Today LEGO has revealed that the next large-scale vehicle in the Icons theme will be the venerable Defender 90 in celebration of the brand’s 75th anniversary this year. The Defender 90 is one of the most iconic vehicles in automotive history, with this design having been available from 1983-2016 before an updated version was introduced in 2020, which has already been the subject of a LEGO Technic model. 10317 Land Rover Classic Defender 90 includes 2,336 pieces, making it one of the biggest System vehicles LEGO has ever made, edged out only by two movie vehicles, 76139 1989 Batmobile and 10274 Ghostbusters ECTO-1. The sand green Defender 90 is kitted out with loads of gear, all of which is removable, allowing you to display the vehicle either as stock or in full expedition mode. It also prominently features new System wheel arch elements that mirror those introduced in the Technic Defender model. The set will be available starting April 1 for US $239.99 | CAN $329.99 | UK £209.99.
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Whenever LEGO releases a big set, talented builders the world over get inspired to build similar models, but better and more epic. You see it with UCS LEGO Star Wars sets, modular buildings, castles (from Helm’s Deep to Hogwarts), and Batmobiles. It also happens in the LEGO Technic world; LEGO releases a 42110 Land Rover Defender, and out of the woodwork start crawling rugged off-roaders like this one by Manuel Nascimento. Not only did Manuel build an enormous and detailed Defender, but he also built a whole display base to demonstrate its capabilities. You can sleep on a Land Rover? That’s intense (get it? in tents?). But the lights and winch work, and it has a working transmission, too, and could in theory drive. But since it weighs in at 14.33 lbs (6.5 kg) driving it is a bit out of the question. Who cares, though, since looking at it is such a treat.
Custom stickers give this a sleek look, honoring a Camel Trophy competition team as well as the builder. It’s got all the details, too, from the cages and bars to the snorkel. The nets in the rear windows look great, and I love the huge knobby tires. My favorite parts usages are the socket wrenches for the door pulls and the DUPLO shovel mounted over the front right wheel. Droid arms serve beautifully for the hood latches, too. Now, I said this was built in response to the new LEGO Defender; that’s not properly true, since this was originally built back in 2017, but it is still an epic ride.
And if you enjoyed this Land Rover Defender, you might also like a pair of Land Rover Defenders by Peter Carmichael.
The Land Rover Defender has been newly revitalized for 2020 with a complete overhaul of its aesthetics from the ancient-looking offroading beast that it’s been for decades, and LEGO commemorated the launch of the new generation with the Technic set 42110 Land Rover Defender. Early reports show it’s got promising off-road chops (as any Land Rover should), but it remains to be seen what the durability of the new model is. However, it’s obvious what Peter Carmichael thinks given this diorama of the classic model rescuing the newer one.
Peter says he began his concepting for the classic Land Rover design with an existing LEGO design, but ended up changing nearly every part of it in pursuit of greater accuracy. The result is fantastic, with the Defender’s iconic lines showing through from every angle. The sand blue for the new 110 model is a bold choice, given the paucity of elements in that color, but it works well to mimic the available Tasman Blue.
For several decades, the LEGO Technic theme has incorporated licensed vehicles pulled from the ranks of the world’s best-known auto manufacturers. And almost without exception, LEGO has focused these sets on sports cars and heavy equipment. But now Technic has made a foray into the new class of automobile life that seems to be taking over all that it touches: the SUV. With 42110 Land Rover Defender, LEGO not only releases its first Technic SUV, but also lands its first license with renowned automaker Jaguar/Landrover in 50 years (LEGO produced diecast Jaguar models in the 1960s). Not simply a one-off, the licensing partnership also includes minifigure-scale vehicles for the Speed Champions line like the I-pace and Formula E racecar. The new LEGO Defender released Oct. 1, 2019, and was revealed in conjunction with the real vehicle’s debut, marking Land Rover’s return to the venerable Defender model. The set includes 2,573 pieces and retails for US $199.99 | CAN $249.99 | UK £159.99.
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