Dragon 1/72 SdKfz 223
KIT #: 7420
PRICE: $20.50 SRP
DECALS: Two options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: STwo kits in one box


The Sd.kfz 222 is part of a family of light armored cars thatstarted with the 221. Prototypes of this series were initially developed around1937 and were produced until 1942. However these useful vehicles were used untilthe end of the war. The main difference between the 221 and the 222 was in theweapon carried. The 221 had a a seven sided open topped turret with a single7.92mm machine gun. Later in the war, a 2.3 cm anti-tank rifle replaced themachine gun. The 223 (and subject of this kit) was the radio command car version. It reverted to the machine gun for armament and had a large 'bed frame' antenna on the top. 500 were produced.

All of these vehicles were based on a Horch/Auto Union chassiswhich had either a 3.5 liter, 75 hp engine (Ausf A) or later production had a3.8 liter 81 hp engine (Ausf B). Both had the engine in the rear. The chassishad a four wheel drive, fully independent suspension. Initially, they also hadfour wheel steering, but this was removed later as it proved to be unnecessary.The differentials were full locking ensuring that all four wheels were able toprovide traction.

The hull was welded steel plate with a door on either side. Theopen top was covered by a framework with steel mesh (obviously to prevent theodd hand grenade from being dropped inside). Elevation and azimuth of the turretwere manually controlled via small hand wheels. 


Somewhat hot on the heels of the SdKfz 222, Dragon has issued the radio car version. This one uses most of the parts of the 222, hence what look like the same sprues. Only this time, the larger turret and 20mm gun are not used. Instead, this one uses the smaller turret with the 7.92mm machine gun along with the additional bits (like the big antenna) for the 223 variant. I'd not be surprised to see the base 221 done in the future. This is an 'Armor Pro' kit because it has two pieces of photo etch included. These bits are for the upper turret screens that are used to keep out hand grenades (nasty little things that really make a mess of interiors).

As usual, you get two kits in this set and while the box says 130 pieces, I'd have to think that perhaps means for both kits? Maybe not. Anyway, straight from the Dragon's mouth, here are the features:

- Newly tooled Sd.Kfz.223 Leichte Panzerspähwagen delicately produced
- Realistic bed-frame antenna included
- Finely molded hull w/detail
- Full fighting compartment w/detail
- Finely-molded jerry cans included
- Delicate MG 34 included
- Photo-etched turret shields can be assembled open/closed
- Chassis presented in full details
- On-vehicle tools sharply produced
- Intricate external stowage included
- Realistic-looking headlamps included
- Well-shaped driver's seat
- Delicate wheels w/authentic tread pattern

The instructions show markings for three vehicles. All from unknown units and for the most part, with little more than generic markings. One is Panzer Grey from 1940 while the other two are North African based desert tan. The decal sheet provides your basic markings plus a variety of numbers to be used to make your own license plates.


Another really nice addition to the Dragon line of 1/72 vehicles. You'll probably have to take your time and wear a magnifier of some sort while construction goes on as some parts are quite small. However, the end result will be some very neat vehicles to add to your small scale armor collection.



July 2011

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