Though some people these days are capable of building their own cars from scratch, it's not a skill that is widely possessed. Those of us who are less technically inclined (but might still want to make a functioning car) just got one step closer to our dreams, as the first fully drivable, life-size car has been built... out of LEGO.
This wonder of an automobile was created by the LEGO group, and will be unveiled today for the first time at the Grand Prix Formula 1 event in Monza, Italy. It is being called the "LEGO Technic Bugatti Chiron," and it is completely non-glued, self-propelled, and made entirely of LEGO Technic pieces. The car fits two passengers and can accelerate to over 20 km/h. Not bad for something that is quite literally snapped together.
This model takes the form of the world's fastest production car, the Bugatti Chiron. It is the first of its kind, using over 1,000,000 LEGO Technic elements and powered exclusively using motors from the LEGO Power Function platform. Yes, that was motors plural, as it uses 2,304 motors and 4,032 LEGO Technic gear wheels. The engine generates 5.3 horsepower, an estimated torque of 92 Nm, and 0.0 jigawatts.
Take a look at a video showing off the new car right here:
“This life-size model is a first of its kind in so many ways, and with it, we wanted to push the boundaries of our own imagination," said Lena Dixen, Senior Vice President of Product and Marketing at the LEGO Group. "Our Technic designers and the engineers from the Kladno factory in the Czech Republic, the place which also builds the impressive models for LEGO Stores and LEGOLAND parks, have done an amazing job both at recreating the Chiron’s iconic shapes and making it possible to drive this model. It’s a fascinating example of the LEGO Technic building system in action and its potential for creative reinvention.”
If we're talking about creative reinvention, then when can we start building our fully functioning LEGO spaceships, pirate ships, and castles? Cars are great and all, but let's get weird. That's easy for us to say, but LEGO cars don't grow on trees. This vehicle, all built of LEGO Technic elements and precisely rendered from the taillights to the speedometer, took over 13,000 work hours of development and construction.
Of course, once assembled, the car had to be tested. This fell to Andy Wallace, former race driver and multiple winner at Le Mans and Daytona. As he said, "When I first saw the LEGO Chiron, I was immediately impressed by the accuracy of the model and the minute attention to detail. In fact, from about 20 metres away it’s not obvious that you are looking at a LEGO car. I can only imagine how much time and effort went into making this model."
He added that driving the LEGO Chiron was "a great experience" and that he never thought that the day would come when he would drive a LEGO car. Us neither, sir.
What's next in the world of cars, LEGO, and LEGO cars? We imagine faster and bigger ones... though we believe we already mentioned spaceships and castles. You know you want to be the first person to test-live in a LEGO castle — don't try and tell us that you don't.