Growing up, I used Legos to build replicas of the cars I loved. Limited in pieces, skill, and patience, they often ended up looking like cartoon cars come to life – mismatched colours, squared proportions, and a wobbly wheel or two. But Lego Technic, a line of plastic rods and parts, takes things a step further. The sets, introduced in 1977, allowed for more elaborate creations, eventually spawning kits such as the iconic Aston Martin DB5 from James Bond, Porsche 911 GT3 RS, and the Bugatti Chiron. But a scaled-down model of the Chiron wasn’t enough for Lego Technic. The company went ahead and built a life-size, drivable version of the Bugatti Chiron made from Lego Technic pieces. The similarities between it and the real thing are striking.
The full-scale model uses over 1 million Lego Technic pieces. The exterior features interconnected triangular segments that make up an outer skin structure, mimicking the shape of the real Chiron. Move inside, and Lego pieces recreate the Chiron’s interior in detail. The dash, seats, and steering wheel are all there. The car features a rear spoiler, speedometer, front and rear lights, and a brake pedal. Development and construction took 13,438 hours.
While the Lego Technic Bugatti Chiron looks cool, it moves under its own power, too. No, it can’t achieve the real Chiron’s 261 mph top speed. The Technic creation comes with 2,304 motors, 4,032 gear wheels, and 2,016 cross axles all sourced from Lego Technic, generating a theoretical 5.3 horsepower and an estimated 67 pound-feet of torque. That propels the 1,500-kilogram Lego Chiron up to just over 12 mph. It’s not supercar speeds, but still impressive.
The Lego Technic Bugatti Chiron is an engineering feat. It’s the first fully-functional self-propelled life-size Lego Technic car ever. It’s also the first non-glued model of such complexity, according to the toy brick builder. There’s no glue residue here. To complete the look, the Lego Chiron comes with real Chiron wheels and emblem.
As Andy Wallace said, the driver behind the wheel of the Lego Chiron and former racing driver, “From about 20 meters away it’s not obvious that you are looking at a Lego car.” We agree.
Gallery: Bugatti Chiron, 1:1 scale Lego Technic model
First Ever Life-Size and Drivable LEGOÆ Technic Bugatti Chiron Is a Pioneering Piece of Engineering and Design
Perfectly recreating the organic design lines of the world’s fastest production car – the iconic Bugatti Chiron – the LEGO Technic life-size model pushes the boundaries of what LEGO builders imagined was possible to build in LEGO elements.
The model is the first large scale movable construction developed using over 1,000,000 LEGO Technic elements and powered exclusively using motors from the LEGO Power Function platform. Packed with 2,304 motors and 4,032 LEGO Technic gear wheels, the engine of this 1.5 tonnes car is generating 5.3 horse power and an estimated torque of 92 Nm.
Lena Dixen, Senior Vice President of Product and Marketing at the LEGO Group said:
“This life-size model is a first of its kind in so many ways and with it, we wanted to push the boundaries of our own imagination. For over 40 years, LEGO Technic has allowed fans of all ages to test their creativity with a building system that challenges them to go beyond just creating new designs, to also engineering new functions. Our Technic designers and the engineers from the Kladno factory in the Czech Republic, the place which also builds the impressive models for LEGO Stores and LEGOLAND parks, have done an amazing job both at recreating the Chiron’s iconic shapes and making it possible to drive this model. It’s a fascinating example of the LEGO Technic building system in action and its potential for creative reinvention.”
A fascinating feat of design and engineering
Seen from a distance side by side, the resemblance of the two cars is striking. Get closer and you will find a fascinating and complex outer ‘skin’ structure, built of interconnected triangular segments made into a LEGO Technic ‘fabric’ designed to mimic the iconic shapes of the original Chiron. Peek inside and discover that every single detail of the original car has been carefully and precisely recreated in LEGO Technic elements – from seats, to dashboard and the steering wheel.
Equipped with a rear spoiler, speedometer, front and back-lights, detachable steering wheel and brake pedal, all fully functional and built of LEGO Technic elements, the model is a dream come true for any LEGO fan. Building it required the use of 339 types of LEGO Technic elements, and over 13,000 work hours of development and construction.
A test drive like no other
Building a one of a kind LEGO Technic life-size car is one part of the task. Testing if it can drive is another. And what better location than the same place where the real Chiron was first tested – Ehra Lessien proving ground in Germany – a unique facility built to handle speed.
One weekend afternoon, the LEGO model took off and accelerated to everyone’s joy and amazement. And while it may not match the original Bugatti Chiron’s mindboggling 420 km/h speed, the LEGO Technic’s power function motors have managed the impressive performance to propel it to a little over 20km/h – ultimately making the ‘Build for Real’ idea truly complete.
Andy Wallace – the driver behind the LEGO Technic Chiron – former racing driver with multiple wins of the 24 Hours of Le Mans and Daytona, as well as many other races, and today official Bugatti pilot, said:
"When I first saw the LEGO Chiron, I was immediately impressed by the accuracy of the model and the minute attention to detail. In fact, from about 20 metres away it’s not obvious that you are looking at a LEGO car. I can only imagine how much time and effort went into making this model."
"Driving the LEGO Chiron was a great experience, which I thoroughly enjoyed. All those years ago I could never have imagined that one day I would actually drive a LEGO car!"
The Chiron is the ultimate super sports car and the latest interpretation of Bugatti’s brand values ‚Art Forme Technique‘. With a power output of 1,500 HP, unprecedented for production vehicles, an exceptionally high torque value of 1,600 Nm between 2,000 and 6,000 rpm and a wide variety of technical innovations, the Chiron sets new standards in every respect. The Chiron is not only designed for maximum speed, but also meets the highest possible demands in terms of luxury, comfort, everyday drivability and durability. The Chiron combines the best in all these areas which makes it the world’s most complete super sports car.
The model is a first of its kind in many ways:
- first fully-functional self-propelled life-size LEGO TECHNIC car
- first non-glued LEGO TECHNIC model of such complexity
- first large model powered using LEGO TECHNIC power function motors
- first large-scale moving model using LEGO TECHNIC bricks & elements
- first time to create new types of transparent LEGO TECHNIC bricks
- first time to create load bearing parts build purely out of LEGO TECHNIC bricks & elements.
…using 58 types of TECHNIC custom-made elements
Facts and numbers:
- Over 1,000,000 LEGO elements in total
- 339 types of LEGO TECHNIC elements used
- No glue used in the assembly
- Total weight: 1500 kg
- 2,304 LEGO Power Function Motors
- 4,032 LEGO TECHNIC gear wheels
- 2,016 LEGO TECHNIC cross axles
- Theoretical performance of 5.3 HP
- Estimated Torque of 92 Nm
- Functional rear spoiler (using both LEGO Power Functions and Pneumatics)
- Functional speedometer built entirely from LEGO TECHNIC elements
- 13,438-man hours used on development and construction
- The model comes with real Bugatti Chiron wheels and emblem