Trumpeter 1/35 Canadian AVGP Grizzly (late)
KIT #: 01505
PRICE: $39.95 SRP
DECALS: One option
REVIEWER: Dale Rannals


The AVGP (Armored Vehicle General Purpose) is a series of three armored fighting vehicles ordered by the Canadian military in 1977.  The first variant, the Grizzly, was an infantry carrier. The second variant, a Cougar, had a 76mm turret and was used by Armour Corps forces. The final variant, the Husky, was a recovery vehicle.  These were based on the six-wheeled version of the Swiss MOWAG Piranha I.  The Canadian Forces' LAV III, the United States Marine Corps' LAV-25, and the US Army's Stryker are other variants of the Piranha family.

The most basic member of these three was the Grizzly. It was fitted with a twin-gun Cadillac-Gage 1-meter turret mounting one .50cal and one .30cal machine gun. The Grizzly had a crew of three (driver, gunner, crew commander) plus a rear compartment seating eight dismounts, in theory anyway.  This was one of the main complaints of the vehicle: it was cramped.  In reality 6 lightly-equipped soldiers (or 4 in winter gear) could be carried.  The Grizzly's 10mm armor was good for stopping shell splinters or rifle bullets and this was considered adequate for training. Of course, once deployed operationally (Cyprus, the Balkans and Somalia) it was realized more protection was need.

The AVGP also had propellers and trim vanes for amphibious use.  But recent retrofits have removed the marine drive system, as it is no longer used and maintenance is expensive.

Since about 2005, the AVGP fleet has been retired from service.


The kit contains slightly more than 220 crisply detailed parts molded in light gray.  No flash was noticed on anything, nor any ejector pin marks.  Also inside the box are a sprue of 17 clear parts, 7 soft rubber tires, and a small PE fret of three pieces.

The instructions are a full page booklet of 12 pages containing 16 steps and a parts layout drawing.  They are well drawn and pretty straight-forward. 

Instructions are for one vehicle: SFOR, Bosnia UN Mission. It is an overall light green.  A full page glossy painting guide is included, with color call-outs in Mr. Hobby, Vallejo, Model Master, Tamiya, and Humbrol.


This is a pretty simple kit of a very neat looking vehicle.  It took a couple months working on it to finish it up, but only because I was working on many other projects at the same time.  I believe if one had a weekend to kill, this kit could easily be completed by Monday.  There are no individual tracks to fret over, nothing overly complicated in assembly, and everything is pretty much one color …. Green.  So the whole thing can be slapped together and then painted. 

The first four steps deal with the drive-train, suspension and wheels/tires.  The drive train is quite complex and well represented, but not difficult to assemble.  It all goes together very well and is quite sturdy at the end.  The tires I left off until after painting, they can be popped on easily anytime. 

Once this was done I deviated from the instructions a bit and mated the upper and lower hull halves together.  The instructions would have you do this toward the end which to me sounds like a good way to break things off the kit that you just put on.  I then added the rear bulkhead and doors.  This, however, was the one area I really goofed up on.  It is possible….. trust me on this….. to assemble the bulkhead inside out.  I realized this after the glued had dried and the hull proper was a nice sturdy structure.  At that point I was not going to destroy things trying to get it back apart.  All the parts still fit on the inside of it (which was now the outside) and the difference is minimal, so I just rolled with it.  Headlights, mirrors, and upper hull detail in general come next, and nothing here is complicated or fiddly.

The turret comes next, and here the instructions could be a bit better in showing how things fit together.  The turret front bottom is the one area where I needed some putty.  Here too is the place for most of the clear parts …. Eight visors in the turret top.  Once again these were left off until the painting was complete.

The spare tire mount is the last assembly to complete, if you want to.  It is optional.  I like the look of that big tire hanging off the front, so I proceeded with it.  The mounting of the tire is a poor design. A small piece of plastic that you cut and glue two small pieces of wire to, which then is suppose to support the weight of the tire hanging off it.  Boo Trumpeter.  A single post of plastic would do this much simpler and be much sturdier and, being inside the wheel/rim, very easily hid.


Doesn’t get much easier than this: overall green.  I used some Model Master 34102 medium green that I had already had mixed up.  This was sprayed over everything and allowed to dry.  The few decals were next and these went down okay but tended to want to stick as soon as they hit plastic.  Got them positioned but they were reluctant to move.  Then a thin black wash was thrown on it all to dirty things up and pop out some detail.  The plan here was to follow this up with some brown washes, but while shaking up the bottle…… a bit too enthusiastically I fear …..the bottle flew out of my hand and did a straight shot right into the kit. (and yes, I did feel incredibly stupid….)  Surveying the damage, I found both mirrors and the windscreen were knocked off. Fortunately that’s all that happened: it could have been much worse.  I reattached the mirrors, but the windscreen was no-where to be found.  I didn’t think it hit hard enough to be instantly vaporized, but after a half hour of fruitlessly searching the area I gave up.  Where do these things go?  This was not a small piece either, a couple centimeters square easily.  Anyway, I threw some brown washes on it and called it good.   


This is a pretty simple kit of a pretty neat looking military vehicle.  I am sure if one wanted to, it could be assembled and painted in a weekend, as there are no real issues in assembly and painting can’t be easier.  Highly recommended for those with an interest in wheeled APC’s or anyone who just wants a quick build to relax.


 The Internet

Dale Rannals

December 2012

Thanks to Squadron Products via Modeling Madness   for the review kit. You can find this kit at your favorite hobby shop or on-line retailer.

If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contact the editor or see other details in the Note to Contributors.

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