The box and contents
Unfortunately, our review copy was banged up somewhat in transit, nevertheless, you can still see that the box because of this set is pretty sharp looking with the “Adult Collector” styling, this means an ordinary black background, prominent logos, and a mandatory 18+ age rating. (I’d guess a genuine age requirement of this set will be nearer to 10+, as there’s nothing super complex about the build.) What’s missing is any kind of “Ultimate Collector Series” (UCS) messaging. While LEGO has currently only applied that term to Star Wars-themed sets, many collectors view sets such as this and the recent 76139 Batmobile to be UCS-equivalents. To be fair, this set lacks some “standard” UCS features just like a display plaque and related exclusive minifigures, so maybe leaving that marketing off is way better.
On the trunk, you can easier see that here is the version of the ECTO-1 from the Ghostbusters: Afterlife movie. There are always a handful of stills from the trailer, plus a few insets revealing the real-world play top features of the set. The primary focus, though, continues to be on the automobile itself, this time around seen from a rear angle.
In the box are 23 numbered bags, grouped across 12 building steps. There’s also an unnumbered bag containing the tires and other larger elements.
The instruction book and sticker sheet are protected from damage by a white cardboard envelope. The manual is ideal bound and 312 pages long. In a great twist, the cover art calls back again to classic automotive owner’s manuals, instead of revealing another product shot. The trunk cover gets the Ghostbusters logo and also one for General Motors, pointing out that set can be a accredited product for the GM brand. Interestingly, that logo isn’t strongly featured on the outer packaging, only turning up in the legal-ese blurbs on underneath of the box.
While this set does contain printed parts, the sticker sheet can be pretty big. And repetitive. The ECTO-1 in the Afterlife movie has apparently been sitting idle for a long time and has gathered a whole lot of rust for the reason that time. I wasn’t very impressed with these “rust” stickers – all the four patterns is duplicated often, leading to a fairly cookie-cutter look. Since they’re just stickers, it could have been nice for each and every rust patch to get a slightly different shape. Alternatively, these are stickers rather than printed parts, so if you wish to just leave the rust off and also have a “freshly painted” ECTO-1, you can.
A lot of the set features relatively common parts, but here are a few rare and new gems. Quarter-panel domes in dark blue-grey were a great new surprise, and the Technic shock absorber has only appeared previously in the 42107 Ducati Panigale V4 R. There’s are also a somewhat uncommon 1×2 dashed-arrow tile, and a new/updated Proton-pack print on a 2×2 round tile.
Other new printed parts include this siren-grille on a 2×2 boat tile and a fresh hubcap design on 3×3 Technic discs.
Additionally, there are two new parts in this set: a fresh tyre and a 6×14 curved windscreen. The guts hub of the tyre gets the same dimensions as a collection of two 2×2 round plates with axle hole, with the rim extending out a 5-stud width. The rim itself uses the typical bar diameter, meaning you can attach stuff to it using standard LEGO clips. Hopefully, we’ll see both these again, as they feel just like super useful factors for custom car building.
The ultimate new printed component I needed to call focus on is something sure to be always a hit with Ghostbusters fans: a 1×4 logo brick. The set includes three of these, built into leading and rear doors.
The chassis for the ECTO-1 is quite durable and stands up well to handling. Technic gearing is built-into the build in early stages, and drives several action features.
First up may be the steering functionality. This will eventually be installed to both the tyre in the cab, and to be able to be turned from a knob on the top rack.
The next little bit of building intrigue begins with this chair, positioned in the heart of the car. Included in the back of it really is a proton pack, featuring that new printed 2×2 round tile.
As observed in the trailer, that is a “gunner’s chair” that swings out from the car. Pressing on a portion of the car’s exterior pushes the chair out while spinning it around. The action here’s smooth and didn’t jam on me at all. However, putting the chair back to the automobile isn’t as clean, as we’ll see down the road.
The next few parts of the build likewise have some Technic-complexities to them, but overall the instructions are obvious and simple to follow. The inside details certainly are a little sparse, plus some are obviously made to hide the Technic mechanisms. Peering closely at the movie trailer stills, everything you can see of the inside of the automobile matches up pretty much overall.
Another action feature is this drop-away ramp behind the automobile. While building, it had been better to manipulate the chair to see things doing his thing, but after the build is performed, you pull a lever on the other hand. In the shot below, you can even see that there’s a crate labeled “R. T. V.” An instant little bit of internet sleuthing reveals that means “Remote Trap Vehicle,” coincidentally the next component of the action feature. Again, we’ll reach that in a bit.
Externally, things are needs to get together. (Despite my sloppy early-stage building here.) The license plate is a sticker on a 2×4 tile, which is sort of a bummer. This might have made a good printed part, as I could never get the stickers on correctly straight.
Moving along, the doors make the look of them. Only three of these open, as the fourth hides the trap door mechanics above. The yellow railings inside doors will be utilized later as connection points for the windows and interior details.
The door hinges use some interesting hinge construction that people saw previously in the 10265 Ford Mustang. This keeps the doors from swinging open too wide, and makes the model feel somewhat more real-world accurate consequently.