03 February 2022

LEGO® Speed Champions 2022: Interview with Christopher Stamp

Posted by Admin

The 2022 range of LEGO® Speed Champions has been revealed, and we were excited to once again speak to LEGO Design Manager Specialist Christopher Leslie Stamp. Tim Johnson and Ben Davies had a quick video chat with Chris at Fan Media Days in May 2021 where he told us about the highlights of each set: 76906 1970 Ferrari 512 M, 76907 Lotus Evija, 76908 Lamborghini Countach, 76909 Mercedes-AMG F1 W12 E Performance & Mercedes-AMG Project One, and 76910 Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro and Aston Martin Vantage GT3.

The release date for Speed Champions varies year by year and in 2022, it is 1 March. “We design all of our Speed Champions to be a January launch, because we need that flexibility; our launch date can sometimes fluctuate,” Chris explained. “I know a lot of people online said it was to do with COVID, but it was all planned before COVID! So that was kind of a wrong guess unfortunately.”

LEGO 76906 1970 Ferrari 512 M

This LEGO version of a 50-year old LeMans race car is made from 291 pieces and priced at US$19.99 / £17.99 / DE€19.99 / AU$32.99. 

They've done a type of vehicle like this before: the Porsche 917K which came in 75876 Porsche 919 Hybrid and 917K Pit Lane back in 2016; the second year of Speed Champions. “This shows you how far we've come, basically,” Chris said.

“We've brick-built the headlights and the tail lights. The headlights have got a decorated 1x2 tile at the side so that you see transparent on the front of the headlight, but it's on the side, it's all red.”

The rear wheel arch uses the Arch 1 x 2 Inverted (78666) from 2021, which initially appeared in LEGO Ideas 21329 Fender® Stratocaster™. “You build it all upside down, and you basically plug it in the side to create that wheel arch line.” The wheels themselves are not the new Speed Champions wheels from 2021, however. “We're actually relying on the old Speed Champions wheel element, because it doesn't need to have low performance.” 

76906 1970 Ferrari 512 M is available to preorder for a 1 March release. Please consider following our affiliate links – New Elementary may earn a commission: : UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop

LEGO 76907 Lotus Evija

This LEGO version of a fully electric hypercar comes with 247 pieces, priced US$19.99 / £17.99 / DE€19.99 / AU$32.99.

It is a brand new IP partner; the first time that they’ve teamed up with Lotus. “Lotus obviously has a huge history as a British car manufacturer in the automotive industry,” said Chris.

This is the first 8-module wide vehicle from Speed Champions to come in Dark Green. “We've only done one dark green car before, the Ford Mustang,” confirmed Chris, “so there's a lot of new element colour changes in there, for example the 4x3 bow, corner tiles and the upside down surfboard at the back!”

Curved wedge slope 3 x 2 x 1 

Of course, the elements drawing our attention are the left and right bows at the front – a pair of new moulds. They are 3x2 wedge bows with cutouts, and further on in this article you will see that they are also coming in both Light and Dark Bluish Gray, as well as Lime. All are decorated with headlight prints, which many of you will find restrictive but is a major step forward for Speed Champions – “you guys keep asking for fewer stickers and more decorations, especially for the headlights”, confirmed Chris. Last year’s Ford GT Heritage Edition was the first example of decorated headlights.

Image ©2022 Victor Pruvost using Mecabricks Advanced Add on by Scrubs.

We don’t have the new bows in hand yet, so cannot share their IDs, but thanks to some quick modelling by New Elementary's Victor Pruvost, we can describe to you what’s going on with this new mould! As you can see (in teal) above, on its 3-long side the curve matches the existing 3x2 bow (in yellow) and 3x1 bow (in orange), and on the other side it shrinks down to a 2-module long curve. We asked Chris if this fits with other existing 2x bows? “We looked into it... ‘is it 2x4 to a 2x2? Is it a 1x4?’... I've got like 40 different versions of this! So we did try to line up the outer curve with the existing 1x2 bow but on the front [Chris pointed to the thin lip at the base of the element] you ended up with a very weird triangle shape. It didn’t look good.”

Image ©2022 Victor Pruvost, rendered using Mecabricks Advanced Add on by Scrubs.

