Yesterday LEGO revealed 31203: World Map, a buildable display piece that claims the title as the largest LEGO set ever by having the most amount of pieces in the box with 11 695.
Overseas those with deep pockets will be paying €249.99 / $249.99 / £229.99 / AU$399.99 / CA$349.99 depending on their region.
At the time of the reveal we didn’t know what price South Africans would need to pay, and if the set would even be available here. Thankfully the Facebook page of the LEGO Certified Stores South Africa has revealed a price of R4 999.99 and a release date of 1st June.
In terms of how much of a premium we’ll be paying it’s worth looking at the UK price. Aside from being a similar market the UK price includes tax, unlike the US one, making the comparison fairer.
Right now £229.99 converts to around R4 506. For the sake of simplicity let’s just say that local buyers will be paying a R500 premium. Anyone who has ever tried to privately import large items like this will know that the costs can add up quick, so R500 is a lot, but not unexpected.
In terms of value it’s worth remembering that this set is the largest only in terms of number of pieces, not by size or weight. Those 11 695 pieces combine to make something that is akin to a large, thin picture frame and is 104 X 65 centimetres (length X height).
In comparison the largest set available before this one was the 10276: Colosseum. That set is still on sale locally for R9 999.99. The colosseum has far fewer pieces – just 9 036 – but it costs more as the LEGO pieces themselves are larger on average. When assembled it is 52 X 59 X 27 centimetres.
Most of the pieces in the world map are tiny 1X1 tiles which you place manually, like building a picture pixel by pixel. These small pieces use less plastic to make so LEGO can sell the set for less compared to other products that have less pieces that are larger.
You can see more of the set in the gallery. While it makes a nice display piece – and it almost certainly costs less than a fancy piece of art – we’re not too keen on it. This is because the world map is part of the Art LEGO theme. We’ve built a set from this theme before and it’s boring to say the least but, again, the end product is pleasing to look at.