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Technic is one of LEGO’s longest-running product lines dedicated to experienced LEGO builders who enjoy constructing machines and vehicles. In this LEGO McLaren Senna GTR 42123 review, I will take you through the nuts and bolts of this LEGO Technic set and help you decide if you should make it your next LEGO project.
This set has been on the market since 2020, and it’s already established as one of the most affordable LEGO Technic models that offer an entertaining and slightly challenging set construction experience.
Unlike sets from the LEGO Speed Champions theme, the McLaren Sena GTR 42123 lets you build a realistic replica of a rare luxury sports car. Our guide to the best LEGO Ferrari sets can help you discover some of the most popular LEGO models inspired by vehicles manufactured by this Italian carmaker.
Bottom Line Up Front
McLaren Senna GTR 42123 is an excellent entry-level LEGO Technic set for builders who would like to improve their set-building skills. However, you might find this model underwhelming if you’re an experienced LEGO builder.
The Nitty-gritty of the LEGO McLaren Senna GTR 42123 Set
LEGO published the McLaren Senna GTR 42123 set on January 1, 2021. The set was released at the same time as Ferrari 488 GTE ‘AF Course #51’ 42125 and Jeep Wrangler 42122 models. It contains 830 pieces, and it is recommended for children aged ten or older.
It contains the pieces you need to construct a 1:15 replica of a hypercar named after the legendary Formula 1 driver Ayrton Senna. This collectible set is currently still in production, and you can order it from the LEGO website or purchase it in a LEGO-certified store.
However, this model will be discontinued by the end of 2022, but the company still hasn’t released the set’s exit date. Please browse through our guide to the best LEGO Porsche sets to discover some of the best models inspired by Porsche cars from Technic, Creator Expert, and Speed Champions themes.
Packaging and Building Instructions
McLaren Senna GTR arrives in a standard box for a LEGO set of its size. The front end of the box features a hypercar’s photo from an unflattering angle, so you may not be able to recognize it at first.
The box’s bottom side contains several pictures of the LEGO model, including an image that offers basic information about the vehicle’s engine and its maximum speed. The contents of the McLaren Senna GTA 42123 set include three bags of pieces, a sticker sheet, and a leaflet containing building instructions.
The leaflet doesn’t offer much information about the hypercar since it features just one page dedicated to the vehicle that provides facts similar to those you can find on the box. The building instructions are clear and easy to follow since each step of the process is illustrated.
Please read our guide to the best LEGO Corvette sets if you’re looking for a LEGO set inspired by this iconic car.
An Overview of the Set’s Pieces
This hypercar’s model is composed of a combination of LEGO Technic and System bricks, but none of the 830 pieces are exclusive to this set. However, the set contains an abundance of blue panels that can be useful for DIY LEGO projects.
In addition, the set features a blue version of 1×3 panel element, the Jeep Wrangler 42122 contains the yellow version of this piece, while the Ferrari 488 GTE ‘AF Course #51’ 42125 comes with black and red variants of this part. The McLaren Senna GTR model also has blue flexible axles.
The front tires measure 43.2 x 14 mm, and they’re smaller than the rear wheels with standard dimensions. Besides the panels and tires, this set doesn’t include other noteworthy pieces.
Please go through our guide to the best LEGO trucks for more information about sets that enable you to build different types of toy trucks.
The Assembly Process
The construction takes place in three phases. It starts with assembling the toy’s chassis and its V8 engine with moving pistons. You’ll notice that the rear axle doesn’t have a differential as only one wheel is placed on the 90-degree gear transmission.
You’ll have to complete the wheel axles, the engine, and the chassis before moving to the second stage of the assembly process, which focuses mainly on the car’s rear end. During this phase, you’ll construct the anti-wing, attach multiple panels and apply stickers to them.
The sticker sheet contains 45 stickers which means that every 18th piece in this set has a sticker. Their purpose is to increase the level of detail and make this McLaren replica more realistic.
The hypercar’s cockpit, steering system, doors, hood, and bumpers are constructed during the final stage of the assembly process. The knob located on the car’s roof can be used for steering. The fully assembled model is 12 inches long, 4 inches wide, and 3 inches tall.
The toy doesn’t have the rollback function or remote control options. Check out our guide to the best LEGO monster trucks to learn more about LEGO sets based on different monster truck models.
A Look at the Finished LEGO McLaren Senna GTR Model
Although relatively spacious, the car’s interior isn’t impressive. The most remarkable detail of the vehicle’s interior is the steering wheel positioned at an angle to the seats since more complex models like the Ferrari 488 GTE’ AF Course #51′ 42125 don’t have this feature.
Placing a Minifigure inside the McLaren Senna GTR isn’t possible. The cockpit doesn’t have a dashboard or any other details that would make it more interesting. The car’s exterior is far more attractive than its interior as its level of detail is striking.
Like the original, the McLaren Senna GTR replica doesn’t have suspension, which leaves almost no space between the wheel arches and the wheels. The doors feature hinges positioned at an angle, enabling you to open them effortlessly.
The black spoiler decorated with the original branding dominates the rear end of the hypercar. In contrast, the vehicle’s front end has headlights composed of translucent System parts instead of sticker headlights commonly featured in similar LEGO Technic sets.
I think that the McLaren Senna GTR’s exterior more than makes up for its underwhelming interior. Please read our guide to the best LEGO fire trucks if you’re interested in getting a firefighter-themed LEGO set.
