It’s been thirteen years since Christopher Nolan’s ‘The Dark Knight’ re-set the bar for Batman movies. It’s also been thirteen years since the best Batmobile of all time crashed onto screens, and seven since LEGO’s own 76023 Tumbler set first crashed across bedroom floors.
Time therefore for an update, which LEGO have revealed today in the form of the new 76240 Batmobile Tumbler.
76240 looks fairly similar to the first set to recreate the Tumbler, because… well, it is, but the new version includes 200 more pieces for a total parts count of over 2,000. It also features the awesome tyres first released with the 42054 Technic Claas Xerion 5000 – although we’re not actually sure they’re that accurate for the Tumbler – along with LEGO’s new all-black marketing for their adult sets, which is rather appropriate for ‘The Dark Knight’.
The ’18+’ bit is probably just marketing guff though, allowing adults to feel more comfortable purchasing a toy / justifying it to a perplexed partner. “Honestly Barbara, this isn’t for kids. It’s a sophisticated interlocking building system!” “OK, just buy the damn thing. (Sigh….)”.
Nevertheless – and unlike the Batman films that followed ‘The Dark Knight’ trilogy – 76240 looks a good update to bring the Tumbler back to Batman fans in LEGO form, and the new set will be available to buy for around $230/£170 when it reaches stores later this year.
The charming 10271 Creator Expert Fiat 500 set became a firm favourite when it joined LEGO’s ever growing line-up of officially licensed vehicles last year. Although we still don’t know why it comes with an easel.
Whilst the primrose yellow hue of the original set suites the Fiat 500 perfectly, the humble Italian city car was also available in a range of other pastel colours in the 1960s, and LEGO have decided to release a new version of the 10271 set in this lovely light blue.
Becoming 77942, the new Fiat 500 set is identical to the yellow version, only in, er… blue (with even the pointless easel updated accordingly).
On sale in the UK now, 77942 will hopefully roll out elsewhere (otherwise expect some ludicrous pricing on eBay), and could perhaps signal a wider multi-colour strategy from LEGO for successful sets?
The ‘Fast & Furious’ movies are – for the most part – total garbage. With characters coming back from the dead (twice), long lost family members loosely enabling plot continuation (twice), and bad guys turning good just to keep them in the franchise (three times by our count), the plots could have been written by TLCB Elves.
But, like the internet’s most popular video category, no one is watching a Fast & Furious movie for the plot. They’re watching for the cars. And maybe Vin Diesel’s giant shiny head. In doing so making ‘Fast & Furious’ the most profitable movie franchise ever.
Thus LEGO have joined the ‘Fast & Furious’ party, and have brought one of the franchise’s star cars to life in Technic form. This is the Technic 42111 Dom’s Dodge Charger set, supplied to us here at TLCB by online shop Zavvi, and it’s time for a review…
First a shout out to our suppliers Zavvi, whose delivery was prompt, communication good, and the 42111 box was massively well protected inside, well… a bigger box. If you’re the kind of person who likes to keep the boxes for your sets (ours just go in the recycling), that’s a bonus.
LEGO have realised this too, removing the sticky circles that hold the ends shut (but that rip the artwork when opened), and fitting a cereal-box style closable tab so it can stay closed.
Inside 42111’s box are five numbered bags, bagged instructions and stickers (which helps to keep them protected too), and 1,077 parts. Many of these are weird and new, at least to this reviewer (if not the set), and continue LEGO’s approach of using every colour ever. However, like numerous ‘Fast & Furious’ characters, we’re going to do a complete 180 and say that it, well… works.
Building 42111 is fun and straight-forward, with the multitude of colours making it easy to find the parts required. The colours are thoughtfully chosen too, enabling quick identification and actually changing in some cases as the build progresses depending upon which similar pieces they shared a bag with. They’re all fairly well hidden by the end too, so there’s no ‘rainbow’ misery here.
The build can also be commended for creating a fully working rolling chassis by the mid-point, which makes it much more interesting than only adding the wheels at the end.
As has been the case for a while now though, the instructions can be very simple, at times adding just one piece per step. That said, there are a lot of orientation changes, which you have to watch out for so you don’t install something upside down. Not that this Reviewer did that. He’s a professional.
