41999: My impressions

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41999 4x4 Crawler Exclusive Edition has been out for a couple of weeks now, and despite claims that orders placed through shop.LEGO.com on the 1st August wouldn't ship until the end of September, I received mine a couple of days ago, and built it right away.

I'm not going to do a full review because I see that zipsforbananas has written an excellent one already, and there's a thorough pictorial review on Eurobricks. Instead, I thought I'd just tell you what I thought of it and also solicit your feedback.

 

What I liked about it:

  • The packaging is superb. Why can't all LEGO models come in a reusable box like that, rather than one that you have to destroy to open?
  • The model is the best representation of a 'monster truck' that LEGO has produced, although perhaps after comparing it with real monster trucks, it would have looked better with larger wheels.
  • Often with Technic models you get the feeling that the designers skimp on vehicle bodywork by over-using curved panels or by using flexible tubes to give an impression of bodywork, but that's certainly not the case here; the body is well built using plenty of beams, and consequently there are no gaps in it. Maybe this is because it was designed by an AFOL, and that's how we like to build our models.
  • I didn't buy 9398, last year's Technic 4x4 crawler, the chassis of which this model is based upon, because I didn't like the colour scheme. Unless the the stickers were applied, it would have looked terrible, half black and half white. Applying stickers to Technic models is usually a mistake because they peel and flake over time. The colour scheme issue has been addressed and this new model looks terrific in dark blue and white, with or without stickers. The silver beams used for the bumpers and elsewhere look great.

What I didn't like:

  • Until I finished it, there was nothing I didn't like. It was a interesting build, not too repetitive, and unlike some recent Technic models, it doesn't have a parts-dense multi-function gearbox which usually take ages to construct and are prone to mistakes. Then I switched it on...
  • The speed at which it moves is a major disappointment. It crawls along at a pace that didn't even scare my cat. I think I was expecting something more like 8369 Dirt Crusher RC which zips along at a fantastic speed.
  • The four wheel steering is very clever, and works well using the new PF servo motor but I thought the rear wheels turning looked a bit daft and un-prototypical. It's easily fixed though, I snapped open the rear axle assembly joint, removed one of the 3L axles and used pins to lock the rear axle in a fixed position. It doesn't have such a tight turning circle now but that's not much of a problem.

In summary, it's a great looking model, packed with functionality, but ultimately, playing with it is a bit disappointing.

Did you buy one? Have you built it, or are you like many people in the forum (it seems), keeping it as an investment for resale later? If you have built it, what did you think? Maybe it was your first Technic model. If so, will you buy more?

If you didn't buy it, it looks as if you won't be doing so unless you have deep pockets as it's out of stock now at shop.LEGO.com and prices on eBay are ridiculous (upwards of £400/$500).

30 comments on this article

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By in United States,

What number did you get?

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By in United States,

LOL! You don't like that the crawler crawls. I suppose I could understand being upset if you didn't know that this model was based on the crawler chassis, but I think you did. The point about the color scheme and stickers is valid, but otherwise I prefer the original over this. As a Technic collector from its inception in 1977 I prefer the bodies to be light or non-existent. The tech is the feature to behold, not the body or appearance.

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By in United Kingdom,

^^ 6478

^ I can't say I'm upset, I didn't buy it to play with, anyway.

There is a place for both features and appearance, IMO.

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By in United States,

I built mine (#15101), I am a Technic fan and I love it. Chassis is exactly the same than the latest batch of 9398, I got one of the early 9398 and a couple pieces are different. I changed the gearing (swap 2 gears and replaced 2-x2 for front and back) to make it about 5x faster, but it does not crawl anymore. Looks great on display beside the 9398. I am surely glad I built it.

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By in United States,

I don't think we'll ever see a set from Lego using Power Functions that really has any type of performance(speed wise)... Unless it is a small very lightweight vehicle... You can modify the 9398/41999 to make it quicker, but it isn't something that Lego would offer right out of the box because they have to ensure that it is performs without failure...

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By in United Kingdom,

Wow! Thanks Huw! I'm honoured that you don't feel the need to review it after I did, thanks very much.

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By in United Kingdom,

^
i read you're review it's really good, much better then my reviews any way.
though i don't own any technic sets this one looks pretty good,

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By in United States,

I heard this sold out almost immediately. A colleague bought one after it was "sold out." I guess around 3,000 were sent back to LEGO to be re-packaged and then put back for sale, so he picked one up then.

I've never been interested in Technic, although I think I have an old hoverboat from the 90s maybe.

