Academy 1/35 Warrior MCV 'Iraq 2003' Kit First Look
|Date of Review||May 2004||Manufacturer||Academy|
|Subject||Warrior MCV 'Iraq 2003'||Scale||1/35|
|Kit Number||13201||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Nicely detailed exterior, updated armor included||Cons||No interior|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$38.00|
The Warrior Mechanized Combat Vehicle (MCV) was developed in the mid-1970s by GKN Defence. Designed as the next generation combat vehicle for the British Army, the Warrior was actually a parallel development to the US-made Bradely. With all of the developmental problems that the US was having with the Bradley, the Warrior was the only available solution with over 1,000 produced.
Construction was welded aluminium, similar to the US M113, making the vehicle light enough to be transportable on the RAF Hercules. With the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Warrior would not enter its own until Operation Desert Storm. Upgraded with applique armour, no Warriors were lost to enemy fire (though two were destroyed in a friendly fire incident with an A-10 firing Maverick missiles at the vehicles).
Improvements to the Warrior continued as experience was gained in peace-keeping operations such as Bosnia in the mid-1990s and more recently in Iraq. As with any successful combat vehicle in military service, the Warrior has been adapted and/or modified to serve other missions such as artiller observer, recovery vehicle, and command vehicle (with additional radios).
The kit is molded in tan styrene and features well-executed details on the exterior, including bolt heads. Supplied on six trees (the duplicate wheel and vehicle suspension tree was not imaged), the kit provides loads of separate details that would be found pre-molded on the hull and turret with other manufacturers, including individual grab irons/tie-downs, tow cables, positionable crew hatches, periscopes, and stowage baskets.
Another notable feature of this kit is the lower hull. The kit was designed from the beginning to be a static display model, so you won't find left-over holes that need filling from a motorized version.
One of the new features provided in this release is the additional bolt-on armor applique that increases the survivability of the vehicle over the stock aluminium hull. For the Iraqi Freedom version, the kit also provides the Combat Identification Panels (the louvered-looking things mounted all around US, UK and allied combat vehicles).
The nicely detailed turret also includes a rear stowage basket that uses a sheet of flexible material to represent the wire mesh sides and bottom of the basket.
The only down side to this kit is with all of the great detailing outside, there is no interior provided. With all of the crew hatches being positionable, including the rear compartment door, it is a shame that the vehicle can't be posed open. While this does leave room for an aftermarket company to come along with an interior, this is the second release of the Warrior kit and I am not aware of any interior options (yet).
Markings are provided for two Warriors:
- Warrior, 38KG40, British Army, IFOR, Bosnia, 1995
- Warrior, British Army, Iraq, 2003
This is the second issue of the Warrior kit from Academy, but this time the vehicle has been updated to represent the configuration that is seeing action in Iraq! Even with the additional parts, construction of this kit is quick and straightforward. This kit is recommended!
My sincere thanks to MRC for this review sample!