New Technic Releases revealed (and some opinions on them)

It’s the week of LEGO firing out one new product announcement after another and this offers up the perfect opportunity to write down my thoughts on them. I had seen leaked images several months ago already (as I’m sure many of you had, too) and even had written a little article about them, but then was smart enough to delete it again as to not draw LEGO‘s anger and fury.

The photos in this article are pulled from official sources, so credit where credit is due: All images ©2018 LEGO Group.

42079 – Heavy Forklift

Umm, yeah, a forklift. There have been several variations on that them already in the past and there is literally nothing you can add to the subject without being repetitive. It’s all been done a million times with the only real difference being the size and design.

This one would turn out reasonably large and with the wheels borrowed from the Mercedes Arocs model I might in fact already have what I need to build it from scratch in my parts repository, just perhaps not in this color combination. Mine would probably end up having a red gear rack to extend the fork vertically and the rest would be all yellow or white.

Overall the model looks decent enough, it’s just not particularly exciting and the suggested price of 70 USD, which undoubtedly will translate to 70 EUR, seems way too high. It’s probably safe to say that you should wait until it drops to around 50 or 40 Euros.

LEGO New Releases 2018, 2nd Quarter, 42079, Heavy Forklift

42080 – Forest Harvester

This, quite frankly, is a bad joke, at least for the more serious Technic enthusiast. Clearly this is aimed at kids that will really play with it, but I don’t see how that will work at a 150 EUR price tag. The irony here is that there could have been a market for this, but LEGO pretty much got everything wrong by toy-ifying it way too much.

On the bright side, we will get some panels in colors that weren’t available before, but that’s about it. Even that idea hasn’t been carried through as no doubt several panels that are black on the model would also be Lime Green or Green on the real thing and then the white trim line would make much more sense. Additionally the overall proportions just look totally whacky. This thing would probably topple over even with a Christmas tree.

The real stinker for me, though, are the disproportionate felling/ sawing unit and the pneumatics. Without this stuff the set would have looked a lot better and probably even fitted in with some nature-themed City sets. The way it is I can’t see it working for either side. It’s likely too complicated to build for kids while at the same time as a Technic builder the many simplifications will leave you unsatisfied. That being the case it would probably be a good idea to support this LEGO Ideas project and hope we might one day get a better incarnation of a forest harvesting machine…

LEGO New Releases 2018, 2nd Quarter, 42080, Forest Harvester

42081 – Volvo Autonomous Loader

I still have the large loading shield from the Volvo L 350 F model (42030) clogging up my parts collection, so it’s a goo bet that I won’t be needing a second one and will pass on this model as well. That said, I think it looks interesting enough to be worth building from existing parts. The re-issue of the large excavator bucket also will allow many fans to build “that other Volvo” if they never got their hands on it.

The yellow wedges on the robot arm and wheel hubs are amor parts from the Buildable Figures series, BTW. You can see the on the elbows of my Speederbike Stormtrooper as well. I’m just throwing this info out there since somebody asked about it on a German forum already.

LEGO New Releases 2018, 2nd Quarter, 42081, Volvo Autonomous Loader

42082 – Rough Terrain Crane

We’ve all been waiting for this and touted as “the largest Technic set ever” (so far) it certainly looks that way. The staggered/ layered panels alone could ramp up parts count considerably as will the massive long arm. That’s also going to be the biggest issue: Where will you put the damn thing without it getting in the way?

On a hunch I also would say that you probably can’t avoid buying it if you really want to build it. The turntable gear segments so far only exist in yellow on the Bucket Wheel Excavator (42055), the telescoping arm is probably going to use some very long gear rack elements that haven’t been available for years and overall the sheer number of parts might have you coming up short with some elements even if you have a huge LEGO Technic collection already.

On the other hand the parts count is inflated hugely by a number of standard parts on which you could stock up for pennies already now, so I’m not sure if 230 Euros is a good price. Depending on your existing supply the answer to that could be yes or no, so I’d definitely wait a little and see how prices develop for this monster, even if I would admit that I think that this would be a much, much more satisfying experience even at full price than last year’s 6×6 All Terrain Tow Truck (42070), which was similarly priced, but totally failed to deliver on what was promised…

LEGO New Releases 2018, 2nd Quarter, 42082, Rough Terrain Crane