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Kubelwagen Type 82

Tamiya 1/48 Scale



S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: 32501
Scale: 1/48
Contents and Media: 55 parts in yellow plastic; 1 part in clear; decals for vehicle and figures
Price: 1,000
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Beautiful model in its own right or a great diorama accessory; excellent structural surfaces and detail; optional heater shroud for rear deck; two figures included; decals for Luftwaffe and Wehrmacht vehicles, plus rank insignia
Disadvantages: No pedals (also absent from 1/35 and 1/16 scale Tamiya Kubels)
Recommendation: Highly Recommended


Reviewed by Brett Green

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The addition of a vehicle and figures can add context and scale to a model aircraft.

When I built Tamiya's 1/48 scale Messerschmitt Me 262 last year, I was impressed with the accompanying 1/48 scale Kettenkraftrad and its driver. The parts breakdown of this little motorcycle/tractor was simple, yet detail was very good indeed. Even better, I only had to invest around an additional hour of construction to transform my model aircraft into a vignette scene.

It is therefore pleasing to see that Tamiya has repeated this approach with their brand-new, standalone 1/48 scale Kubelwagen Type 82.



Tamiya certainly has plenty of experience with this ubiquitous German utility vehicle. Over the years it has released two 1/35 scale kits, plus a static Desert Kublewagen in 1/16 scale and a radio controlled Type 82 too.

The new 1/48 scale kit reflects this heritage by the high quality of the parts, crisp surface features and extensive detail in this relatively small scale. However, the parts breakdown is quite different to its bigger brethren. For example, the front two doors may be positioned open but the two rear doors are fixed shut.

Mounts for the seats are cleverly moulded as vertical posts on the floor of the car. The timber floor slats are depicted by raised ribs running from front to rear. The corrugated panels are represented inside and out; and fabric detail on the seats and the furled canvas hood is very convincing. Under the vehicle, key suspension details are present, and the bottom of the engine is moulded to the lower chassis. The simple engine detail is covered by a separate sump guard, so little of this area is visible in any case. Smaller parts such as mufflers, steering wheel, instrument panel, wheels and headlights are beautifully rendered too.

That necessary evil, the ejector pin mark, makes an appearance in faint form on the inside of the doors. However, they do not seem to be in any other areas that will be seen once the model is assembled.

A single injection-moulded clear part is supplied for the windscreen. I expect that we will soon see a selection of vinyl masks to help paint this item before too long.

The only optional part is A12, a shroud on the back of the vehicle used to recirculate air from the engine compartment vent  in colder climates. This part will not be required in warmer settings, although this is not mentioned in the instructions.

The only real potential for criticism is the absence of the accelerator, clutch and brake pedals.



The figures reveal that this release is aimed squarely at the model aircraft builder. There is a Luftwaffe pilot and crewman, both in standing poses, examining a map (provided on the side of the box together with some road signs). The figures are very well detailed with minimal seam cleanup required.

Decals are supplied for three Luftwaffe vehicles, with the JG 53 option including the "Pik As" Ace of Spades symbol for the front and rear of the car, plus rank insignia for the two figures.





Given the saturation of German vehicles in 1/35 scale, it is perhaps not surprising that Tamiya should take this step back to 1/48 scale. The smaller scale will definitely appeal to 1/48 scale aircraft modellers, and will undoubtedly pick up a cross section of military modellers too. Furthermore, for a kit with this high level of detail and two figures, it is relatively inexpensive compared to its larger counterparts.

I do hope that we see more Tamiya airfield-related releases in this scale.

The potential for future subjects is intriguing. How about a few bicycles laying on the ground? Or a small Austin sedan? And of course the obvious Jeep and sundry fuel trucks.

Tamiya's 1/48 scale Kubelwagen meets the high standard that we expect from this leading model manufacturer. Detail, engineering and accuracy are all excellent. The kit looks like a quick, trouble free build that will add scale and context to your Luftwaffe 1/48 scale aircraft.

Highly Recommended

Review and Images Copyright 2003 by Brett Green
Page Created 07 November, 2003
Last updated 12 August, 2004

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