Review: NASA Mars Perseverance Rover (42158)

Review: NASA Mars Perseverance Rover (42158)

I’m a big fan of the NASA theme, but I’m not a big fan of the Technic theme. Therefore, when I had the opportunity to write this review, it turned out to be a challenge for me and keep that in mind, as I am not a great expert on this topic.
But I have to admit, that only with Technic is it possible to build details with movement like the ones we will find here.

Review: NASA Mars Perseverance Rover (42158)

This rover is not the first to be made by NASA, nor is it the first to be made in LEGO. We already had the IDEAS 21104 NASA Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover set, which I am pleased to have in my collection, but it is the first to be made in the Technic theme.

The rover pictured here is the Mars Perseverance (also known as “Percy”), launched by NASA in 2020 and arrived at Mars in 2021 to continue exploring this planet.

This LEGO Rover, like its predecessor, has 6 wheels, but the size is much larger, which will allow for much more detail and movement. They are about 32 cm long and 15 cm wide, and their precision is magnificent (I confess that it is much bigger than I thought). In fact, all the main aspects are represented here, such as the various cameras, sensors and other instruments, the power source at the rear, the robotic arm and, of course, the wheels and legs (known as rocker bogies).

Review: NASA Mars Perseverance Rover (42158)

But the set is not limited to the Rover, as we also have a small helicopter, called Ingenuity (also known by its nickname Ginny), which despite being a smaller construction, has several well-designed details.

Once assembled, it doesn’t have to be just a set to display, as there’s so much to tinker with, play with and learn from.

At the top of the set we have a lever, with 2 functions. When it is moved backwards, it causes the front and rear wheels to turn inwards to allow the rover to move in place in a circle. When we change the lever forward, it is possible to steer it from side to side. Undoubtedly, an interesting mechanism.

Review: NASA Mars Perseverance Rover (42158)

If we put some obstacles, we can see that the construction is impressive and very realistic, being easy to overcome these obstacles (without exaggerating, as in the original).

Then we have another function, in the front area, where we find the robotic arm. I thought it was smart to place the controls on this arm at the back, as it makes it easier to use. However, the movements are limited, being able to remove the Rover’s arm and raise or lower, but it is not possible to move the front part without being manually (and it takes some strength for this movement).

While being a Technic set, it is not as difficult to build as other models, but it is not a model for beginners. Despite this, I believe that many, after seeing or reading the reviews, get excited and buy the set, even if they don’t like Technic.
This set also has another feature, which is not exclusive to this set, yet few use it, which is the use of the Technic AR app.

Review: NASA Mars Perseverance Rover (42158)

After installing the app, we choose the set, and we have to place it on a flat surface with a lot of light. Then just follow the steps. When the scan is done well, some options appear, such as watching videos about the Rover or being able to simulate that the Rover is on Mars and use several of the characteristics that the Rover has. Funny, very educational, but without a magnificent result.

Review: NASA Mars Perseverance Rover (42158)

Undoubtedly, an excellent set, not only for exhibition, but for education (not only through construction, but also through the use of the app) and also for playing. But I confess that this is not where I’m going to surrender to Technic.

Value and Parts

The set has 1,132 pieces and is priced at €94.99, £84.99 or $99.99 / €94.99. Not being an exclusive set for sale at LEGO, several promotions should soon start appearing on different websites, which will allow you to lower the cost of this set.
I’m sure that many, like me, who are not Technic fans will have their first Technic set in their collection.

  • Unboxing – 7/10
  • Easy to build – 6/10
  • Aesthetics – 9/10
  • Playability – 10/10
  • Minifigures – NA
  • Collectible – 10/10
  • Parts – 7/10
  • Price – 9/10





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