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LEGO Technic 2020 | Set Previews!

And now, later than billed, it’s the all new 2020 Technic line-up! OK, we’re well into 2020 now (and have already previewed the new 42109 Top Gear Rally Car and 42110 Land Rover Defender sets), but one of our Elves got caught at The LEGO Company’s HQ and securing its release was harder than removing a U.S President from office. We wouldn’t have minded (we have lot of Elves) but it had some great intel…

42101 Buggy

This intel in fact, the new 42101 Buggy aimed at aged 7+ and featuring 117 pieces. 42101 looks like a modern reinterpretation of the classic (and awesome) 8818 Dune Buggy set from 1993. It’s not as good as the 1993 version obviously, which had a single-cylinder piston engine, but it does feature steering and rear suspension, making it a worthwhile entry point into the Technic range. Expect to pay around $12/£9 in stores.

42102 Mini Claas Xerion

The second entry point into the 2020 Technic range brings back the familiar green and red we’ve come to know from one of LEGO’s official partnerships. The original 42054 Claas Xerion 5000 set is – we think – one of the best Technic sets of all time, and the 130 piece 42102 set resembles a tiny (like, really really tiny) version of the 2017 flagship. Accurate decals, working steering, and a lawn mower thingy that rotates as the model is pushed along make the Mini Claas Xerion a neat set for ages 7+, and like the Technic Buggy above it’s available for pocket money. Good stuff.

42103 Dragster

Uh oh, the Pull-Backs. The Scrappy-Dos of Technic, we haven’t yet been impressed by any of these. However 2020 looks like it might be the exception, because we rather like this one! Featuring nothing but a pull-back motor (boo), the new 42103 Dragster set displays the usual extensive stickerage we’ve come to expect from these sets but it looks… well, really rather good. Aimed at ages 7+, 42103 includes 225 pieces, a ‘Christmas tree’ light, and a wheelie-bar. Could 2020 be the first year of decent pull-back sets?

42104 Race Truck 

No. Because back to form, here’s the 42104 Race Truck. With 227 pieces – all of which can be put to better use elsewhere – a plethora of stickers, and a pointless start/finish gantry thing, 42104 includes literally nothing that a Technic set should do. Oh, the bonnet opens, does that count? Next…

42105 Catamaran 

Breaking momentarily away from the Pull-Backs comes 42105, one of LEGO’s most unusual Technic sets ever, although perhaps 2016’s 42074 Racing Yacht proved there is a market for Technic sailing boats. With 404 parts including a pair of new two-piece hulls and those huge sails, 42105 features complete mechanical controls for the rudders, hydrofoils and sails and can be re-built into a more traditional powerboat should you wish to deploy those sail pieces elsewhere. It also floats(!), which immediately makes it cooler than any other set in this line-up (because who doesn’t like a good bath toy?). Aimed at ages 8+ expect to pay around $40/£35 for 42105, and for bath time to become much more interesting.

42106 Stunt Show

42106 pulls us back from bath time fun to, well… pull-back fun, but it could have good play value. Not much else mind. The 42106 Stunt Show includes three models in one; a pick-up truck, trailer/ramp, and a motorcycle, each looking fairly terrible despite the flame decals. The trailer features mechanically operated legs to turn it into a ramp and the truck includes steering, but that’s all. Which is nowhere near enough for a set costing $50/£45. Admittedly jumping the bike through the flaming hoop does look rather fun, but not $50 of fun, and we suspect even the Elves would tire of it quickly. We’ll be leaving this one on the shelf…

42108 Mobile Crane

The final set of H1 2020 is the largest of the line-up (not withstanding the officially licensed 42110 Land Rover Defender and 42109 Top Gear Rally Car sets revealed here at the end of 2019), the near 1,300 piece 42108 Mobile Crane. Forgive us for not being particularly excited by this one, because it does look like a reasonable set. It’s just that LEGO have released countless eight-wheel mobile cranes over the years and they’re all becoming much the same.

