Thursday, July 5

New item preview from Miniart - 1/35th scale Pz.Kpfw.III Ausf. D/B

We just got news of a new item from Miniart - the new kit of in 1/35th scale of the Pz.Kpfw.III Ausf. D/B is in development, and this kit with all of that extra armour on the front shure looks pretty cool - but what is inside the kit? We see in our new item preview...

New kit in progress from Miniart

Pz.Kpfw.III Ausf. D/B
1/35th Scale
Box size: 386x240x60
Coming soon
Product Link on the
 Miniart Website

Kit contains Miniart's new model kit of medium tank Pz.Kpfw.III Ausf. D/B. Not sure about the lineage of this marque of Panzer III? we have some background for you.

The Panzerkampfwagen III Ausf D, also called the Sd Kfz 141 3b Serie Zugführerwagen/ 3b Serie ZW - it was the fourth and final development version of the Panzer III, and saw a final attempt to improve the suspension system first adopted on the Ausf B. That version of the tank had introduced a system with eight road wheels on each side. The wheels were connected in pairs, which were then carried on two long leaf springs, with one pair of wheels at each end. On the Ausf C, the first and last pairs of wheels were given their own short leaf spring, carried parallel to the ground, while the second and third pairs were carried on a long leaf spring.
On the Ausf D, the second and third pairs of wheels remained unchanged, but the short leaf springs for the first and fourth pairs were mounted at an angle. This had the effect of increasing the amount of support they provided, but the suspension system was still not satisfactory and would be replaced completely on the Ausf E.

The Ausf D also featured a new commander’s cupola, which would be used on the Panzer III Ausf D, E and F and on the Panzer IV Ausf B, C and D. This cupola was protected by 30mm armour and had five vision slits. Minor changes included the replacement of the louvres on the rear hull with hatches and changes to the sprocket, idler and transmission.
The first fifteen Ausf Ds carried the same 15mm main armour as the earlier versions. According to some sources, the last fifteen were given thicker 30mm armour, but this is not at all certain.
The Panzer III Ausf D served with the Panzer regiments and divisions in Poland, but was officially withdrawn in February 1940 along with all earlier models, because of its thin armour and poor suspension. It briefly returned to the front line during the Norwegian campaign when it was issued to the snappily titled Pz Abt z b V40.
Vehicle Statistics:
Hull Length: 5.92m/ 
Hull Width: 2.82m/ 9ft 3in
Height: 2.42m/ 7ft 11in
Crew: 5 (Commander, gunner, loader, driver, radio operator)
Weight: 16 tons 
Engine: Maybach HL108TR V-12 
Max Speed: 40km/hr/ 24mph
Max Range: 165km/ 102 miles
Armament: One 3.7cm KwK L/46.5, plus two 7.92mm MG 34 in turret and one in front of superstructure

The new kit from miniart has many features we think you will like:
Clear Parts Included
Photo-etched Parts Included
Workable Tracks Links
Workable Chassis & Suspension
Accurate Turret Interior
All Hatches Can Be Posed Open or Closed
Decal Sheet for 4 Variants

Contents of the Box - these sprues are duplicated on some of these multiple times:

The track links and Track Pins are in multiples here
Turret, Coppola & Hull base
Clear parts for periscopes/viewing ports 
PE parts - not too many which is great!
CAD images of inside the turret to show you the details inside
And here it is all built up in CAD form - impressive and I could imagine many scenarios testing this tank, especially with the option of all that extra armour.
The colour schemes supplied in this kit
OK, more on this kit when it comes to our door and we review it – till then you can see all of Miniart’s kits at their homepage.