German Medium Tank VK.3002 (DB) with suspension type I
OKB Grigorov 1/72, Ref. 72089
Some time ago, I reviewed the German Medium Tank VK 3002 Daimler Bens (DB) with suspension type II produced by OKB Grigorov under the reference 72086. Just to remind that this VK 3002 (DB) was in competition with the Maschinenfabrik Augsburg Nurnberg (MAN) prototype (the future Panther) for the introduction of new 30 to 35-ton class vehicle with sloping armor, wide tracks to move on soft ground and a gun with a high muzzle velocity. The VK 3002 DB showed several features ‘borrowed’ from the T34/76 and was fitted with a turret equipped with a 75mm 48 caliber, located towards the front of the chassis, a running gear made of large road wheels mounted on external leaf springs and a MB 507 diesel engine. The slow development of the DB’s chosen engine and turret, along with the unusual use of diesel fuel lead to the MAN project to be selected and mass-produced. It seems that the VK 3002 DB displayed 2 types of suspension, the type I with four double T34-style road wheels and the type II with interleaved Panther-type road wheels.
The VK.3002 DB Suspension type I kit (Ref. 72089) includes 76 parts that are common for to the Suspension type II kit (Ref. 72086). Most parts are made of a high-quality grey resin with very fine details, particularly on the chassis, hull and tracks.
12 photo-etched parts and a turned metal barrel are also included.
The instructions are clearly drawn and the assembly should be fairly simple, even if the tracks must be bent around the drive sprockets and idlers..
I could not find reference in my own extensive library about the two different types of running gear but OKB Grigorov are not known for making things up, so I think we can trust that this ‘variant’ was indeed once being considered.
All in all though, this looks like another well detailed and well-fitting product from the Bulgarian artisan.
Bibliography: Panzer, The German Tanks Encyclopedia Caraktère presse & éditions, 2015, and: The Spielberger German Armor & Military Vehicles Series. Vol. I, Panther & its Variants Walter J. Spielberger Schiffer Military/Aviation History 1993
Review and pictures by Jean-Paul Oudinet.