WWII E-75 Heavy Tank with 128mm gun
|Kit #: UA72029|| Preview
by Kevin Liang
- kevin_liang123 (at) yahoo.ca
Edited by F. Giovagnorio
E-75 is a German blueprint tank. It is based on the Tiger II, but instead of a complex and expensive torsion bar suspension, it has external Belleville washer bogies. The number of roadwheels have also been reduced to 8 per side from…18 (9x2). I don't know how only 8 is going to hold more weight than the previous 18 (that barely held), but I didn't make this theoretical tank that defies physics.
Each bogie contains two road wheels, and is easily removed in case of combat damage. E-75 means it's near 75-100 ton range. The engine would be the Maybach HL234. The armour is theoretically the same as a Tiger II, but the frontal upper and lower hull is now sloped 60 degrees from vertical, instead of only 50.
Vision is also improved, with the additional stereoscopic rangefinders on the side of the turret.
Since it's a paper tank, weapons don't really have a standard, and thus ranged from the standard Tiger II 8,8cm L/71, 10,5cm, etc. Modelcollect has several variants already produced. The other kits come with 8,8cm L/100, or a Flak 55.
In this kit, the E-75 is equipped with a massive 12,8cm 44 L55 gun with muzzle brake (ala World of Tanks). It wouldn't really fit in the turret, but it looks cool. Rule of cool pretty much rules tanks anyway right?
On to the kit.
The decals are well printed. It includes several different unit patches and pre-made hull numbers. If you choose to make your own, that's available too. The flash is also covering up the gun barrel markings for tank aces, should you choose to depict your tank to be an invincible badass.
The lower hull is very similar to any Tiger II's. The exception is it's more angled on the front, and the lack of torsion bars. The bogies are separate and constructed separately. It's really easy to create a knocked out tank with this.
Some pioneer tools are molded on the back of the hull, as is the rear fenders. The molded on rear fenders can be extremely annoying if you want to make a combat damaged tank.
However…if you've been paying attention up top, you'll notice the kit comes with PE parts! It includes the rear fenders. The annoying part will be removing the thick plastic one. It should've come unattached. Oh well.
You get two suspension sprues per kit. The roadwheels are extremely well done, and on par with Revell. The front drive sprocket is the early Tiger II 18 teeth type.
Tracks are like any Tiger IIs from first glance. Would've preferred hard plastic, but this is not bad.
The turret is similar to a Tiger II's, with a few differences here and there. You'll need counterweight for the metal gun barrel, or you'll be forced to glue it in place.
…And here we come to the worst part of the kit. The upper hull. For whatever reason, Modelcollect didn't do the open hatches on this kit. That's very disappointing for those of us that like to show off the engine or include crews.
Furthermore, the side skirt is already built into the hull. It will be rather annoying to remove should you choose not to have them.
Pioneer tools are all pre-cast on the hull. They have good relief, but it would've been nice to have a choice of separate tools.
On the driver's side, it's oddly missing a weld spot between the front and side plates. The radioman's side does have the weld.
But of course, I left the best for last: the PE/brass parts. For the price of purchase ($30USD), you get additional parts that Modelcollect call "Ultra Version". It comes with the skirt/fender/engine deck/turret track hanger PE parts, as well as a turned brass barrel. The barrel alone is worth quite a bit of change.
In conclusion: This kit sort of defied the Modelcollect's convention of massive amount of spare parts, as it has very few to spare. It also doesn't give modelers freedom to depict what they want compared to their previous kits, without scratch work. However, it is part of the only series of 1/72 E-75 plastic kits around. It's still easier to work with a complete plastic kit than resin or scratch building from a Tiger II.
Recommended (with reservations)
Kit is graciously provided at subsidized cost by the manufacturer.