After a few hours of happy parts selection and spot-the-difference, you’ll have a nicely sized Technic recreation of the early ’70s Dodge Charger – modified ‘Fast & Furious’ style with a giant supercharger and NO2 tanks – complete with a working V8 engine, steering, all-wheel suspension, opening doors, hood and trunk, and a bizarre party trick. Continue reading →
The Lego Car Blog laziness, er… we mean ‘generosity’ continues today, as we’ve passed another impressive looking Game of Bricks lighting kit on to a reader for their thoughts. Greg Kinkaid (aka black_hand_bricks on Instagram) was one of the lucky readers first to respond to our Facebook call, and bagged himself a Game of Bricks kit to light up the huge LEGO 76139 1989 Batmobile set. Read on to find out Greg’s thoughts!
“Where does he get those wonderful toys?” people might ask of me. Well the Batmobile comes from LEGO, but the light emitting from within it – that’s all Game of Bricks. I was offered the opportunity to write a review here at The Lego Car Blog, making this both my first review and my first light kit; the Game of Bricks 76139 1989 Batmobile.
My Game of Bricks light kit arrived in a plain padded envelope, which held a nice sturdy box filled with individually numbered bags. At first I was unsure of how to even begin putting it together, but a link to the online instructions was in my order confirmation e-mail, leading to thorough and well photographed build steps.
Onto the kit, and a tedious process starts at the back of the Batmobile set running wires from the rocket booster, tail lights, as well as the fin lights, and moves forward from there. Much of the set must be disassembled during the installation, with wheels, headlights, side panels, the back panel as well as the intakes all removed, but the result is wires that are very hard to see when the installation is finished. That said, several of the kit’s lights are fitted with 3M tape, so I don’t get the feeling the lighting kit will be reusable if the set is ever disassembled again.
The wiring on the lights seems thin but is stronger than it looks, with some wires twisted together and others a single strand, depending on the number of LEDs attached. All the boards and the battery pack fit nicely within the back end of the set between the rear wheels, and these had command strips so they’re not just floating around.
Now for the bad bits; The lights in the headlight area and the turrets were tricky to run in-between gaps within the front wheel-wells and through to the bottom of the vehicle. Once they were run to the back of the set I discovered the wires were the exact length of the model. That made it even more difficult, because – whilst the instructional photos showed a bit of slack to pull the board out and easily plug in the lights – instead I had to fat finger the plugs in the lower part next to the axle and hope the lights didn’t pull out of the other end.
The 3M strips I mentioned before didn’t seem to hold up after the recent heat wave and I had to go back in and push them back down. Afterwards the underside looked messy so I used the wire ties that were in the packaging to clean it up, and perhaps this kit would be better to use these in the official installation instructions.
Overall though, even after the frustrating installation, I would recommend the Game of Bricks lighting kit for those looking to make their LEGO 76139 1989 Batmobile set even more impressive ; visually the end result is amazing. And in hindsight I should probably have opted for the remote version too, so I wouldn’t have to mess about with the backend to turn it on!
The crack team of Elven ‘volunteers’ fired over The LEGO Company’s HQ permitter wall tasked with uncovering this summer’s new sets had – we thought – all returned/been eaten by guard dogs, but no! Today one last bedraggled Elf returned home to TLCB Towers with a final new-for-2021 LEGO set, at it’s a great one…
This is the brand new Creator Expert 10279 Volkswagen T2 Camper Van, LEGO’s officially licensed successor to the wonderful 10220 Volkswagen T1 Camper Van that has been on sale for almost a decade (making it one of the longest serving LEGO sets ever).
Improving on the 10220 set is no mean feat – it achieved a full 10/10 review here at TLCB – and LEGO have certainly gone all-out, nearly doubling the parts count to a whopping 2,207 pieces.
Many of these are tiles too, as a new building technique deploys outward facing ‘SNOT’ to construct the bodywork in place of the original set’s traditional stacked bricks.
A fully detailed interior complete with a canvas pop-top, opening cabinets, a fridge, a stove (with all important tea pot), and a sink is included, whilst a brick-built surfboard (first seen on the 10252 Volkswagen Beetle set) along with two folding deck chairs ensure the T2 is suitably beachy.
