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Kübelwagen & Schwimmwagen Visual History

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Kübelwagen & Schwimmwagen

A visual history of the German Army's multi-purpose vehicles

Ampersand Group via Casemate UK




The Type 82 Kübelwagen was developed from the nascent "People's Car" that Hitler had ordered from Volkswagen once he took power in the early 30s.  It was originally meant to be based on the running gear of what later became the Beetle, but changes had to be made to improve the vehicles handling off tarmac.  It was made simple for utility, and had all stamped body panels for ease of construction and maintenance, plus a 1L air cooled engine in the rear compartment, which was increased in size during the development of the Schwimmwagen.  The amphibious Schwimmwagen was developed for crossing rivers, and had a specially stamped body that improved water-fastness, plus a flip-down propeller at the rear for propulsion.  Both types were built in large numbers, and saw active service in many theatres of WWII.






This book from Ampersand by the prolific David Doyle carries on the format of the Visual History series, with 120 pages of great photos from sources both contemporary and from preserved or restored vehicles that are now in the hands of collectors.  The book contains over 250 photos in total, with many of them large and highly detailed.  The pages are split between the Kübelwagen and the Schwimmwagen with a useful potted history given on both types in the introduction.






While the contemporary photos are in black and white, the preserved examples are photographed in full colour, and the detail in which they are depicted would be an absolute boon to any modeller, especially those wishing to go for ultimate realism.




Whether you have the Beko or Tamiya Kübelwagen, the Tamiya Shwimmwagen in 1:35 or one of the many models in other scales, this book will give you all the reference pictures and some besides, as well as some inspiration for dioramas.


Highly recommended.



Review sample courtesy of


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