65 cleanly moulded light grey plastic parts
on four sprues, 2 black soft plastic one-piece tracks (rubber bands),
decals for 2 vehicles plus extras, 4 page double sided fold-out
instructions with parts plan, 10 build drawings and 1 page of
Good detail, double road wheels, engine
detail and openable hatches.
“Rubber Band” tracks, no driving
compartment detail, no commander's seat post and solid aerial guards.
We've known this kit was coming from Trumpeter for about six to nine
months. Considering that the old Esci kit, just re-released be
Italeri, is not too bad, how does this new one stack up? Well, it is
superior, but only just.
The main gripe with the Esci/Italeri kit was Siamesed road wheels
and because of this, no interior detail on the otherwise nice link
and length tracks. There were other small niggles such as no driving
compartment detail and solid aerial guards. Besides this, it built
into a nice little model and was generally welcomed when Italeri
brought it back.
So, why is this new kit superior, if only slightly?
The over-all moulding quality is about the same as the older kit
although it is in light grey as opposed to Esci's olive drab.
Trumpeter has given us pairs of road wheels instead of the single
wheels as in the older kit and this means the tracks are better
detailed on the inside. Unfortunately, they are not L&L but rubber
bands. Trumpeter have also gone to the trouble of producing some
engine and transmission detail but then not given us any way of
viewing it. Most peculiar!
thumbnails below to view larger images:
Both kits have solid frame aerial
guards, openable hatches and rear access ramp, some interior detail
in the troop compartment including side seats and neither have
driver's detail. One area where Trumpeter have fallen behind Esci is
the absence of the commander's seat post, fairly prominent if the
rear door is open.
The “A” sprue is all wheels, drive sprockets, return rollers and
more wheels. Like the Esci kit, the lower hull is separate but in
this case has the upper hull sides and rear on it also. “B” is all
the interior bits, roof, troop compartment floor, hatches, lights
etc. “D” has the sand shields and two jerry cans and “F” has the
hull front plate, rear track guards and engine compartment roof.
The small decal sheet has quite a few markings on it but only one is
mentioned in the instructions (39 J Jilly) with no other markings on
it at all. The box top art-work shows another, Booze Hounds 42 and
these are on the sheet. There are some others but I have no idea
where they go.
Considering the age of the Esci kit, this one is a bit disappointing
being a new moulding. If you don't have either, this is the one to
go for but if you already have the Esci/Italeri kit don't bother to
go out for this one, it's just not that much of an improvement.