Cyber-hobby 1/35 Neubau-Fahrzeug
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
|NOTES:||One time release|
The German Neubaufahrzeug series of tank prototypes were a first attempt to create a heavy tank for the Wehrmacht after Adolf Hitler had come to power. Multi-turreted, heavy and slow, they did not fit in with the Blitzkrieg tactics and therefore only five were made. These were primarily used for propaganda purposes, though three took part in the Battle of Norway in 1940.
Though these tanks were never placed in production, they provided a propaganda tool for Nazi Germany, for example being shown at the International Automobile Exposition in Berlin in 1939.
This propaganda role was extended with the German invasion of Norway, when a special Panzerabteilung was formed which took the three armored prototypes with them to Oslo. They saw some combat there, with one being blown up by German engineers when it got stuck in swamps near ┼ndalsnes. To replace it, one of the mild steel prototypes was used.
It is unclear what happened to the tanks after the Norway campaign, but none of them survived the war. The surviving vehicles were ordered scrapped in 1941, which took place in 1942 according to documents captured by the British in 1945. The dates upon which the vehicles were scrapped are unclear, but it is thought that the beginning of the construction of the Sturer Emil prototypes dates from the same time.
All that survives of these tanks are a small number of running gear parts, preserved in the Gudbrandsdal Krigsminnesamling (Gudbrandsdal War Memorial collection), at Kvam in Norway.
Over the years I've read books on the Norway invasion of 1940 and read about the use of these tanks in the campaign. Until now, I've not seen a kit of one and I should have realized that Cyber-hobby would eventually get around to providing one. Since the subject is rather esoteric and I don't think there were any variants, but I could be wrong as there are parts not used and you have to do a bit of conversion work. The instructions show what needs to be done where. The kit is superbly molded as you'd expect, using Dragon's standard slide mold technology. It is also a fairly big tank with its three turrets and complex suspension. This one has individual track links and quite a few of them as well.
Here is a full rundown of the features.
There are no 'unit' markings, just four insignia. Two different camo schemes are appropriate with the box art one used during the Norway campaign and the lighter version done initially after it was built.
This isn't a cheap kit, probably due to the limited variations that can be done with it, but it is a very cool tank and I'm sure many out there are going to be very pleased with this one.
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