Tamiya 1/35 M1025 Humvee Kit First Look
|Date of Review
|Excellent basis for any number of available conversions
In the early 1980s, the US Army developed a requirement for a new multi-purpose vehicle to provide greater capabilities to the warfighter while simplifying the support requirements needed to keep the existing fleet of vehicles operating. At this point in time, the Army was still using the M151 Mutt, M561 Gamma Goat, M718 and M792 ambulances, and a number of commercial vehicles (CUCV) to fulfill its various missions. A common chassis and powerplant would significantly simplify the training and number of parts it took to keep these vehicles operational. So started the High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) program.
AM General won the program and has produced over 190,000 vehicles in over 16 variants since the mid-1980s. Early versions of the Humvee were powered by 6.2 liter diesel engines while newer types received the 6.5 liter diesel. All Humvees are equipped with automatic transmissions to simplify driver workload.
The M1025 variant is up updated armament carrier version of the M998. The M1026 is identical to the M1025 with the exception of also having a bumper-mounted winch. Both have a gun ring mounted in the center of the vehicle that can mount the M2 .50 caliber machine gun, Mk.19 grenade launcher, M240 machine gun, or M249 Squad Automatic Weapon (SAW).
Tamiya released the M998 w/Bushmaster gun (kit 35143) in 1/35 scale many years ago and at the time, it was one of the better kits of this versatile vehicle. It competed against toolings from Academy and Italeri at the time. In fact, as I was recently reminded, this early Tamiya Humvee was the Italeri kit with the addition of a new-tool Bushmaster gun.
A few years ago, Tamiya tooled up a new Humvee and issued this kit, the M1025 armament carrier, and the M1046 TOW missile carrier. These two newer releases, based upon completely new tooling represent the best kits of the Humvee in any scale.
Molded in desert tan styrene, the kit is presented on four parts trees plus a single tree of clear parts and a set of four rubber (vinyl) tires. You can't really see what is different in this kit until you compare the parts trees side-by-side with the original M998 release.
The Italeri kit had a reasonably detailed chassis, doors that were molded with the front and rear doors molded as one part, a body tub that had to be assembled, plastic wheel halves, and a number of details that weren't representative of production Humvees.
This kit has a one-piece body tub (a testament of improved molding technology) and significantly more detail on the chassis. The wheels are separately cast and the tires are now rubber. The interior details are very well representative of production armament carriers and also provide nice options for the standard and deep water fording kit variants.
The slanted top can have its rear hatch positionable, the gun ring hatch is also positionable, and you have your choice of M2 or Mk.19 weapons on the ring.
Markings are given for four schemes:
- M1025, 1st Mech Inf Div, 1st MP Company, Camp Bond Steel, Germany, KFOR, 2000
- M1025, 519th MP Bn, 65th Coy, IFOR, Bosnia, 1996
- M1025, 16th MP Bde, 210th MP Coy, FOB Cobra, Iraq, 1991
- M1025, 8th Marine Regt, 3rd Bn, Kosovo, KFOR, 1999
This kit is the a great build straight out of the box, and there are a significant number of aftermarket parts and conversions to render any number of Humvee variants that have appeared throughout the 24 year history of this vehicle. The winch and associated bumper can be found in the M1046 kit while this one has the brush guard.