Working steering, a sliding door, a brand new windscreen piece, and an opening engine cover add to the realism, whilst period-correct (and hippy default) ‘Peace’ and ‘Love’ decals ensure the model reflects the late ’60s – early ’70s era that still defines the T2 today.
Expect the new LEGO Creator Expert 10279 Volkswagen T2 Camper Van to cost around $180/£150 when it hits stores later this year, and LEGO’s successful Volkswagen Camper story to continue for some time yet. A T3 set in 10 years’ time? We wouldn’t bet against it!
Things are about to get very big. And very expensive.
This is the brand new LEGO Technic 42129 Mercedes-Benz Zetros Trial Truck, it measures a hefty half a metre long, and it’s due to carry an equally huge price-tag when it goes on sale later this year ($300/£275).
However that enormous sum of money unlocks the most powerful motorised truck that LEGO have ever built, with three Large motors, one Medium motor, and bluetooth control via the LEGO Control+ App.
Those motors power all four wheels, the steering, and – for the first time ever – remotely locking differentials. All-wheel-suspension, a working gearbox, and a ‘detailed engine’ (which might just be a spinning fan) also feature, which compared to yesterday’s reveal isn’t all that much, but then, 42129 looks mega off-road.
LEGO have made some properly bold claims about climbing angles in their press release, and included in the set are some marker flags so that owners can test these via setting their own off-road courses at home.
A smorgasbord of amusingly generic racing stickers are included too (‘Oil’, ‘Intake’, ‘Rack’, and – our personal favourite – ‘Axle Beam’), although these actually look OK, and 42129 is blessed with the same enhanced level of detail as other recent Technic sets.
Aimed at ages 12+, the 2,110 piece LEGO Technic 42129 Mercedes-Benz Zetros Trial Truck looks like an excellent (if monumentally expensive) addition to the Technic line-up, and perhaps the most fun way to use the Control+ App yet…
The Lego Car Blog Elves have been busy! Fired over the LEGO Company HQ’s perimeter wall by way of the office catapult, it’s been just a day since we revealed the brand new LEGO Technic LEGO Technic 42126 Ford F-150 Raptorset. Hot the heels of that Elf comes another, and it’s brought back quite a model; this is the brand new for 2021 LEGO Technic 42128 Heavy-Duty Tow Truck.
With over 2,000 pieces 42128 pays homage to various American heavy-duty trucks, sits at the top of the new-for-2021 Technic line-up*, and – most excitingly – it features pneumatics!
More interestingly, unlike some other recent pneumatic sets, 42128 is unmotorised, with its pair of pneumatic cylinders fed compressed air via a hand pump like the good ol’ days. These lift and extend the crane boom, whilst the pair of winches, crane rotation, rear lift, and stabiliser legs are all mechanically operated by hand. Which is awesome.
Not only that, there’s a miniature working inline-6 engine upfront, working steering, and a functioning lift on the first of the truck’s three axles.
It all looks wonderfully mechanical, and that’s despite 42128 continuing LEGO’s trend of adding ever more visual realism to Technic sets, which are now at almost Model Team levels of detail. The 42128 Heavy-Duty Tow Truck certainly contains heaps of exterior detailing, including fuel tanks, exhaust stacks, air filters, and a brick-built grille.
Less positive are the stickers though, which are surely some of the worst that LEGO has ever stuck on a Technic model. Still, you can always leave those off.
The new Technic 42128 Heavy-Duty Tow Truck set will reach stores in August of 2021 aimed at ages 11+, and is expected to cost around $150/£140 when it does so. Excited? We sure are. Although we’ll probably leave those decals unstuck.
*Or is it?… Tune in tomorrow for something even larger.
It’s review time here at The Lego Car Blog, as we add another LEGO set to the by now pretty huge Review Library! This set review comes from one of our readers, who dons the Reviewing Anorak (which may or may not be a real thing) and takes on the enormous remote controlled LEGO Technic 42114 6×6 Volvo Articulated Hauler. Wojtek Hildebrandt is the reader in question, and so good is his review that TLCB Team are frankly a little worried for their jobs. That’s not true of course, as they don’t get paid… Anyway, over to Wojtek!
