Bronco 1/35 DAK 'Topolino' and Cart
|KIT #:||CB 35136|
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||New tool kit. Includes IF8 Infantry Cart|
The Fiat Topolino was one of the smallest cars in the world at the time of its production. Launched in 1937, three models were produced until 1955, all with only minor mechanical and cosmetic changes. It was equipped with a 569 cc four-cylinder, side-valve, water-cooled engine mounted in front of the front axle,( later an overhead valve motor ) and so was a full-scale car rather than a cyclecar. The radiator was located behind the engine which made possible a lowered aerodynamic nose profile at a time when competitors had a flat, nearly vertical grill. The shape of the car's front allowed exceptional forward visibility.
Rear suspension initially used quarter-elliptic rear springs, but buyers frequently squeezed four or five people into the nominally two-seater car, and in later models the chassis was extended at the rear to allow for more robust semi-elliptic springs.
With horsepower of about 13 bhp, its top speed was about 53 mph (85 km/h), and it could achieve about 39.2 miles per US gallon (6.00 L/100 km; 47.1 mpg-imp). The target price given when the car was planned was 5,000 lire. In the event the price at launch was 9,750 lire, though the decade was one of falling prices in several part of Europe and later in the 1930s the Topolino was sold for about 8,900 lire. Despite being more expensive than first envisioned, the car was competitively priced. Nearly 520,000 were sold.
I have to say that I was quite delighted when I first saw this kit at the LHS. I've always liked the little Fiat and am pleased that it has been kitted, albeit as a military vehicle. A civilian one has also been released without the addition military bits.
The kit is molded in Bronco's tan plastic and the molding is superb. This is not a large vehicle, with the one-piece body measuring a bit less than a Volkswagen Beetle at under 3.5 inches in length. Bronco has gone the extra step of completely enclosing the body in a plastic form-fitting case to prevent damage.
This is not a curbside and has a complete flathead four cylinder along with with its cooling system (which is behind the engine). This all fits onto a well done frame with both front and rear suspension pieces. The front wheels are designed to be able to be posed turned left or right. A floor pan installs on the frame intowhich the two seats are fitted. This vehicle does not have a back seat, though there is room in there for equipment or some uncomfortable passengers.
Both the hood and doors can be posed open if one so wishes. The doors come with two different size windows so one can pose them closed or with the forward section slid back. There is a rack for the roof onto which a pair of Jerry cans can be placed. On the back a bed roll can be put atop the spare tires.
This kit also comes with a small two wheeled cart that fits to a tow bar that can be attached to the back of the car. There is a nicely done pair of photo etch frets that contain bits for both the car and for the cart. One could probably build this as a civilian vehicle by not installing the various militarybits like the roof rack, Notar light, flag post and slit headlight covers. Any chrome work, however, would have to be painted in place.
Instructions are well done with large, easy to read instruction steps. The only painting information I saw was to paint the steering wheel flat black. The car can be done with three markings options. One is the DAK version shown on the cover with the cart. Another is a captured variant in US olive drab with large white stars. The third is a medical car in Panzer Grey with white circles in which are red crosses. The kit comes with a driver sticking holding the door open and another figure leaning on the roof with his foot on the running board as shown on the box art. The decal sheet, which I have darkened, is quite well done and allows you to do your own license plates if you so wish.
This is a very cool little set and like all Bronco kits, is highly detailed. I'm sure it will not be a quick build, but it will provide a most interesting vehicle to add to your staff car collection.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fiat_Topolino July 2013 Thanks to www.dragonmodelsusa.com for the preview 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 contactthe editor or see other details in the Back to the Main Page Back to the Previews Index Page
Thanks to www.dragonmodelsusa.com for the preview 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 contactthe editor or see other details in the
Back to the Main Page
Back to the Previews Index Page