Martin Vantage AMR GTE racers, which competed in the GTE Pro category at Le Mans 2018, and made a rather wonderful noise to boot.

Previous bloggee Lasse Deluran has recreated the #95 and #97 cars beautifully in Minland scale, replicating their very lime liveries superbly too.

There’s more to see of Lasse’s Aston Martin Vantage AMR racers at both Flickr and the Eurobricks forum, where you can also find a link to building instructions should you wish to recreate these for yourself. You may need to buy some lime coloured bricks though…

Express Gass

Talking of big boring boxes, here’s a Chevrolet Express Conversion Van. No amount of tinted windows and stickers down the sides could make us want to ride in this hateful pile of American misery, but Ralph has made his (excellent) Miniland recreation of the Chevy Express rather more exciting by the addition of a tow hitch, meaning his beige box of bricks can tow an altogether more interesting Chevy…

Hooked up to the Express is a trailer carrying this magnificent ’57 Bel Air ‘gasser’, complete with a supercharger poking through the hood and a flame paint job, both of which have got the Elves very animated. A cast of unique-looking characters is on hand to make sure she’s runnin’ right and there’s more to see of the Bel Air gasser (and the Express van we suppose) at Ralph’s photostream – click here to make the jump!

Do Your (Super) Duty*

The emergency services are the everyday heroes that have been thrown into the spotlight both during the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, and in the subsequent protests, riots, and social disorder that seems to be infecting Western society as much as the disease the proceeded it.

It’s a hard enough job to do without having bottles thrown at you, but sadly that’s what’s happening, despite the fact that the emergency services will work just as hard to save the bottle thrower as the innocent bystander in the event they’re needed.

This superb FDNY ambulance comes from TLCB regular Ralph Savelsberg in his trademark Miniland style. Based on a Ford Super Duty extra cab, Ralph’s model replicates the livery and details of the real ambulance beautifully, and he’s included a neat paramedic figure too. There’s more of the build to see at Ralph’s photostream – click the link above to dial 9-1-1.

*Today’s excellent title song

Sprinting to Save

The world’s emergency services battle to save us every single day, with the current Coronavirus pandemic highlighting in particular what an incredible job they do. Of course they need the tools to do the job, and that’s what they’ve got in the Netherlands with their Mercedes-Benz Sprinter ambulances. Flickr’s Ralph Savelsberg is the builder behind this one, recreating both the converted van and its complicated Dutch chevrons over EU-mandated yellow paint job with brilliant accuracy. Opening doors reveal a life-like interior too, and there’s more of Ralph’s Sprinter to see at his photostream – click here to call an ambulance.

The Miles Aren’t Coming Off!

If you bunk school and steal your Dad’s Ferrari 250 GT California (we’ve all been there), hoping to run the car in reverse later to take the miles off the clock, ‘Ferris Bueller’s Day Off’ taught us it doesn’t work. Even less so if you kick the car whilst it’s running so it reverses through a window and down a hillside. Your Dad will definitely notice that.

Thankfully it wasn’t a real GT California (these days a >$20million car), but a modified MGB in the scene in question, but it looked pretty good to us. As does this, x_Speed‘s recreation of both the 1960s Ferrari and the famous movie scene in which it featured. Clever techniques are in evidence throughout the build and there’s more to see of x_Speed’s Ferrari 250 GT California, Ferris Bueller, Cameron Frye, and Cameron Frye’s Dad’s garage on Flickr via the link.

Polish a Turd

Italy, no stranger to maniacal despots itself, had a nice little business selling its old products to scumbag dictatorships in the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s. The most famous of these is probably the Polski-Fiat 126, built under license in Poland alongside the Italian made, and actually quite good, Fiat 126.

The two cars were almost identical in the 1970s, with the Polski version using a few lower specified components but otherwise being indistinguishable save for a little ‘p’ on badge.

The Italian-made 126 ceased production in 1980 after an eight year production run, however the Polski-Fiat version, with its Communist standard long waiting list (with Poles largely dependent upon coupons from the Government to buy one), survived for another twenty years, by which point it really was a turd.

This wonderful model of the Polski-Fiat 126 isn’t a turd at all though, being a thoroughly excellent recreation of the humble Polish peoples’ car. Built by previous bloggee Dornbi of Flickr it captures the real 126p beautifully (and is pictured above alongside an equally good communist counterpart Trabant).

Head to Poland (via Italy) sometime in the 1980s at Dornbi’s photostream by clicking on the link above.

