Lego McLaren-Honda MP4/4 Formula One race car debuts this spring

Lego has announced a new large-scale kit paying homage to the legendary McLaren-Honda MP4/4. One of the winningest race cars in Formula One history, the car kicked off the McLaren-Honda team’s storied 4-year F1 Constructor’s Championship winning streak, which lasted from 1988 to 1991. Soon, it will be possible to recreate this historic machine out of 693 tiny plastic bricks.

Since 2015, Lego has been producing automotive-themed sets officially licensed by automakers in a line called Speed Champions. The brand list is a who’s who of marques you expect to be parked at a casino in a James Bond movie: Ferrari, Porsche, Lotus, McLaren, Mercedes-AMG, Aston-Martin, Lamborghini, Bugatti, Pagani, Koenigsegg, and the like. As far as Japanese cars go, they’ve made only made three: an R35 Nissan GT-R NISMO, Toyota GR Supra, and R34 Nissan Skyline GT-R that is, tragically, in the color scheme of the car from 2 Fast 2 Furious. These kits are usually comprised of about 250 pieces.

Then there’s the more advanced sets geared towards adults, which are much larger, more detailed, and can contain anywhere from 1,200 to 1,500 pieces. Cars in this Icons line have included a Porsche 911, Land Rover Defender, and a 1969 Camaro Z/28.

Compared to those, the McLaren-Honda MP4/4 has far fewer pieces. However, it still has action features common to these larger kits, like working steering and an adjustable rear wing. Details like the suspension rods and Honda turbo V6 engine have been recreated in Lego form, and it rides on racing slicks. It even comes with a miniature Ayrton Senna and his signature yellow and green helmet.

Oddly, the packaging and description make no mention Honda, though the H logo and “Powered by Honda” graphics appear on the car itself. It was generally accepted at the time that the Honda RA16 engine at the heart of the MP4/4 was the key to unlocking F1 wins. As an engine supplier to multiple teams, Honda had an even longer winning F1 winning streak, powering Williams-Honda champions from 1986-87 for a total of six consecutive Constructors’ Championships. Still, Honda fares better than Marlboro, whose sponsorship gave the car its red and white livery.

The MP4/4 will be the first car with Japanese connections in a large format Lego set, but it’s not the first. Last year Lego released a 1,478-piece Yamaha MT-10SP motorcycle with a working gearbox and suspension. A Kawasaki Ninja H2R is scheduled for release later this year as well. If you’re interested, the Lego McLaren-Honda MP4/4 goes on sale March 1 and will retail for $79.99.

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1 Response to Lego McLaren-Honda MP4/4 Formula One race car debuts this spring

  1. Negishi no Keibajo says:

    I’m not much of a Lego fan but anything to do with an MP-4 is a hit. A little o/t but went by the Nissan Crossing & saw the Prince R380 displayed. Wonderful surprise BUT I’m perturbed by “Nissan” instead of “Prince”

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