Tag Archives: Jonathan Elliott

A gangster’s roadster: please admire from a distance

A roadster too sleek for the 1930s. Open top and exposed engine. Is it some vintage Batmobile or a hot-rod noir? Jonathan Elliott presents his latest custom minifig-scale car to add to his portfolio, a roadster that could give the current Vintage Taxi GWP a run for its money. Lacking any other colour, there is just enough and barely enough chrome to break up a predominantly black visage. The owner of this vehicle must be classy and dangerous, and it definitely takes my mind to old gangster movies…

Black Roadster

If you see this parked in front of a speakeasy of your choice, RUN!
See more of Jonathan’s wonderful creations here.

Your new Uber driver has arrived

In case you’re going anywhere tonight, Jonathan Elliott has just upgraded your Uber ride. It’s no a longer a modest 17-brick-big 605 Taxi from 1971, but instead, it’s an ultra-futuristic EV vehicle. Like the emissions, the number of open LEGO studs has gone from over 30 to nearly zero. Although it took the brick-built taxis to evolve this far, let’s hope the real ones will become equally cool soon enough.

Set 605 remake

Go anywhere in the rugged Toyota FJ40

LEGO automotive enthusiasts lost our collective cookies when they came out with the 10271 Fiat 500 set in bright lemony yellow. (I think I peed a little!) It was a previously difficult color to come by but as Jonathan Elliott pointed out, even with the Fiat, there are only 352 parts available in that shade, a large chunk dedicated to minifig hairstyles. This means building your own creations in that tasty color is still somewhat difficult. Boy, don’t I know it! That didn’t stop Jonathan from building a totally awesome Toyota FJ40 though. This model is so accurate it almost feels like you can actually go off-roading in it. While he is no slouch with building LEGO cars, his automotive chops really shined with this one. Check out the archives to see what I mean.

Toyota FJ40

We got your wagon covered.

We like supercars as much as anyone else, but there’s something equally cool about vintage rides like this Volvo 240 estate by Jonathan Elliott (JE Brickworks). I mean, you’re in for a world of hurt if you try and move a couch on the roof of your Lamborghini. A model that deserves a closer look, this blue beauty has a tilted minifigure ice skate for the Volvo logo and particularly clever use of steering wheels for wheel rims.

Volvo Wagon

If you prefer your Volvos to be a bit more “heavy duty”, then check out our review of the LEGO Technic 42114 6×6 Volvo Articulated Hauler or this amazing fan-built, radio-controlled  1/20-scale Volvo FH.

That’s a big cat, in small form

Building great-looking LEGO cars at minifigure scale is always a challenge, but it’s made at least a little easier by choosing a vehicle with fairly straight lines. Of course, that doesn’t mean that builder Jonathan Elliott has been slacking off with this 1968 Mercury Cougar, as there are tons of great details here. One of the best is the side mirrors, made with grey lever bases stuck onto 1×2 panels. Plus we can’t overlook the fact that Jonathan attempted the whole thing in teal, which, while it’s seeing a recent resurgance in official sets, is still a very limiting color.

1968 Mercury Cougar

Bin there, done that

I can’t help borrowing the title for this post from the description of the build by Jonathan Elliott — it’s just as good as the truck itself. Not only is the model 6-stud-wide, but it is also a very accurate copy of Phoenix dustcart, which must be familiar to our readers from the UK.

Garbage truck

The design of the rear part is particularly impressive. The loading mechanism turned out impressively neat and compact; the design is so clean, it makes the truck a perfect example of efficient design. I wonder what the truck would look like with a massive ad on its side, but I guess like it tidy better.

Garbage truck

Mr. Mercedes makes many merry motorcars

LEGO car builder Jonathan Elliott tells us that boxy small-scale saloon cars like this classic Mercedes are fiendishly difficult to build, even more so then their curvier sportscar counterparts. I’m inclined to agree. This model is chock full of tricky SNOT (Studs not on top) techniques and complex offsetting. But I love its understated elegance. We’ve enjoyed Jonathan’s small-scale vehicles before. If vehicles of any scale are your thing, then I’d advise you buckle in and check out our archives. There’s some automotive gold in there for sure.

