Kagero's Sturmpanzer IV Brummbär


Karmieh, Mucha & Gladyslak




$24.95 from Casemate Publishing


Scott Van Aken

Notes: 112 pages, softbound, 8 x 11 inches,
ISBN: 978-83-64596-32-2

The Sturmpanzer IV is a popular modeling subject with those who like German WWII AFVs. Its short, large caliber gun is to many, just cool looking and add to this the side skirts along with the interesting camouflage schemes it carried and you will always see one or more at a model show.

Based on the realization that a big caliber mobile infantry assault vehicle was needed, the Sturmpanzer concept was a natural continuation of the early lightly armored SPGs that were based on Panzer I and Panzer II chassis. By the time this one entered combat at Kursk, it was reliazed that a full enclosed and fully armored fighting compartment was required. Based on recycled Panzer IV chassis, the vehicle already had a known automotive section with a parts supply chain (of sorts) already in existence. All that was required was the new armored upper hull and the addition of the weapon.

For main armament a 150mm howitzer was carried. The vehicles was also built in three rather small batches, resulting in three major variants. Slightly under 300 vehicles were produced and saw action in every front from mid-1943 until the end of the war.

This book continues Kagero's Photosniper series. There are basically four parts to the book. The first is a history section with period photos. Reading this section takes a bit of effort as it is obviously not written by someone who has English as their primary language and some of the sentence structure is a bit tortured. However, it can be understood. Perhaps Kagero needs to hire someone who is a primary English speaker to proof-read books like this if it is intended for an English speaking audience.

The second part of the book consists of high quality line drawings of not only the overall view of the major variants, but also detail bits and pieces. This is followed by many pages of quality close-up photos of a vehicle in a museum in Munster, Germany. This is a late production version, the most numerous built. The book ends with an equally large number of 3D artwork images, this time concentrating on the mid-production vehicle with its zimmerit coating. At the very end of this section are a few pages of full color profiles of various Sturmpanzers and a few pages of 3D artwork of a late vehicle in the ambush scheme.

In all, it makes for an excellent reference on the type and just the sort of book that AMS armor modelers will want to have in their collection.

April 2015

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