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Laffly(f) Typ V15T (35573) 1:35


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Laffly(f) Typ V15T (35573)

1:35 ICM via Hannants Ltd




The Laffly V15T was a particularly niche entry into the French Artillery Tractor roster, with only 100 being made before production ceased at Laffly to be taken over by another company.  The type saw limited service in the French army pulling the outmoded 25mm anti-tank guns, and after capitulation, in service with the Wehrmacht as transport or radio wagons, where they bore the suffix (f) to denote their French origin.  The unusual aspect of this vehicle was the four apparently ‘vestigial’ wheels on axles spurring off the chassis rails that were intended to increase the off-road abilities of the type.  When viewed from the side however, the small balloon-wheels appear to be above the level of the main axles, so whether this actually worked anywhere but in the deepest ruts is a mystery.  We don’t see them on modern vehicles, so I’m guessing they were more trouble than they were worth.



The Kit

This is a reboxing of a brand-new tool from ICM, and I was not wrong when I imagined we’d be seeing a few more boxings, and that’s no bad thing.  It’s typical of modern ICM in that it is well-stocked with detail, and arrives in their standard compact top-opening box with captive inner lid. There are seven sprues of grey styrene inside, plus a clear sprue, four flexible black tyres, a small decal sheet and the glossy-covered instruction booklet with spot colour and colour profiles to the rear.  It’s a full interior kit including engine, chassis and crew compartment, so there are plenty of parts to get your glue on.










Construction begins with the chassis, with an option to remove the rounded rear-end where the towing hitch attaches, which is cut off easily with a scalpel or razor saw using the red outlined section on the drawings as a guide.  A number of cross-braces are added, and a jig is placed under the inverted chassis onto which the rear suspension arms are laid, so that they set up at the correct angle, taking care not to glue the arms to the jig.  If you have left the rear section on the chassis, the towing eye and other parts are glued in place, then the various leaf springs, ancillary axles and other suspension/steering parts are attached to the sides, with a sizeable transfer box and twin drive-shafts placed in the centre facing aft.  The front axles are made up and glued in place with twin springs above them on the chassis, two more drive-shafts pointing forward, and more suspension/steering parts for the small wheels.  The little balloon tyres are each made from two halves each, and four are created to affix to the small axles that project from the chassis rails, the front one of which has some limited steering capability.


The 4-cylinder 2.3L petrol engine is next to be built, beginning with the two-part block and adding the sump, timing pulleys, transmission, exhaust manifold and finely-moulded cooling fan, plus other ancillaries that should result in a highly detailed rendition that just needs some HT-wires and sympathetic painting to complete.  It is laid into the centre-front of the chassis along with the airbox and intake hosing, then is bracketed by a pair of tapered inserts that fill the gap between the block and the chassis rails.  The main cab is based on the shaped floorpan, with sides, aft bulkhead and some internal structures added along the way, which later form ammunition storage bunkers around the sides of the rear portion.  The front crew have a seat each with separate backs, and there is another optional wider seat in the middle of the rear compartment, which installs over a moulded clamshell door with pull-handles.  A set of driver controls are added to the left front of the body, then a firewall with pedals, a breadbin-like compartment and other small parts is fixed to the front of the body, with a steering column and wheel added after the bodyshell is fixed to the chassis.  The dashboard with dial decal is added over the wheel, and the area is covered over with a curved scuttle panel.  In the rear compartment, the tops to the stowage boxes are fitted, and these have the individual sections and their handles moulded-in.


Returning to the engine compartment, the steering column is extended into the lower chassis and a horn is fixed to the trim panels, then the three-part radiator is assembled and glued to the front of the vehicle, defining the engine bay.  A loop of hosing joins the radiator to the engine, and the cowling panels are closed over the compartment, although you have the option to leave them open if you wish.  Some small parts are added to the lower edges of the cowlings, which has crisply detailed louvers moulded-in.  A pair of curved front wings are glued to the lower body over the wheels, and each of the four main wheels have a brake drum part added to the end of each axle, after which the wheels themselves are made from two hub halves that mate inside the hollow tyres and glue to the axles, allowing the vehicle to stand on its own wheels.  At the rear, an axe and shovel are fixed to the bulkhead with a stop sign and the towing hook, a folded tilt is added to the rear, and the windscreen is made up from a frame and two individual clear panes.  A trio of rolled-up canvas anti-splatter covers are pinned to the fronts of the door apertures and the two headlights have their clear lenses glued on before they are put in place on their mounts next to the tiny wheels at the front.  The final parts are a front number plate board and an optional square unit plaque on the left front wing.




There are three varied markings options provided on the decal sheet, one more than the original boxing, and they’re painted in differing shades, depending on where they were based and the prevailing colours at the time.  From the box you can build one of the following:


  • Unknown Unit, 1941
  • 931st Assault Gun Division, France, Mobile Brigade (West), 1943
  • Mobile Brigade (West) France, 1943






The decals are printed by ICM’s usual partners, and consist of dials, number plates and a few other small decals, with good register, sharpness and good solid colours.



Until the first boxing of this kit arrived, I had no clue that the type existed, and it’s a curious-looking beast that’s endearing for its unusual shape and design.  Detail is excellent, and if you didn’t fancy the options on the sheet of the original kit, these alternative schemes are a lot more interesting, and you have to love those weird vestigial wheels.


Highly recommended.


Available in the UK from importers H G Hannants Ltd.



Review sample courtesy of


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