The underside is also more complex than usual, as  shows. the 2-long side has different cutout ‘steps’ to the 3-long side. “Speed Champions brought in the 3x2 bow, and from the day we brought it in, we needed extra cutouts underneath,” explained Chris. “So that's what we've tried to maximise here.”

76907 Lotus Evija is available to preorder for a 1 March release. Please consider following our affiliate links – New Elementary may earn a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop

LEGO 76908 Lamborghini Countach

This LEGO version of the iconic 1970s Gruppo Bertone design comes with 262 pieces, priced US$19.99 / £17.99 / DE€19.99 / AU$32.99.

Immediately we were drawn to the triangular build at the rear. “Quite a quirky build going on at the back,” agreed Chris. “We've got brick-built headlights and tail lights, and what's really cool about this are the front headlights, can you see the orange? There is something going on under the hood, literally. In there, we've basically stuck a decoration for the indicators underneath a sideways transparent brick so that when you look at it from the front, you actually see a reflection of the origin! 

“We have decorated wheels to capture that iconic look, and we did look at adding opening doors because this car is known for the way the doors open, kind of like the DeLorean is. It was actually in the original brief I gave the designer, but none of the other Speed Champions have opening doors. We did a version where the doors opened, but then the windscreen didn't open. So then we needed to talk about the possibility of making new windscreens that come in maybe three sections, and how do you build the door part of the windscreen into the door... and it became a logistical challenge. We eventually said let's not do it; it would be lovely but it's a nice-to-have not a need. I am excited to see whether a lot of people online customise it to be able to do that!”

76908 Lamborghini Countach is available to preorder for a 1 March release. Please consider following our affiliate links – New Elementary may earn a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop

LEGO 76909 Mercedes-AMG F1 W12 E Performance & Mercedes-AMG Project One

This LEGO double-pack has 564 pieces and retails at US$29.99 / £34.99 / DE€39.99 / AU$69.99.

The printed parts are again a star of the show with the Mercedes-AMG F1 W12 E Performance; the wheels are Pirelli branded, a first! It also has an EPSON sticker so you can build a LEGO printer if you want. It won’t work, but then again neither do the real things.

Also notable are the printed ‘D-tiles’ (Tile, Round 1 x 1 Half Circle Extended - 24246) which are used in Dark Red with Black printing for the headrest, and Black with the Mercedes emblem at the front.

This is the first Mercedes in the 8-module wide format, but of course a 6-wide version exists in 75883 Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team, from 2018. “What you'll see is we're no longer a toy. We're now more of a die cast,” Chris pointed out.

As for the ​​Mercedes-AMG Project One, this is a vehicle that has been expected to come out for many years now and is finally being released. 

The ‘AMG’ decoration at the front is printed on the rear side of a Slope, Curved 2 x 4 x ⅔ (88930) simply to take advantage of its 2-plate high vertical surface.

Note also the black fin at the rear; we assumed it was a new element but were assured it is Tail Shuttle (6239) buried deep in the construction! As for those rear bumpers, they are 2 of the Racers Car Grilles (50949) attached upside down at angles.

 76909 Mercedes-AMG F1 W12 E Performance & Mercedes-AMG Project One is available to preorder for a 1 March release. Please consider following our affiliate links – New Elementary may earn a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop.

LEGO 76910 Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro and Aston Martin Vantage GT3

This interesting pair have 592 pieces and retail at US$39.99/  £34.99 / DE€39.99 / AU$69.99.

There are not one but two firsts with this set, Chris explained. “We thought that it was about time that we added Aston Martin to the portfolio! And this is the first ever concept car we've done in Speed Champions.”

Indeed the Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro is bizarre and thrilling! That brand new windshield is the unusual measurement of 6x7 modules. The special chassis developed for Speed Champions sets could not be used here (and nor on the F1) because of those dramatic diagonal holes either side. You can’t see from the pictures, but instead, the ‘Speed Champions wheelbase’ Wheel Bearing 2X6X1 1/3 w/ Cross Hole (65635) is used underneath, rotated 90 degrees to the usual alignment. 

The Aston Martin Vantage GT3 features a wonderful solution for the brick-built tail lights. “It's pretty crazy!”, said Chris. “And what you'll also see on there is a little Aston Martin logo decoration?” Again, this is the backside of a slope, in this case the ‘double cheese’ Slope 30 1 x 2 x ⅔ (85984).