LEGO has a long-standing tradition of recreating dominantly yellow construction equipment in Technic sets. This is rather a grateful theme for construction blocks after all – simple shapes and function over form. Recently these have mostly been Volvo licensed vehicles; wheel loaders, excavators, and haulers with different degrees of motorisation – from full (as in 42030 loader) via optional (to power 42053 excavator pneumatics) to none (for endless knob spinning fun with 42081 concept loader). The time has come for a fully remote-controlled articulated hauler – a Volvo A60H with the Control+ app.
Beauty is in the eye of the behauler.
First, let’s have a look from the outside. This is a looker, at least for a construction machine. We can see it already on the box cover, where the hauler is put in some blurred quarry environment. It fits well, but then the same image is sometimes used without the background, which makes the chassis twist look weird, like doing some unlikely stunt.
Speaking of weird: LEGO’s previous attempt to minify a Volvo hauler – the B model for 42030 – had it all wrong (even with the number of wheels), but if you’re generous enough, you can say it was a tribute to vintage, skeletal Technic sets. If so, then 42114 is more from a bloodline of Model Team or recent adult Creator sets, even if it uses mostly Technic parts. Of course, the pins and holes are there and some proportions and colors are off, but both overall shape and some neat details are very true.
Let’s start from the business end; the dump body – we’ll call it the body from now on – has a complex shape with clever usage of tapered panels (which are flat on both sides, unlike straight panels) and very few empty spaces. I guess you couldn’t haul sand in it, but it should be perfect for some beans or potatoes. Or lemons to match the colour. The driver’s cab is correctly centred and surrounded by a proper, orange safety railing as well as accurate big mirrors. There is a slightly surprising mudguard serving as a dashboard, my favorite seat made of a single curved panel 3x5x3 (which seems to fit the same purpose regardless of model scale), and a warning beacon on the roof that twists slightly to turn the Control+ hub on or off.
Further to the front, we have one of the best-looking parts – a nicely sculpted bonnet. The impression is improved by a few stickers, but even without them all the angles and curves feel just right, even if they’re not entirely true to the original, e.g. with headlights. One curved panel covers the limits of the other and everything works together nicely. It’s wobbly during construction but becomes solid enough eventually. The front bumper on the other hand is no match for a durable look of the original, but to me, it doesn’t harm the overall impression too much.
Now we get to the hardware. Both real-life and miniature versions of the Volvo hauler are powered by six cylinders. In full scale, they are six, famously green inline cylinders of an internal combustion engine. For the set, they are 6 AA/R6 batteries. Which one is “greener” energy depends probably on whether your batteries are rechargeable and if so – how you recharge them. Continue reading →
The Elves have been busy! A crack team of ‘volunteers’, sent into the bowels of The LEGO Company’s HQ, have returned, some of them without any German Shepherd teeth marks at all! The fruits of their mission are six new Speed Champions sets for 2021, and – more excitingly – two brand new manufacturer partnerships.
76900 Koenigsegg Jesko
The first of the two new manufacturer partnerships is the hardest to spell. Swedish hypercar maker Koenigsegg have been a bedroom wall staple for years, and 76900 will bring Koenigsegg’s 1,300bhp (and rumoured 300+mph top speed) Jesko to bedroom floors too when it arrives alter this year. The Speed Champions version includes 280 pieces and – to our eyes – really looks the part. Expect it to cost around $20/£15 when it hits stores, and for bedroom floors to be a much faster place.
76901 Toyota GR Supra
The second new partnership is the one we’re most excited about, although perhaps not the first model to come from it. 76901 marks the first officially licensed Toyota set, and brings their spectacularly styled fifth generation Supra into the Speed Champions line-up. It’s a shame then that the resulting model looks so awkward, in particular the dodgy-looking stickered headlights. Still, LEGO know what sells, and we suspect that 76901 will be mighty popular. Plus, if it opens the door to a Technic or Creator Toyota Land Cruiser, Le Mans racer, or Yaris WRC car, we’re all for it. Aimed at ages 7+, expect 299 parts and the usual $20/£15 price-tag.
