Question: How do you make LEGO vehicles even cooler?
Answer: Make it movable through motors and remote control.
As a kid, I always had a love for remote control cars. I was quite lucky to be given quite a few different RC cars by my parents. Some of the RC cars were from brands such as Tamiya and Nikko.
When I saw that LEGO was going to release the 4×4 Crawler 9398, I was really excited. Now I could combine my love for RC cars with LEGO!
As I dig a little deeper, it turns out this is not the first time LEGO has created an RC car. There are other sets such as the discontinued LEGO Technic Motorised Excavator 8043. It comes with one of the most number of power functions and movement controls ever in a LEGO set.
There was also a line called LEGO Racers. Some sets in this theme are the Track Turbo RC 8183 and Twin X-treme RC 8184 released in 2009. These were smaller sets that are almost minifigure scale. However, the steering mechanism was not very well sorted out. The car could only move forward or back at a single speed. Also, the steering was either full left or full right.
LEGO has really improved their RC cars with the release of the 4×4 Crawler 9398. This set comes with a new servo motor to enable better control and steering. The front wheels can now easily return to centre with this new part.
The overall body of the truck comes in black and white pieces which may look weird if stickers are not applied. There are also plenty of red technic pieces for the chassis. I’m not a big fan of the two tone body and would probably look for some black colour pieces to replace the white body panels.
A friend who also bought this set had the same comments. In fact he also did not like the red pieces for the chassis but as there are a lot of them, it would be very expensive had hard to replace them.
The scale of this set is similar to another LEGO Technic set called the Mercedes Benz Unimog U400 8110. This set actually has a nicer body. It is one of the flagship LEGO technic sets with over 2000 pieces. It is a great looking model but unfortunately, the LEGO power functions included only control movement such as the liftarm at the rear truck bed. You can’t drive the truck around using remote control.
I think it would be a fantastic idea to buy both models and combine it together. And I’m not the only one who thinks so. Here’s a video of someone else who has done it.
As with most LEGO technic models, there is an official alternative build. The set can also be built into a 4×4 Off Road Truck. It is a european style truck with the cab over the front wheels. I personally prefer this body style although the model becomes too heavy in the front and a little unbalanced. I have come across people who dislike the model B build but I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinion. The instructions for the alternative model B build is available for download on the lego website.
The LEGO Technic 4×4 Crawler 9398 is a fantastic attempt by LEGO to create an RC car. The improved steering and new servo motors make it a great set to purchase just for all the power functions alone. As with the beauty of LEGO, the parts are modular and can be combined with other sets to create new models.
Year Released: 2012
Retail Price: $199.99