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KV-85 Russian Heavy Tank

Bronco Models 1/35 KV-85 Russian Heavy Tank Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review March 2015 Manufacturer Bronco Models
Subject KV-85 Russian Heavy Tank Scale 1/35
Kit Number 35110 Primary Media Styrene, Photo-Etch
Pros Exquisite details Cons Nothing noted
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $70.00

First Look

KV-85 Russian Heavy Tank
KV-85 Russian Heavy Tank
KV-85 Russian Heavy Tank
KV-85 Russian Heavy Tank

While the T-34 was the primary medium battle tank of the Soviet Army during World War II, the Kliment-Voroshilov (KV) tank series were developed as the heavy tank (equivalent to the German Tiger). Like the T-34, the early KV tanks were armed with a 76mm main gun, but the gun had limited success against the Panther and even less effectiveness against the Tiger. The KV series were found not to be any more effective than the T-34, but a limited number KV-1S tanks were produced with a new turret and an 85mm main gun based upon the 52-K anti-aircraft gun (similar to the German's use of the infamous 88mm FlaK gun in the Tiger) and designated as KV-85. This same 85mm gun would arm the highly successful T-34/85. The KV-85 was only an interim solution while the KV engineers designed the Josef Stalin series heavy tanks.

Bronco Models has released this new-tool kit of the KV-85 and looks like a very nice kit. Molded in green styrene, this kit is presented on 20 parts trees plus a separate lower hull, 33 trees molded in rust-colored styrene, and one fret of photo-etched parts.

Some key features of this kit are:

  • Detailed suspension and road wheels
  • Individual track links with two track pins per link
  • Detailed driver's station
  • Positionable driver's viewport
  • Detailed machine gun in bow gunner's station
  • Detailed engine
  • Positionable engine compartment cover
  • Detailed 85mm main gun viewable through open turret hatches
  • Coaxial machine gun
  • Ball-mounted machine gun in turret rear
  • Positionable turret hatches

The instructions are well-illustrated and walk you through the assembly and painting of this kit. Marking options include:

  • KV-85, 283, unit unknown, Russian Front, 1944
  • KV-85, 31, unit unknown, captured in Ukraine, Nov 1943
  • KV-85, 5225, 1452 SP Gun Regt, Crimea, April 1944
  • KV-85, captured and reused by German Army, 1944

This is a nicely detailed kit with the basics provided inside the turret and hull though more details will need to be added to bring this tank to life. The engine compartment is a nice plus which provides another nice superdetailing opportunity. Some modelers may find the three-piece track link assembly a bit cumbersome but you can glue the links together and still achieve the realistic track sag over the return rollers. Aside from the track, assembly of this kit should be straightforward and enjoyable without the over-engineering found in similar kits.

My sincere thanks to DML for this review sample!