I don’t buy many of the big sets. My LEGO hobby is more about building than collecting, but sometimes the nostalgia bug bites me hard. I have happy memories of a baby blue beetle that my dad and I drove around in when I was a kid. We put a lot of miles on that car and drove it till it died. Seeing this latest Creator Expert set, I knew that I had to have one.
Being a member of the LEGO VIP Program, I was able to get this set a bit early. Last week I rode my bike out to the local LEGO store and wound up coming home with two of them (one to build and another just for all the beautiful dark azur elements).
The box was stuffed with goodness: eight bags, numbered 1 to 3. The instruction booklet is thick and didn’t come bagged and boarded, which I think is a poor decision for a set of this size. This means that my booklet is warped and so were the stickers. No creases or damage, but still feels a bit sloppy for a set of this size.
The build is divided into three distinct stages. The three bags marked ‘1’ build the basic frame of the car and most of the rear end. There are a lot of interesting techniques in this build, utilizing advanced snot and careful offsets to capture the curves. The colors too are striking with dark azur body work and brick yellow interiors.
The second set of bags builds the interior and the front end. Again, the careful sculpting in the set is impressive and inspiring. I really appreciate the printed Volkswagen logos, though I wish that they had printed the other graphics as well and done away with the sticker sheet entirely.
The final set of bags finishes out the build. The addition of a cooler and old-school long board for the roof rack are pretty great. I also like that LEGO provided extra tiles and stickers so that the car can have correct plates for a number of different countries.
That tiny air-cooled engine is recreated faithfully. Thit is pretty much what I remember when we’d break down and have to fix the car on the side of the road. So many details captured here.
Of course, the trunk is up there under the hood, with a spare tire and gas tank. More clever use of new parts here to get the turn signals and the fenders just right.
The doors open nicely and show off that snug interior. The windows are rolled down of course, as that was the only climate control available.
The roof is removable too, giving access to the whole interior. A nice touch, but a mostly just to let us fiddle with the seats.
The finished model is a beautiful thing. The designers have captured the classic curves and character perfectly. Those new 5×5 quarter-circles that they made for the fenders do a lot of heavy lifting there. Small details like the trim and the sideboards are lovingly rendered.
So, yeah, I’m gushing over this model. It was a wonderful build and I’m looking forward to stealing techniques to use in my own models. I’m also looking forward to sharing it with friends who have similar nostalgia for those funny little cars.
I’m definitely recommending this one!
Keep building and enjoy!