BTR-152.V1 Armoured Personnel Carrier

MAC Automodelle 1:72 Scale Vehicle Review

BTR-152.V1

The first version of the BTR-152 was produced in 1950, it became the basis for many useful variants. The vehicle hull is of all-welded construction, engine and transmission are at the front of the vehicle. The crew consists of a driver, co-driver, and up to 17 infantry who normally board the vehicle through the rear entry hatch. The BTR-152.V1 was the second model to enter service, it had a front mounted winch, and a tyre-pressure regulation system.

Contents

  • BTR-152.K with armoured roof
  • 7.62 mm machine gun
  • 13 sets of decals

Evaluation

There are a total of 54 parts; the main superstructure is actually partially pre-assembled; composed of three pieces fused together.

Plastic axles are indicated in the instructions, but the kit actually came with metal axles.

The kit comes with 13 sets of decals, and three batches of vehicle ID numbers:

  • (1) East Germany
  • (2) CSSR
  • (3) & (4) Poland
  • (5) Hungary
  • (6) Afghanistan
  • (7) Syria
  • (8) Israel
  • (9) Bulgaria
  • (10) & (11) USSR
  • (12) Finland
  • (13) Red Cross
  • Vehicle Numbers

The instructions are written in four languages, Czech, Russian, English, and German. Illustrations are included, but the proper placement of a few parts (the steering wheel, for one) are omitted. Easy enough to figure out, though.

The model is molded in a bright blue plastic, which is somewhat softer than the plastic used by most manufacturers. One must therefore be careful when trimming and filing; also note that the paint is more likely to rub off until coated by protective varnish.

Painting instructions were not included in this kit. The BTR may be painted Humbrol No. 114 Russian Green to represent a Warsaw Pact or Syrian vehicle.

Crew figures are not included.

Historical Employment

  • The BTR-152 series has seen service with Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Bulgaria, Cambodia, China (as the type 56 APC), Congo, Cuba, East Germany, Egypt, Finland, Hungary, India, Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Poland, Romania, Soviet Union, Syria and other countries. Production ended in early 1960s, and in Russia the vehicle was replaced by the BTR-60.P series.
  • The Palestinian Authority (PA) currently has 50 BTR-152 in inventory which were supplied by Egypt in 1996 and 1997.
  • Israel used BTR-152 series vehicles, but it is unlikely that these were actually purchased from the Soviet Union. Like other Warsaw Pact equipment in the Israeli arsenal, the BTR-152s were most likely captured during the conflicts with Egypt, and Syria.

Possible Conversions

  • BTR-152.V2 armoured personnel carrier without winch
  • BTR-152 anti-tank vehicle with ATGM launcher
  • BTR-152.A anti-aircraft vehicle with twin machine guns or cannons
  • BTR-152 close support vehicle with quadruple heavy machine guns
  • BTR-152.K armoured personnel carrier with armoured roof
  • BTR-152.U, command vehicle. The vehicle had raised sides to provide more internal space, and comfort for the staff working inside; it was not armed. This variant and the BTR-152.K would be suitable for several other uses, as an ambulance, signals, and artillery registration vehicle.

Overall, the kit is simple, and went together well. Some parts needed fiddling to get to fit, and it wasn't always clear where to cut parts off the sprue. Other manufacturers might have made more parts for the same subject, to allow the vehicle to be modelled with open doors and window hatches, for example. The kit should be a welcome addition to any collection, but may be hard to find. Assembled in the Czech Republik, the kit may be produced under a different name in Europe.

Patrick Storto

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