During last week’s LEGO press conference for the 2014 Annual Results, fellow reader Michael Bradford, who has provided the Collectible Minifigures Compendiums, was lucky enough to attend the event. At the same time, he also took a tour of the LEGO factory in Billund, Denmark and has given an exclusive look on how our favorite bricks were made. Usually filming on the factory floor isn’t allowed but Michael had access to and has given us a look on how LEGO creates the bricks.
As someone who has worked in a plastics factory before, it does give a nostalgic feeling of seeing all the molds and raw ABS materials. If you haven’t seen the National Geographic’s Mega Factories about LEGO, you can check that out too.
In our second LEGO Speed Champions review, we have one of the sets that I was more looking forward to, the McLaren P1 (75909). The set contains 168 pieces and retails for $14.99 which comes out to a $0.09/piece.
I usually don’t cover the boxes but for the LEGO Speed Champions sets, they do have some details I’d like to cover. On the front, you get your typical product image of the McLaren P1. Th back of the box shows more product images including the driver changing his own tire while on the track. There is also a fact box for the vehicle’s actual specs. The McLaren P1 has 903 HP and a max speed of 217 MPH/350 KM/H with a 0-60 MpH in 2.7 seconds/0-100 KM/H in 2.8 seconds. One thing that wasn’t noted about the P1 is that the starting price of the of 2014 model is about $1.15 million.
The contents of the box includes two unnumbered bags, an instruction booklet, and a small sticker sheet.
There is one minifigure in the set. The driver wears a mostly white uniform with with some racing stripes and the logo across the chest. The back side of the torso also has the McLaren logo printed. He also has a silver helmet. Finally, he has a wrench as an accessory.
The building of the McLaren P1 took about 15 minutes to complete but most of the time was just putting on all the stickers for it. When I say stickers, there were a bunch of them. There were 18 of them to be exact and if you have OCD like me, you would’ve wanted them to be fairly straight on. One thing to note is that the windshield is actually a printed piece and I’m glad it is because those are the worst to put on, at least for me.
The main color of the car is Flame Yellowish Orange which is the same color used predominatly in the LEGO Legends of Chima Lion tribe sets. There are a variety of older parts that now are in this color. There is also some black pieces here and there to give it some contrast. Here’s a quick look at the car without its stickers.
The overall design of the McLaren is pretty accurate to the real thing with the sleek curves on every side of the car. One downside is that if you look from the top angle, it’s not actually the full car. The width of it is only six studs wide with room for only one seat. The car would’ve have looked a little more accurate if it was two studs wider and had the passenger seat. LEGO didn’t have to include a second minifigure but at least it would have looked nicer. Another downside is that it doesn’t really roll very well as the wheels are fairly tight.
What’s nice about the set is that you can change out the alloy wheels with a 5 spoke and a 12 spoke variety. Personally, I do like the look of the 12 spoke rims more although the 5 spoke ones aren’t too shabby either. You can even leave it plain and it’ll still look good.
There is also a red and white race curb and three cones to finish out the set.
Overall, I do like the McLaren P1 (75909) set a lot even with the slimmer size. A couple of nice details of the set includes interchangeable wheel style and the adjustable rear wing. There are a lot of stickers but I feel that it gives the car some details that the plain look doesn’t provide such as the the two bonnet vents on the hood.
Motor junkies will most likely want to pick up this set and it definitely makes a great display piece. The set is now available in stores and on Shop@Home along with the other supercars in the LEGO Speed Champions line. I’ll be continuing reviewing the other sets in the upcoming days and hopefully I’ll be done by next week so stay tuned.
We have some new LEGO Star Wars 2015 news/rumors for you guys today. Sir von Lego over on Eurobricks has in hand a German retailer catalog and there’s a new set that we haven’t mentioned before, a Sith Infiltrator (75096). This new version of the ship could be a store exclusive and that’s why it wasn’t mentioned before. It was also stated that the minifigures that will be included in the set are Darth Maul, Watto, Young Anakin, Astromech, and Qui-Gon Jinn. There’s been a couple version released already with the latest one being 7961 in 2011 but it seems that we’ll be getting another Sith Infiltrator this year.
