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M151A1 Kit

Academy 1/35 M151A1 Shmira Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review September 2005 Manufacturer Academy
Subject M151A1 Shmira Scale 1/35
Kit Number 13004 Primary Media Styrene and rubber tires
Pros Nicely detailed kit of this multipurpose utility vehicle Cons Nothing noted
Skill Level Basic MSRP (USD) $16.00

First Look


The IDF nickname for the M151A1 is Shmira (guard or observer). This is a very appropriate name for this workhorse as the Shmira has been used extensively by the IDF for roving patrols and forward observation. One of the improvements made to the M151A1 by the IDF was the addition of either a roll bar or a full roll cage to protect the occupants of this heavily loaded vehicle from being crushed in the event of a vehicle roll-over (a common problem for all Jeep-type vehicles from the 1940s to present day). Since the phrase 'unarmed and unafraid' does not apply here, the IDF also added additional weapons mounts and storage racks for a variety of gear needed to extended duty in the field.

This kit is yet another beautiful Academy rendering, comprised of 148 parts molded in tan styrene, 16 parts molded in clear styrene, and five rubber tires. All parts are flash free and also free of those annoying ejector pin marks in areas that would be visible after assembly. The only exception to this is the underside of the chassis/body which would have a few pin marks because it was cast without the usual tree around it. These pin marks are minor and will be easily removed.

As with the full-scale example, the chassis and body are one part. To this one part you'll be attaching a boatload of detail. Under the hood is a fourteen part flathead four-cylinder engine. The part count for the engine does not include the radiator, oil-bath air filter, brake reservoir and other details that are also included. About the only thing you can do to add any detail under the hood is add the ignition wiring, and radiator hoses. The detailing under the chassis is also complete with a detailed drive train and suspension system.

The detailing definitely doesn't stop here. The vehicle is equipped with a command radio, complete with antenna mount on the rear of the vehicle. Pioneering tools are provided as well as a water jug and spare tire. The kit is rounded out with a pair of machine guns on pedestal mounts.

Decals are provided for two different examples:

  • Shmira in Beirut, 1982
  • Shmira in Tel Aviv, 1984

This kit is yet another example of Academy's attention to detail in its armor offerings. This kit is highly recommended!

This kit is highly recommended!

My sincere thanks to MRC for the review sample.