The new generation of Mercedes-Benz trucks launched in 1973 and was a completely new design and completely new appearance. The "New Generation" was supplied to a number of military organisations. As the Mercedes-Benz 1017, or 1017A, respectively, it was procured by the Bundeswehr as of 1977. The German Army originally intended to obtain up to 22,000 Mercedes-Benz 1017 and 1017A. However, at the same time, Daimler-Benz AG had received an order of about 18,000 U 1300 L (Unimog). This was protested, among others, by workers at Magirus-Deutz, leading to 7,000 Mercedes orders being replaced with units by that manufacturer (or its successor Iveco, respectively). The 1017 model designation stands for the maximum gross weight (10 tonnes) and the engine power (170hp). Vehicles with the selectable all-wheel drive are termed 1017A and carry the army designation "tmil gl" for "teilmilitarisiert geländegängig" (partially militarised, cross-country capable). The last vehicles were delivered in 1988 and many are currently still in service under the tactical designation of "LKW 5t tmil", or "5-Tonner" for short.
The first few pages of this book like all Tankograd contains all of the history, technical side of the truck from procurement, commercial availability, variants, technical description engine, transmission, axles, crew cab, cargo body to the disposal of them.
Mercedes-Benz Typ 1017 family-technology is the start of the photo heavy sections with a black and white photo of an LKW Mercedes-Benz 5 t mil (4x2) from the Jagdgeswader 74 fighter squadron based in Neuburg an der Donau. This appears to be one of the first production vehicles delivered to the German military services. If like me you like to add detail to your builds then the draught pictures showing the braking system with wire, pipes and pumps will be pleasing. Further drawn pictures of the front axle and also rear axle again will help for the budding scratch builders. Some further detailed pictures, black and white with colour pictures to show some of the detail that most of us modellers like to have when looking at a build or project. Finally some great pictures of the cab interior finish of this section of the first chapter.
Mercedes-Benz Typ1017 (4x2): In total the Bundeswehr received 15,000 LKW Mercedes-Benz 5 t mil trucks. Only a small proportion of these were the Typ 1017. Colour pictures here show the cargo version in an overall drab green and the Bundeswehr, black, brown and green camouflage. With further pictures showing the cargo version in some of its defined jobs like the Kabine Typ II shelter, a cargo truck with two x 2,300 water tanks for drinking purposes. A truck carrying two fuel tanks possibly for helicopters.
MB 1017 A (4x2) Cargo-wooden cargo bay shows the wooden cargo bay trucks these trucks again were put to many different uses including a quick reaction medical forces. One 1017 truck with Kabine II shelter on the back whilst towing Anhanger 4-Rad, 3t Typ 2343 Trailer. Three very well detailed pictures of the Kabine II Shelter on the back of an MB 1017 being used for field medical supplies.
MB 1017 A (4x4) Cargo Steel Cargo bay: first picture in this section shows a late cargo body with side walls made of steel with tarpaulin cover, this truck also carries a flashing amber light as part of the Marinefliegergeschwader 5 fighter squadron based in Kiel. Further pictures follow with various different uses being made of this versatile truck, like an airborne division based at Hesse being loaded with its trailer onto the back of a low loader train carriage. A great shot of a winter camo version with green and white netting over the back of it really adding to the camo in the winter scene. Two excellent 1/35th scale drawings follow one of a covered back the other of the open cargo back. This section is the largest of the book and has some fantastically detailed photos with this, one being a snowplough attached to the front and salt spreader on the rear. Several KFOR versions some in camo and some in the UN white colour adorn the pages near the end of this section One vehicle that caught my eye was a truck that is used to deal with emergencies. Due to its special purpose and the fact that it operating in the military part of the Koln Wahn International Airport MB 1017 A "Crash kit truck" features yellow high visibility markings and blue warning beacons.
Mercedes-Benz Typ 1017 A (4x4) shelter: this section talks about and of course shows plenty of pictures with the truck carrying the various different uses that the Germans deploy the Kabine II shelter for. A large headquarters sits on the back of one of the one the trucks which has EUFOR on the side of it in white with a various network communication system. Another for me was the truck that is based at Neuburg an der Donau, it carries a shelter of US origin the vehicle, which is fitted with blue beacons and is used for crash rescue purposes, black out headlights underneath the front bumper this vehicle a rarity.
Mercedes-Benz Typ 1017 A (4x4) box body: this is a small section with a couple of pictures showing the boxed body in the Bundeswehr camo scheme and one drawn picture of the boxed body version (not sure of the scale)
Mercedes-Benz Typ 1017 A (4x4) for UAV-Systems: from 1972 onwards ten Canadair CL 89 reconnaissance drone systems were fielded at division level for battlefield surveillance purposes for day and night surveillance. Several pictures follow showing the truck in different states along with the image data receiver mission kit is mounted on the back in a Kabine II shelter. Further pictures of the newer KZO UAV in the field this first came into service with the Bundeswehr in 2005 to replace the ageing CL 89 system
Mercedes-Benz Typ 1017 A (4x4) Collapsible shelter: this is a few pictures of the truck in service providing support in the field for the Bundeswehr. The pictures are very well done and will provide a good source of inspiration for anyone wishing to scratch build this version of the Typ 1017 A.
Mercedes-Benz Typ 1017 A (4x4) dump Truck: only two pictures on one page for this section one of the dumper truck side view on and the other with the back raised.
Mercedes-Benz Typ 1017 A (4x4) Fire-Engines: has to be my favourite section albeit a small section with only four pictures, two showing the familiar fire engine red colour. One from the KFOR in Bundeswehr camo scheme is a pump water tender. The last fire engine in drab green colour towing a 2-Rad 1.5 t oil-fighting- measures trailer
The last section shows the Mercedes-Benz Typ 1017 A (4x4) "Kracken" the kracken is an antenna carrier in service with EW service is a highly specialised vehicle and is believed to be unique, it is in service with the German Air Force.
As I have found with the recent Tankograd books some of the first section is very detailed and maybe more detailed than you may actually require, but this is followed by some fantastic picture heavy sections, which for the modellers amongst us can and is very useful. On a quick brief search for some kit version of this very useful truck I only found a couple of 1/72nd scale by Armada hobby and two 1/24th scale Typ 1017 Revell fire engines. The Armada Hobby offerings in 1/72nd scale are resin kits with photo-etch and are new tooled 2017. I live in hope that one of the mainstream manufacturers will bring out a 1/35th scale plastic kit at some stage. In the meantime, the book is a very good read and contains several really excellent pictures that will help anyone in the attempt to scratch build a version of this truck. I really like the way that Tankograd write their books with a clear and concise manner adding pictures of the trucks in various poses and versions. This book would be useful to anyone with an interest in military soft skins or an interest in late cold war vehicles. I would recommend Tankograd books to anyone as I find them very useful and helpful great series of books.
Highs: Well written full of fantastically detailed pictures showing the truck in various states and uses. Lows: Unfortunately, no 1/35th scale models that I am aware of. Verdict: Another great title from a publisher with a huge following and quite a large library of military books.