76910 Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro and Aston Martin Vantage GT3 is available to preorder for a 1 March release. Please consider following our affiliate links – New Elementary may earn a commission: UK LEGO Shop | USA LEGO Shop | Australia LEGO Shop.

Our thanks to Chris and the AFOLET team for this interview!

READ MORE: LEGO® Chinese Festival review: 80109 Lunar New Year Ice Festival

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  1. What the hell is going on with the Australian pricing on the 2-packs? $30 USD but $70 AUD? Excuse me!? Especially when the pricing on the other sets is perfectly normal.

    1. I'm curious whether those prices are totally accurate... the Mercedes two-pack is listed as $30 USD but the similarly sized Aston Martin two-pack (priced the same in other regions) is listed as $40 USD. The latter seems more realistic for a two-pack like that (being double the price of the single-car sets), so it might be that the $30 price is inaccurate and the discrepancy between the US and Australian prices for that set isn't quite that extreme.

    2. Maybe, though the Corvette 2-pack is only $30. Also only 512 pcs (vs. 564 for the Mercedes set).

      I guess this also leaves the door open later in the year for a $50 2-pack to be released with a second wave (oh please oh please oh please!)

  2. These are all fantastic, and for the first time I can say with certainty that I'll end up buying them all. The move to 8-wide has proved itself wide, and I appreciate the focus on the vehicles without the little side builds the 6-wide cars tended to have.

  3. Anyone else notice how speed champions work so much better with old, angular cars like the countach and the ferrari rather than the modern, smoother ones...

    1. Not just modern, either! The Ferrari 250 GTO, '68 Corvette, etc. would all benefit from more compound-curved bricks, especially in the top of the fender area. Frankly the Porsche 911 is too angular for my tastes also.

      I know they said they really don't want to re-visit models they've already built and I understand it, but with 8-wide it's really hard not to want an official new version of all of the early cars.

  4. Love the new bows (also a proof that the straight ones could have been more cut-out and could have been much more useful). I understand that it's a curve on 2 axes and thus needed a print, but I seriously hope that B&P (or whatever soon replaces it) is gonna offer them unprinted.

    1. It'd be great to get them unprinted, I'm sure we'll see them in other sets though I am curious what. Personally I'd much rather have these printed headlamps than stickered. I prefer removing printing if I need a plain brick vs. having to apply stickers if I want a decorated brick.

  5. they also can added not 2 studs wide but 1 stud wide part... like half of a part 11291... also i wish they make quarter circle tile 2x2 like 76797 Brick Round Corner, Curved 3 x 3 x 1 Quarter Circle

  6. Hello. (this is not spam).

    My friends and I are huge fans of the Speed ​​Champions kits. We are from Poland and we decided to do surveys among young people and adults in provincial cities about Speed ​​Champions. It took us from April to November to collect the questionnaires. Over 194,000 people completed them.
    As it turned out, they would like to see such cars as: Pagani Huayra (30 240 votes), Porsche Tycan (75 405 votes), Lexus LFA (12 220 votes), McLaren Speed ​​tail (77 382 votes), BMW m8 competition (89,272 votes), Zenvo ST1 (12,394 votes), BAC Mono (9,684 votes) and other models below 5,000 votes who could appear in the Speed ​​Champions series.

    The next part of the poll was about "What racing series do you want to see in Speed ​​Champions". The responses of most of the respondents were consistent and related to such series as:
    -VASC (Supercars)
    -IndyCar Series
    -new NASCAR Series
    -new F1 Series
    -Dakar Rally

    To sum up, is it possible (taking into account the results of the survey) that such kits on this subject will ever appear in your offer in Speed ​​Champions kits?

    Could you please ask the designer about it?

    1. What an amazing number of people responding! LEGO Designers are not allowed to comment on future products, however, so we could ask but they would not reply :) It's of course to protect against competitors. However we will send a copy of your message to LEGO, because I know the Speed Champs team are always very interested to hear what people want!

  7. My most favote one isthe Lamborghini Countach

  8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. Interesting point, but deleting your comment for language, children read this site.