Sir von LEGO has also given a more accurate detail of the characters for the LEGO Star Wars Constraction Ultrabuild sets coming later this year. These characters are Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Boba Fett, General Grievous, and a Stormtrooper. It was earlier mentioned that Jango Fett and Commander Cody would be two of the characters but it seems that that isn’t the case now.
In our final LEGO Marvel Super Heroes Avengers: Age of Ultron set review, we have The Avengers Quinjet Chase (76032). The set has 772 pieces and retails $79.99 which is around a $0.10/piece. The box consists of six numbered bags, two instruction booklets, a sticker sheet, and a comic.
There are a total of five minifigures in the set: Iron Man MK 43, Captain America, Vision, Black Widow, and Ultimate Ultron.
We’ve seen Iron Man MK 43 already in The Hulk Buster Smash (76031) and the Attack on Avengers Tower (76038). Like with the other ones, Iron Man is mostly red and gold but the main difference is the helmet where it has some black outlines to give it a more prominent look. The Tony Stark head is the same as before. Iron man MK 43’s accessories are the trans-blue studs and round bricks.
The next minifigure in the set is Captain America. He’s the exact same one as in The Hydra Fortress Smash (76041). He has an updated uniform that’s more movie accurate. The main colors are pretty much red, white, and blue with some brown printing for his shield harness. His head piece shows Cap wearing his cowl which also has some chin strap printing. His accessory is his Vibranium shield.
Up next is Vision which is a new character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. In the comics, Vision was created by Ultron but in the MCU, he is an android that is programmed by Tony Stark and Bruce Banner. For AOU, he is still a mystery as of this writing because there’s not much revealed about him yet. What we do know about him is that he is an exclusive minifigure to this set. His torso and legs are a muted green color with some very nice printing on the front and back of the torso. The hands and head is a purple color with the head having lots of detailed printing. You can see some of the robotic marks on both sides of the head. The yellow cape is the new kind that’s been showing up in the recent sets.
Black Widow returns as a minifigure this year with a more updated look as well. However she is not exclusive to this set as she also appears in The SHIELD Helicarrier (76042). The torso and legs are mostly black with some subtle blue on the outline of the body. She does have a double-sided head with a smirk on one side and an angry expression on the other. Her hair is a new piece with some curl molding on the bottom part of the hair. Black Widow’s accessory is the ADU gun.
Finally we have Ultimate Ultron. In the comics, this version of it is made of Adamantium to upgrade its body but in the movie, it’ll probably be made of Vibranium just like Captain America’s shield. Unlike the previous minifigures of Ultron, the Ultimate version has a new grey armor that gives it a more complete look. The printing on both sides of the torso and legs have sort of a silver metallic look to it. The head piece is actually the same one as the Iron Legion minifigures with the trans-orange piece with printed details. The helmet and neck brace piece completes the look of Ultimate Ultron. The accessories included are trans-orange studs and round bricks. This version of Ultron is exclusive to this set.
The first part of the build is not really a build but the motorcycle that drops down from the Quinjet that Captain America rides. The black frame of the bike has the new 2015 sleek molding style. There are some stickers with the Avengers logo for both sides as well as a clip for Cap’s shield on the back.
The next part is the lab truck. The truck is your typical looking vehicle with not much to it on the outside. There are a couple of stickers that says Cho Research as well as the Korean characters 조연구실 for Cho Research Lab. There are also some stickers on the front and back for the license plates. Inside the lab truck, there is a container that holds Vision. This may give a clue that the Cho Research Lab may have a hand in creating Vision. One of the play features is on the back of the truck where there’s a lever you push down to make the truck explode freeing Vision’s container. The other play feature is by lifting up the back roof area and putting Ultron on it. There you would use the Super Jumper to launch Iron Man at him to knock him down.
The main part of the build is the Quinjet itself. It has an updated color scheme with it now being white and blue. It’s quite large and is a great size for the aircraft.
