For my next Summer 2023 LEGO City review, we head into the suburbs with 60398 Family House and Electric Car, which features a modern home design that’s perfect if you need a home for your minifigures to live in.
Like the rest of the Summer 2023 LEGO City theme, the set benefits from a modernised take on LEGO City, and the contemporary residential architecture, as well as colours make for one of the most aesthetically-pleasing City dwellings I’ve ever built, but the set’s incredibly high price of US$59.99 / AU$84.99 / £46.99 raises a lot of questions about housing affordability in LEGO City.
Let’s take a quick look at 60398 Family House and Electric Car which is available now in the UK, EU and Australia, and will be available in the US from 1 August onwards.
Who is this set for? LEGO fans wanting a modern home design to add to their City.
Special thanks to LEGO for sending these sets over for this review.
60398 Family House and Electric Car Set Details
Set number: 60398
Set name: Family House and Electric Car
Retail Price: US$59.99 / AU$84.99 / £46.99 / €52,99
Release Date: 1 June 2023 (EU, AU, UK) / 1 August 2023 (US & Canada)
Set Designer: Aaron Newman (@aaronbrickdesigner)
The set features a small family with a mother, father, and young boy. It’s a young family, and they also have a cute German Shepherd puppy as the family pet.
The minifigures are fairly standard, although I do like the young boy’s stegosaurus shirt. Interestingly, the boy also has a hearing aid printed on his head, which is cool if you don’t own one. The mother’s braided hairstyle is also quite uncommon, and it’s great to see more diverse hairstyles make their way into LEGO City.
The house design features contemporary architecture styles, incorporating lots of timber into the facade, as well as a classic pitched roof.
There’s a covered garage, a small pathway leading to the main entrance, and even a small football goal and football for the boy to kick around a ball.
The colours of the build are very aesthetically-pleasing, and I especially love the contrast of the dark blue roof with the white upper level, and brown frame, which is punctuated by plenty of greenery.
The proportions, and just how compact everything is does reflect modern architectural standards in more densely populated metropolitan areas, where house blocks are becoming smaller, but there’s a nice balance incorporating greenery too.
The Family House also very subtly incorporates a LEGO City roadplate, which is used for the garage driveway!
One of the key standout features of the Family House is this black conservatory, which you can attach to the front of the house, or detach and serve as a standalone greenhouse. The black steel frame contrasts very starkly against the rest of the house in a really nice way, and I really like how it just elevates the entire house.
Befitting modern trends, this Family House is as green as they come, with solar panels on the roof.
And an EV car-charging port in the garage. Looks like Octan Energy is also joining the transition to green energy, with a different coloured version of their iconic logo.
Here’s a look at the electric car, which comes in a standard 4-wide Town configuration. It’s is still pretty familiar, and when I saw the EV-charging port, I was hopeful to see a more modernised vehicle, the design still looks pretty typical to LEGO City and Town cars.
I really wished they had included a frunk (front trunk) for the car to differentiate from other vehicles and be more in-line with contemporary EV-design!
LEGO City car number plates typically have the set number, and a nod to the designer. The letters AN are reference to the designer’s initials – Aaron Newman, whom you might remember as a contestant on LEGO Masters US Season 1!
Here’s a look at the back of the house, which has an open doll-house design for easy access.
The roof also opens up, which allows for easy access to the rooms.
Here’s a look at the interiors of the Conservatory, which has some crates of freshly harvested carrots, and a thriving tomato tree. There’s even a dining table here for the family to eat.
There’s a simple but modern toilet, and also a photo of a surfing green turtle, which is likely a nod to 60377 Explorer Diving Boat which includes a new turtle!
And here’s a look at the kitchen, which includes an induction stove, some water and dog food for their puppy. You also get a sense of the family’s interest by the stickers on the fridge, with a drawing of the family house, a dinosaurs (kid must be dino-obsessed), and some letters and a football.
The heading upstairs, the rooms are pretty simple and minimalist, with a large double bed for the parents. There’s very little space for decorations, but I do like the shelves and plants on them.
The kid has a single bed, a lava lamp next to it, and of course, his very own TV to play video games on it. Lucky kid! I wish I had a widescreen TV mounted to my wall in my bedroom when I was that age!
What I liked:
- A pleasant idyllic single family home, modernised for sustainability
- Great combination of colours
- One of the nicest compact home designs
What I didn’t like:
- Reflective of house prices today – super expensive
- EV has no frunk
60398 Family House and Electric Car is a really frustrating set to review, because I really love the design and what LEGO are trying to achieve with the set.
It incorporates some of the best use of colour and contemporary home design to craft something that’s familiar and a huge leap in terms of LEGO City house architecture.
The modern Family House is a shining example of the glow-up that LEGO City has undergone, and it’s a really practical take on modern living, with a focus on minimalism, and sustainability. For younger kids, it’s a great message to send where you generate electricity through solar panels, to charge your EV and also grow and eat your own vegetables.
Where it completely falls over is the price, which gave me a bit of a shock when I realised that it’s a US$60 / AU$85 set, which feels so bizarrely exorbitant for a 462-piece LEGO City set.
It gets even worse, when you place it side by side with a comparable 31139 Cosy House, a Creator 3-in-1 that only came out 3 months ago. They’re both the same price, but Cosy House comes with almost double the number of pieces.
I’m not sure what LEGO’s Marketing team are thinking here with this, as it all but assures that families are going to skip over the set because of just how expensive it is.
There’s probably a cruel joke in here about how the price in the new LEGO City has reflected the unsustainable increase in house prices all across the developed world, but I’m just disappointed in the price as this is a really good LEGO City set.
Let’s make another comparison, just to illustrate just how overpriced this set is. It’s the same price as 43217 Up House, a licensed Disney set with exclusive minifigures AND a custom Dug dog mould, that has 130 more pieces.
I’m just flabbergasted that LEGO would think this is a good idea and that fans wouldn’t notice.
We very rarely get standalone residential buildings in LEGO City, so it’s always a treat when we get new ones, and I really wanted to like 60398 Family House and Electric Car. I do like the design, but am just so disappointed with the price.
Build  – A fun LEGO City build that features very considered architecture and use of colour
Real Value  – One of the worst-priced LEGO City sets
Innovation  – Great use of colours, and I like the sustainability focus and modern design
Coolness  – One of the best designed LEGO City Houses that’s fit for what modern kids expect
Keepability  – It’s compact size makes this easy to display and can easily slot into your LEGO City
Rating and score: 3/5 ★★★✰✰
Thanks so much for reading my review of 60398 Family House and Electric Car! The set will be released on 1 June in Australia, the UK and EU, and 1 August for North America.
What do you think of the 60398 Family House and Electric Car’s design, and most importantly, how LEGO have priced this? What would be a fair price?
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