The Set’s Playability
In my opinion, the LEGO McLaren Senna GTR 42123 is a display set. This doesn’t mean that you can’t play with the toy car you build, but rather that you won’t have a lot of play options at your disposal.
Like all other LEGO Technic sets, this model doesn’t contain accessories or Minifigures, which further narrows the range of play scenarios you can develop. However, the assembled toy is stable, and it won’t come apart if you use it to stage races with other vehicles from this theme.
On the other hand, its sleek exterior and high level of detail make it a perfect addition to a LEGO display shelf. You can also combine it with other LEGO Technic models in the same price range and create a collection of luxury sports cars.
Our guide to the best LEGO sets of all time can help you discover some of the most sought-after sets from major LEGO themes.
Price and Value
The McLaren Senna GTR 42123 set is reasonably priced. The LEGO Technic theme has only four models in this price range, which makes this set one of the theme’s most affordable options.
Moreover, the 42123 set has an excellent value for the money because it offers a rewarding construction experience. This model is collectible, and its market value will likely increase once it is retired.
Hence, buying this set is an excellent investment, especially if you get it at its current price or purchase it at a discount. Also, the McLaren Senna GTR 42123 is more than three times less expensive than the recently released McLaren Formula 1 Race Car 42141, although it has 600 pieces fewer than the new LEGO Technic model.
Please go through our guide to the biggest LEGO sets if you’re searching for a set with more than 2,000 pieces.
Pros and Cons of the LEGO McLaren Senna GTR 42123 Set
- An accurate replica of the LEGO McLaren Senna GTR hypercar
- Fun construction process
- Sturdy, stable, and stylish design
- The toy car features authentic details
- It’s one of the most affordable LEGO Technic sets
- This set is collectible
- It doesn’t offer a lot of play options
- The building guide doesn’t provide a lot of information about the vehicle
- An experienced LEGO builder can construct this set in a few hours
The Best Alternatives to the LEGO McLaren Senna GTR 42123 Set
The Technic theme doesn’t have a lot of sets in the same price range as the McLaren Senna GTR model. However, finding an alternative with similar or more advanced features shouldn’t be too difficult, especially if you’re considering models that cost more than $100.
Keep in mind that almost all LEGO Technic sets with more than 1,000 pieces cost more than $100. I’ve shortlisted a few sets from this theme you should consider if you’re searching for an alternative to the McLaren Senna GTR 42123 model.
Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 42138
LEGO released the Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 42138 set at the start of 2022, and the early reviews are wonderful. The set has 544 pieces, nearly 300 less than the McLaren Senna GTR 42123, but both models have the same price despite this.
Assembling the racecar toy doesn’t take more than a few hours, and a relatively low piece count makes it a perfect fit for young LEGO fans. The toy has a pullback function that allows children to stage races, it is AR compatible, and you can use it on virtual racetracks.
Besides being fun to play with, the Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 is also a beautiful display piece.
Formula E Porsche 99X Electric 42137
Children aged nine or older can construct the Formula E Porsche 99X Electric 42137 set by themselves even if they don’t have a lot of set-building experience. The building instructions are simple, and each step is illustrated, but the leaflet doesn’t offer much information about this Formula E car.
The toy has two pullback motors, and it is AR compatible. Children can scan the car with the LEGO® Techinc™ AR app and use the pullback function to control how fast it moves in the virtual space.
The assembled model is 12 inches long, and it has a sturdy design that guarantees the toy won’t fall apart during a race.
Ferrari 488 GTE ‘AF Course #51’ 42125
The Ferrari 488 GTE ‘AF Course #51’ 42125 set has 1,677 pieces, and it is several times more expensive than the McLaren Senna GTR. The assembled toy is 19 inches long, 8.5 inches wide, and five inches tall. It has a V8 engine, front, and end suspension, opening doors, and a highly detailed interior.
Although the steering wheel isn’t positioned at an angle with the driver’s seat, you can still access it easily and use it to steer the car. The leaflet with building instructions also contains information about the vehicle and the AF Course team.
Frequently Asked Questions about LEGO McLaren Senna GTR 42123 Set
Question: Does LEGO Produce Spare Parts for the McLaren Senna GTR 42123 Set?
Answer: Yes, you can order replacement pieces for this set from the manufacturer’s website.
Question: Are there Any Other McLaren Sets in the Technic Theme?
Answer: At the moment, the McLaren Formula 1 Race Car 42141 and McLaren Senna GTR 42123 are the only LEGO Technic sets featuring McLaren vehicles.
Question: Is the McLaren Senna GTR 42123 Set AR Compatible?
Answer: This set isn’t compatible with AR apps, and you can’t use this toy car on virtual racetracks.
Question: How to Move the Engine’s Pistons?
Answer: All you have to do to move the V8 engine’s pistons and the crankshaft is push the car.
Unlike most LEGO sets in its price range, the McLaren Senna GTR 42123 set challenges the builder during the construction process. Its framework is rudimentary, but the toy’s body is composed of several highly detailed sub-assemblies that can be difficult to complete.
The result is a beautiful display model of a rare luxury hypercar that offers plenty of value for its price. It doesn’t provide a lot of play options, but you can combine it with other similarly priced LEGO Technic sets to extend its playability.
In my opinion, this set is an equally good choice for a novice LEGO builder and an expert collector of LEGO Technic sets. Was this LEGO McLaren Senna GTR4213 review useful?
Please share your opinions about this set in the comments or continue reading our Diagon Ally review to find out what makes this set so popular.