by: Tom Cromwell [ ]
IntroductionWhen the Bundeswehr started working beyond German borders on UN duties at the end of the twentieth century they realised there was a need for a well-armoured wheeled vehicle small enough for use in urban environments where the Fuchs was too big and the Wolf was too vulnerable. The spec called for all-round armour for the crew, and a V-shaped floor to deflect mine blasts. To make development as short as possible the new vehicle was to be designed around as many already-available parts as possible, so the Dingo was designed on Unimog running gear. The result is a mine-protected large armoured 4x4 similar to a Wolf on steroids.
ContentsAs with most Tankograd books, this is a soft-cover A4 format (210mmx297mm) book totalling 64 pages. It is part of the Tankograd “Militärfahrzeug Special” series (#5036), by Ralph Zwilling, and does not seem to have an ISBN number. There are 139 large colour photos of sharp quality, mainly two or three to a page, and unfortunately no line drawings.
The Dingo 1 entered service in 2000, and is the subject of this book. An upgraded Dingo 2 arrived in 2005, but is to be covered in a separate publication.
Text is presented in German and English, split with German on the left and English on the right. All photo captions are in both languages too. Given how much of this book is given over to the photos, the bulk of useful information comes from the captions rather than the short blocks of text. Development of the Dingo is addressed, with photos of the prototype for those who may want an interesting conversion project. Other topics include a dedicated walkaround section of a standard Dingo and sections for variants including Military Police, Electronic Countermeasures, “Cuckoo” Intelligence Unit, and Loudspeaker vehicles. Much of the detail is unavailable for obvious reasons, but at least there are good images from numerous angles for modelling purposes!
ConclusionThis is a good photo-book of this relatively new armoured off-roader, and should really help modellers. Modellers of Bundeswehr equipment in Braille-scale are fortunate to have a plastic kit from Revell, but those working in 1:35 presently have to track down resin kits. Maybe this book will inspire somebody to release the Dingo in 1:35 plastic! Thoroughly recommended to modellers and Bundeswehr fans.