If you're looking for an iconic car to build from Lego Technic, you're not short of options, from the fairly cheap to the very expensive. But in the mid-price tier, the key decision is between the Lego Technic Ferrari 488 vs Lego Technic Porsche 911.
These are absolutely two of the best Lego Technic sets available right now, and walk a very interesting line in terms of balancing complexity with price. They're both large and impressive builds with lots of realistic 'functions' (as Lego calls them) included, but are a fraction of the price of Lego's truly elite Technic cars, the Lamborghini Sian and Bugatti Chiron.
Of course, your decision might just be made because you're a Porsche lover over Ferrari, or vice versa, but if you're on the fence, let's go over what both of these offer.
Don't forget to check out our guides to the best Lego sets overall, as well as the best Star Wars Lego sets.
Lego Ferrari vs Lego Porsche: Price & release date
The Lego Technic Ferrari 488 GTE “AF Corse #51” (as it's technically known) was released on January 1st 2021, and it officially costs £169.99/$169.99/AU$299.99.
The Lego Porsche 911 RSR was released at the end of 2018, and it officially costs £139.99/$149.99/AU$249.99. Of course, you'll often find discounts on both – there's every chance of finding them in our guide to the best Lego deals.
If you're thinking that it feels like there's been a Technic 911 for longer than that, that's because there was, just in a different form. Collect the set(s)!
As mentioned, the prices put these sets right in the middle of the 'Technic cars based on real models' spectrum. You can get the small Lego Chevrolet Corvette or Ducati Pangale bike (I'm counting that as a car, and I'm not sorry) which cost less than half as much as the Ferrari and Porsche
At the top end, you've got the Lego Lamborghini Sián and Lego Bugatti Chiron, which cost twice as much as the cars we're featuring here, though are only a little bigger when built. So what makes the cars we're looking at cheaper? Let's talk about it.
Lego Ferrari vs Lego Porsche: Design & complexity
The impressive thing about both of these models is the number of realistic Technic functions that are included. They both include suspension, working steering, opening doors, an visible engines with pistons that move when the wheels are turning. The Porsche includes a working differential too, which is a little bonus for lovers of mechanisms.
Where these differ from the more expensive Lambo and Bugatti is primarily in the lack of gearbox. Those models include fully-functional multi-speed gearboxes, and those things are complicated. They're a huge number of tiny pieces, and take up a lot of space.
What the Ferrari and Porsche sets do is drop the gearbox, but keep the other functions I've already described above. They're also a little smaller, with both reaching 19 inches long and five inches high when built – the more expensive sets are more like 24 inches long.
So that makes them much cheaper, but also much less complicated to build. The Porsche is actually rated for ages 10+, and Lego specifically mentions it as a great buy for kids with an interest in engineering. The Ferrari is officially rated for age 18+, which is more like the super-complicated models… but we suspect that's being rather ungenerous to the building skill of most teens.
The Porsche is 1,580 pieces and the Ferrari is 1,677, so there's not that much of a difference in that case.
Both offer really impressive-looking end results, including cockpits full of realistic equipment and details. I think the Porsche is my preference of the two aesthetically, but they're both great showpieces.
Lego Ferrari vs Lego Porsche: Verdict
I think that of these two models, I find the Porsche slightly more appealing overall – it's got a slightly lower price, and has a cool differential to build on top of the steering, suspension, engine and so on.
However, the red Ferrari is a red Ferrari, and should never be discounted due to that fact alone. You'll be happy either way, and I think that both of these model tread the line perfectly between being complex Technic builds, and affordable and fun models to put together.