4 x 4 MRAP Armoured Fighting Vehicle
Kinetic, 1/35 scale
Reviewed by Brett Green
The International MaxxPro MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) vehicle is an armoured fighting vehicle designed by American company Navistar International's subsidiary Navistar Defense along with the Israeli Plasan Sasa, who designed and manufactures the vehicle's armour. The vehicle was designed to take part in the US Military's Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle program, led by the US Marine Corps, as well as a similar US Army-led Medium Mine Protected Vehicle program.
The MaxxPro utilizes a crew capsule with a V-shaped hull, mounted on an International WorkStar 7000 chassis. The V-hull deflects the blast of a land mine or improvised explosive device (IED) away from the vehicle to protect its occupants. Because the chassis is mounted outside the armoured crew capsule, there are concerns that it will likely be destroyed in the event of an ambush, leaving the soldiers inside stranded. However, according to Navistar Defense spokesperson Roy Wiley, the MaxxPro "did extremely well during the tests, and we are extremely pleased." This design may prove as effective as the Krauss-Maffei Wegmann ATF Dingo that uses a similar design, one which mounts an armored capsule to a Unimog chassis. This design has survived a 7 kg (15 lb) land mine blast with no injuries.
According to Navistar Defense, the vehicle is designed with operational readiness in mind and uses standardised, easily available parts, to ensure rapid repair and maintenance. The armoured body is bolted together instead of welded, as in other MRAPs. This facilitates repair in the field and is a contributing factor to Navistar's greater production capacity for the MaxxPro.*
F i r s t L o o k
Although the packaging labels Kinetic’s model as a generic 4 x 4 MRAP, it is in fact a Navistar MaxxPro.
Underneath the attractive box art, Kinetic’s new 1:35 scale MaxxPro comprises 304 parts in grey coloured plastic, 22 photo-etched parts, 25 parts in clear, and eight black vinyl parts. Markings are provided for two vehicles.
The plastic parts are mainly free from moulding flaws, although there are a number of sink marks here and there that should be filled before construction gets underway.
The level of overall detail is good, with the first four steps of the instructions dealing with the running gear, chassis and lower hull. The “V” shaped lower hull is moulded as one main piece with suspension and drivetrain details being built up during these first four construction steps.
The upper body, including the engine hood, is cleanly moulded in one large piece.
The interior provides the main features and some details – seats, bulkheads, instrument panel, steering wheel and pedals, transmission shift, floor, fire extinguishers and more. The instrument panel has raised moulded detail, and a decal is supplied as an option for the dials.
The side doors and rear hatch are moulded as separate parts and may be posed open. The big rear door in particular features some nice interior detail including the entry stairs with non-slip texture.
The turret is fitted with armoured glass sections in clear plastic and a well-detailed .50 cal machine gun.
The 22 photo-etched parts are mainly for the mesh restraints for the seats and the grilles over the windows.
The four black vinyl tyres looks really good, with a convincing sidewall ripple moulded in place.
The small decal sheet is printed by Cartograf. As you would expect, registration and printing are perfect.
Markings for two fairly generic vehicles are provided.
C o n c l u s i o n
Kinetic’s 1:35 scale 4 x 4 MRAP Armoured Fighting Vehicle is a well detailed and nicely presented kit. It is a fascinating subject and, with its growing usage, there should be some interesting marking possibilities in future too.
Kinetic is to be congratulated for their continuing exploration of this new generation of MRAPs. I’ll look forward to seeing what they have for us next!
* History section courtesy of Wikipedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_MaxxPro
Thanks to Lucky Model for the sample
Text and Images by Brett Green