The release of 10252 Volkswagen Beetle marks the third year in a row that the LEGO® Group have released a large-scale vehicle under the Creator Expert banner (following 10248 Ferrari F40 last year and 10242 Mini Cooper in 2014) plus of course there have been others in 2011 and 2008, both Volkswagen vehicles. Let's hope this annual tradition continues, as these are absolutely wonderful sets for many reasons - I'll hand over to Elspeth De Montes (azurebrick) to describe why, once she's out of the bath.
First I want to talk a little about the colour Dark Azure (I will use the BrickLink name as I always feel that the LEGO Group missed the ‘e’ off by accident). First produced in 2011, LEGO Colour ID 321 is not a common colour by LEGO standards, having quite a restricted collection of parts prior to the release of this set. In fact, there were only 113 parts in total; a figure which includes a host of variations of minifigure legs and torso designs. Containing 35 different elements in Dark Azure (swoon!), 10252 Volkswagen Beetle can be thought of by its alternative name, ‘Dark Azure Parts Bundle’.
New Dark Azure
- 1/4 Arch Brick 5x5 with Cut Out (6152112 | 24599)
- Brick with Bow 2x4 (6031839 | 93606)
- Brick with Bow 1x4 (6151667 | 11153)
- End Ridged Tile 1X2/45° (6151689 | 15571)
- Roof Tile 2x1x2 - '65° slope' (6151673 | 60481)
- Radiator Grille 1x2 - the 'grille tile' (6152109 | 2412)
- Brick, Modified 1x1 with Handle (6152103 | 2921)
- Tilted Corner 4x4 with Angle (6151693 | 43708)
- Brick 1x3 (6154879 | 3622)
- Brick with Arch 1x1x1 1/3 (6151669 | 6091)
- Flat Tile 1x1 (6151658 | 3070)
- Plate 1x1 (6151658 | 3024)
- Roof Tile 1x1x2/3, Abs - the 'cheese slope' (6133838 | 54200)
- Slope 45 2x1 with 2/3 Cutout - the ‘Stafford Slipper’ (6151668 | 15672)
- Plate 1x2 with 1 Knob - the ‘jumper plate’ (6151671 | 15573)
- Flat Tile 1x2 (6151659 | 3069)
- Left Shell 2x6 with Bow/Angle (6151672 | 41748)
- Right Shell 2x6 with Bow/Angle (6151670 | 41747)
- Plate 1x3 (6153538 | 3623)
- Angular Plate 1.5 Bot. 1x2 1/2 (6152110 | 99780)
- Angular Plate 1.5 Top 1x2 1/2 (6152101 | 99781)
- Plate 1x2 with 1 Horizontal Snap (6151674 | 11476)
- Plate (A) 4M 45° (6152113 | 15706)
- Plate 1x10 (6151666 | 4477)
¼ Arch Brick 5x5 with cut out
The Dark Azure part that is a new mould is the ¼ Arch Brick 5x5 w/cut out. It is a quarter circle and so four together form a circle that is 10x10 studs in size. It is smaller than the other existing quarter-circle parts shown below which form circles of 12x12 studs.
There are eight of this new curved part supplied, to form the four slightly-larger-than-half circle wheel trims on the VW Beetle. You can see below that the designer has used the 1x2x1 1/3 curved brick (6151669 | 6091) in between the two ¼ arch bricks to slightly extend the wheel trims by one stud, and then another of the same at one end to shape the bodywork.
It's not only part 6091: the relationship with other curved bricks below shows that the outside curve also matches the curve in other parts. Note that I have laid part 6191 sideways.
Not new but Dark Azure
- Plate 1x2 With Slide - ‘door rail’ (6145412 | 32038) appears in one other set from June 2016, 75148 Encounter on Jakku.
- Roof Tile 1x2x2/3, Abs - 'double cheese' (6151663 | 85984) appears in one other set from June 2016, 70596 Samurai X Cave Chaos.
- Plate 1x4 (6133728 | 3710) appears in one other set from June 2016, 70596 Samurai X Cave Chaos.
- Plate 2x6 (4640891 | 3795) appears in 4 other sets.
- Plate with Bow 1x2x2/3 - the 'baby bow' (6137300 | 11477) appears in 4 other sets.
- Plate 2x2 with 1 Knob - the 'double jumper' (6029163 | 87580) appears in 6 other sets.
- Roof Tile 1x2/45° (6036851 | 3040) appears in 6 other sets.
- Brick with Bow 1x3 (4640901 | 50950) appears in 6 other sets.
- Brick 1x1 with 1 Knob - the 'washing machine' (6004938 | 87087) appears in 6 other sets.
- Plate 1x2 (4653988 | 3023) appears in 12 other sets.
- Brick 1x2 (6004943 | 3004) appears in 23 other sets.
