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  • Set Year: 1978
  • Set Number: 854
  • Set Parts: 206
  • Set Price: 39.75
  • Building Instruction: No
  • Currency: Guilders
854 - Go-Kart
854 - Go-Kart

In its year of introduction this set was priced 39.75 guilders in the Netherlands.

Set 854 was released under the "Technical Set" series in 1978 in Europe.  It finally made it to the US in 1979 with the number 948 as an "Expert Builder" set.  This go cart features  steering using a rack and pinion system, a single cylinder reciprocating engine driven from one rear wheel, and dual rear wheels on each side.  Traditional studded construction is used almost exclusively, with the steering wheel supported by axles and connectors. This was the first of many go carts from LEGO®.

Previously, the piston element had only been used in the biggest set, the 853 Auto Chassis, but now was available on a small, inexpensive set.  This was the first set to feature hoses which, while not functional at this time, made the engine look more realistic.  Later go carts would not really get much more complicated, but would use more specialized parts to achieve their functionality, and would put more emphasis on styling.




Main model



The front wheels can be steered using a wheel at the driver's position. The wheel drives an axle connected to an 8 tooth pinion gear via a universal joint. The pinion drives a rack. The steering mechanism itself uses 6 traditional 2x2 swivels with 2 pair allowing rotation of the wheels about the vertical axis and another pair acting as control arms attached to the rack gears. Simple axles allow the wheels to rotate freely.


The single cylinder engine uses the offset axle holes of the 24 tooth gears to make a crankshaft. Connectors placed end to end and clocked 90 degrees form rods which connect to a specialized 2x2 square piston. The "cylinder" is actually square. The engine also has a number of aesthetic features such as cooling fins (suggesting this engine is air cooled) and new hose elements which could potentially represent water cooling lines, vacuum lines, or even spark plug wires. The engine is driven off of a set of 24 and 8 tooth gears attached to the left rear wheel, giving the engine a ratio 3:1 with respect to the wheels.

Wheels and Tires


This set contains 6 sets of wheels and tires of type:

  • Black Tire 17 x 43.
  • Light Gray Wheel with Split Axle Hole.

By Technicopedia