by: Roman [ ]
Tamiya remains one of the main supplier of quarter scale military kits even though I am not a big fan of their simplified detail. This time they offer one of the most iconic trucks from WW2, the German Opel Blitz 3t. There was previously a kit of late version of that truck from Italeri but it is nice to get an up-to-date new tooling offering.
This model is supplied in the typical Tamiya 1/48th scale kit box with a nice box art and features printed on sides. Inside there are 5 dark grey coloured styrene sprues in individual bags, 1 light grey coloured sprue, 1 clear plastic sprue, a set of decals, assembly manual and a background information leaflet (also contains paint schemes). Everything has a typical Tamiya quality and can be called a shake and bake kit.
The build starts with the chassis and here we have 1 piece frame, separate amortization springs, muffler (has to be drilled out), steering linkage and differential. The wheels included in the kit are made of two parts and they are not sagged. Replacement can be found from SBS models, however, one should be aware that Tamiya has early style 6 bolt wheels, while SBS models has 8 bolts. The cab has reasonable detail with separate levers, seat, dashboard, and a steering wheel. The pedals are molded together with the cabin floor and one can easily replace these with photoetch leftovers from the spare box if desired. The dashboard has decals for it. Note that there are some pin marks on the inner side of the cabin – doors and rear wall. These have to be filled in. What I like is that the wipers are not made together with windshield meaning that you can easily replace them with photoetch if desired. And the painting would be much easier as well in contrast to some kits where Tamiya made wipers together with the windshield. There is one figure of a driver included in the kit and it is made of 4 separate parts. The detail is acceptable, while not much would be seen through the windows anyways. There is no engine included and there is no Opel Blitz lettering on the front grill. Although there is a dedicated space for it (I am sure this would be addressed by aftermarket companies). Otherwise the fit on the cabin is excellent and similar to other kits is it a pleasure to build.
The cargo bed is made of several parts and they have very nice detail for the scale. Under the cargo there is 1 Jerry can and 2 tool boxes, license umber plate and tail lights. In the front section there are headlights with 2 options (clear plastic or covered lights), tow hooks, horn, Notek lamp, tools and width indicators. The extra included sprue X is from one of the older Tamiya kits and includes 3 fuel drums, a number of Jerry cans, bedrolls ad a bucket offering you a load for the truck already out of the box.
Please note that I omitted adding a number of details so far as I am planning to do a conversion on my model. Also the cab and cargo are dry fitted.
Painting options provided are both for trucks painted Panzer Grey – Poland 1939 and Eastern Front 1941. The decals include unit insignia, license plates and tire pressure markings. They could have included Luftwaffe license plates as well given the fact that many of these would be used together with aircrafts.
Altogether this is a very nice kit from Tamiya with typical easy assembly within a couple of hours. A subject is well chosen and I am sure there will be a lot of those built as standalone models, conversions or together with aircrafts of the same scale of dioramas. The inclusion of cargo load items is a pleasant bonus, however the marking options are rather limited to Wehrmacht and no Luftwaffe decals provided. Otherwise, any well done 1/48 kit is a big event and I can only thank Tamiya for keeping that line of kits.