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TGMA 1/48 Mercedes Benz L3000S 3 ton Truck w/High Sided Cargo Bed Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review May 2008 Manufacturer TGMA
Subject Mercedes Benz L3000S 3 ton Truck w/High Sided Cargo Bed Scale 1/48
Kit Number 48021 Primary Media Resin
Pros Great addition kit for diorama or vignette Cons No decals
Skill Level Basic MSRP (USD) $49.95

First Look


The Mercedes Benz L3000 was a diesel-powered three ton utility truck that was developed for the ever-essential cargo-hauling duties needed to keep the front-line troops supplied with food, fuel, ammunition, etc. The truck was a two-wheel-drive vehicle powered by a four-cylinder 75 horsepower diesel engine. Used alongside the Opel Blitz, the L3000 was actually better in rough terrain.

Produced between 1938 and 1943, almost 28,000 examples came off the production line. Like other utility vehicles, the L3000 was adapted into a variety of other roles including mobile repair facility, mobile communications center (funkwagen), and more.

In addition to operations around Europe, the Mercedes Benz L3000 was also deployed to support the Afrika Korps with its ease of maintenance and utility in rugged terrain common in North Africa.

Top Gun Miniatures has been producing an interesting variety of 1/48 and 1/48 scale diorama accessories and vehicle conversions, but here we have one of their newest full-kits. This is an all-resin rendition of the Mercedes Benz L3000S three-ton cargo truck in 1/48 scale. I must say that the casting here is top-notch!

Cast in tan resin, this kit looks like it could be one of Tamiya's beautiful 1/48 scale offerings had this been produced in high-pressure styrene - the details and design are there. Take a look at those details...

Construction begins with the chassis, and while the frame comes pre-cast (no need for leveling and alignment), you simply add the suspension, axles and drive train. You will need to remove the thin resin flash from the frame, windows, etc., but no clunky casting blocks are there to be removed.

With the chassis together, add the brake and shift levers to the cab tub (not pictured here - it was still inside the cab when these images were taken) and assemble the dash board. The windshield is fabricated from a sheet of acetate (provided) and using a template provided in the full-color instructions.

The assembled and painted tub goes back inside the cab, and you're ready to mount the cab onto the chassis.

The high-sided wooden cargo bed is nicely done and will really look nice with hints of wood visible through worn and weathered paint. The cargo bed also has a nicely cast canvas cover with the rear flap folded up to reveal the interior through the rear.

While no decals are provided in the kit, the manufacturer did provide license plates printed on the color instruction sheet.

If you're one of the new generation of quarter-scale armor modelers, here is one subject you won't find in styrene anytime soon and has a vast number of possible color schemes depending on the year produced and the theater it was assigned to support.

Quarter-scale aircraft modelers should also take note of this kit. With the nice variety of vehicles produced for Luftwaffe airfields, this would be another common utility vehicle that would be used to haul ammunition, oil, tools and even crews around the dispersed flightlines around occupied Europe. This would be another nice addition to your scale Luftwaffe fighter or bomber vignette!

My sincere thanks to TGMA for this review sample!