Hasegawa 1/48 Ju-87G-2 'Stuka' Anti-Tank Attacker

KIT #: 09054 (Jt54)
PRICE: 2400 yen when new
DECALS: One option
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: 1998 release


Hans-Ulrich Rudel, a Stuka ace, had suggested using two 37 mm (1.46 in) Flak 18 guns, each one in a self-contained under-wing gun pod, as the Bordkanone BK 3,7, after achieving success against Soviet tanks with the 20 mm MG 151/20 cannon. These gun pods were fitted to a Ju 87 D-1, W.Nr 2552. The first flight of the machine took place on 31 January 1943, piloted by Stepp. The continuing problems with about two dozen of the Ju 88P-1 and slow development of the Henschel Hs 129 B-3, both designs using the large, 7.5 cm Pak 40-based, autoloading Bordkanone 7,5 7.5 cm (2.95 in) cannon in a conformal gun pod beneath the fuselage, meant the Ju 87G was put into production. In April 1943, the first production Ju 87 G-1s were delivered to front line units. The two 37 mm (1.46 in) Bordkanone BK 3,7 cannons were mounted in under-wing gun pods, each loaded with two six-round magazines of armour-piercing tungsten carbide-cored ammunition. With these weapons, the Kanonenvogel ("cannon-bird"), as it was nicknamed, proved very successful in the hands of Stuka aces such as Rudel. The G-1 was converted from older D-series airframes, retaining the smaller wing, but without the dive brakes. The G-2 was similar to the G-1 except for use of the extended wing of the D-5. 208 G-2s were built and at least a further 22 more were converted from D-3 airframes. Only a handful of production Gs were committed in the Battle of Kursk. On the opening day of the offensive, Hans-Ulrich Rudel flew the only "official" Ju 87 G, although a significant number of Ju 87 D variants were fitted with the 37 mm (1.46 in) cannon, and operated as unofficial Ju 87 Gs before the battle. In June 1943, the RLM ordered 20 Ju 87Gs as production variants.


Probably little surprise to anyone, this kit is simply their standard Ju-87D-5 with additional sprues to make the G version. It is pretty obvious that the G was planned from the start as there are areas on the lower wing for you to open holes for the special gun mounts.

As with all Hasegawa kits, the detailing is very good. There are full side panels for the interior with most of the bits and pieces already molded in place. This is satisfactory for the vast majority of modelers who don't want to fuss with a lot of tiny bits and pieces. One thing the interior could use are belts for the pilot and gunner.

In line with other Hasegawa Stuka kits, the forward section is separate. As all their kits use the same basic fuselage, this helps them to keep the cost down. Of course you get separate wings and landing gear that are germane to this variant. That includes the different canopy that requires a little trimming of the interior opening. Also different are the struts that hold the tailplanes. As this is the cannon armed plane, there's no need for dive brakes. There is also a separate sprue for the wider prop blades. Now, if you wanted to build a standard D-5 you could though I don't think the main bomb fins are provided nor the bomb crutch.

Instructions are standard fare for Hasegawa with Gunze paint references. There is only one marking option and that is for Rudel's plane as shown on the box art in RLM 70/71/65. Decals (not shown) are 'old school' with the whites that are off-white, though they are probably still usable if you so wished.


So there you have it. I don't think anyone else has done a series of Stukas in this scale, so that makes the now 25 year old Hasegawa kits the best around. I can tell you from experience that these make into great models with little muss or fuss.



November 2023 

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