42108 does feature a wealth of mechanical operations, with eight-wheel steering, boom elevation, rotation and extension all via hand-powered mechanisms, a working winch with a ratchet to allow it to lift loads, and four functioning stabilisers. However despite the increase in detail that we’ve come to expect from modern Technic sets and enhanced realism thanks to a few well-judged decals, 42108 is an utterly unmemorable product. It’s also priced at around $95/£85 which – particularly as it includes no B-Model – is rather a lot.

We’ll go sailing on 42105 instead…

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My Other Car’s a Land Rover

LEGO’s cool-looking 42110 Technic Land Rover Defender set – revealed here last year – has been on sale a while now, and we think it looks pretty good. However we’re less sure about real Defender which is yet to go on sale, and seeing a prototype on the roads of the UK hasn’t helped the cause. We couldn’t afford one anyway though – despite the vast fame and riches we have accrued through this website* – so we guess it’s not aimed at us.

For those in our camp of not really knowing who the new land Rover Defender is aimed at, and maybe preferring something a little more authentic, Flickr’s Milan aka grohl might have the answer.

This marvellous looking ‘stadium truck’ complete with working suspension, four-wheel-drive, a three-speed sequential gearbox, steering, and a V8 engine has been built solely from the parts found within the 42110 Technic Land Rover Defender set, allowing you to make something with a little more off-road pedigree should the new Defender turn out to be just another posh SUV for well-healed city-dwellers.

Milan has produced video instructions for his 42110 ‘B-Model’ too, so if you own the Technic Land Rover Defender set and the real car turns out to be more ‘organic vanilla latte please’ than ‘dude, let’s abseil down this mountain’, you can turn your Defender into a stadium truck yourself.

There’s more to see of Milan’s 42110 B-Model on Flickr, where full details and the all-important link to instructions can also be found. Click the link above to take a look.

*Which you can learn about here.

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My Other Truck’s a Beetle

The lovely LEGO Creator 10252 Volkswagen Beetle set has spawned several B-Models from the blue bricks found within it. Nathanael Kuipers (a previous set designer for LEGO no less!) has created another, and has made instructions available for owners of the 10252 set to recreate it for themselves. Drawing on several classic pick-up truck designs from the late ’30s to the late ’40s Nathanael’s B-Model captures the style of the time wonderfully and there’s more to see of his 10252 B-Model (including a link to building instructions) on Flickr here.

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Buy One Get One Free

Nope, we haven’t finally relented and decided to jump on the Black Friday bandwagon, but nevertheless if you’re an owner of the excellent looking 10265 Creator Ford Mustang set then you could own this 2020 Mustang GT500 for free (just not at the same time).

TLCB Master MOCer Firas Abu-Jaber has created this superb looking GT500 from the parts only found within the 10265 set, and what’s more he’s working on instructions so that you can build it for yourself too.

In the meantime you can check out all of the images of Firas’ 10265 B-Model on Flickr via the link above, you can learn how Firas creates amazing models such as this one via his Master MOCers interview at TLCB, and you can find out why Mustang owners need at least one other back-up car by clicking here…

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76896 Speed Champions Nissan GT-R NISMO | Set Preview

It’s 2020 Speed Champions reveal time! Uncovered by one of our elite Elves thrown over The LEGO Company HQ’s wall a few weeks back, this is the brand new 76896 Speed Champions Nissan GT-R NISMO!

Slotting in between the previously revealed 76895 Ferrari F8 Tributo and excellent 76897 Audi Sport quattro, 76896 brings another real-world manufacturer into the Speed Champions line-up. The new Nissan GT-R NISMO joins the range in LEGO’s new 8-wide style that has become uniform across the latest Speed Champions sets, allowing them to look (mostly) to scale side-by-side as well as being able to fit two mini-figures.

Aimed at ages 7+ 76896 includes 298 pieces, a mini-figure racing driver, and a lot of stickers, forming the racing livery, front grille, air intakes and even the headlights.

It’s not really a look to our tastes, as we much prefer the brick-built rear to the be-stickered front, but we suspect that if you’re seven you won’t mind at all (when you’re seven stickers are awesome).

