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SU-100 Kit

Tamiya 1/25 SU-100 Tank Destroyer Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin


Date of Review August 2010 Manufacturer Tamiya
Subject SU-100 Tank Destroyer Scale 1/25
Kit Number 25104 Primary Media Styrene
Pros Simple build, nice exterior details Cons No interior
Skill Level Basic MSRP (USD) $88.00

First Look

SU-100 Kit
SU-100 Kit
SU-100 Kit
SU-100 Kit
SU-100 Kit
SU-100 Kit

The SU-100 entered production in 1944 as the Soviet's ultimate self-propelled anti-tank gun. This weapon was essentially the T-34/85 chassis with a 100mm D-10S gun sticking out of the front of the hull. The D-10S could penetrate up to 139mm of armor at a range of 2 kilometers.

Powered by a 12 cylinder diesel engine, the SU-100 could move its 31.6 tons up to 50 kph. With this level of mobility, armor and firepower, the SU-100 would routinely go cat hunting (Panthers, Tigers, etc.) and would serve in many countries after WW2 well into the 1960s.

Tamiya started a new trend some years ago with their 1/25th scale armor series. While it didn't catch on like 1/35th scale, Tamiya didn produce some interesting subjects including a Germain Tiger with some interior details, a Centurion Mk.III with a full interior, this SU-100, and a T-34/85. Academy responded witha Panther Ausf.G and Jagdpanther. The Tamiya kits were originally produced a few decades ago, so detailing isn't up to today's standards, but with the size and ease of assembly, the average modeler can have some fun with this project, and the AMS modeler has a nice basis for some serious scratchbuilding in the crew and engine compartments.

The kit is molded in dark green styrene and presented on five parts trees plus separately provided upper and lower hull halves. A bag of individual track links are also provided and these snap together so nicely that you wish something similar was more widely available in 1/35 scale.

Unline the Tiger and Centurion kits, the T-34 and this SU-100 are exterior-only models. A crew figure is provided should you want to pose the commander's hatch open, but you won't have anything else to see inside the hull unless you do a bit of work.

The kit shows its roots with the lower hull of the T-34/85 as well as a similar rear engine deck. The torsion arms are set up to articulate so the vehicle will pose nicely on flat surfaces as well as going over obstacles. The snap track will articulate nicely with the road wheels and provide that hard-to-replicate sagging track under certain load conditions.

While the pioneering tools are not molded onto the surface of the hull (thank you), they are molded in subassemblies so you might want to see about tweaking these details to add some depth to the detailing.

The external fuel drum tanks are simple assemblies similar to their 1/35 counterparts. If you can find some plumbing detail shots so you can use a little wire to replicate the fuel lines, these would also enhance the appearance of your model. Of course we have several SU-100 walk arounds here.

One distinct difference between this release and the earlier releases of this kit is the pair of unditching logs added to the sprue at the bottom image.

Decals are provided for five examples:

  • SU-100, unknown unit
  • SU-100, 321, Polish Army, Post War
  • SU-100, 254, Soviet Army, World War 2
  • SU-100, 204, Soviet Army, World War 2
  • SU-100, generic post-war Soviet markings

The decals are definitely fresh-printed and look nice!

It is good to see these 1/25 scale kits coming back from Tamiya and provide a nice canvas for the AMS modeler to have some fun in this larger scale.

My sincere thanks to HobbyLink Japan for this review sample!.