I'm not too upset about not picking this up. The collectibility nature is great, but ultimately I don't have any intention in buying LEGO to sell later. I might make a small profit on some sets, and this one might make a much larger profit, but I like immediate satisfaction when it comes to selling things, so I avoid selling LEGO as much as I can.

Hope everyone enjoys theirs if they open it.

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By in Netherlands,

This is my first Technic set after coming out of my Dark Ages 4 years ago. I must say I really enjoyed building it and think it is a really great set. The speed is a bit disappointing but I guess the low speed makes it a good crawler.

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By in United Kingdom,

There's a brilliant feature on this set found here:

http://brickgarage.blogspot.ru/2013/06/exclusive-review-of-41999-4x4-crawler.html

At the bottom of the page there is a photo of what this set looks like with the largest wheels Lego ever produced. The bigger wheels were found only in the Power Puller and 4x4 Off Roader (circa 2000-2001) and a recent check on bricklink showed them for $111 each! $444 for a set! I borrowed a set off a friend, guess he'll want them back!

It looks much better with the larger wheels as they scale better with the truck and give it a real look of the Bigfoot monster truck.

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By in United States,

Now someone just has to take that body off and put it on a 8070 supercar frame.. if feasible

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By in United States,

This set will go down as the biggest "one that got away" since I started collecting lego again. It was #1 on my have to buy list for 2013, but I got married at the end of July and was in Jamaica on my honeymoon from the day it was released to the day it sold out and never got an opportunity to buy it. I obviously had other things on my mind and it was actually one of the first things I checked when I got home but with the prices this thing is going for I guess it'll just be that set for me...oh well.

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By in United States,

^^
If your marriage doesn't last, you'll be kicking yourself again. J/K....good luck!

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By in United Kingdom,

Four wheel steering is a normal feature of monster trucks.

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By in United States,

I'd love to buy one but$ 500... Definitely one of my favorite Technic sets of all time.

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By in France,

Is there a servo motor in the box ?
I can't manage to get information on this point.

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By in Austria,

What is it with Lego lately and all this limited b..s.... If you are not on the computer 24/7 you'll quite like to miss it. :(

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By in United Kingdom,

^To be fair the competition was launched last October, voting was in January and the winning design was revealed in March. You've had quite a few 24/7s to notice it.
I can't think of anything else they've done that's limited that's not a minifigure or promo give-away either.

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By in United States,

@brclark82 - rumors abound that LEGO Stores might get an additional delivery before September. It's all 3rd hand info, though. Keep up to date via the Forum.

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By in France,

I'm so sad I missed this because I was on holidays :(
Do you know it it would be easy to buy the regular Crawler and build the body of this 41999 from bricks ordered at BL (though in black since the cost of the blue ones seems off the roof!). I've checked briefly the instructions, and the chassis seem to be quite the same (if not identical?).

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By in Gibraltar,

as Lego does not ship to my country I could not order so settled for a 9398 which was an excellent deal NOS on ebay damaged box

My 9398 came with the newer shiny 6-hole wheels - though without the white detail of course - and an almost 50/50 offset on these...

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By in United Kingdom,

^^ I would think that would be perfectly feasible. The chassis is indeed identical.

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By in France,

I've checked the parts that differ between the 41999 and the 9398, ant there is actually quite a lot. It would make a significant investment. That make me angrier given the regular price of the 41999, witch was a bargain compared to the regular (Lego) price of the 41999 (and there is light an another motor !).
Maybe Lego will release a box to build a new 41999-body for the 9398. Let's hope so.
Meanwhile, I'll work on my BL extra parts list to evaluate the cost :)

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By in United Kingdom,

Maybe Cardiff isn't the hotspot for scalping that some Lego stores are, but I picked this set up quite casually, seeing it in there a few days into August and going back a couple of days later to buy it. It wasn't their last one either. It might just be my location, but it doesn't seem quite as rare as some are making out. And as it was a competition winner that was always going to be exclusive, what's so wrong about it being rare and hard to build part sourcing? Was it available online to VIP members too, or am I getting it mixed up with other exclusives?

In terms of the model, half the build is different to 9398 because that was the point of the competition (I believe the only difference to the chassis is the orientation of two "double bush" parts so that the winch can be attached to them). The parts are less common because this has been built in MOC style with panels and filled in sides rather than the usual Technic framework style too. Those things really enhance the set (and make it 100 times better than the gaudy 9398 was!), and there are plenty of sets I admire and appreciate but don't own, so I personally can't see how those things can be all that annoying. After all, it would have been pretty naff if they'd just released an alternative build for 9398, and they could have made it more expensive too!

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By in United States,

Rumor has it they are coming back to the lego stores in the us due to popularity

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