10 June 2013

REVIEW: LEGO Technic Pull Back Cars

Get your coat, you've pulled.

As sprightly young pups we never played all that much with Technic, LEGO's construction product, and for that we blame our mums. Although we longed to get to grips with the technical looking sets and build some truly awesome mechanical monsters, our mothers decided it all seemed far too complicated for our little fingers and instead filled our Christmas stockings with what was then called 'LEGO Basic'. A blessing and a curse.

However, now we are all growed up big boys and don't have to listen to our mums (except when we're ill) so leapt at the chance to test two Technic sets, #42010 and #42011.
A LEGO Technic model is an altogether different animal than the standard LEGO which is massively popular at the moment due to movie and TV tie-ins (how about a little LEGO Hobbit, Star Wars and Superman?). For a start the the pieces are completely alien to someone who likes their LEGO blocky, and the way things connect is also different. These two sets are just that, and we found ourselves a little bamboozled at first (and also in awe) at the strange shapes and what seemed like plastic scaffolding. AND NO MINIFIGURES!

But those are our issues, ones we were happy to forget once we got with the building. We could discuss both sets individually but we found them to be much of a muchness with quite similar pieces and shapes employed for both kits. Both were essentially a framework which grew from the wind-up motor positioned between the rear wheels. That isn't to say these are dull kits, not at all; its just we found that both offered a similar level of challenge.

The unique selling point of these two car sets is the inclusion of a pull-back-and-go motor which allows the completed models to zip across your living room carpet. As you can see from the picture on the right the motor element is by far the chunkiest piece in both sets, but still a nicely designed one with lots of connection points for other bits of LEGO.

At a leisurely pace each car took us around 30 minutes to complete. Bare in mind our lack of Technic experience; if you're a pro at it, these are probably a quarter of an hour builds to you.

Both finished products are honesty very pleasing. Sturdy and solid, with just enough give in each model to allow some rough play. And play is definitely on the agenda here, as the cars - particularly the blue buggy (#42010) - were right little movers. By pulling them back just two feet along the carpet charged the motors sufficiently to produce a ten foot whizz. Fortunately the large rubber tyres - again, a bit better on the buggy - gripped most surfaces brilliantly and allowed for great traction.

A bonus of getting both cars is that after downloading the building instructions from the LEGO website you are able to combine elements from both vehicles to create a pretty snappy looking dragster. It's a nice touch and feels like quite an exclusive model once you attempt it.

For our first go at LEGO Technic we found the sets to be engaging while not too tricky and overly complicated as might put us off. If you had to choose one from the other we'd say go for the buggy, if only because all it's pieces remained in place after the 15th time it cascaded down the stairs.

We're definite converts to LEGO Technic after building these sets and are looking forward to reviewing some more.

£14.99 each
Visit www.technic.lego.com

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