When thinking back, it seems that most of the time, Lego Town's racing subtheme featured a so-called "dragster" - a racing car with an elongated front.

This impression is corroborated by checking the actual sets: Brickset list

While I did not check for how long each of these "dragster" sets was produced/sold, if we assume a medium set lifespan (in the catalogue) of some 3 years, the succession of release years (1983, 1986, 1989, 1993, 1997, 1999, 2000, 2006, 2017) indicates at least until the beginning of the 21st century, there was at least one dragster set available at almost any time.

Now, I am not a car racing buff at all, so maybe I am missing something. Yet, while I have seen my share of car racing scenes on TV, and plenty of racing cars in museums of technology, I do not think I have ever encountered a "dragster" in real life. Therefore, my perception is that in the real world, dragsters must be an extremely exotic kind of vehicle.

Is there any known reason for why dragsters seem to be so overrepresented in Lego's town sets compared to other elements of the real world? (Or is it indeed my perception that is skewed, because dragster are indeed common sights a part of this planet's car racing subculture, and Lego is simply replicating that part of the world?)

  • If you want to find an ant, visit an art hill. Hang around professional drag strips and you'll see plenty of dragsters. They are not that exotic, having been around since the 1950s. But that is a super-expensive type of racing so you might not see too many at smaller drag strips. – Raindog Mar 31 '17 at 14:35
  • 1
    Presumably they were popular with kids in their market research? They're very swooshable. Three of these sets have either a wind-back motor or manual launch system, an extra gimmick to make these sets more attrative, it's possible dragsters were chosen as they are more stable at high speed and suited to be launched? – Ambo100 Mar 31 '17 at 15:13
  • Drag racing is a popular sport all over the world. I think OP will find the Wikipedia page on drag racing very interesting as it goes through the history of drag racing on every continent. The bottom line is this: "The history of automobiles and motorcycles being used for drag racing is nearly as long as the history of motorized vehicles themselves, and has taken the form of both illegal street racing, and as an organized and regulated motorsport." Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drag_racing – TheBrickBlogger Mar 31 '17 at 15:22
  • 1
    This isn't really SF&F, and both site and community cultures vary. It could be as simple as "Kids love dragsters and they are simple to build" or they sell well. – Journeyman Geek Apr 1 '17 at 22:04
  • 1
    I'm not sure how we can give "the concrete, actual answer" unless we have access to TLGs research or marketing teams to know why they have found dragsters so marketable. They do like them though, LEGOLand Windsor includes a drag strip in its Miniland, and my kid had the creator set that builds a bike, dragster and something else and the dragster is still complete. My other thought was that steering is tricky at 4-6 studs, and dragsters don't steer, so they suit the medium well. – Zhaph - Ben Duguid Apr 7 '17 at 7:38

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.