Build-a-Ferrari 488

The worldwide douchebag that is Coronavirus has so far cancelled the first half of the Formula 1 season, the Isle of Man TT, and postponed the Le Mans 24 Hours. But fear not, because you can recreate the world’s greatest race at home thanks to Lasse Delueran and his superb replica of the Ferrari 488 EVO GTE that competed in the 2018 event. Beautifully accurate (and more than a little complicated), Lasse has released building instructions for his model, plus he’s built a host of other Le Mans racers too, so you can build your very own starting grid. Head to Lasse’s photostream via the first link in the text above to see more of the 488 and to find a link to building instructions, and you can check out his other creations via the second.

The Other Prius

The Prius isn’t the only compact hybrid car from the early 2010s. Based on the same underpinnings, sister firm Lexus released the CT200h back in 2011, a luxury take on the fuel-efficient self-charging hybrid formula. If ‘luxury’ just means having a slightly nicer interior.

The CT200h was memorable only for using Kylie Minogue to promote it, but it worked for previous bloggee Lasse Deleuran who owns a CT in real life and has chosen to recreate it in Miniland scale complete with his roof box and bike rack.

The little Lexus might be a bland box, but don’t underestimate the complexity of replicating it successfully in Lego form. Lasse’s recreation of his own CT200h is almost unfathomably complicated, capturing the car’s shape to near perfection through a multitude of clever building techniques. Our heads hurt just looking at that front fender.

Everything opens too, revealing that slightly nicer interior and even more monumentally complicated brickwork, from the stepped roof to the ingenious tilt applied to the side windows to ensure the model’s proportions accurately reflect those of the real car.

It’s one of the most thoroughly engineered and brilliantly realistic replicas that we’ve ever featured and there’s more of Lasse’s masterpiece to see at his photostream. Click the link above to join us gazing in awe at a Lexus CT200h, which is a sentence that no-one has ever said before.

Creating Amazing

The current Lexus tagline might be pure marketing waffle, but it does link nicely to today’s creation. This is Lasse D’s stunning Lexus LFA, a model that first appeared here back in 2017. Built as a commissioned piece for Toyota Motor Europe, Lasse has refined his design (as shown by the white version below) and has now made instructions available, so you can build Japan’s amazing supercar for yourself. Head to Eurobricks via this link to see more images, a video of Lasse’s commissioned project, and to find that all important link to instructions!

The Middle*

The Chevrolet Corvette is due a bit of change in 2020. Now just about able to compete with European supercars thanks to someone showing Chevrolet something known as a ‘Corner’, the current Corvette is actually quite good. Not resting in their laurels, Chevrolet are about to knock it up a notch and move the engine to the middle of the car, making the C8 Corvette the first mid-engined GM product since the 1988 Pontiac Fiero.

This Lego version of the new Corvette comes from Flickr’s Lasse Deleuran who has built his recreation of the of C8 long before the real car has even been released, basing his model on the pre-production prototype shown at a media event this year. Whether buyers will like the new mid-engined layout or not will probably depend on whether they can embrace change, progress and handling balance, or whether they’re from Texas, but whichever camp you’re part of you can see more of Lasse’s excellent Miniland-scale C8 Corvette via the link above.

*Today’s ace title song.

American Classics – Picture Special

Lego Classic Car Garage

Ralph Savelsberg, aka Mad Physicist, is one of the most prolific bloggees here at TLCB. One of our Master MOCers and a writer for the The Brothers Brick (everybody boo!), Ralph has been building stunning Miniland scale vehicles for years, and years, and years. His creations number in the hundreds, but until now he’s had no-where to put them. Finally though, a few are getting a home!

Lego Classic Car Garage

This brilliant classic car workshop, inspired by some of the workshop-builders that have appeared here in recent times, contains everything you’d expect to find in a modern repair facility, plus of course, some wonderful classic American cars. Six of the eight vehicles have appeared here at TLCB in some form or another, with the Ford F150 pick-up and a Hudson Hornet making their debuts today (we think!).

Lego Classic Car Garage

Amongst the classics are a Pontiac BonnevilleFord Fairlane Crown Victoria SkylinerBuick RivieraChevrolet ImpalaChevrolet 3100 Stepside pick-up, and the aforementioned Hudson, all expertly recreated in miniature. There are also two dreadful modern pick-ups; a ’90s Ford F150, and if that wasn’t bad enough there’s the simply awful (but superbly replicated) Dodge Ram too.

Lego Classic Car Garage

We’ll stick with the classics, and there’s more to see of each beautiful ’50s-’60s slice of Americana via the links above to the respective articles here at The Lego Car Blog, and you can see more photos of the complete workshop via Ralph’s Flickr photostream – click here and enjoy!