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Tamiya 1/48 M8 Greyhound Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review December 2007 Manufacturer Tamiya
Subject M8 Greyhound Light Armored Car Scale 1/48
Kit Number 32551 Primary Media Styrene, metal
Pros Very nicely detailed, die-cast chassis Cons
Skill Level Basic MSRP (USD) $26.95

First Look


The M8 Greyhound was a light armored car designed in 1941 as an armor support vehicle, but its outstanding agility made it ideal as a scout or reconnaissance vehicle. Protected by a relatively thin steel armored shell, the Greyhound's primary defensive capability lie in its speed and maneuverability on and off road. Power came from a Hercules JXD liquid-cooled engine rated at 110 horsepower.

The turret was equipped with the M6 37mm anti-tank gun and the vehicle had stowage for up to 80 rounds. To the right of the M6 was an M1919 30 caliber machine gun coaxially mounted with the main gun. An M2 .50 caliber machine gun was mounted on the turret ring atop the turret.

The M8 was used primarily by US forces in Europe, though some did find their way into the Pacific theater as well. In addition to US forces, the Greyhound also equipped the British and Free French armies as well. In fact, a number of M8s remained in service with a number of countries well after the end of World War Two.

The market for 1/48 scale armor continues to grow as Tamiya continues to turn out cool subjects that not only resonates with space-conscious armor modelers, but also aircraft modelers looking to add dimension to their aircraft vignettes. Tamiya has dedicated much of its energies on this new market and with the wide variety of engineering data they've developed for their huge 1/35 armor catalog, jumping into 1/48 made perfect sense.

My interest in 1/48 armor kits really centers around the support vehicles, not the armor. I prefer building my tanks in 1/35 or even 1/16, but when I am doing a diorama in 1/48 scale with Mustang or Thunderbolt on a forward airfield, I'd like a nice vehicle that would contribute to the theme without any effort. Having a Greyhound standing guard would be one good option!

This kit is molded in olive drab styrene and presented on five parts trees, plus a die-cast metal chassis This release renders the M8 with the gun turret, but like its 1/35 scale counterpart, it is likely to see a parts swap to render the M20 scout car as well.

The kit features a detailed drive train, lots of nice detail on the hull, an equally nice turret, and a nicely done 37mm gun to see through the open top of that turret. The kit provides one figure looking through field glasses and can be posed easily aside the vehicle, atop the hull or in the turret.

Decals are included for two examples:

  • M8, A Troop, 25th Mech Cav Recon Sqn, 4th AD
  • M8, 3rd Plt, C Co, 82nd Armored Recon Bn, 2nd AD

Tamiya has produced a nice array of combat vehicles in 1/48 to date, and I am really happy to see this new addition in the support vehicle line-up.

My sincere thanks to HobbyLink Japan for this review sample!