76902 McLaren Elva
The third new set in the 2021 Speed Champions line-up recreates yet another McLaren in brick form. The near $2million Elva is one of far too many real-world McLaren special editions, giving LEGO a vast range of McLaren cars to turn into sets. It’s not one of our favourites this one, although the wing-mirror looks cool. Less stickers (good), less parts (bad), and likely the same price-tag as the sets above.
76903 Chevrolet C8.R & ’68 Chevrolet Corvette
This is more like it! The first double-car set of the 2021 Speed Champions range, 76903 brings the Chevrolet Corvette C8.R racing car and ’68 Corvette C3 to the line-up, and they both look fantastic. The modern C8.R shows how stickers should be applied (i.e. to create a livery, not as a substitute for the brick-built basics), whilst the classic C3 might be one of the nicest Speed Champions road cars ever. 76903 includes 512 parts, two mini-figures, and is expected to cost around $40/£35 when it arrives later this year.
76904 Mopar Dodge Top Fuel Dragster & ’70 Dodge Challenger
The American road and racing car combo continues with 76904; Dodge’s iconic ’70 Challenger (in their excellent ’70s purple!) alongside an enormous Mopar Top Fuel dragster. Unlike the larger sets from previous years no gantry or starting lights are included (which is fine by us as they always look a bit rubbish), but the size of the dragster alone increases the piece count to 627. Two mini-figures and a lot of stickers for the dragster are included, and we expect 76904 to cost around $60/£55.
76905 Ford GT Heritage Edition & Bronco R
The final new set in the 2021 H2 Speed Champions range continues LEGO’s successful partnership with Ford, recreating the Ford GT in Heritage Edition spec and the brand new Ford Bronco. The GT features as many stickers as the rest, although they do work well here, whilst the Bronco R is covered in even more. They kind of suit the Bronco though, which also includes a very cool looking blue roll cage, sump guard, and spare tyre cage too. Like the other double vehicle sets, 76905 is aimed at ages 8+, and actually includes the most parts at 660 (although many are small pieces). Expect 76905 to cost around $55/£50, and for that Bronco to be used to jump over all manner of household objects after it goes on sale later in the year.
This is not the best Lego Porsche 911 model ever made. In fact, it’s not even the best Porsche 911 model made by this builder. However, what it is, is the best Porsche 911 model built from another Porsche 911 model. By miles.
LEGO’s ace official 10295 Porsche 911 set is a wonderful addition to the line-up, particularly as it features a classic version of Porsche’s iconic sports car. However what if you like your 911s a little newer?
TLCB Master MOCer Firas Abu-Jaber has the answer, constructing this 2021 Porsche 911 Turbo S only from the parts found within the official LEGO 10295 classic 911 set.
Now the usual 911 joke here would be ‘well, all 911s look the same anyway’, but the proportions of the modern iteration (and any new car) are actually drastically different to those from 40 yers ago.
Firas’s B-Model somehow manages to convey these superbly, even if the outcome is a little squashed, and best of all he’s made building instructions available via his excellent Bricks Garage website so that you can swap your classic 911 for the latest model too.
It’s every LEGO fan’s dream job, and for one lucky applicant it could become a reality in 2021! Yup, The LEGO Company are looking for a new Model Designer to join their Technic team, where – in Billund Denmark – brand new LEGO Technic sets are brought to life!
Applicants will need mechanical, product, or toy design knowledge, either through formal education or via outside experience, good English language skills, creative software ability, and – of course – “A good understanding of the LEGO® Technic™ building system”.
The crack team of TLCB Elves dispatched over The LEGO Company’s perimeter wall at the end of 2020 had – we thought – all returned. By ‘all’ we actually mean ‘the survivors’, as each year we always lose a couple to German Shepherds with a taste for Elf meat. A simple ‘ceremony’ is held for those that didn’t make it, by which we mean they’re crossed off a list, and then we all get on with our lives.
Today though, we’ve got to get the TipEx out and add two names back onto the list, because a pair of Elves have miraculously returned, weeks after they were thought lost/eaten!
We’re not sure what took them so long, and we probably never will as we don’t understand the jibber-jabber of Elvish, but we’re pleased they’ve made it back, because it means we can share two more new-for-2021 Technic sets!
The first is this rather fetching orange contraption, the 42120 Rescue Hovercraft, or ‘Luftkissenboot fuer Rettungseinsaetze’ in German (it’s a beautiful language).