We also suspect that the new 76896 Nissan GT-R NISMO will fly off the shelves, with the GT-R being one of the poster cars for the Forza generation and also becoming the first Japanese car to be recreated as an official LEGO set.

We hope that the new Nissan GT-R’s arrival heralds the possibility of further Japanese manufacturers deciding to partner with LEGO (Toyota Supra, Lexus LFA or Honda NSX anyone?), but even if not – and although this particular Speed Champions set is a bit stickery for us – the arrival of another real-world manufacturer is something to be celebrated, particularly with a car as legendary as the Nissan GT-R

The new 76896 Speed Champions Nissan GT-R NISMO set is expected to cost around $20 and is due to reach stores by the end of the year.

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76895 Speed Champions Ferrari F8 Tributo | Set preview

No sooner had we written yesterday’s post previewing the awesome new 76897 Audi Sport quattro S1 set than another Elf stumbled back into TLCB Towers following its ‘adventure’ in LEGO’s HQ.

This is its find, the new 76895 Speed Champions Ferrari F8 Tributo.

The 2020 Speed Champions line-up wouldn’t be complete without a new Ferrari set, and this really is a new Ferrari set, being the Italian supercar manufacturer’s latest model which was only revealed at the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year.

Like yesterday’s Audi, the new Speed Champions Ferrari F8 Tributo set applies LEGO’s new 8-wide scale to allow for a little more realism and for two mini-figures to sit side-by-side. 76895 only includes one, and interestingly it’s a racing driver despite the F8 being a road car, but you can always add a second should you wish.

The F8’s design has been well replicated in Lego form, albeit with a few stickers helping with the shape of the cockpit, and includes 275 pieces for an anticipated $20 price tag. Aimed at ages 7+ we think 76895 looks rather good and will likely continue the success of Lego’s Ferrari Speed Champions partnership, however we’d still take the Audi…

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76897 Speed Champions Audi Sport quattro S1 | Set Preview

The elite team of Elves dispatched over The LEGO Company’s perimeter walls are one by one returning to TLCB Towers, clutching their discoveries stolen from the bowels of LEGO’s R&D department.

A couple may also carry a few bite marks (and some don’t return at all), but that’s why we employ mythical creatures, as there’s no way you’d get us to squeeze through an air-conditioning duct to escape a Danish Alsatian. We’re much too fat.

Anyway, the Elf that returned today came home clutching a new set that has got us very excited, the frankly brilliant looking 76897 Audi Sport quattro (with a little ‘q’) S1 rally car.

The quattro was not the first car to be fitted with all-wheel-drive, but it was the first to take the idea rallying, along with a unique 5-cylinder turbocharged engine that made a truly ridiculous amount of power, allowed thanks to Group B’s incredibly lax rulebook. The result was a car that won the World Rally Championship in ’82 and ’84, with every WRC manufacturer title claimed by an all-wheel-drive car thereafter.

The new 76897 set recreates the Audi Sport quattro S1 which finished second in 1985 season in the hands of Stig Blomqvist and Walter Röhrl, using LEGO’s new 8-wide template to bring more realism to the Speed Champions range. Constructed from 250 pieces, the Audi’s famous livery has been really well replicated, and for once the detail is brick-built rather than being applied by stickers. There are stickers too of course, and they look splendid, adding excellent period authenticity to the set.

Like all Speed Champions sets 76897 also includes a mini-figure driver, but annoyingly no co-driver, despite the 8-wide design allowing one to fit. This is no doubt due to cost, but is nevertheless disappointing from a realism point of view.

Despite this oversight we think the Speed Champions Audi Sport quattro S1 is one of the best products to come from the franchise yet, and – at an expected cost of around $20 when it reaches stores at then end of the year – there’s no cooler set for the money. We’ll just have to add our own second mini-figure to the model to complete it.

