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Shar2

Le.gl.Einheits-Pkw (Kfz-1). 1:35

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Le.gl.Einheits-Pkw (Kfz-1)

ICM 1:35

boxart.jpg

 

After 1933, Germany began to build a modern army. The light off-road passenger car was built by the BMW-Werk Eisenach under the designation BMW 325, as well as Hanomag (Typ 20 B) and Stoewer  . The vehicles were used as troop carriers (Kfz. 1), by repair-and-maintenance squads (Kfz. 2/40), by artillery reconnaissance sonic measurement squads (Kfz. 3) and by troop-level aerial defence (Kfz. 4). Almost 13,000 units were built. Between 1940 and 1943, only Stoewer continued to build the R 200 Spezial without the four-wheel steering (Typ 40). The cars weighed 1,775 kg empty (1,700 kg without the four-wheel steering). 90% of all military branches rejected the vehicle as "unfit for wartime service" in a 1942 enquiry, while the much simpler, lighter and cheaper Volkswagen Kübelwagen proved to be far superior in basically every respect.

 

The Model

The model arrives in the usual sturdy box with a separate top sleeve with a nice artist’s representation of the vehicle on the front. Inside, within a large poly bag, are four sprues of light grey styrene, a small decal sheet and, in a separate poly bag, one clear sprue.  On initial inspection the parts are really well moulded, clean, with no sign of flash.  There are a number of moulding pips, some of which are on quite fragile looking parts, so care should be taken when removing.  The sprue gates attaching items like the exhaust are also quite heavy and I can see these parts breaking if you’re not careful. 

 

The build is actually one of ICM’s easiest having seen many of their earlier releases which seemed to include everything separately. In this case the chassis and much of the suspension bracketry is provided as one complete moulding to which a three piece V shaped crossbeam is added to the centre section followed by its floor pan, and then four bump stops at each corner. Two spring mouldings are then added to their respective mounting plates and the steering rack fitted to the front axle mount. The lower wishbones, also single mouldings for front and rear are attached, along with the front and rear differentials and axles, which are made up from four parts. The upper suspension arms are fitted, as are the drop links, four stowage boxes and the exhaust pipe.

 

spruea.jpg

 

sprueb.jpg

 

spruec.jpg

 

clear.jpg

 

Strangely, the main drive shaft is fitted before the engine, which is a lovely little model in itself. Consisting of the main block split vertically, the cylinder head and support cradle are glued into place, before the two piece bell housing and four piece gearbox are attached. The engine is further detailed with the fitting of the ancillaries, such as starter motor, alternator, filter and manifolds. With the fitting of the drive belts and fan the engine is fitted into place between the main drive shaft and the front differential, before the air filter and exhaust section which attaches to the main pipe work already attached to the chassis.

 

The main section of floor pan, which also includes the rear mudguards is also a single piece moulding, the underside of which is fitted with the three piece fuel tank, skid pan, fuel filler pipe and a rear reflector. This section is then glued to the chassis and the each of the three piece wheels are fitted to their respective axles. The two piece radiator is then glued into position, when construction moves to the interior, with the fitting of the front and rear bulkheads. The front bulkhead is fitted with the instrument binnacle, cross beam, and grab handle, as well as the foot pedals and steering column. The cabin sides are then attached, as well as the three piece bonnet, which, unfortunately has not been moulded so that the engine can be seen.  If the modeller wishes to reveal the engine, then quite a bit of careful surgery will be required. To the rear the boot section is attached, as are the roof hinge supports, while in the front the gear stick is fitted. Each of the seats, two singles at the front and a bench seat in the rear as assembled and glued into place, as are the front mud guards. The rear of the bench seat is glued into place along with the two rifles and their stowage supports, at the front of the vehicle the three piece bumper assembly is attached.

 

There are two more rifles fitted, one per side in the front cabin and the four doors assembled and fitted either open or closed. The windscreen is made up from three parts and attached to the front bulkhead.  The rear bumpers, one for each quarter are made up form three parts, with the left hand unit fitted with number and unit id plates, while the left unit is fitted with a rear light. The completed bumpers are glued into position, followed by the two piece spare wheel and four piece folded roof, there being no option to have the roof raised. The build is completed with the addition of allteh lights, windscreen wipers, rear view mirrors, a spade and a pair of three piece Jerry cans.

 

Decals

The small decal sheet contains registration numbers for four vehicles and along with unit ID insignia. The four vehicles are all painted in the overall tank grey, with Field Grey roof canvas.  The vehicles blonged to the following units:-

 

  • Le.gl.Einheits-Pkw (Kfz-1), 16th Panzer Division, River Don area, June 1942
  • Le.gl.Einheits-Pkw (Kfz-1), 11th Panzer Division Ukraine, July 1941
  • Le.gl.Einheits-Pkw (Kfz-1), Panzergruppe 1 Keist, Ukraine, July 1941
  • Le.gl.Einheits-Pkw (Kfz-1), 1/JG51, Stary Bykhov, Belorussia, July 1941

 

 

decals.jpg

 

Conclusion

It’s good to see these rather unusual vehicles being released. They may not have had the starring roles, or even a glittering career, but they can be just as interesting. I’d never heard of this vehicle before receiving the review sample. Will look just as great with some troops in a diorama or on its own in a collection.

Review sample courtesy of logo.gif

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Looking at the glazed sprue, it appears to contain windows for a raised roof, but one is not included?

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That is correct, which is rather strange. :shrug:

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