LEGO Speed Champions debuted in 2015 with six sets based on exotic sports cars including the Ferrari LeFerrari, McLarren P1, and Porsche 918 Spyder. The LEGO vehicles featured a six-stud wide design from designer Craig Callum. This was a new style for LEGO vehicles at the time, providing a distinctive, realistic look that allowed for much greater detailing than typical LEGO vehicles.
Five years later, the Speed Champions line has been upgraded to an 8-stud wide design. The new design adds an extra layer of realism that fleshes out the sometimes “boxy” style of the older Speed Champions cars (especially the American muscle cars like the recent Chevrolet Camero, Ford Mustang, and Dodge Challenger/Charger combo set). Another bonus of the redesigned 2020 cars is they can now seat two minifigures side-by-side, whereas the previous cars were all single-seaters.
Personally, I’ve never bought a Speed Champions set before, but the preview images for the new 2020 builds – and particularly the bright red Ferrari F8 Tributo – were too tempting to pass up. So I picked up a couple Speed Champions sets as soon as I was able.
But, does the actual build live up to the hype? Let’s find out.
Ferrari is a popular brand for Speed Champions. LEGO released six Ferrari-themed Speed Champions sets in the first 5 years, including exotics and F1 racers, and all of them red.
So it should be no surprise that we get a red Ferrari to help launch the new, 8-stud wide Speed Champions redesign. This year’s Ferrari is the F8 Tributo, which has Ferrari’s fastest V8 engine ever. The box packaging features front and rear views of the LEGO F8 Tributo, a photo of the real car, and several uses of the Ferrari logo.
The new 8-stud Speed Champions generally include 25% more parts than their 6-stud predecessors. The Ferrari F8 Tributo comes with 275 parts in two bags. Red is the dominant color, naturally, with a lot of black and grey that will be used for the frame, plus a splash of blue and yellow. The box also includes a loose part that forms the base of the chassis and is also where the minifigures will sit.
The instruction book is 72 pages with 82 steps (not including sub-steps). Eleven stickers are used for detailing on the car, although several pre-printed parts are included in the set.
The Ferrari F8 Tributo includes one minifigure. He wears a Ferrari t-shirt, a dark red hoodie, and dark blue pants. The head is two-sided and both a hair piece and a racing helmet are provided.
An interesting side-note note with my set was that the minifigure head was slightly misprinted. If you compare the left-side and right-side images below, you’ll notice how one face is offset when compared to the other. It’s a minor issue but when the hair part is worn, you can just barely catch a hint of the facial hair on the rear-side of the minifigure.
This would be a very long article if I wrote about everything I enjoyed with this build. But trust me, it’s a fun build to work on. But I’ll save the details for my summary at the end.
Bag 1 builds the chassis and the back half of the car and starts on the interior. About half the stickers are used with bag 1.
And bag 2 finishes the build.
Having never built a Speed Champions set before, I can’t make an honest comparison of the 6-stud design versus the 8-stud design. But I can say that the 2020 LEGO Speed Champions Ferrari F8 Tributo is a spectacular looking LEGO car, and a lot fun to build. It’s not over-stating the issue to say that it nearly transcends LEGO bricks. It looks and feels like a true model of a beautiful exotic sports car, rather than a LEGO version of a car. The curves are as well as you can achieve with a LEGO set. The detailing on the front and rear bumpers are perfectly done and were probably my favorite parts of the builds. There are only 8 visible studs on the entire car, which I think is a remarkable achievement.
I actually had a hard time taking photos of the completed build because it reflected my lighting so well. But photos don’t do this car justice. If you’ve never bought a Speed Champions car before, or even if you have, I strongly recommended you buy one of the new models and see it for yourself. The sets have increased in price because of the higher number of parts, but I think you’ll find that is a more-than-reasonable trade-off for the quality of the build.
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