The Australian Formula 1 (F1) Grand Prix is still hours away and yet, McLaren Racing has already thrown down the gauntlet. Teaming up with LEGO Australia, the iconic orange and blue F1 team backed by Aussie legend Daniel Ricciardo and 22-year-old wunderkind Lando Norris has just unveiled the type of collaboration every kid dreams of. Feast your eyes on the weekend’s most prized vehicle, a lifesize build of the LEGO Technic McLaren Formula 1 Race Car.
Set to hit the Albert Park Circuit just as the 2022 Australian Grand Prix kicks off, the new life-sized LEGO McLaren is a serious piece of work. Nine times the size of its collectible inspiration, the jaw-dropping piece of creative ingenuity took a whopping 1,893 man-hours to complete and comprises 288,315 individual LEGO bricks. Our condolences go to the 27 different people involved in the design and build of the new vehicle, for they surely sacrificed more than just time on the 5.7-metre-long, 2.4-metre-wide brick-built beast.
The life-sized LEGO Technic McLaren Formula 1 Race Car was designed in collaboration with the engineering team at LEGO Group and McLaren Racing, and features the F1 team’s iconic papaya livery, which adorned the MCL35M race cars during the 2021 F1 season. From a technical perspective, the build itself is comprised of five separate components, including four wheels, a car body, suspension and even the newly introduced halo. Truly, this LEGO reinterpretation is more than just a lifelike adaptation.
Niels Henrik Horsted, head of product at LEGO Technic confirmed that just like its high-octane inspiration, the LEGO build was designed to allow people to sit in it thanks to the removable halo and steering wheel. When it arrived trackside early Thursday morning, McLaren drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris were quick to test out the theory. Pulling the steering wheel off and sliding into place, Aussie F1 star Ricciardo’s trademark beaming smile was evidence enough that LEGO and McLaren had pulled it off.
“The partnership between the LEGO Group and McLaren continuously develops each time we get together for the next collaboration,” Henrik Horsted said. “We never stop trying to excite and inspire our fans by pushing the limits of possibility through the technology and designs produced, both on the racetrack and with LEGO building.”
Formula 1 fans visiting Albert Park for the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne this weekend will be able to check out the new LEGO McLaren Formula 1 Race Car as it sits track-side. According to LEGO, the stunning piece of brick-built art offers a “meticulous translation” of the pioneering design and cutting-edge technology McLaren will be making use of throughout the weekend. For those unable to head down, however, all is not lost. LEGO has restocked the new Technic McLaren Formula 1 Race Car model, which is now available online and via global retailers. If you get into a LEGO McLaren of your own, this might be the next best thing.