Since assuming the Roco MiniTanks family of military models, Herpa has expanded the line with new models. This is their GTK Boxer
, an 8X8 wheeled armor vehicle in 1/87. It is one of six Boxers currently cataloged by Herpa.
Technology, force size, budgets and the changing face of international participation have created a need for versatile military vehicles that can be utilized for war and peace. From these concerns sprang the the GTK Boxer. This wheeled medium armored vehicle features a modular design that offers a new machine that can be used as an infantry fighting vehicle, ambulance or many other roles. According to Germany's military website;
With the GTK Boxer armored transport vehicles, a new generation of medium weight class was developed. Its special feature lies in the fulfillment of individual claims on a trend-level and in the balanced coordination of competing demands.*
To further elaborate on the Boxer;
The Boxer is a German-Dutch multirole armoured fighting vehicle designed to accomplish a number of operations through the use of installable mission modules. It is produced by the ARTEC GmbH (ARmoured vehicle TEChnology) industrial group, and the programme is being managed by OCCAR (Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation). ARTEC GmbH is seated in Munich, its parent companies are Krauss-Maffei Wegmann GmbH and Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles GmbH (RMMV) on the German side, and Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Nederland B.V. for the Netherlands. Other names are GTK (Gepanzertes Transport Kraftfahrzeug; armoured transport vehicle) Boxer and MRAV for Multirole Armoured Vehicle.
The German and Dutch base vehicles are identical, only the mission modules differ.
Known mission modules
Armoured personnel carrier
Infantry Fighting Vehicle featuring the Rheinmetall Lance turret.
Engineer group carrier
Battle damage repair
Probable platform of the German army's future SysFla anti aircraft system, incorporating the LFK NG missile and the MANTIS gun system
Artillery Gun Module
Germany German Army - 403 vehicles, deliveries until 2018
Netherlands Royal Netherlands Army - 200, deliveries started 2013 until 2017.
Potential future operators
Lithuania Lithuanian Land Force On December 11th, 2015 Lithuania decided to buy 88 Boxer armored vehicles armed with Israeli made 30mm MkII guns and Spike-LR anti-tank missiles.
Australia Australian Army The Boxer IFV version is being offered for the LAND 400 program.**
The Boxer in the Box
Perhaps this Herpa-Military
series model is not considered a model by some because there are no parts to attach and because it is pre-painted. Yet this new model is a scion of the generationally acclaimed MiniTanks line of 1/87 models, begun by Roco in the 1960s, that inspired dozens of model companies to release hundreds of 1/87 military model subjects available today.
This Boxer is the Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV) packing a Rheinmetall Lance 30mm gun turret. It is fully assembled. Molding and detail are sharp and I found no flash, sprue burrs, mold seams, nor visible sink marks nor ejection circles. Unlike many old MiniTanks, none of the hatches open. Almost all detail is molded on. Yet, that molded detail is very crisp.
The wheels are molded in a composite rubber/plastic and have good tread detail.
The model is securely packed in a clear plastic cradle - perhaps too securely, as it took a great deal of effort to eject the model from the tight fitting cradle without scuffing or breaking something; so far I have not been able to insert it back in!
Paint and Markings
Herpa painted the 3-color desert camouflage. The Bundeswehr Kruz is also painted on. Herpa does not use decals. Tail lights and headlamps are simulated with paint.
Herpa's new GTK Boxer is a fine model. While assembly-modelers are probably cussin' me for reviewing it here, Braille Scale modelers of modern equipment should be interested in this sharp model. It offers the potential for detailing and painting, and its small size affords one the opportunity to create detailed dioramas of a modest footprint.
Lack of positional hatches is the only real drawback I will mention, as the molded-shut ones limit the modeler from adding crew.
Molding and detail are sharp. Painting and markings are, too. I recommend this model to 1/87 modelers, collectors, wargamers, and anybody interested in this new multi-role medium AFV.
Please remember to mention that you saw this model here - on
* Deutsches Heer. Gepanzertes Transportkraftfahrzeug (GTK) Boxer
. [Web.] n.d.
** Wikipedia. Boxer (armoured fighting vehicle)
. [Web.] 20 December 2015, at 17:18.