Low-cost Armour

German Light Tank Pz. Kpfw. 38 mit 7.5 cm KwK 40 (L /48)

OKB Grigorov 1/72, Ref. 72077

The Light Tank Pz. Kpfw. 38 mit 7.5 cm KwK 40 (L /48) belongs to a series of conceptual designs proposed by Krupp in November 1943 to Generalinspekteur der Panzertruppen and to Wa Pruef 6.   The aim was to increase the armament of all panzers and jagdpanzers while using the least amount of armour. If the effectiveness of all weapons was to be increased, the significant redesign of current models and the consequent disruption of production lines were one of the reasons these models were never put into production, or even tested. The paper panzer proposed here is the result of the mounting of a modified Pz. Kpfw. IV turret on a panzerjaeger 38t chassis. The new planned Pz. Kpfw. IV turret would have featured a six-sided form, a flat gun mantle, no vision nor pistol ports and two hatches in the roof.  Only one simplified hatch in the left side and a 7.5 cm Kw. K. L/48 were to be installed. This turret project was however dropped in July 1944.

The OKB Grigorov cardboard box contains 44 parts in grey resin, one photo-etched fret with 23 parts and, a nice touch, a turned-metal barrel.  Most of the photo-etched parts are dedicated to the chassis. The long sections of tracks are nicely cast as but will have to be bent around the drive sprockets and idlers.  On the top, various hatches can be left open and can thus give access to the turret and hull. The resin pieces are finely detailed and should be easily removed from their pouring blocks.  A clear and simple instruction sheet is also included and will ease the build.  Although, no decal nor painting advice is included, everyone can use their imagination to represent an interesting panzer project as no such vehicle was ever built. This is an interesting kit for those who are interested by the Panzerwaffe and its potential evolution.

Some bibliographical reference is available from: Panzer Tracts N° 20-1 Paper Panzers, Panzerkampfwagen, Sturmgeschuetz, and Jagdpanzer. Thomas L. Jentz and Hilary Louis Doyle.

Review & pictures by Jean-Paul Oudinet.

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