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42109 Technic Top Gear Rally Car | Set Preview

Our Elves are on it right now. Much as we hate to admit it, they’re doing rather well at sneaking into The LEGO Company’s headquarters, not being eaten by Danish Alsatians, and bringing back brand new sets for us to share with you. Hot the heels of the Unnecessarily-Long-Named Lamborghini set revealed here last week, this is their latest scoop; the new for 2020 Technic 42019 App-Controlled Top Gear Rally Car.

42019 is the latest in LEGO’s app-controlled line-up, utilising the new Control+ app that allows a model to be controlled via bluetooth from a mobile device (as per SBrick and BuWizz). It also adds another (slightly odd) brand to LEGO’s burgeoning roster of official partners. Yup, BBC Top Gear join such names as Aston Martin, Ferrari, Chevrolet and Jaguar in being printed on a LEGO box, although this link is perhaps a little more tenuous (and perhaps more than a little late given Top Gear’s peak was some years ago).

The new 42109 App-Controlled Top Gear Rally Car set is a fully remote controlled rally racer of a generic and non-specific design, featuring an XL motor for drive, an L motor for steering, LEGO’s new Bluetooth smart hub, and a whole load of stickers.

463 pieces make up the set, none of which look new or remarkable, but what is very cool is that 42109 isn’t just operable via a bluetooth device through the new Control+ app, it includes interactive in-built challenges, merging video game thrills with a real functioning Technic model. That sounds rather neat, and is something we think any nine year old (or TLCB staff writer, which amounts to the same thing) will absolutely love.

Of course the success of the new App-Controlled Top Gear Rally Car will depend upon the execution of those app-based challenges, but as the app could be easily updated with new challenges added over time, we see far more longevity in the Control+ platform than LEGO’s past forays into gaming achieved (we’re looking at you 8432 Technic Red Hot Machine)…

42109 is due to reach stores at the end of the year aimed at ages 9+ and is expected to cost around $129/£125. We’re cautiously excited…

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Speed Champions 76899 Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo EVO & Urus ST-X | Set Preview

LEGO set names just keep getting longer. This is the new Speed Champions 76899 Lamborghini Huracán Super Trofeo EVO & Urus ST-X set, the latest in LEGO’s rather excellent line of officially licensed real-world vehicles. Joining the likes of Ferrari, Mercedes-Benz, McLaren, Jaguar, and Mini, plus VW Group brands Porsche and Audi, Lamborghini (another brand within the Volkswagen empire) are the latest manufacturer to partner with LEGO’s Speed Champions range.

The new set brings two Lamborghini cars to bedroom floors around the world, the marvellous Huracán Super Trofeo EVO and the hideous Urus ST-X. Each model is built in LEGO’s new 8-wide scale, includes a mini-figure driver, and deploys an array of stickerage to add visual realism (or cheat, depending on your point of view), with the Huracán looking rather lovely and the Urus spectacularly ugly, so correct on both counts.

The obligatory start/finish gantry that seems to be included in every Speed Champions set makes an appearance as expected, whilst another 660-odd pieces make up the two cars. 76899 will reach stores imminently, and whilst we do really hate that Urus, adding Lamborghini cars to the LEGO line-up (even if one is a Urus) is a welcome move. More please LEGO!

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LEGO 76139 1989 Batmobile | Set Preview

Great news for those of you who only work in black! LEGO have revealed their upcoming 76139 ‘1989 Batmobile’ set, at it is really very black indeed. With 3,306 pieces (at least 3,000 of which look to be black), 76139 is one of the largest Superheroes sets to date, and bridges nicely across the DC and Creator car lines.

The model is a faithful replica of the vehicle used in the 1989 Tim Burton movie, and comes with a rotating platform and three slightly superfluous mini-figures (Joker, Vicki Vale (who?!), and Batman himself), which gives away the model’s primary purpose as being a display piece rather than a toy or engineering demonstration. Nevertheless the new set does feature working steering, a sliding cockpit (using a new piece), and pop-up machine guns should Batman decide to go rogue.