Black Mercedes-Benz

A little Citroën for your evening

There are a handful of cars that are instantly recognizable the world over, like the Volkswagen Beetle and the Jeep. I’d posit that the Citroën 2CV belongs right there with them, having been in production for more than 40 years. This beautiful LEGO version of the classic French car is brought to us by Jonathan Elliott, and it’s just perfect at minifigure scale. The 1×1 and 2×2 curved tiles help fill out the curves on this swoopy post-war sedan.

2CV

Teal Mog pickin’ logs

The Unimog — the multi-purpose utility truck produced by Mercedes Benz — has always been a favourite of mine. Something about the shaping of the cab and the big tractor wheels still fascinates me to this day. Since it is big and aggressive with a high ground clearance, it is something you would see in off-road races, churning up mud and climbing rocks. Yet in most cases, they are roadside repair and agricultural vehicles, sporting orange and green. Vehicle builder Jonathan Elliott reconfigured the Unimog into a logging truck — which is not so uncommon. Sporting a realistic yet simple crane hoisting some nice textured logs built up of column bricks and printed log tiles. The best part is — it’s teal!

Unimog U1700 With Hiab

What the crazy European kids were into

When I think of my childhood the Ford Pinto comes to mind. That’s because we had one when I was growing up and apparently Dad thought nothing of our safety. But across the pond, LEGO builder Jonathan Elliott tells us that during his childhood, the Mk1 Ford Transit was the ubiquitous thing in the United Kingdom as well as Germany, Belgium, and Holland. It’s still a Ford but apparently far less explosive. In fact, the Ford Transit is so revered out there that the platform is still used today in everything from school buses to police and ambulance applications. Jonathan replicated the shape nicely with this little build proving you don’t need a vanload of pieces to create an accurate LEGO model.

Early Ford Transit

How many studs does it take to make a supercar?

The good things about standards are that there are so many of them. Take for example the seemingly simple measurement of how wide a LEGO car should be. The City theme usually sticks to four and six stud widths, and most fan creations have followed that guideline. That standard certainly made things easier for collaborative town displays. But recently we’ve got a game-changer in a new 8 stud wide standard for Speed Champions vehicles. Builders have already started to explore this larger scale’s additional detail and upgraded real-world shaping. But not every stud count has to be even. Jonathan Elliott has created a De Tomaso Pantera supercar in a seven stud width.

De Tomaso Pantera

Jonathan’s 6-stud version was already great, but there’s a lot to love about this new take. Built around the new Speed Champions windscreen, it also incorporates new mudguards and more extensive use of 1×2 cheese slope tiles. The shaping is just superb, and I’m looking forward to seeing what Jonathan tackles next at this scale.

Red looks good on more than just Ferraris

When I was a kid, I collected lots of Hot Wheels and Matchbox diecast cars. Somehow or other, among them all, I ended up with three red Lamborghini Countaches, all identical. I just had them out the other day, looking at them with my son, in fact, driving at insane speeds around the coffee table and eventually plunging over the edge in a fiery wreck. I also recently purchased the new Ferrari F8 Tributo, and noticed that the new windscreen looked a lot like the Hot Wheels Countach’s shape. It seems I am not the only one, as super car LEGO builder Jonathan Elliott used that very piece to create his own 7-stud wide take on the Countach LP400, and did it immeasurably better than I could have.

Lamborghini Countach LP400

The signature triangular scoops in the sides are done perfectly, and the angular hood and body, which ushered in a new era of sharply angled supercars, replicate the original’s nearly spot on. I wish this version had the huge V-shaped wing on the back that later models (including my Hot Wheels) had to add control to the car at high speeds. Sure, the wing decreased the top speed a bit, but the car handled better with it when pushing its upper limits. But that’s minor. The 7-stud body is a nice compromise between the too-small 6-wide and the too-large 8-wide, too. I’m not sure if it fits a minifig, but does it have to when it looks this nice?