There’s something relaxing about trains. Perhaps because they were the first large scale land vehicle to make the world a vastly smaller space for many people. Whether old fashioned steam trains like the Harry Potter Hogwarts Express, or high speed commuter trains, they all have a special allure. Particularly when they are fresh off the production line and are brand spanking new like this one!
We start building this set with the railway platform. It’s a fairly simple platform but with a couple of nice touches. The rail map shown and the tree give it some character. We’re also introduced to our first two minifigs – Sally and Lucy. Is that their real name, who really knows, but they look like Sally and Lucy to me, so we’re going to run with it. The panniers (side bags) on the bicycle are a nice touch. They’re not yet folded down in the photo below as Lucy was carrying a bit of helium for a balloon animal show she was running later.
The next part of the first couple of bags is to complete the rest of the track. It’s a standard oval track. The track itself is compatible with most other trains made since 2006 so if you’ve got a few others, feel free to go wild! You can also buy spare track including switch tracks from your favourite LEGO store.
I was excited to see once we opened the next packs a splitter cable for the power. One for driving the wheels and another for powering the train lights.
We recently reviewed an aftermarket light set for the Vespa and it’s easy to see why LEGO hasn’t yet deployed them en-masse. The aftermarket set provides a great effect, but it’s dramatically more likely to break and not meet the long term LEGO standards. As you can see from the cables above, they’re quite heavy duty! The front lamps of the train are pushed into 1 x 1 bricks with a hole. The light then travels through the transparent blue cheese graters to great effect.
Very quickly the shape of the main drive cabin takes place. Driver John took the drop-top version for a quick spin but rapidly established that at 300km/h the wind in your hair is a touch too much.
Once the power cables have been routed, you load the power module with the fuel for the journey. In this case, 6 x AAA batteries. Then connect the drive cable and the lights cable and mount the power module.
If you’re like me, as soon as you can you test the electronics. There’s nothing worse than completing the build and then finding out it doesn’t work because you did something wrong. Ok, there’s plenty of things worse than that, but I still like to test early and often. As can be seen, the lights look fantastic.
The overall cabin is very sleek and certainly has the bullet train nose. The battery pack is quite accessible for future fuel re-supplies. The top can be easily opened and the power button is also extended for easy access (shown as the green square).
I’m harping on a bit about the lights, but they are really great. Even in a quite well lit room, there’s a fair mount of light emitted at full power as shown below. You can also step them down to lower power in 10 step increments as required.
Although some LEGO sets utilise the phone based app for control, this set still has the old fashioned physical controller. I’m on the fence whether this is a pro or con. On one hand, it’s 100% more enjoyable using the tactile buttons. On the other, as your LEGO collection grows, you’re likely to pick up quite a few of these and they require their own batteries too. If I were forced to choose, I would elect for the app, but only because LEGO are a company likely to be here for the long term and continue to support it. The sustainability elements win the day for me!
The next carriage starts with a dining segment. I feel like a coffee and hotdog just making it. The hostess has a perfect printed torso including tickets in her pocket. Plus, look at that perm!
Over the last few years, I’ve really noticed a significant effort from LEGO on diversity and inclusion. Whether a wheel chair olympian from series 22, or a wheel chair minifig in this build, it’s fantastic. There’s so many disabled kids who will now get to play with sets and imagine themselves in the action. Kudos to LEGO for this.
The carriage below not only has a space for wheelchairs, but also double doors for easy access.
The finished carriage looks quite spiffy. The roof sections can be easily removed for access to the minifigs and boosted playability. The stickers for dining cart and disability cabin are a nice touch for the set. Like most train sets, you can see the magnetic coupling to attach to other carriages on each end. It does as it says on the tin – let’s you join this cabin to another one.
The final cabin is quite similar to the second cabin albeit with a different layout. This one is predominantly based on seating passengers (and the odd bicycle or two). The build process is almost identical but quite enjoyable. There’s nothing really tedious and the varied colours keep it interesting. I like to think that Lucy might be a LEGO store employee noting the colours on her Torso.
The second and third finished carriage are very similar.
I quite enjoyed building this set. It’s a great addition to the city line of trains. I can’t recall running the previous trains, but at full speed this one goes like the clappers. It feels like it’s on the verge of jumping the tracks. I like it! The minfig inclusions are a nice mix. Colourful, diverse and all part of a great narrative.
If you’re building out a LEGO city of your own, this would be a great addition to power through your CBD.
Set: Express Passenger Train
Set #: 60337
Number of Minifigs: 6
Number of Pieces: 764