The new 76139 ‘1989 Batmobile’ set is expected to cost a around £220/$250 – which is rather a lot – and will go on sale on Black Friday 2019, which seems both appropriate and quite possibly a dark joke considering the price…

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SEMA

Founded in 1963, the Specialty Equipment Market Association, or SEMA, has become a giant of the automotive landscape. The annual SEMA show in Las Vegas is now one of the largest automotive events non the planet, attended not just be tuning companies but also by mainstream auto manufacturers, who are embracing a culture that can help their brand image.

Previous bloggee Simon Przepiorka has decided to build a Lego homage to the upcoming SEMA show, taking the official 10265 Ford Mustang set as a base and reworking it to achieve the awesome looking wide-body Mustang you see here. Such an approach is perfectly in keeping with SEMA, where standard manufacturer products are modified to often wild extremes, these days occasionally by the actual company that made them in the first place.

We think Simon’s modified Mustang looks spectacular and there’s more to see at his photostream via the link above, plus you can take a look at some of the good, weird, and frankly awful vehicles from last year’s SEMA show by clicking here.

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My Other Car’s a Mustang

LEGO’s new 10265 Creator Ford Mustang set is a great addition to their officially licensed range. With useful parts, excellent detailing, and being a replica of one of the coolest cars ever made, it’s one of our favourite sets of recent times, and Nathanael Kuipers – a previous set designer for The LEGO Company – has just made it even better.

This excellent 1970’s Ford F100-inspired pick-up truck has been constructed by Nathanael only from the pieces found within the 10265 set, not that you’d know – so un-constrained does it look!

The model features opening doors, a dropping tailgate, and a detailed engine under the opening hood, and best of all if you own a 10265 Ford Mustang set you can build Nathanael’s pick-up truck too, as he’s made building instructions available!

Head to Nathanael’s photostream by clicking here to see more of his superb 10265 B-Model and find out how to build it for yourself.

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75898 Speed Champions Formula E Panasonic Jaguar Racing | Set Preview

LEGO have electrified the Speed Champions range! This is the new 76898 Formula E Panasonic Jaguar Racing GEN2 & I-Pace eTrophy set, the latest addition to the brilliant officially-licensed Speed Champions line-up (and the set with probably the longest name yet).

Bringing both Formula E and Jaguar into the Speed Champions fold is an exciting tie-up, particularly if it opens the door to other sets from Jaguar’s glorious back-catalogue.

The new 76989 set includes two cars from the Panasonic Jaguar Racing team; both the GEN2 Formula E racer and the road-car based I-Pace eTrophy support racer. Each car takes the scale up slightly from past Speed Champions sets, allowing for two mini-figures to sit side-by-side in the I-Pace, plus the set also includes a start/finish gantry and accurate decals to recreate the real Panasonic Jaguar team livery.

We think that the I-Pace – whilst a superb real car by all accounts – doesn’t translate particularly well in brick form, looking a bit like an iron, but the Formula E car certainly looks striking in the brick, especially in Jaguar’s electric blue. 76989 will reach stores in January of 2020, bringing with it two welcome partnerships to the Speed Champions range. More please LEGO!

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LEGO Technic 42100 Liebherr R 9800 Excavator | Set Preview

There’s been one hole remaining in our reveal of the H2 2019 LEGO Technic line-up. It turns out it was a very big hole indeed. This is the 42100 Liebherr R 9800 Excavator, the largest and most expensive Technic model ever released.

With over 4,100 pieces, seven electric motors, and two of LEGO’s new ‘Smart Hubs’ which allow for remote control via Bluetooth thanks to the recently released LEGO Control+ App, the 42100 set is the most advanced Technic set yet, and it has a price tag to match, costing $450/£400.

That is seriously expensive for a toy, but LEGO are hoping that the set’s enormous array of programmable functionality will make it an attractive purchase. The officially-licensed Liebherr (joining such sets as the Volvo L350F, Mack Anthem and Claas Xerion 5000) can drive, skid-steer, rotate the superstructure, extend and raise the boom, and open and tilt the bucket, all remotely via a phone.

