Random set of the day: Metroliner

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Metroliner

Metroliner

©2001 LEGO Group

Today's random set is 10001 Metroliner, released in 2001. It's one of 16 Trains sets produced that year. It contains 782 pieces and 11 minifigs, and its retail price was US$149.

It's owned by 889 Brickset members. If you want to add it to your collection you might find it for sale at BrickLink or eBay.


35 comments on this article

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By in United States,

When LEGO started thinking Amtrak was cool. ;)

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By in United States,

Since when is lego city on top of mammoth cave?

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By in United States,

It's gettin too good...
We're due for a Clikits

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By in Australia,

All of the yes.

As a kid, I was 8 when the 9V train system came into play. I fell in love with the freight engine 4563 (I still have it, and it's still one of my favourite trains. I named all my Lego people, at the time, and 4563 was the only set where I named the train driver after myself) ... but I never really understood the appeal of the Metroliner. Like, I didn't get it.

When I was in college, 10001 came out, and I finally had the chance to buy a Metroliner for myself.

*Now*, I get it. It's beautifully-designed. It has all the wonderful interiors and playability of those gorgeous 80s trains (I love the little bathroom in the main carriage, and the sleeping compartment in the rear locomotive is so cute) and train doors, every carriage actually has doors ... but it also has the beautiful design of a modern train with up-to-date 90s pieces (so you didn't have the wires trailing through the carriages).

With the Metroliner, you really had the best of all the Lego Trains eras, and I love it for that reason.

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By in United States,

We had a set on this exact backdrop show up in the Random Set of the Day not too long ago.

Interesting.

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By in United States,

When I was a kid I didn't collect LEGO train sets, but my dad did so I do have a lot of nostalgia for them in that regard. Metroliner was always one of my favorites (especially with the added Club Car from #4547-1/#10002-1), because its Amtrak-esque look closely tapped into my own firsthand experiences travelling by rail.

In hindsight, it's also AWESOME that this set had such great interior detail even with the inherently cramped space of 6-stud-wide LEGO trains: a cafe in the front, a bathroom and passenger/dining car in the middle, and a sleeper and luggage/bike storage in the rear. It's also neat that they had alternate instructions to rebuild it as a commuter train. I'd love to see this kind of detail in a future LEGO train.

It's not without its faults, of course. The minifigures are rudimentary, as was the norm back then — kinda crazy to realize that it wasn't really until LEGO started picking up licenses that they really introduced more than four different hairstyles for Town sets! And it's also wild to me that both the original and the reissue were close to the same price as today's passenger trains even without adjusting for inflation, but that the transformer/speed controller you actually needed to make it run WASN'T included.

I'm sure that today's City train sets having all the electronic bits included has more to do with the cost of those sorts of electronic components going down than with LEGO having just been stingy back in the 90s and early 2000s, but it certainly makes me realize just how expensive a hobby this was even back then when I wasn't old enough to appreciate how much my parents were spending on some of this stuff…

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By in United States,

If I was in charge of the LEGO group I’d do two things right away. Bring back classic space sets. And put doors back on to the train carriages. Why did they stop doing that?

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By in United States,

I’ve started letting some of my old 9v trains go, but this one and my 2 club cars are in my permanent collection. One of the Lego greats.

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By in Turkey,

This was my favorite train of all time. Sadly, I've never had the chance or the finance to get it. Luckily I didn't miss out on the 10002. It's just a club car but it's okey, still part of the history.

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By in Hungary,

This is very much The Train to me. One day, hopefully...

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By in New Zealand,

I recently sold this set and the club car. Still in boxes (opened) with sealed bags. I still have the original and club car too but that is made up :)

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By in Germany,

"Since when is lego city on top of mammoth cave?"
Since caves don't form overnight, probably since its founding. The earliest attempt to map and expand the cave system was the expedition codenamed "Rock Raiders", in 1999. They found valuable trans-neon green minerals the caves, guarded by rock monsters, so another expedition was launched in 2009 titled "Power Miners", who were equipped with updated gear designed to counter the rock monsters. To their surprise, the monsters have also evolved the meantime though. That expedition must have been nonetheless successful, as in 2012 the gold mine could finally be opened in Lego City, whose employees only had to face some glow in the dark spiders starting in 2018.

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By in Singapore,

I didn't know the Metroliner had an alternate build. I knew that the vast majority of sets from that era had alternate builds, I just assumed that the 9V trains didn't for some reason.

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By in Hungary,

Another train from hell.

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By in Portugal,

Pure gold! Please re-release!

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By in Australia,

I have plenty of LEGO.
This would be the last set I would sell.

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By in Belgium,

This is one of my most wanted sets ever due to its iconic design. Didn't get it when I was a child (with no money) or during 10001's release when I was a teenager (during my Dark Ages and I don't even think it was available in Belgium anyway)… I wish it were rereleased again! The red freight train and the Crocodile-type locomotive are as iconic, too. I always spend a few minutes admiring either when I have the chance of seeing a copy (e.g. at the Lego House).

