The German Tiger I early production early was the first heavy tank developed and deployed by the German armed forces surpassing the Panzer III and IV tanks, during the period of the war. Characterized as an early production version, the tank benefitted from distinctive features such as the cylindrical commander’s cupola, turret smoke dischargers, and pistol ports on the turret. Armed with the formidable 88mm gun, the Tiger I early production also served with the German armed forces during the 1943 Kursk Offensive in Russia. Later versions of the Tiger I tank appeared in almost all front-line battles, till the end of the conflict in Germany. The German Tiger I heavy tank had a strong psychological deterrent effect to many opponents. Its very complicated design, requiring a lot of expensive materials and heavy production facilities, combined with the manufacturing time led to around only 1,347 units built between August 1942 and August 1944.
Border Model‘s 1/35th scale German Tiger I Early Production kit depicts the early production version of the German Tiger I that first saw combat during the Kursk offensive. The box contains 9 light grey, 1 clear plastic sprue, a slide moulded chassis and turret, 2 PE frets, a metal barrel, and a decal sheet.
The kit features fine, delicate details as can be seen on both the hull’s and turret’s replicated welds lines, cast markings on the road wheels, and various details on the vehicle. The contains a wealth of stowage and accessories such as brass tubes for the smoke dischargers, ammunition boxes, un ditching logs, kettles, buckets, helmets, air identification flags and tarps, dust covers for both the main gun and hull machine gun, as well as pork legs. The kit also contains 5 different types for the main gun’s mantlet, 2 types for the radiator covers, and 3 different types for the turret’s rear stowage box.
The included PE fret contains parts for various parts of the kit such as the engine grills, as well as anti-infantry barbed wire which was specially mounted on the hull’s both sides by the 505th heavy tank battalion in Kursk.
Eight marking options are included in the kit for 6 tanks during the 1943 Kursk offensive, and 2 tanks on the Eastern Front during the Winter of 1943/1944.
It is to be noted that this is the special early release batch of Border Model’s Tiger I Early Production kit, containing a 1/1 Knight Iron Cross with Double Swords Silver Oak Leaf replica.