LEGO Icons 10321 Chevrolet Corvette C1 – A classic car reimagined [Review]

The LEGO Group made a good choice when they changed the Creator Expert line into the Icons theme. It brought a level of sophistication and exclusivity that hadn’t quite been seen before. In addition, it brought out some true world icons. And one of those icons comes from a great legacy of classic cars. The LEGO Icons 10321 Chevrolet Corvette C1 appears at first glance to be a real winner. Come along as we fire up the engine and see how this one drives. The 1210-piece set will be widely available August 4th and retail for US $149.99 | CAN $199.99 | UK £129.99.

The LEGO Group sent The Brothers Brick an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.

Unboxing the parts, instructions, and sticker sheet

For a millisecond there was a rumor that this car would be all white, and boy is it a relief that’s not the case. I would venture to guess that for most people, when you imagine this car, you imagine it in “Roman Red” and speeding down the California coastline. I expected an additional image of the real thing on the back of the box, but I guess it’s a good thing there are so many features to tease instead.

Inside the box are 9 bags numbered 1-9, an additional plastic bag for the tires, and a pair of paper bags for the windshield pieces. Despite LEGO instructions noting the oncoming arrival of paper packaging for at least a couple years now, this is the first time this reviewer has ever come across it.

The instruction manual has a stylized angle of the vehicle on the cover. Perhaps this is to somewhat mimic the image of the actual car in black and white on the first page. This set also includes a small sticker sheet containing 14 stickers. It sounds like a lot, but you barely notice it.

The build

As someone who consistently reviews Technic sets, this was a fun kit for rewiring my brain to see advanced vehicles in System. The build starts off simple and squared-off, but we’ll soon see the interesting ways this System-Technic combo creates shapes by manipulating the grid.

Much of this is achieved with jumpers and System-Technic crossover parts. This whole thing is also quite sturdy and “locked-in” with multiple pin and stud connections. As we continue to form the base, we include the rear axle and trunk lining. We also use the newer 2×4 inverted tiles in addition to 1×3 inverted tiles to both smooth out the underside and lock things together.

With a solid base ready to go, brackets and side building fills out the body and allows us to add some shape with red 1×2 cheese slopes.

One of the most iconic aspects of the C1 Corvette are the rounded taillights. These are achieved using Bionicle eyes. When we attach this section, we also add in a nifty lever for the trunk. We’ll get back to the mechanism in a bit, but it’s satisfying to see the use of the 2×2 tow hitch creating a plate-thick slot (on a different axis) for the half-beam, while simultaneously acting as a stopper to hold it in place.

After the trunk, we turn our attention to the seats and cab area. It’s the first time we’re seeing both stickers and printed elements in this build. In this case, the arches used for the space behind the seats are printed, while the tiny slopes between them are stickered. Certainly, it’s much easier to apply a sticker to a forgiving 1×2 curved slope than dead-center on an arch.

At this point we smooth out the rear body. The long, curved wedges that have become common in recent advanced models really play well here. (Sets like The Mighty Bowser, the Typewriter, and the Vespa 125)

Just with those installed, you can already see the classic C1 “duck tail” emerge.

It’s nice how the back underside bits both clip in and have a stud connection. It makes them solid and unlikely to pop off while still achieving the general look. The fun fender bits are comprised of light bluish grey bananas, candle sticks, and dual-sided weapon hilts. Surprisingly, this is the first time any of them have been featured in this color.

In this model, we are given the option of three potential license plates. Often times, LEGO doesn’t divulge the significance of the random letters and numbers in models. These tend to be Easter eggs that hold significance for the designers. But here, the history of the vehicle had a strong influence. Apart from the showroom logo, the offerings are a Michigan plate with “GM – 0937” on it and a California plate with “C1 1961” on it. The former represents the home of General Motors (GM), and is followed by “LEGO” upside down (0937). Meanwhile, the latter of course denotes the model name and release year of the original car.

With the vanity plate chosen and a couple more wedge slopes to round things out, all we need now is the trunk/boot hood. But that won’t come in the instructions for a little while, so we’ll get back to that in a bit.

Turning our attention to the front of the vehicle, we add a few gears, which will allow us to turn the wheels with the steering wheel.

Before the steering wheel can go on, we need to install the dash. Of note, this includes a stickered tile, three foot pedals, and a ribbed hose air duct. The pedals are inkwells attached to clip arms.

With that snuggly seated, the axle shaft for the steering wheel is threaded through the dash assembly.

As you can see below, the angle is achieved with a universal joint.

Now we begin work on the sides of the model, laying the foundation for some fun build techniques. The grey stripes, for example, are staggered at half-stud intervals thanks to crafty plate/tile stacking.

The use of jumpers and a side-attached 2×2 triangular plate already gives the illusion that we’re creating a lot of contouring and depth on the sides.

The front grill starts out with some 2x2x2/3 profile bricks sandwiched between rail plates. New in light bluish grey are a pair of hotdogs detailing the fender. Around back, a 2L bar with stopper will receive the fan.

The second row of the grill does not have the flutes of the profile brick, but it’s not super noticeable unless you’re looking for it. The whole thing is rounded out by clipped-in handle bars. Small grey mudguards (also new in grey) are added above the hotdogs. On the back, a small propeller is added for the fan.

At this point the entire sub-assembly is connected to the model, and more banana-hilt-candle fenders complete the look.

From here, we lock in that front section and build it up to receive the slopes and tiles that will cap everything off.

We’ve already seen one printed element, and now come four more. These tiles feature the signature silver pinstriping and are very welcome additions to the set over stickers.