Those functions can be programmed too, thanks to the new Control+ App, with realistic sound effects and real-time feedback available. It’s a modern interpretation of the brilliant plug-and-play 8479 Barcode Truck from twenty-two years ago, only with the up-to-date control programmability afforded by today’s intuitive touch devices.

The new LEGO Technic 42100 Liebherr R 9800 Excavator set will reach stores in October of this year, instantly becoming the flagship of the Technic range. Will the intuitive control, easy programmability and amazing multiple motorised functions offset that huge price? We’re willing to bet that if it does then a $500+ Technic set isn’t too far away…

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LEGO Technic H2 2019 | Set Previews!

Our Elves have been sneaking! Following our reveal of the H1 2019 Technic sets another batch of Elves were dispatched to The LEGO Company’s HQ to uncover the H2 additions to the Technic line-up. The survivors returned home over the summer and after much consideration we’re now able to offer our ‘expert analysis’ of LEGO’s latest sets! So, here you go, the H2 2019 LEGO Technic line-up…

– 42098 Car Transporter –

There’s a theme running through the H2 2019 Technic range and, much like your Mom, it’s size. We’ll start with the largest. Or longest at least. This is the 2,500 piece, 3ft long 42098 Car Transporter, a vehicle type that LEGO have dabbled with in the past in the Technic range, but never really tackled properly.

Three models in one, 42098 includes a truck, trailer and a muscle car, all of which are packed with mechanical functions like Technic-of-Old. The aesthetics are very much Technic-of-New though, with plenty of stickers and an increased level of visual realism.

42098 can fit five cars on board by our count, leaving room for four of your own once built. Both the truck and muscle car feature ‘Hand of God’ steering and miniature working piston engines, whilst the truck and trailer include ingenious hand-powered mechanisms to access the top decks, with gears lowering and extending a multitude of ramps to enable a full load to be driven on board.

42098 looks like a really interesting addition to the Technic range, and it’ll be nice to be able to store other sets and MOCs neatly on top of it. Expect the new set to cost c$180/£140 when it reaches stores later this year.

– 42099 4×4 X-treme Off-Roader –

Next we have a set that’s got the Elves very excited. It’s huge, it’s orange, it’s remote controlled, and it features LEGO’s penchant for poor spelling when words contain the letter ‘x’.

The 42099 X-treme Off-Roader looks… well, nuts, and it features LEGO’s new bluetooth remote control, finally catching up with third-party providers such as SBrick and BuWizz who have been offering control-via-phone for some time.

Like the 42098 Car Transporter above, 42099 is a complicated set aimed at ages 11+, but this time it swaps mechanical functionality for LEGO’s Power Functions motor system, now with the addition of the new ‘Control’ bluetooth-compatible app-based operating system.

This gives 42099 superb-looking playability, provided the set’s all-wheel-drive, remotely controlled steering, and suspension are up to the job. Judging by the images we’re hopeful, and if the number of stickers is a measure of off-road ability, the X-treme Off-Roader will be able to climb Everest.

Like all the sets previewed here 42099 will reach stores later this year. We’ll do our best to resist testing its Elf-smushing ability when we get our hands on it…

– 42097 Compact Crawler Crane –

The last H2 2019 Technic set we’re previewing today (but not the last in the range…) is this, the 920 piece 42097 Compact Crawler Crane. Featuring an all-mechanical array of functions including boom extension and raising, four spidery legs that use the huge stabiliser parts from the 42078 Mack Anthem set reviewed here earlier in the year, a winch, and a set of manual tracks, it looks like no crane we’ve ever seen but contains some excellent gear-driven functionality nonetheless.

Still towards the top of Technic’s age range, 42097 is aimed at ages 10+ and will cost around $100/£80, making the H2 2019 line-up one of considerable size and complexity, earning LEGO a few TLCB Points after a slightly lacklustre H1 range.

There’s one more set in the H2 2019 line-up left to reveal, and we’ll do just that later this summer. In the meantime you can check out our preview of the H1 2019 Technic sets here, plus you can visit our Review Library where 100 LEGO sets past and present have been reviewed so far via the link.

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