by: Rob van Kan [ ]
The 'Wolf' or Mercedes G is a light all-terrain vehicle in use with many armies – including Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark, France (as Peugeot P4) and Austria (as Puch G) - and was, before Revell issued this kit, a much requested item by modellers of modern armour and softskin vehicles. The basic kit of the short wheelbase soft-top has loads of possibilities for altering since so many different versions of the Geländewagen are in use - from field ambulances to the USMC Interim Fast Attack Vehicle.
The box contains three sprues of green plastic, one separately packed sprue of clear plastic (my kit actually contains two), five 'rubber' wheels, a small decal sheet and instructions with a length of wire for the antenna taped to them in typical Revell fashion. There is little or no flash apparent, and most ejection pin marks are in the right places - invisible after construction. On both my front windshields there's a little pit above the driver's position which will need cleanup.
Overall it has nice detail, although I can't be too happy with the boxy and untextured look of the soft-top. Together with the thick and also untextured windows it will look far too rigid. Detail on the wheel rims is a bit soft as well; in one of my wheels a little hole is left where the plastic apparently did not completely fill the mould. The spare wheel is the same as all the other wheels which is, to the best of my knowledge, incorrect. The back of it is also hollow, leaving you with no alternative but to mount the soft-top. What's more - even the spare wheel cover is rigid and hollow. This should be a loose cover and of course closed on all sides.
Sink marks are apparent on the front bumper and around the headlights - cleaning the latter up would mean losing the fine texture of that part (which, on the original vehicle, is plastic). You could use parts of the alternative Puch G grille if these have come out better - but you'll have to cut both grilles up for that. The tyres have pits, blemishes, no brand names and a hollow profile. The kit has no engine and only a minimum representation of one on the bottom. Another glaring omission for a potentially open topped vehicle are the foot pedals. There's not even a moulded-in representation of them.
In closing, the decals are printed slightly off register. You can create your own German army plates but the Dutch decal option is incomplete since it has no unit markings (which are similar to those of the Bundeswehr). The font used for the yellow Dutch license plates is way off the mark as well. However, Revell has never produced a correct Dutch plate - not even for their 1/24 car and truck kits - so that's not a big surprise.
As usual with Revell of Germany's own mouldings, it's a mixed bag. It will need a lot of TLC to come up to the standard of most modellers.