The Best Performing LEGO Sets of 2020
13th May 2022
In a previous article we presented the most profitable sets that retired in 2021, and in this article, we follow that up by taking a look at those sets that left shelves at the end of 2020. In our analysis, we looked at the average sale price on Bricklink over the last 6 months. To increase the accuracy of this analysis, we only included sets which had sold more than once in that time. However, this resulted in only two sets being excluded.
A total of 208 sets retired at the end of 2020, of which, 64 are now selling for more than their RRP. For five themes, 100% of the sets that retired now see a profit. These were: Architecture, Ideas, Jurassic World, MINDSTORMS, and Seasonal (Chinese New Year). Here is a rundown of the ten most profitable sets.
Top Ten Performing Sets
10. (10252) Volkswagen Beetle
RRP: £74.99 / $99.99 / €87.72
Percentage increase: 120.16%
It's not surprising that this set has proved popular amongst collectors, given the cult status of this car across the US and Europe. Many LEGO fans may also have fond memories of driving, or being driven in, a Beetle. The Creator Expert range of cars are nicely designed and attractively priced, with this set being no exception. Subsequently, other Creator Expert cars have performed well in the value stakes, so future models may be a good investment bet.
9. (75938) T-rex vs Dino-Mech Battle
RRP: £74.99 / $99.99 / €87.72
Percentage increase: 120.19%
You can see why this set was a favourite of 2020. For starters, it features the slightly ridiculous, but very fun concept, of a mechanical dinosaur battling a T-Rex. Dinosaur figures have also long proven popular, and this T-Rex has one of the best colour schemes in our opinion. In addition, there are a handful of baby dinosaurs and bats in this set, which are useful for any MOC builds.
8. (71713) Empire Dragon
RRP: £24.99 / $29.99 / €29.23
Percentage increase: 120.68%
The NINJAGO theme was given us a whole horde of dragons over the years, some good, some evil. Most look great and the one in this set maintains that tradition. The Unagami villain minifigure in this set is also highly original and impressive. What drives the price up of many sets post-retirement is compatibility and tie-ins with previous sets. This set fulfils that criteria as it provides another dragon to add to the other collection of dragons many NINJAGO fans will certainly have. Other NINJAGO dragons could be worth purchasing, such as the newly announced Lloyd’s Golden Ultra Dragon (71774) that looks as impressive as it sounds!
7. (70437) Mystery Castle
RRP: £89.99 / $99.99 / €97.47
Percentage increase: 122.65%
A decent LEGO castle will sell like hot cakes, and while this one is definitely not the best, it still now sells for 40% more than its original RRP. The set features some nice elements that would prove useful for any castle themed MOC. On the basis of this, the currently available Medieval Castle (31120) may be worth purchasing, albeit that Creator sets don’t normally perform that well on the aftermarket.
6. (76113) Spider-Man Bike Rescue
RRP: £19.99 / $19.99 / €24.36
Percentage increase: 126.39%
This set has some great minifigures, which goes some way to explaining its price increase. It contains the best iteration of Carnage and a very nice Miles Morales Spiderman. Spidey is also many people’s favourite superhero, with the most recent movie release, No Way Home, being a huge box office success. We’ve seen these smaller Marvel sets performing well in other years, so they’re well worth considering, especially if they include exclusive minifigures of popular Marvel character.
5. (21047) Las Vegas
RRP: £34.99 / $39.99 / €38.98
Percentage increase: 126.96%
Las Vegas has many unusual standout buildings, so it was just asking to be depicted in an Architecture set. We especially like the inclusion of the Luxor hotel and casino building with its giant sphinx. You’ll usually find an Architecture set in the top ten most profitable sets of any given year. For many they will make for excellent souvenirs and mementos of a city break to display. This set is actually a redesign, as the original contained the Mandalay Bay Hotel, but it was replaced by the Bellagio due to the Las Vegas shooting in 2017. Only a handful of the original made it onto shelves, which is why it's now one of the rarest LEGO sets ever.
4. (41372) Stephanie’s Gymnastics Show
RRP: £24.99 / $29.99 / €29.23
Percentage increase: 128.75%
This set’s presence in the top ten list is a turn up for the books. The Friend’s theme is aimed at the young female audience, which is fair to say is not the typical demographic of a LEGO collector. The set also doesn’t contain any special elements so it’s anyone’s guess as to why it now sells for just over 40% more than its RRP.
3. (40351) Halloween Ghost
RRP: £9.99 / $9.99 / €9.99
Percentage increase: 143.97%
The desirability of BrickHeadz and Seasonal sets is something we’ve seen in other years. Given that this set falls under both those categories, it’s not surprising it’s the third most profitable set that retired in 2020.
2. (21145) The Skull Arena
RRP: £19.99 / $19.99 / €19.49
Percentage increase: 147.26%
Our analysis showed that the majority of Minecraft sets we waved goodbye to in 2020 have ended up appreciating in value. The most wanted in this theme is the Skull Arena that now has an impressive average sale price 50% more than its RRP. The popularity of the video game, and the accuracy with which it can be recreated in LEGO form, could explain why these sets have performed well on the aftermarket. This suggests that other sets based on popular video games, such as Sonic the Hedgehog – Green Hill Zone (21331) and the newly released Horizon Forbidden West: Tallneck (76989) could be worth adding to your basket.
1. (10260) Downtown Diner
RRP: £129.99 / $169.99 / €146.21
Percentage increase: 168.82%
Any serious aspiring LEGO city architect is going to have a couple of streets of modular buildings as the backbone to their settlement. Their interconnectivity allows for easy construction and makes any new modular releases highly craved by anyone that already has some. Compatibility is certainly a feature that we would look out for when picking investment sets. The retro look of the Downtown Diner also sets it apart and makes it one of the better modulars.
Top Performing Themes of 2020
Once again, we also looked at each theme as a whole, to find which were most profitable and which should be avoided. Leading the way is Architecture, Creator Expert, and Minecraft, all of which had a set in the top ten list.
What’s surprising is that Star Wars sits mid-table, with the theme’s sets as a whole selling less now then when they were on shelves. We’re accustomed to seeing eye watering prices for many retired UCS sets on eBay and Bricklink, so it just goes to show that not everything from a galaxy far, far away is a hit with LEGO collectors.
Bottom of the pile is Trolls World Tour and DOTS, which nearly all AFOLs are not going to have any interest in, given their junior appeal. It should be noted that some themes only saw one set retiring, so the values below may not be representative of a theme’s popularity.
|Theme||Average Set Value (Percentage of RRP)|
|Seasonal (Chinese New Year)||115.79%|
|Batman / DC||108.07|
|Toy Story 4||77.24%|
|Trolls World Tour||55.91%|
We hope this arms you with the knowledge to pick out some good investment sets. If you are looking to pick up some minifigures too, be sure to check out our article on how to store them.
Disclaimer: This article or any others on brickranker.com should not be considered financial advice and investing in LEGO is risky.
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