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By in Australia,

Such an iconic design, I really wish I had one. Damn you dark ages....

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By in United Kingdom,

I never realised this was Amtrak-inspired til it was pointed out very recently. And I've *been* on Amtrak. Twice.

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By in United States,

This is the set that led me to discover Brickset! Somebody had posted it for sale on Craigslist some years ago with links to Brickset for pictures. Fast forward to today and the cycle is now complete.

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By in Russian Federation,

The artwork is sooo trippy.

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By in Portugal,

I love this set so much.

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By in Norway,

”It's one of 16 Trains sets produced that year.” Oh.. <3

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By in Netherlands,

9v train system was amazing.

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By in United States,

@GeordiePaul: If I had to guess, it’s probably a similar reason to why they no longer put doors on most LEGO City cars: because kids tend to put characters in by removing the roofs anyhow. Wit trains there’s the additional factor that omitting doors can mean more room for additional seating.

That said, I miss them somewhat as well. And surprisingly, while most 1x4x5 door elements have been replaced by reversible ones for the 1x4x6 door frames, the train doors appeared in sets as recently as last year (in a new color, no less), so at least that’s not an obstacle to LEGO reintroducing them in actual train sets.

@Chilis_no: In fairness, most of those were “My Own Train” single cars/locomotives and packs of basic bricks for changing the colors of the locomotives. So the overall amount of new train car/engine designs available was not much different than a pair of City train sets might have today.

This piecemeal approach was intended to give buyers more choice, but it sold much more poorly than more complete train sets typically did, to the point that even those same cars and engines were repackaged as more complete train sets in subsequent years.

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By in United States,

I got the original, #4558 in December 1993. I had received a $1500 annual bonus from my job- when my pay was about $8 an hour. About February of 1994, I realized I had spent $900 on LEGO since that bonus, including #4563 and I think #4564 also- maybe that came later. "I spent $900 on LEGO in two months?" Good times!

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By in United States,

Boarding passengers may have to ask: "So there is another stop, where I can get off, before this thing goes back into the volcano, right?" @xboxtravis7992 I always thought Amtrak trains were cool... at least I thought they looked cool. My sis and I rode them a lot as kids, from Portland, OR to Boise, ID!

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By in United Kingdom,

Back when Lego Trains consisted of more than just a new passenger set and freight set every 2/3 years. I miss the old accessories.

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By in Sweden,

With all passenger trains released since the original Metroliner in 1991, it's quite amazing that the only other sets to rival it are Horizon Express and Emerald Night.

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By in United States,

I could wax poetic about this RSotD, but I will save my long-winded ode for when the actual Metroliner, #4558, is featured. As part of the Lego Legends line, it was very cool to see this set return. However, I still couldn't afford it at the time. Once I saw reviews of it, however, I didn't feel too bad about skipping it. Like the Guarded Inn re-release before it, it came in a drab black, white, and grey box. Fine, I guess, but to make matters slightly worse, it was also a big box, and in that transitory period of Lego set packaging, that meant it had the hard cardboard perforations and no other internal organization. It was just a big empty box, and they threw all the tracks, parts bags, and large loose pieces in there willy-nilly. Not very befitting of a "Legend", in my opinion!

Even more damning were the part substitutions. Now, the Guarded Inn was from 1986, and even in 2001, a lot had changed in Lego since then, so I accepted several upgrades (honestly, I was probably ignorant of what changed since I wasn't even alive in 1986 and had no complete Lego sets from that time period in my collection). But the Metroliner came out when I was alive, and in an age where I appreciated the parts selection and set design. With the re-release, they turned some of the printed parts into plain pieces that now required stickers. That was definitely a large mark against it. And I think there were some other part substitutions as well. In retrospect, it wasn't as egregious as later sets in the Legends lineup, but it was the first example I clearly noticed.

That said, I'm glad this re-release existed for a time. It was even more deserving of the "Legends" title than the Guarded Inn before it, and it definitely stayed in my consciousness when over a decade later, I finally had the resources to obtain a MISB 4558.

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By in Serbia,

@Chilis_no exactly what I was thinking...

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By in United States,

The best train Lego has ever made imo.

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By in United Kingdom,

It took me a while to appreciate this set - for me it was the symbol of my beloved 12v system being replaced by something far inferior (and incompatible from a traction and track point of view) and I didn’t want to start all over again and lose my remote points, working signals etc. I was an emotive eight year old :)

28 years on and I’m just about over it.... :)

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By in United Kingdom,

Early 9v (and most 12v) trains were the best trains Lego produced. Makes the current battery powered trains look a little pathetic. Hoizon express and emereld night are notable exceptions.

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