Sven Franic has early access to the LEGO® Speed Champions range for 2018, which are now available at BrickLink. He's put them together and, more importantly, pulled them apart to reveal the new pieces you'll find in 75884 1968 Ford Mustang Fastback, 75885 Ford Fiesta M-Sport WRC, 75886 Ferrari 488 GT3 "Scuderia Corsa", 75887 Porsche 919 Hybrid, 75888 Porsche 911 RSR and 911 Turbo 3.0, and 75889 Ferrari Ultimate Garage.
Speed Champions is an in-house LEGO® theme featuring external licences by various car manufacturers. The theme’s fourth year in production is a testament to its great success. The 2018 line up is represented by sets licensed by Ford Motor Company, and two long-running IP partners of TLG: Ferrari N.V and Porsche AG.
I’ve been a gearhead all my life, and I remember trying to recreate real cars in minifig-scale models with the bricks I had as a kid. Cars like this at the time would have made my mouth soar from swooshing and vrooming.
New parts in 2018 LEGO® Speed ChampionsA piece that I can safely guess was designed specifically for this theme back in 2015 is the specialised mudguard that most of the models use (Design ID 18974). While the large piece ensures the models are sturdy and work perfectly with robust wheel setups, the shape is slightly limiting for some types of cars. This drawback is remedied by the introduction of the new alternative mudguard element (Design ID 35789). The element is overall shorter and has a deeper curvature towards the bottom, making it ideal for so-called “Coke bottle styling” body shapes.
The new mudguard is instantly available in four colours:
- White (Element ID 6217895) in set 75887 Porsche 919 Hybrid
- Earth Green [TLG]/ Dark Green [BL] (6217897) in set 75884 1968 Ford Mustang Fastback
- Bright Red [TLG] / Red [BL] (6217896) in set 75889 Ferrari Ultimate Garage
- Bright Blue [TLG] / Blue [BL] (6219820), also in set 75889
The most exciting piece fresh off the injection mould is another Flat Tile element. I don’t have the official name yet but it is basically a 2x2 tile cut in half diagonally (Design ID 35787).
The 45° angle makes it compatible with the ever-increasing variety of tiles and other elements cut at this angle.
It is likely we will start seeing this triangular tile element in more widespread use as the variety of available tile shapes has greatly increased in recent years, opening new possibilities such as two-dimensional typography and signage.
The triangular tile is introduced in four colours:
- White (Element ID 6217875) in set 75889 Ferrari Ultimate Garage
- Medium Stone Grey [TLG] / Light Bluish Gray [BL] (6217876), also in set 75889
- Black (6214807), also in set 75885
- Earth Blue [TLG] / Dark Blue [BL] (6214808) in set 75885 Ford Fiesta M-Sport WRC
Coincidentally, all of these four colours are already in use by two other tile elements cut at this angle: the Tile 2x3 Pentagonal (Design ID 22385) and Tile Corner Facet (27263) which makes mixing and matching easier.
Recoloured pieces in 2018 LEGO® Speed Champions
An element that is just shy of being hot enough to call brand new is the 1x2 Plate rounded with open studs (Design ID 35480) which we discussed in more detail before.
It was introduced in Bright Red and Black in the Super Heroes theme and both colours have made it through to the Speed Champions, more specifically set 75889.
Just in case the new mudguard element has caused confusion, it is not a replacement for the old design (18974). That is still kicking, and even comes in two new colours:
- Bright Yellowish Green [TLG] / Lime [BL] (Element ID 6112244) in set 75888 Porsche 911 RSR and 911 Turbo 3.0
- Earth Blue (6214809) in set 75885
- Earth Blue left (Element ID 6214811), right (6214812) in set 75885
- Earth Green left (6214814), right (6214813) in set 75884
- White, left (6213880), right (6213881) in sets 75888 and 75887
The largest set, 75889 Ferrari Ultimate Garage, has some additional new pieces in Bright Red. The 2x2 Tile Modified Facet (Element ID 6217194|Design ID 27263), the 3 x 4 Curved Wedge Plate, aka "roof section" (6204665|93604), and an old Classic Space-era piece that hasn't been seen in red for almost 20 years, the 1x4 Plate Split-level (6218227|18624 or 4590).
6636) passed you by in the 2018 LEGO Disney set 41155 Elsa’s Market Adventure (available at Amazon USA|UK), the 75884 Ford Mustang is here to remind you that this tile is now a reality.
Due to the colour choice of one of the Porsches in set 75888, some elements had to be given a re-colour in Bright Yellowish Green: the Inverted 1x2 bracket (Element ID 6218266|Design ID 99780), the 1x1 Round Quarter tile (6211875|25269), and the Technic 3L Cross Block (6211876|42003).
StickersInitially I was planning to ignore the elephant in the room. AFOLs tend to loudly voice their sticker hate.
Most of the stickers have limited usability outside the sets, except some cool garage posters in the flagship set 75889 Ferrari Ultimate Garage. They depict each of the cars that come with the set in a pop-art poster style illustration.
Some models can pull off the stickerless look better than others. Below is an example, if you decide to opt out.
A quick word about the setsI am delighted to see classics like the ’62 Ferrari 250 GTO, the ’68 Ford Mustang Fastback and the ’74 Porsche 911 (930) Turbo make it into LEGO sets. These are all cars with cult status that might pass by the target age group if left neglected in future toys. I am especially fond of the colour choices like the groovy ’70s lime green for the Porsche and the Mustang’s dark green which I am pretty sure is a nod to the 1968 film classic Bullit.
In an interview for Top Gear, Craig Callum, the design manager for Speed Champions, mentioned that the cars are not just for kids. He gives an example of how they span the generations by including different generations of models in a set that will attract both kids and parents, such as the 75874 Chevrolet Camaro Drag Race (Amazon USA|UK) and 75881 2016 Ford GT & 1966 Ford GT40 (Amazon USA|UK). The same pattern is repeated in this year’s lineup and I couldn’t be more excited about the choice of models, colours and elements used.
Bonus extra!I asked Sven to send through a behind-the-scenes shot of that gorgeous garage he built just to start this post.
Enjoy more of Sven Franic's models on his Flickr page.
You can now buy these sets at BrickLink.
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