Here's a quick fun fact: LEGO has been partnering with Ferrari for more than 15 years, with more than 50 building sets made during this time. For 2021, LEGO has worked with the Prancing Horse company to produce scaled model of the Ferrari 488 GTE "AF Corse #51" race car. The new Technic model consists of 1,677 pieces, is almost half a meter in length, retails for S$279.90 and is available for purchase now since the start of this month from all the usual retailers like LEGO's LazMall store, Shopee and Toys"R"Us.
As with a lot of Technic modeled car sets, the sequence to building the Ferrari 488 GTE is purposely made similar to how the real car is assembled in the factory. In this case, you build engine first. It's also here that you realise the the pistons in the engine "pumps" up and down to the wheels movements.
Stickers...and loads of them! The set comes with two enormous sticker sheets that contains a jaw-dropping 61 stickers in total. I can't recall the last time I've come across a LEGO Technic, or a LEGO set for that matter, that comes with so many stickers. Unfortunately, since the real Ferrari 488 GTS is an endurance race car and for the sake of accuracy, is necessary. Surprisingly though, in my 5-6 hours of building it, I've never found sticking them a chore.
Once you've built the engine, that's where the fun begins in my opinion - building the car chassis around it. The build is straight-forward, although I did end up with a couple of slip-ups: aligning a pin set to a hole incorrectly, or not aligning the front wheel axel before adding on the steering wheel. It's here you also get to see the exorbitant amount of stickers fixed on.
It's not just the fake V8 engine and functioning steering, but the Ferrari 488 GTE also features fully independent suspensions on each wheels.
The interior of the car has a measure of accuracy to the real Ferrari car - check out the Prancing Horse logo. The stickers here really do make this part of the car pop up more, and add the right details to give it a sense of realism.
The set also comes with a limited number of rubber parts, which will be bended later on to mimick the contours of the real Ferarri's windshield frame, roof sides and even the engine bar. You'll see it in a bit.
Many hours and stickers later, and you will find a very nice LEGO Technic Ferrari 488 GTE. Quite possibly the best looking one in years too. It looks spectacular under studio lighting, but equally good sitting on a table, shelf or inside a display cabinet with the rest of your LEGO Technic supercar sets.
Here's a look at the interior again, with the set fully built. I could have done better by correctly aligning the steer axel to the wheel while still in the early part of the building process. The end result is a steering wheel that isn't aligned with the wheels.
Here's a look at the engine compartment. I absolutely love the details and the contours around it.
The bottom of the set surprised me, actually. During the whole building process and even upon completion, I'd never thought or realise that the undercarriage is largely hollow. Or 'empty', if you will. I would imagine some of the the more imaginative LEGO builders would find a way to integrate a LEGO motor into the large space just at the front of the rear wheels.
The rear of the has some fairly high details too - note the exhaust pipes, bumper fins and the spoiler. The OCD in me cringed at the gaps that the separate stickers leave in between though. It's unfortunate that panels throughout the model have gaps in between, but the gaps between the stickers in the rear here just seems more obvious.
Here's a closer look at the front of the model.
LEGO Technic has launched some very interesting, adult-focused, collectable sets in the past few months including the Lamborghini Sian. Some LEGO Technic models can look awkward and would do better as a Creator set, but what I've liked about these sets designs is that they have always been refreshing. The LEGO Technic 42125 Ferrari 488 GTE “AF Corse #51” may not have the lush, premium aura of the LEGO Technic 42115 Technic Lamborghini Sián FKP 37, but it is still huge and detailed enough to be a collectable without hurting your wallet too much.