Aimed at ages 8+, 42120 includes 457 pieces – many of which are orange which is excellent – and features thrust propellors that rotate as the model is pushed along, and working steering that both turns the hidden wheels underneath and swivels the aforementioned fans.
Decals are included a-plenty and there’s a reasonable looking B-Model too. Expect 42120 to cost around $35/£30 when it reaches stores in March of 2021.
The second cause of today’s Elf-list-amendment is another new 8+ set, the excellent looking 42121 Heavy Duty Excavator. A purely mechanical set, 42121 includes around 100 pieces more than 42120, two of which are small linear actuators that operate the excavating movement.
A pair of hand-powered cogs drive these to extend the boom and tip the bucket, and it’s great to see mechanical functions are still (sometimes) alive and well in the Technic range – although there is a risk of these being rather annoying in practice, based on our past experience.
Superstructure rotation and rolling tracks are present too, and 42121 also includes a few extra details like warning cones and some ‘rubble’ for added playability. A slightly odd B-Model completes the set and you can expect it to cost around $45/£40 when it reaches stores later this year.
We think these two additions to the 2021 Technic line-up are rather good ones, joining a range that looked pretty strong already.
You can take a look at the other 2021 Technic sets revealed here via the Search box (just type ‘Preview’ in it), and you can check out our reviews of past years’ sets via the Review Library.
Take a look whilst we try to convince our Administrator that adding the Elves back onto the list is probably less work than Option B.
Yes yes yes! LEGO’s partnership with real-world vehicle manufacturers is probably the best thing the company has done since inventing the brick itself, and in no set is this more evident than the brand new 10295 Creator Expert Porsche 911.
Containing a whopping 1,458 pieces and aimed at ages 18+, the 10295 Porsche 911 sets a new high for the Creator Expert series.
Two iconic ’80s versions of the Porsche 911 can be built from 10295; the pretty Targa, or the yuppie-killing Turbo. Each measures over 35cm in length and features working steering, opening doors, engine cover (under which the Turbo features a replica turbocharged flat-6 engine) and front trunk (under which the Targa’s removable roof can be stowed).
An excellent (and very brown) interior contrasts beautifully with the white bodywork, and makes this – in our opinion – probably the finest Creator Expert set yet.
The new Creator Expert 10295 Porsche 911 set will reach stores in March of this year with a recommended retail price of $150/£120, which is rather a lot for a toy, but not a lot at all for a classic Porsche 911. Plus there’s also the 75895 Speed Champions version so you can get your brick-built classic 911 fix for pocket money.
That leaves the two entry points to the 2021 Technic range, 42116 Skid Steer Loader and 42117 Race Plane, each consisting of around 150 pieces, aimed at ages 7+, and costing under $10.
Both look pretty reasonable too, each managing to be realistic and functional, with the Loader including two gear-driven functions (arm elevation and bucket tilt), and the Race Plane’s propeller being driven by the landing gear.
No, that’s not much, but at the age and price point they’re worthy additions to the Technic range, effectively teaching gearing and levers to younger builders. Good job LEGO, and there are still two more sets to come later in Q1…
LEGO’s officially licensed vehicles continue with two more new-for-2021 sets! 42118 and 42119 join the Technic range as the pull-backs for 2021, and like the 42109 ‘Top Gear’ rally car, each is licensed to not a car brand, but to an entertainment company.
‘Monster Jam’ is a North American stadium institution, in which monster trucks freestyle around an arena filled with squashed cars, dirt ramps, and a whooping beer spilling crowd. Which sounds great. Because it is.
Two of the main protagonists are ‘Grave Digger’ and ‘Max-D’, which LEGO have chosen to recreate for their 7+ Technic sets.
It’s normally at this point when we’d deride the new pull-back sets for being total garbage, but this year we can’t. Because they’re awesome.
Each set contains around 250 pieces (although there’s no ramp this time – which surely these were made for – but you can build one of those at home), including excellent wheels and tyres, and a giant Jolly Roger/Angry Chief flag.
Expect 42188 and 42119 to cost under $20 when they reach stores next year, and for Monster Jam arenas built from books, cushions, toy cars, and other household objects to appear in homes everywhere. Good stuff.