During World War 2 the German Army was seen as one of the most mechanised forces, despite having a large number of horse drawn units. The Germans however did utilise mechanised units for reconnaissance and they developed a large number of four and eight wheel wheeled AFVs. This review centres on the Hobby Boss
Sd.Kfz 222. The Sd.Kfz 222 was based upon the Horch 801 chassis with a rear mounted engine enclosed in an armoured body, despite the four wheel drive it suffered with poor off road capability.
The kit arrives in a sturdy box with the typical Hobby Boss
artist’s illustration of the vehicle. This release from Hobby Boss
is released as a 1st Series. The box contains the following:
- 12 Dark Yellow Sprues
- 1 Upper Body Shell
- 1 Lower Body Shell
- 1 Clear Sprue
- 4 Vinyl Tyres
- 3 Etched Frets
- 1 Decal Sheet
The large number of sprues contribute to the detail seen in this kit. There is a fully detailed engine that appears only to be missing electrical leads. There is a well detailed chassis complete with the complex suspension seen on these vehicles. The instructions indicate that the lower suspension arms are moveable which is curious as the springs are then glued to them. The modeller in theory could actually replace the springs with copper wire and display the kit in a dynamic fashion. Curiously the wheels can only be assembled straight ahead, it may be possible to depict the wheels turned but as the vehicle had four wheel steering this will be a complex conversion. The tyres are vinyl and have a well moulded tread pattern.
After assembling the chassis the construction turns to the interior which is packed with detail. There is stowed MP38/40 and empty hand grenade racks although it would be have been nice to see a non-etched option. The interior details include the vision ports which are curiously not moulded on the clear sprue but do feature the operating handles. The interior does match the photographs that had previously appeared on the old AFV Interiors website. The prominent side doors are separate and if posed open will enable the modeller to display the fine details.
The armament consists of optional Flak 38, Kwk-30 or Kwk-38 and a Mg-34 the turret is complete with the traverse mechanism, commanders and gunners seat. The turret also features the very prominent grenade screens which are etched brass and these must be bent to shape and feature a styrene frame surround.
The front mudguards feature the large headlights but not the usually seen Notek night driving lamp, not supplied, which was stowed inside the vehicle when not in use. The external stowage includes the vehicle tools and a mudguard mounted jerry can.
Painting and finishing
There is a single panzer grey paint scheme offered in the instructions. The instructions indicate various colours throughout the assembly, there is an error that has the interior painted in white, it should be ivory. The decals include the interior stencilling a complete set of number plates. There is a set of ‘blank’ number plates with a good set of numbers enabling the modeller to depict Wehrmacht and SS vehicles.
This is a fine kit of an iconic vehicle Hobby Boss
are to be congratulated with this release. This will build into a very detailed model, the full interior is a welcome addition and there is very little to add. I would highly recommend this release to any modeller and not just those who build Axis vehicles.