Welcome race fans! For the next four weeks I'll be reviewing the Speed Champions cars. These got my heart racing the moment I saw them. Larger than City scale, somewhat minifig scale (though only one passenger) with incredible detailing. The most exciting thing is the licensing deal that TLG acquired to produce cars from not just Ferrari but McLaren and Porsche. Porsche was a classically difficult brand to license but it IS under Volkswagen AG. Who knows, maybe we'll get a Bugatti Veyron or a Lambo next?
I challenged the kids to a new way to build. I dumped all of the pieces of ALL four sets in a big pile together. We all chose cars (or at least mine was chosen for me) and we commenced. It was delightful to watch the frustration and hear "This piece isn't here!" But we got them all built with only one error and had fun.
When I dumped out all the pieces, several of them caught my eye. These are some of the newer molds and a few are made in several colors. It's kind of disappointing that every single car uses 4 of the new bulky POOP fenders. And the Technic wheel holder POOP is a shame. But the new 2x6 rounded plate is neat and will have it's uses.
Also cool are the new spoked wheel covers. The nice thing about these is that they allow for a smaller mold to customize your car. One wheel to rule them all with a central stud allows for any of the little bits to snap on. Each car comes with two styles meaning 8 covers in all. Of course these are going to have way more uses than just wheel covers. With a central anti-stud and a diameter of ~14.8mm, they are just smaller than a 2x2 space and can click in place. My first thought was roof fans for a 4-wide train. But I bet all sorts of other greeblers have their heyday.
And then there's the windshields. Really there's only two windshields. But the larger one is used in three different ways; two with print and one plain. These are 4x6x2 with a nice curved slope and a front base that matches a 4L diameter round piece. Spacers and racers ought to enjoy these. It's a nice touch to include them plain to increase their variety of uses. The bright light orange striped one ought to still be useful but the Ferrari one is pretty limited.
Amongst all four sets are a variety of extra parts. They're all the extras you'd expect but it looks cool to see them all laid out and combined from all four sets. In reality you get multiple extras of the red pieces, the dark red tiles and the grey bits.
As you may notice there's both yellow and bright light orange. The colors are similar enough that I was afraid there was going to be some confusion and cross uses. It only happened once and we caught it early on.
The base construction of all cars are very similar. They start with a city vehicle base which is then extended 3-4 studs in each direction. All the cars are built to 6-wide and use brackets on the sides to create a SNOT effect. Two of the cars use a very similar technique and are almost indiscernible from the bottom. I would have liked to have seen a touch more variety but I guess if a technique works, use it! As seems to be typical with most builds, the "hidden" bits are built without any sympathies to the color of the overall build. This was only mildly disappointing but a little shocking on one build.
Each car also comes with a driver and a little mini-build that I assume enhances the play experience.
Next week, why does every other Speed Champions car start with 759xx but La Ferrari is 75899?
A simple week and a little late this week. A 2x8 DUPLO brick. Always nice to have longer pieces. Plus a space marine helmet from the CMF line. I love the grip on the front of the face mask so the fig can hold his helmet. Classy.