Thursday, September 22

The "Guardian" & "Longbow" confirmed as Takom's new 35th scale Apaches...

After several days of keeping us guessing, Takom has just confirmed the two versions of the Apache D "Longbow" & the E model "Guardian" for their new Apache in 35th scale. We look at the what we know about the kits in our preview...

The "Guardian" & "Longbow" confirmed as Takom's new 35th scale Apaches...

Two versions of the AH-64 Apache have been hinted at by Takom. They confirmed the exact models today. Here is a quick run-down of each one...

The Subject: The AH-64D /E Apaches
Surely one of the most lethal helicopters ever devised, the Apache AH-64D/E is capable of destroying armor, personnel, and materiel targets in obscured battlefield conditions. The Apache is a twin-engine, four-blade tandem-seat attack helicopter equipped with an M230 30-mm cannon, Hydra-70 2.75-inch rockets, and HELLFIRE missiles (both laser-guided and radio frequency). 
The current Army Aviation fleet contains both AH-64D Longbow Apaches and AH-64E models. The Apache is fielded to both Active Army and Army National Guard armed reconnaissance battalions and cavalry units. The aircraft is designed to support Brigade Combat Teams across the full spectrum of warfare.   

Probably the ultimate "hero" shot of the Apache we think...

AH-64D "Longbow" Apache
Longbow is readily identifiable by the mast-mounted antenna for its radar. It allows the AGM-114L to be fired in an autonomous fire-and-forget mode, whereas the laser-guided Hellfire requires external designation or use in conjunction with the TADS, and as such is a line-of-sight and non fire-and-forget  weapon. The APG-78 radar can detect, classify and prioritise 12 targets simultaneously, and can see through the fog and smoke that currently foils infra-red or TV sensors.
The British-built AgustaWestland Apache (assembled from kits purchased from Boeing) is based on the AH-64D Block I with several systems, including more powerful engines, folding rotor blades, and other modifications for operation from Royal Navy vessels.

UK Army Air Corps Westland WAH-64D Apache Longbow displays at a UK airshow
An AH-64D Apache flies over a residential area in the Multi-National Division-Baghdad area conducting a reconnaissance mission to keep an eye out for enemy mortar and anti-aircraft systems.

The AH-64E Apache Guardian.
The AH-64E program is the most current evolution of the Apache. It is designed and equipped with an open systems architecture to incorporate the latest communications, navigation, sensor, and weapon systems. The E-model has multiple upgrades from its predecessors, such as the improved Modernized Target Acquisition Designation Sight/Pilot Night Vision System (MTADS/PNVS). This system includes a new integrated infrared laser that allows for easier target designation and enhanced infrared imagery that blends infrared and night vision capabilities. The E-model also has an updated Small Tactical Terminal radio that includes the LINK 16 capability required to communicate in a joint environment. The updated Fire Control Radar can operate in a maritime mode, enabling the Apache to be an integral asset in most environments. The E-model fleet’s Manned-Unmanned Teaming ability provides Level of Interoperability 4 to Apache crews, providing the ability to receive Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) video in the Apache cockpit, control UAS sensors, and direct the flight path of the UAS.  
The aircraft is also undergoing further modernization modifications such as the Modernized Day Sensor Assembly. This upgrade eliminates obsolescence issues while enhancing day-sight capabilities equivalent to the changes made with MTADS/PNVS. Other modifications include Manned-Unmanned Teaming that provides non-line-of-sight communications, video transmission/reception, and maintenance cost reductions.  

Indonesian Army Boeing AH-64E Apache Guardian
The Apache is provided to U.S. allies through a robust Foreign Military Sales program with more than 500 Apache currently in operation or development across 16 partner nations. The current acquisition objective is 812 aircraft. 

An Indian Air Force AH-64E in 2019

The kits:
AH-64D "Longbow"
From Takom
Kit No #2601
1/35th scale
Designed with Snowman Model
Two models are on the horizon from Takom. One is the AH-64D "Longbow", equipped with a glass cockpit and advanced sensors, the most noticeable of which being the AN/APG-78 Longbow millimeter-wave fire-control radar (FCR) target acquisition system and the Radar Frequency Interferometer (RFI), housed in a dome located above the main rotor. This could also be the British version without too many changes.

AH-64E Apache "Guardian"
From Takom
Kit No #2601
1/35th scale
Designed with Snowman Model
Confirmed just now, the second kit is going to be the "E" model of the Apache Guardian, with the more powerful General Electric T700-GE-701D engines and new sensors. Hopefully, we might see some interesting decal choices, knowing that India, Saudi Arabia and Taiwan have this model also. Also some British Army D models are being updated to the E model standard.

That is all we have on these two for now - keep tuned for more info on the kits themselves...

That is all we know about this release for now. You can see more about Takom's kits on their website or on their  Facebook page.