The front cockpit area can open up to put Black Widow in the pilot’s seat. One thing to note is that the windshield is a sticker so that’s a bummer. I thing I don’t really like is that the controls are pretty high up. When the minifig is sitting, she has to extend her arms way high to reach the controls. Having her stand up in the seat is probably the way to go.
In the middle section of the Quinjet, we get some more small stickers throughout the area as well as on the edge areas. The wings can fold up or down depending if it’s in flight mode or landing mode. In the center, there are a couple of stud shooters on top. One thing that’s annoying about these stud shooters is that they will possibly be shot on accident when you’re maneuvering the Quinjet. On the right middle area, there is a button with the Avengers logo you can press for a neat play feature. Underneath the Quinjet is a string piece attached on the bottom. The feature here is to attach a minifigure to it and then to the white inverted brick and press the button. This gives an illusion of air dropping whatever minifigure you have attached. The other side of the wing has a couple of stud shooters that you can rotate out.
In the back area of the aircraft, you get some engines which are pretty hidden inside the wings so there’s a more sleeker look. On the top wing flaps, you can see some stickers with the Stark Industries logo. The back cargo area can fold down to see the small interior.
The main play feature of the set is actually in the middle area of the Quinjet. There’s a piece you can flip up which reveals the interior. Inside is a space to fit in Captain America’s motorcycle with the minifigure riding it. After that, there’s an area that you can press to release the latch and drops the motorcycle down.
Overall, I really do like the all-around design of the Avengers Quinjet. It is definitely an upgrade over the 2012 version although there isn’t much of an interior on both versions. However the lack of a larger interior is replaced with a very neat play feature with the motorcycle drop ship. In addition to the Quinset, we also get the lab truck that also has a cool exploding feature. On top of that, we have some great minifigures with a couple of exclusive ones with Vision and Ultimate Ultron. To me, The Avengers Quinjet Chase (76032) does feel like a $80 set and it’s well worth the price.
A lot of new products were officially released yesterday but one of the cooler things that was released wasn’t really advertised that much were the new LEGO Upscaled Mugs. You’ve probably seen the mugs in various LEGO sets but now you can own one for yourself that you can use. The Upscaled Mugs are 10 times larger than the ones you find in the sets and they are also stackable for easier storage. Currently, the mugs only come in Blue (853465) and Trans-Purple (853439) and both retails for $12.99 each. I believe the LEGO Stores also has the red ones in stock. You can get them now at LEGO Stores and on Shop@Home and they make great gift ideas for any LEGO fan.
The month of March just started but the April 2015 LEGO Store Calendar of promotions and events are also available so let’s do a rundown of everything going on next month. I’ll have clearer images of the calendar once LEGO updates their site.
From April 1-30, you can get a FREE LEGO Ninjago Kai Drifter (30293) polybag with purchases of $50 or more or while supplies last.
For LEGO VIP members only during the whole month, you can earn double VIP points for purchasing LEGO BIONICLE Onua – Master of Earth (70789) and Lord of Skull Spiders (70790).
On April 7, the LEGO Monthly Mini Model Build will be UFO.
From April 13-17, you can get your LEGO Passport stamped when you ask about LEGO BIONICLE.
From April 15-30, LEGO VIP members get early access to a new exlusive set. Our source has told us that it will be the LEGO The Simpsons Kwik-E-Mart (71016). The official reveal of the set will be sometime later this month. The general release date for the set is May 1.
On April 20-22, there is a LEGO BIONICLE Tournament at 5pm. You can earn a BIONICLE poster for participating.
From April 27-31, there is a LEGO Super Heroes Super Jumper play at the LEGO Store.
We now have the official release date for the Target exclusive The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies Blu-Ray/DVD/Digital HD combo pack. Four weeks from now on Tuesday, March 24 you can get your hands on the final movie in The Hobbit trilogy which also includes the Bard the Bowman minifigure as well as the exclusive Bain minifigure as well. The price on the combo pack is $25.99 and you can pro-order online which qualifies for free shipping.