Tamiya 1/48 Horch Type 1a

KIT #: 32586
PRICE: $26.00  SRP
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: 2015 tooling


The heavy off-road passenger car was built by Horch in Zwickau and Ford Germany in Cologne, each using their own V8 engines. They were used by the signals corps (Kfz. 23 and 24), as ambulances (Kfz. 31), as tractors for light artillery (Kfz. 69) and AA guns (Kfz. 81), as troop carriers (Kfz. 70) and as a carrier of AA searchlights (Kfz. 83). Furthermore, the armoured troop carrier Sd.Kfz. 247 and the rear-enginedLeichter Panzerspähwagenarmoured car in all its versions used the same chassis. Nearly 5,000 units were built in total. The cars had an empty weight of 3,300 kg (without four-wheel steering: 3,200 kg). Like the others, the heavy type lost the four-wheel steering along with the mid-mounted spare wheels in 1940. Although it suffered from the same deficiencies as others in this class (complex design,excessive wear and tear, and high weight, which in turn meant a high fuel consumption and led to many broken frames and suspensions in the field), as well as a heavy steering, it appears to have been the most successful type of the standardized off-road passenger car program.


While I build a lot of different types of models, I'm basically an airplane guy. However, I have a real fondness for Tamiya's 1/48 military kits. Every one I have built was a pleasant experience. The parts fit well, the instructions are well done and Tamiya's engineering makes difficult for oafs like me to mis-build any of the kit.

This one is no exception. The kit's five sprues (one is clear) comes in four bags with the duplicate sprues being in the same bag. Molding is exceptional and Tamiya provides six figures to help populate the vehicle. One of these is a driver and then there are five passengers. The nice thing about these figures is that you could easily use them in other similar vehicles if you so wanted.

Frequently, these kits come with either a metal chassis or some sort of weight. Not the case this time. THere is a single piece chassis that incorporates the engine skid plate and some other chassis components. Suspension is nicely done and not a myriad of parts as some other manufacturers might supply.

A floor pan with fenders is provided for the various seats, none of which look very comfortable. A firewall piece is used to hold the instrument panel and the steering gear. Decals are used for the instruments. This will fit atop your completed chassis and then one starts to attach the rear 'trunk' piece and the forward pieces. Note that if one is going to use the driver, it needs to be added before the steering wheel is attached.

The forward doors are separate so one could model them open. There iss a windscreen that can be modeled folded down on the one piece hood. The kit only supplies a folded top, which does make it easier to install the passengers.

Instructions provide only Tamiya paint references. However, this shouldn't be an issue as the two markings options are overall panzer grey with khaki top and seats. One is from the 1st Panzer Division in Russia during 1941/2. The other is with the Herman Goering Division in France during late 1942. Now I know that it was in 1943 that the panzer yellow was specified for vehicles, though I'm not sure if this would have extended to non-combat vehicles like this. I'm sure a search of the 'net will find something in this regard.


Another very nice kit from the world standard. It should prove to be a pleasant build and result in a nice model of one of Germany's many WWII vehicles.

June 2016

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Thanks to me for picking this one up.

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