Legos are used to build some amazing things. More than just a toy, people construct life size, realistic objects using nothing more than skill and imagination. However, when the artist builds a lifelike object with realistic movements, like this Chevy 454 V8 and transmission, that's next-level stuff.
The creation of Evan Koblentz, the Chevy 454 V8 was not assembled from a kit but from Expert Builder series Lego parts from the 1970s and 1980s. It consists of at least several thousand pieces and, at four-feel long, is nearly life-sized and weighs about 40 pounds. Koblentz says it took him "one pandemic" to build it, and he chose the Chevy 454 because it was the kind of engine you'd see in a car of that period, like a Corvette or Chevelle SS.
In addition to the vintage Legos used, what's most impressive about this model is the precision movement. The engine has a working crankshaft, valves, rocker arms, camshaft, and pistons. It includes lights to simulate sparkplug ignition, with the blinking controlled by an 8-bit Lazer 128 computer from the 1980s running programs in BASIC.
Koblentz finished the engine build in 2022 and took it to Brickworld Chicago, which is one of the biggest Lego conventions in the US. The Chevy 454 V8 engine was nominated for an award in the Best Mechanical category but didn't win. He then added a working four-speed transmission, complete with reverse, a clutch, and a shifter, and took it back to Brickworld Chicago 2023. This time he took home the win for the Best Mechanical category.
The Chevy 454 was introduced in 1970 as a replacement for the 427 V8. In addition to the Chevrolet Corvette and Chevelle SS, it was used in the Caprice, El Camino, and Monte Carlo before being phased out at the end of the 1975 model year due to tightening fuel economy and emissions regulations. It briefly returned in the 1980s and 1990s and was installed in General Motors trucks of that era, including the Chevy SS 454 muscle truck.