Top nine rare Lego cars to collect
Investing in, and indeed collecting cars is a serious business but owing to the price point, is an out-of-reach pursuit for many. Collecting Lego sets on the other hand – be they new or used – is slightly more accessible. People are putting their money where their mouth is now that Lego is widely considered to be a better investment than gold, meaning that a desirable set kept in factory-fresh condition can command huge premiums and yield staggering ROI (return on investment) that wouldn’t look out of place in Warren Buffet’s portfolio.
A natural overlap presents itself then, in the form of premium supercar, classic car and performance car Lego sets from top-drawer automotive manufacturers. With many of these sets representing the very pinnacle of road-going machinery, a concerted effort has been made to ensure they remain as true to life as possible. The resultant attention to detail means they serve as charming accompaniments to their real-world counterparts, should your affinities stretch to both plastic bricks and carbon fibre supercars.
A sealed, as-new set in pristine condition is the holy grail to anyone who knows their onions, but for some of the more exclusive and desirable sets, even an opened example can fetch prices way above their initial RRPs. It also goes without saying that once a model has been officially ‘retired’ from Lego’s product line, that’s when its desirability and potential value become apparent. Here we explore some of the most lucrative models from years past as well as future prospects to snap up whilst they are still available to buy new.
Ferrari F40 (10248)
For those that missed our introduction to, investment case study and farewell F40 articles, we are quite partial to the classic supercar that celebrated 40 years of the prancing horse and its enduring appeal has seamlessly translated into the Lego medium.
At launch in 2015, the 1,158 piece set’s RRP stood at a palatable £74.99, but since production ceased on the final day of 2017, values have shot up to £257 for one in pristine condition and used sets holding at £178. An attractive potential ROI (return on investment) of 242.71 per cent over a near-five year time period and 49.8 per cent annually.
Ferrari F430 Challenge 1:17 (8143)
Although technically the smallest set in this collection at just 690 pieces, it does nothing to hinder its current market values. At the time of its release in late 2007, the F430 Challenge set was sold for a modest £34.99, whereas in today’s market a used model will set you back approximately £61 and – undoubtedly due to its age – a new, sealed one is worth around £205.
A set you can rely on
With a possible total ROI of 485.88 per cent and an annual return of 32.24 per cent, this set has consistently performed for over a decade and a half. Some may remember the trio of challenge cars that were listed for sale at PaddlUp earlier this year.
Enzo Ferrari 1:10 (8653)
Like the F40, the Enzo is part of an illustrious automotive dynasty – the Ferrari big five. Unsurprisingly, a car bearing the name of the fabled Italian marque’s founder carries a significant amount of weight in the real world and once again, that sentiment has the same effect at 1:10 scale.
Past and present values
On the 31st December 2006, this 1,360-piece set was retired making it the elder statesman of the group. That’s done nothing to dispel the remuneration on offer here, age is but a number after all. An initial RRP of £79.99 jumps to £133 for used sets in 2022 but the real money, as ever, is in still-sealed examples with some selling for as much as £730 yielding a total ROI of 812.61 per cent and 51.17 per cent annually.
Porsche 911 GT3 RS (42056)
Another high-performer is the Porsche 911 GT3 RS produced between mid-2016 and the end of 2018. There have been several Porsche Lego sports car models through the years but none have reached the dizzying heights of the 911 GT3 RS.
At 2,704 parts, this set is on the larger side which played its part on the £259.99 RRP, but what’s more impressive in this instance is the spike in value over a comparatively small timeframe. Even used examples are currently selling for £427 on average and sealed boxes can go for £618. If you were to achieve that sale price, an enviable total return could be 137.7 per cent and 35.55 per cent annually.
Lamborghini Sián FKP 37 (42115)
At £389.99, the Lamborghini Sián FKP 37 is the joint-most expensive set (RRP) and that is reflected in its vast 3,696 piece count. This Technic model is approximately 1:8 scale and was launched in June of 2020 to largely positive reception. A total of just 63 Siáns were produced, that limited availability and its status as the most powerful Lamborghini ever made lends itself to a clientele with an appetite for investing in and collecting cars. Only time will tell if the same can be said for this set when its retired on a yet-to-be-announced date.
Ford Mustang (10265)
With the majority of modern Lego sets retiring after three or four years of production, the Ford Mustang’s launch date of March 2019 puts it at prime retirement age. At £149.99, this muscle car recreation is one of the more reasonably priced current big Lego sets and at 1,471 pieces it isn’t too daunting a build either. The accessible price point has the potential to hinder its future value, but that certainly wasn’t the case for the Ferrari sets of the early 2000s. Watch this space in the next six to 12 months.
Bugatti Chiron (42083)
The king of cars, the Bugatti Chiron is something of a yacht for the road, that much is evident in Lego’s interpretation of the £2.5m megacar. Released in mid-2018, the set features 3,599 pieces and is currently for sale at £319.99, that is until the 31st December 2022 when it is officially retired. If the trend is to be believed, this set’s value is due to rise in the used supercar Lego market in the next few years so snapping one up just before it is discontinued could prove inspired.
Ferrari Daytona SP3 (42143)
Having been released in June of this year, the Ferrari Daytona SP3 is not only the newest car on the list but it is also the largest in terms of number of bricks at 3,778. Not only that but it boasts the greatest length at 62cm, although the Chiron and Sián are both considerably wider. A hefty price tag of £389.99 also places it as the joint-most expensive model here but due to its recent launch, it's unlikely to see any huge fluctuations to that value in the near future.
McLaren Formula 1 Race Car (42141)
Although this one isn’t technically a supercar, we couldn’t leave it out due to the intriguing story surrounding its release. Having been on sale for less than 24 hours, the 1,432-piece set sold out everywhere. At a comparably affordable £169.99, the set was a huge hit with the McLaren F1 fanbase. Its prevalent popularity suggests prime candidacy for collecting and investing but having only been released in March of 2022, patience may be key in reaping the rewards of this particular set.