An excellent recolor used in the model is an odd but fun one. It’s sort of like a 1×1 round plate had its lip pancaked out in all directions – a little flying saucer. In fact, the element was formerly used as a teacup saucer in both the 2018 Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts CMFs as well as the 2022 Muppet CMFs. In this case, the  piece is inserted into the printed 2×2 round tiles with hole to create the iconic headlights.

Another couple of new elements include a notched 1×4 bow and a notched 1×5 half-arch.

These pieces play a major role in one of the most eye-catching parts of the model: the doors. The unique curvature and inset nature of the side panels are pulled off with the help of these and 2×4 jumper plates.

In combination with the rest of the white splash, it looks pretty slick. The interior also features the window cranks, door handles, and arm rests.

For the seats, dark bluish grey profile bricks set inside black give it a classy, sleek feel.

A bar mounted to their bottoms allow them to be clipped in, and they rest perfectly within the existing structure.

Next we build the engine, which is fairly detailed for being rather small. Tiles attached at an angle via rocker hinges sport a stickered logo, and we even have an oil filter. The drum-lacquer silver engine cover is obviously the highlight of the whole sub-assembly. The 2×2 round tile at its center has only been seen in this color in one other set: 10302 Optimus Prime.

Like the seats, this fits snuggly in the existing structure of the model and looks fantastic.

Our final printed element is the large 5×8 curved slope with the Corvette logo on it. They could’ve easily chosen to make this a sticker, but it’s so incredibly nice to see that they didn’t. It just feels much more classy and excusive.

Like the real vehicle, the hood hinges at the front.

At this point we’re finally able to add the steering wheel, along with the mirrors, antenna, and other detailing. It would’ve been really awesome to see the detailing, including the fenders, in drum-lacquer silver or even pearl grey like the antenna. But it still looks nice nevertheless.

The final new mold comes in the form of the windshield. In fact, as previously mentioned, there are two of them: one for the front, and one for the back when the topper is attached.

On the underside, an old but slightly less common element – a black “steering arm” – is used to help connect the wheels to the frame. Using ball joints and linkages, both left and right wheels are connected to a central shuttle.

The shuttle rests against the previously mentioned gears. Once locked in with some (rail) plates, not only do the wheels work in unison, they also work with the steering wheel.

As for the tires themselves, they have been in four other sets, including the DeLorean time machine and this model’s distant cousin, the Chevrolet Camaro Z28. The hub caps have been seen in one other set: the Ghostbusters Ecto-1.

Wrapping up the whole kit, we build the convertible top, which utilizes the extra windscreen. By the way, this is the first time the 5×5 macaroni plates have been seen in light bluish grey.

I like how the connection points are minimal here, even to the point where the front only rests on the forward windscreen with some small panels as a lip. However, the exposed studs at the back kill the vibe a little bit.

The completed model

As we come to a close, we’re left with a classy little model. The designers certainly did about as well as they possibly could have in replicating the source material.

If nothing else, it’s a lovely display piece that looks good from every angle.

As far as playability goes, in addition to being able to turn the steering wheel (and have it turn the wheels), you can interact with just about every aspect of the car.

The radius isn’t much, but the point of this adult-oriented set is more to display than play anyway.

My personal favorite feature is the trunk/boot. I love how it sits beautifully flush and that pushing the hidden button pops it open.

The area inside is surprisingly spacious, and a great place to store the additional license plates.

The doors are smooth in function and shaped in such a way that they just fit perfectly.

The front hood is a little bit more clumsy than the back when it comes to operation. It’s not particularly difficult to open, it just takes more effort to grab the edges. If you have large fingers, this may be troublesome.

While I would most likely display this topless, the convertible roof looks nice too. As previously mentioned, the exposed studs aren’t ideal, but it’s still handsome overall.

Conclusions and recommendations

Admittedly, I’m not a car aficionado. There are probably people out there who see all the faults in the design. But from a layman’s perspective – and more importantly, a LEGO builder’s perspective – this ticks the boxes. It looks cool, the build was fun, it has a reasonable level of playability, and it’s sophisticated enough for longer-term display. The price-per-piece is not ideal, but there are multiple new molds, prints, and color variants. I would recommend it to any fan of classic cars, or anyone looking to advance their skills with Technic-System crossovers and unique designs.

If you enjoyed this article check out some of our other LEGO reviews and interesting news.

The LEGO Group sent The Brothers Brick an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.

LEGO Icons 10321 Chevrolet Corvette C1 will be available August 4th and retail for US $149.99 | CAN $199.99 | UK £129.99.

4 comments on “LEGO Icons 10321 Chevrolet Corvette C1 – A classic car reimagined [Review]

  1. Mr Classic

    “One entirely new element used in the model is an odd but fun one. It’s sort of like a 1×1 round plate had its lip pancaked out in all directions – a little flying saucer.” – not new but a saucer piece indeed, introduced as a printed tea cup saucer with the Harry Potter collectible minifigs in 2018, then seen unprinted in the Muppet Show collectible minifigs in 2022, part no 38799. Here recoloured in transparent.

  2. Bre Burns Post author

    @Mr Classic Ah! You’re right! Thank you! Admittedly I wrote that at a ridiculous hour and wasn’t paying attention. Changed in the article.

  3. Ed

    I hate that LEGO consistently engineers a very poor turning radius into each of its vehicle models. Why even bother giving steering to the front wheels when they’re almost always designed so they barely turn?

  4. wdog

    Thanks for the great review! Love the gifs. Great looking car, except I struggle with those headlights, love the multiple prints though.

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