New but not Dark AzureThere are a further six elements that are new, including two new moulds.
- Medium Stone Grey [TLG]/Light Bluish Gray [BL] 3.2 Shaft with 3.2 Hole (6143318 | 23443)
- Black 3.2 Shaft with 3.2 Hole (6143318 | 23443)
- Transparent Bright Orange [TLG]/Trans-Orange [BL] Flat tile 1x1 ½ circle (6147049 | 24246)
- Medium Stone Grey Flat tile 1x1 ½ circle (6151688 | 24246)
- Transparent [TLG]/Trans-Clear [BL] Windscreen 2x10x4 (6135457 | 24607)
- Medium Stone Grey Flat Tile 1X1, Round, No. 57 - the ‘VW logo tile' (6153248 | 26866)
3.2 Shaft W/3.2 Hole
Flat tile 1x1 ½ circleThere are two re-colours of the flat tile 1x1 ½ circle, a part which made its debut in Mixels Series 7 in White, mainly as a tooth or a hoof. In the VW Beetle, the Transparent Bright Orange is used for the rear indicator light and the Medium Stone Grey is used as part of the front indicator light. The latter is a particularly useful colour as a decorative tile in architecture, interiors and of course for those mad Spacers.
Round 1x1 Printed Tile ‘VW’
There is one printed tile in this set that is new, a Medium Stone Grey round 1x1 tile with the famous VW logo printed on it. These are used for the fuel tank cap (below) and on the bonnet of the car.
Throw in the towelA nice touch is the fabric beach towel behind the hinged back seat of the VW Beetle. Its 10x4 size gives plenty of room for two minifigures to lie on when sunning themselves by the beach. Actually, I hope no one steals this idea but I was thinking it would make a perfect awning for the 973 D-27C Winnebago Chieftain from The Walking Dead!
Not new but not Dark Azure
The BuildThe VW Beetle is fun to build, I think there were three bags but since I excitedly poured them all into a big pile to find all the Dark Azure parts, I can’t be 100% sure. I would certainly not be winning a VW Beetle speed build competition with my ‘huge central pile’ technique but it was definitely exciting for me. There are some lovely techniques used to make a curvier shape out of bricks, as even curved LEGO bricks do not always allow easy shaping.
For example, the new 5x5 wheel arches are great but behind the new bricks, the designer had to incorporate a few different techniques to achieve a shapely matching wheel arch and fender area.
Another area where the curves were noticeable was the bonnet where the double hinged shape allowed for a steeped angle of ‘curve’. The upper portion of the bonnet near the windscreen uses the curved slopes but the lower portion is actually completely flat. The use of the second hinge and then the central 3mm hose gives the illusion of a curvier bonnet. It is an interesting solution to creating curves from flat bricks and I really like the final appearance.
Another technique I wanted to highlight was 180 degree stud reversal. There are lots and lots of ways to achieve this, but back in ‘the old days’ when I was a minifigure of a girl, the common method was to use the headlight brick. Just because a technique is well-known and oft-utilised does not make it unsuitable for those great LEGO Designers, as the VW Beetle proves - its backseat uses the technique to good effect.
I should also mention that the seats all move forwards and backwards too, but that is thanks to bar and clip hinges, as you can see in this photograph taken during the build process.
The same image also shows another aspect of shaping. If you look at the angles of the doors and body, the designer has angled the doors to give the ‘curved’ bodywork that is part of the actual VW Beetle. You can see the angle clearly when focusing on the black step area beneath the closed door. The doors are 10 studs apart at the front and 12 studs apart at the back but it is subtle enough that there is no real gap on the final model and the doors move freely.
The completed car with the surfboard and cooler is awesome and a very attractive model to display, not just because of the colour but also its aesthetics.
You will note that I applied the UK driving licence plates and also applied the stickers with a degree of imprecision; I can only apologise and say that I was on rather a tight schedule. Regular New E readers will know that I am mummy to 12-week old twins who seem to take my attention away from LEGO at the moment. Sorry for my dodgy sticker technique, I am much better at sticking nappies on I promise… I also closed the bonnet like a chick and didn’t slam it hard enough so the slight gap you see in the final images of the completed build are related to me and not the model! [Ed. - I had the same problem... I think it relates to how snugly the tyre inside has been fitted, and not chick stuff.]
If you are wondering what scale this VW Beetle is, I can confirm that it appears to be a perfect fit for this handsome young chap who hails from Belville. He can sit on the seat and hold the steering wheel to try and catch the eye of a passing young lady.
- Awesome Dark Azure Parts bundle, so many new elements and in great quantities.
- A fun build with nice techniques used.
- A generous supply of four printed VW logo tiles – make anything into a VW!
- Great looking final model that will turn heads.
- Who cares that my Dad thought the completed model was a Citroën CV2?
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