Dragon 1/35 Jagdpanzer IV A-0

KIT #: 6843
PRICE: $76.00 SRP)
DECALS: Three options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: Smart Kit with DS tracks.

HISTORY

 

 Germany based its Jagdpanzer IV tank destroyer on the chassis of the ubiquitous and reliable Panzer IV tank. The vehicle mounted a lethal 75mm main gun in a fixed superstructure or casemate. The low-profile vehicle was actually designed as a replacement for the successful StuG.III, and it was built in three variants, the first of which was the 0-series, essentially a Jagdpanzer IV pre-production version. The 0-series is easily identified by the rounded front corners of the superstructure, a feature that was dropped for production and ballistic reasons once manufacture began. It mounted a 7.5cm PaK39 gun, plus ports for two 7.92mm machine guns in the glacis plate. The first 0-series vehicle was produced in January 1944. 

THE KIT

This Dragon 1/35 scale rendition of a Jagdpanzer IV A-0 is well engineered and carefully crafted to accurately recreate the original pre-production vehicle. Indeed, it has no connection with old item No.9059 that Dragon released ages ago. This is a brand new kit that employs parts such as the chassis and road wheels from Dragonís current generation of Panzer IV kits, combined with easy-to-assemble tracks made from DS. Furthermore, the superstructure and roof are brand new . It has the correct superstructure with distinctive rounded corners that makes it stand out from production Jagdpanzer IVs, while the 75mm PaK39 gun is fitted with a muzzle brake.

The builder can pose hatches open or closed though there is no interior. One will also need to do some modification to extant kit parts to be able to properly portray this variant. Here is a listing from Dragon's PR folks as to what comes in the kit.

- Photo-etched part for sliding cover of gun sight slot 
- New one-piece fighting-compartment superstructure made by slide mold Highly detailed superstructure roof 
- Cast Saukopf gun mantlet and ball mounting plate molded as single pieces with suitable texture 
- Extreme level of detail on superstructure roof, including photo-etched part 
- Hatches in superstructure can be posed open/closed 
- Engine deck has full detail 
- Side-skirt armor produced to scale thickness 
- Elements such as cradle and gun sight mount for L/43 gun accurately reproduced 
- Highly detailed 7.5cm PaK39 L/43 gun includes full breech 
- Rear hull features all details such as exhaust muffler 
- Frontal glacis plate 
- Gun sight and recoil system accurately detailed 
- Realistic return rollers included 
- Road wheels and suspension w/multiple components exhibit crisp detail 
- Sprockets and idler wheels w/delicate detail 
- Periscope mode from clear part 
- One-piece DS tracks w/well defined detail 

Instructions are well done to Dragon's usual standard and feature Gunze and Model Master paint references. There are markings options for three vehicles. One is the box art vehicle from Panzer Lehr Division in 1944. The other two are in overall panzer yellow, one from an unknown unit and the other from 'Schulungsfahrzeug'.

CONCLUSIONS

Those who are fans of the type will definitely want this one. Though built in small numbers, it was battle tested and an important part of the development of the vehicle.  

November 2016

Thanks to www.dragonmodelsusa.com for the preview kit. Get yours at your local retailer.

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