The following introduction is as provided by ICM:
The G4 3 axle passenger car, was designed by Daimler-Benz in 1934 and was produced until 1939. This heavy six seater SUV with an eight cylinder engine producing 100 (later 110) was developed by high ranking officials of the Third Reich, as well as for the needs of the army, where it was used as a staff vehicle (under the designation Kfz.21) basically, the G4 was produced as a four door sudan with a retractable roof. The car turned out to be too complex and expensive for mass production, so it was released in a relatively small series. Some examples where equipped with, MG34 machine guns. They served to transport the highest command personnel, of the Wehrmacht , and were also used as security and escort vehicles. Cars in this version, were named Partisanenwagen.
This offering from ICM arrives in the usual fashion of a flip top cardboard tray with a separate card lid showing the artists impression of the finished article. Inside you are provided with one re-sealable plastic bag containing all the sprues for the model, with the clear sprue in its own bag within the main bag. The decals for the offering are packaged in the instruction booklet. The G4 is a large vehicle for a car, and it should be noted that the amount of parts are indicative of a larger model, and will require care and attention as it is not basic in anyway.
This offering from ICM uses a multi part chassis, that will require more care than usual during its assembly. This is due to cross members being added to the main chassis rails, plus the engine and gearbox assembled and installed prior to the other chassis rail being mated. I would normally suggest using a gridded cutting mat, to get everything aligned but in this case, as everything will have set up firmly prior to the chassis coming together, I suggest using a modellers set square. Some may be thinking “why go to this sort of trouble?” and the only answer I can give is that it has enabled ICM to provide a very accurate representation of the parts of a car often hidden from view. There are a surprising number of parts, that need to be added to the chassis but it will result in a very good representation when complete. The engine and gearbox assembly is reasonably well detailed, for a plastic offering. With a very nicely done cooling fan with fan belts being an area where photo etch or such would be better than what is provided. I do not believe that any dedicated after market sets are provided as yet, but due to the only real change between this and previous releases being machine guns, earlier sets should be applicable.
The suspension of this model is provided via leaf springs, which will require careful clean to remove the seam lines down the centre. The front wheels, while not indicated in the instructions, can be easily shown turned and I wish that ICM utilised this aspect on more of their models. The twin rear axles are added as a sub-assembly and while part count has been kept down, it offers a nice level of detail. The exhaust of this kit, is more complex than usual, consisting of nine parts in total, with my only complaint being the need to drill the end of the exhaust for realism. Modellers generally will be pleased to find that the wheels are injection moulded plastic, rather than vinyl rubber.
The bodywork of the vehicle, has been well replicated in particular the flowing lines of the front mud guards and rear wheel arches. The doors of the model have been moulded as left and right sides, and there are some slightly raised ejector pins marks, and so depicting these doors open will prove problematic, due to the post between them being very small. The front radiator grille area has a very good level of detail moulded on it, and has the three pointed star emblem at the top. Lights and fixtures are well catered for, and include clear lenses which is something that is often overlooked for reasons unknown. The hood of the model, while provided in three separate main parts, cannot be accurately shown open as I believe it was hinged at the centre line of the hood and the sides folded towards the centre line when raised. However, I suspect, that somebody would have released an after market set to allow accurate representation of this detail. The roof of the vehicle is provided both folded and deployed, either of which could be used if you decide not to use the machine guns.
The cab of the model, is the only place you will find any decals, as ICM has provided them to represent the instrument dials. A nice fire wall has been provided between the cab and the engine bay, and I just wish ICM gave more thought to displaying some of the wonderful details that they hide due to not designing the parts to allow a view of the engine bay and chassis. The seats of the vehicle has that luxury leather look to them, and showing no signs of wear and tear. This would normally irritate me, but with this being a luxury high end staff car, I am happy to accept this as it is. The interiors of the doors, are brought to a high standard via the addition of separate door furniture. The machine guns offered in this release, are two MG34’s both on robust columns mounts. The detail of the machine guns is good, but the purists among us, may choose to replace the barrels from someone such as Aber or RB Model. Something on these machine guns that I have not observed previously on ground vehicles, are chutes for the spent rounds, or it is possible that these even collect the spent rounds. The magazines for the guns, are provided as drum magazines as favoured for use in aircraft.
This offering from ICM of the G4 is good. However, I cannot help but observe that it could be so much more. Simple additions, such as the ability to show the hood open, a small amount of photo etch to replicate some of the details, such as the fan belt would lift this model up an extra notch. However, as is the addition of some wires to the engine bay, should you be going to the trouble of displaying it open, and the drilling out of the muzzles of the machine guns, plus the end of the exhaust, are all that I would consider needed for a good well built model.