LEGO® Set Review: 8880 Super Car
Joshua Delahunty’s review
Super Car (us)
LEGO TECHNIC Supercar (da,de)
Daytona VX4 Super Car (uk)
Technic / Model
Ages 11-Up / 1343 Pcs
92 page manual. 2 models. New Technic and Service Catalogs.
Price Range: $139.00 (US) Per Piece: 9.66 cents
Review Written: 17 March 1994 by Patrick Yagle
Special Features / Compatibility
Scale: Technic Action Figures: The seats are a bit large for the action
figures, unless he/she were a youngster taking the ol' Super Car
for a Joy Ride!
Errors: There was a loose instruction page for Step 19, which is meant to replace
the Step 19 bound in the instructions. There's no difference in the use
of parts between the two, just an extra diagram to clarify what's going
on in that step.
Buy it! Heck, I'd even recommend buying it if you've never seen it! If
I had, I would have had mine 3 weeks ago.
The set includes instruction for the Super Car and for a Formula One (F1)
- Super Car:
- This model is a black with yellow trim and white
interior sports car with 4 wheel drive, steering,
and independent suspension. It has a rear mounted
V-8 engine (small pistons) and a functioning four
speed transmission. Also has 'car' features like
pop-up headlights, an opening engine compartment,
adjustable mirrors, etc.
- F1 Racer:
- This model follows the same general color scheme as the Super Car. It is a rear wheel drive, front
wheel steering car with a rear mounted V-8 and a two
I first saw a picture of the Super Car in the first SAHS Catalog that Lego
sent out after the first of the year. After several intense minutes of
drooling, I pulled out the ol' Master Card and dialed the number for SAHS.
On reserving mine, I asked how many had been ordered (I called in the first
week in February) and was told that I was # 187 to order it. About a week
later I got a post card saying I would probably get it on 27 April. I
actually dreaded the day it would come, because I knew I would do absolutely
no studying for my finals that same week. But, since Murphy is not my friend,
I got another post card about a month later saying that I would get it on
14 May. I called Lego the morning of 16 May to see if they had them yet and
they said that they came in on the 13th and that it was on its way. They
sent it Priority Mail and I got it the same day I called. That's Customer
The set is very detailed, with every detail (it seems) taken into
consideration. There's even a sticker for the instrument panel to give
the illusion of a speedometer!
There are a large number of specialized pieces for building the transmission,
steering and suspension. Some of the 'purists' out there don't like pieces
like this but I think it's great! Before I got the #8865 Test Car a few
years ago, a friend and I built a two wheel drive car with full suspension.
It was a dog! It was so large and heavy we had to use heavy duty rubber
bands for shock absorbers and place the steering pivot 8 studs away from the
wheel itself! These special pieces will allow for things like adjustable
Set Rating:Must-Have When I first got #8865 Test Car as a gift 2 years ago, I said (at that
time) "The only challenge left to Lego is a car with 4 wheel steering,
drive, and suspension." Well, they've done it, and done it well.
This is a prime addition to my collection.
Model Rating:Must-Have The models are very functional and feature packed. Some very subtle
things, such as limiting suspension travel, were done in even more
subtle ways. I would almost call it elegant. The tricks used in
the design of the car are very impressive.
Playability Rating:Fair While I find this set extremely exciting, one must consider that I am
a 22 year old engineering graduate student who has been tinkering with
Lego for 15 years and with Technic Lego (Expert Builder, really), since
I was 9 or 10. A kid (especially one toward the younger side of the
suggested age group) would probably find that this set simply took too
long to assemble. The Super Car has 36 steps in 51 pages. More than
two hours of building got me to step 22 or 23, and I'd like to think I
can do this rather quickly; #8865 Test Car takes me about 1:45 to build.
Playability? There are _many_ small and/or delicate pieces in this set.
The enthusiastic play of a teen might result in a few broken pieces.
This is a "builder's" set. I enjoy building at least as much as the play,
and this is probably why I like it so much.
Realistic appearance: Spoilers, contoured bucket seats, and raiseable
hood add to its character. The tires have the label "ZR" next to their
size label, which denotes High Performance in the real world. The sticker
representing the speedometer (digital of course, this is a modern vehicle)
reads 147 km/hr, which is about 91 mph. This furthers the high performance
flavor of the Super Car.
Realistic Operation: The 4 wheel drive system uses 3 differential gears.
Any real car with 4 wheel drive also has 3 differentials. A friend once
told me that a car with 4 wheel steering should have real wheels which
travel half as far as the front wheels (and in the opposite direction,
of course). The Super Car does exactly this.
Hidden Steering Wheel: Because of its location, the 'proper' steering
wheel (in front of the driver's seat) is difficult to reach. Lego has
included a _second,_hidden_ steering wheel. It is the one inch wheel
that I mentioned before. It is hidden between the seats and the engine
and is NOT visible except from directly above.
Just that I had to wait soooo long to actually get it in my hands!
- Steering/Drive linkage:
- There is a new steerable piece that
snaps in between the suspension arms. There is a special
sleeve that slides through this steerer and snaps into each
wheel. There is a special ball shaped 8-tooth gear that fits
into the above-mentioned sleeve. It can drive the wheel from
a range of angles. (Essentially a Lego CV Joint !!)
- There is a 4 x 6 plate with a special hole and
the H shift pattern built into it. A special shift lever snaps
in from the bottom and shifts through the H like that of a real
manual transmission. There is one more very interesting piece
that looks as though it was designed specifically for this set;
it's difficult to describe but I'll do my best: It slides over
the axle extenders (the thing that joins two axles end to end)
and ratchets back and forth along it. Either end of this piece
fits into the open back of the 16 tooth gears which spin freely
on an axle (the new ones, like in the HoverCraft, #8824). By
sliding these pieces back and forth, the transmission engages a
different set of gears (shifting!)
Aside from the above mentioned pieces, There is nothing too
special about the rest of the pieces. [except that they combine
into one really great model :) ]
- Display Tray:
Included one of the suspension arms, the steering wheel,
transmission and drivetrain components. And don't forget
the standard gear or two for show!
- Aside from the special pieces above, the only thing really new
(to me at least) are the wheels/tires. They are the same as
those on the big 3 wheel motorcycle (#8857 ??). I'm glad Lego
has finally made a tire with tread that actually looks like the
tread on real tires.
Oh, I almost forgot, there is a new style of differential gear.
It uses the same beveled internal gears as the old one but has
16 teeth on one end and a 24 tooth gear on the other. These
gear sizes make the differential more versatile in relation to
other gears ==> better building potential!
- Just the wheels mentioned above and a single 1 inch wheel, which
I will explain later.
There is also a small sheet of adhesive stickers (Octan sponsor
labels for the F1 Racer, Hood Ornament, Speedometer and Tachometer
for the dashboard, etc)
Age (at review)
I typically buy only Technic sets, although if a particular set from
a different genre of Lego catches my eye, I will get it on occasion.
Typically, if a set does not have a lot of 'features', such as moving
parts and "turn this crank and the model does ..." type stuff, I don't
like it. This is why I don't like a lot of the smaller Technic stuff.
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