Hobby Boss 1/35 German Pz.Kpfw.III/IV auf Einheitsfahrgestell Kit First Look
|Date of Review||July 2021||Manufacturer||Hobby Boss|
|Subject||German Pz.Kpfw.III/IV auf Einheitsfahrgestell||Scale||1/35|
|Kit Number||80150||Primary Media||Styrene, Photo-Etch|
|Pros||Nice kit||Cons||See text|
|Skill Level||Experienced||MSRP (USD)||$69.99|
In the mid-1930s, the Wehrmacht developed a specification for a pair of medium tanks. The first was the Panzer III, which was to be armed with an anti-tank gun as its main weapon to engage enemy tanks. The second was the Panzer IV, which was designed as a support tank and armed with a howitzer-type main gun for attacking enemy fortifications. As these tanks gained combat experience, improvements were made on the production lines including more powerful main guns. After the Wehrmacht engaged the T-34 medium tank on the Eastern Front, even larger guns were needed, but the Panzer III's turret ring was too small to accommodate a larger turret needed to house larger guns. The Panzer IV's turret ring was larger, so the roles were reversed between the Panzer III and Panzer IV with the latter becoming the anti-tank platform. Production of both tanks and their derivative fighting vehicles continued through the end of the war, but in 1944, a study was conducted to standardize both tank missions onto a common hull/chassis. While a few designs were considered on paper, the production lines for the Panzer III and IV were left uninterrupted through war's end. Similar efforts were applied to other tanks in the Standardpanzer concepts, but fortunately, none of these entered production either.
Here's a new-tool kit from HobbyBoss that adds another German 'paper project' to their product line. The kit is molded in desert tan styrene and presented on eight parts trees (duplicate trees not shown) plus upper and lower hull halves and turret shell, three trees molded in black styrene, one tree of clear parts, and one fret of photo-etched parts. Since this is a kit of a subject that was never built, the model doesn't have the usual stowage, pioneering tools, tow cables, etc., that clutter the average tank, leaving this model looking clean. Also clearly visible are the interlocking armor plate seams that would have made assembly of this vehicle quicker on the factory floor, plus it reveals the thicker armor planned to keep the Panzer III/IV more survivable on the late-war battlefield.
- Among the features and options in this kit:
- Nice wheel and suspension details
- Nice engine exhaust detailing on rear of the hull
- Positionable hatches (no details inside the turret or hull)
- Individual track links
- Clear periscope lenses for commander's cupola
- Armor cover where bow MG would be mounted
- Decals are provided for two notional paint schemes
This is a relatively simple kit that would make a nice display for your prototype/paper project display, and with some additional spare parts, could be made into a 'what if' combat veteran.
If you want an interesting weekend project, this is the Panzer you're looking for...
My sincere thanks to Model Rectifier Corporation for this review sample!