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VCL Light Amphibious Tank A4E12 Royal Netherlands East Indies Army

Combat Armour Models 1/35 VCL Light Amphibious Tank A4E12 Royal Netherlands East Indies Army Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review May 2015 Manufacturer Combat Armour Models
Subject VCL Light Amphibious Tank A4E12 Royal Netherlands East Indies Army Scale 1/35
Kit Number 35003 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-Etch
Pros New tooling, photo etch detailing Cons None
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $54.95

First Look

VCL Light Amphibious Tank A4E12 Royal Netherlands East Indies Army Kit
VCL Light Amphibious Tank A4E12 Royal Netherlands East Indies Army Kit

The British armor company Vickers-Carden-Loyd (VCL) developed an experimental amphibious tank in the early 1930s which was armed with a Vickers .303 machine gun in a turret and was manned by a crew of two. While the British Army did not acquire the tank, a number of them were sold abroad including China, Thailand, the Dutch East Indies and the USSR. Soviet engineers reverse-engineered their tanks to create the amphibious T-37A. A number of the A4E12 tanks were acquired by the Royal East Indies Army to provide support in the ongoing guerrilla war and were used unsuccessfully to defend against the Japanese invasion in 1941.

Combat Armour Models has released their second kit which replicates the VCL A4E12 in Royal East Indies Army service. The kit is molded in light gray styrene and presented on four parts trees plus a small fret of photo-etched parts.

Some key features of this kit are:

  • Simple interior with seating for two crew
  • Detailed Vickers machine gun in turret
  • Positionable ventilation/pistol ports at rear of turret
  • Positionable crew hatches
  • Detailed propulsion thruster

The instructions are very well illustrated and will be easy to follow. Left, right and front profiles are provided for the Royal East Indies Army colors. Paints callouts are based upon GSI Creos colors (Mr. Hobby/Mr. Color)

This is a distinctive bit of history in this kit being the only VCL-produced tank to see combat (briefly) in World War II. As with the full-scale example, the kit is simple should pose no challenges to the experienced modeler.

Thanks to Dragon Models USA for the review sample.

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