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Italeri 1/24 scale Mercedes-Benz G 230 Feuerwehr plastic model kit review

It’s a fire starter, a wicked fire starter
Kit:3663 // Scale:1/24 // Price:$35.99
Interesting subject; one-piece body; individual window inserts; colorful decals; posable steering
Two-piece frame
Injection-molded plastic (black, red, clear); 93 parts (4 vinyl tires); decals
The Mercedes-Benz G-class off-road vehicle was first produced during the 1970s and is still in the company’s lineup today. Italeri’s G 230 kit was originally an ESCI mold released in the 1980s, but don’t let the age mislead you: This is still a crisply molded, low-flash, curbside kit.

The six-page instruction booklet features a short vehicle history, parts index, and 11 steps for assembly. The last two pages are color plates for decal placement.

The two-piece frame is separate from the underbody. The front and rear axles need to be inserted through their corresponding holes in the control arms before joining the frame rails. I recommend you don’t glue the axles at this point so the driveshafts can be lined up and clamp the frame to the underbody, unglued, to keep everything square as the frame glue dries.

Steering is supposed to be posable, but I got over-aggressive with liquid cement and ended that.

The only issue I ran into was that the instructions show the tailpipe (Part 10B) below the fuel tank. It should be between the tank and the underbody. The one-piece wheels and vinyl tires are separate and very well done.

The platform-style interior includes separate side panels, seats, a console, and an instrument panel. The kit includes decals for the gauges and radio, plus an interior rearview mirror.

For this fire brigade release, an optional water pump and hose assembly with a separate tool chest mount behind the rear seat. If you choose to install these and not open the rear door, the backseat must be as far forward as possible. Otherwise, the body won’t clear. There’s nothing like a surprise during the final assembly!

The one-piece body catches the angles of the G 230 well. Crisply molded, it drops down on the chassis and over the interior like a glove. As I hinted at earlier, the kit poses an option to cut the rear door open, but I elected to keep mine closed.

The body is fully enclosed with separate clear windows. Pay attention to the instructions when attaching the windows because some mount from the inside while others mount from the outside. Also, the rear quarter glass (parts 64F and 70F) is handed.

The grille with the headlight buckets comes as a separate part. The headlight and taillight lenses are clear; the taillights need to be painted. Marker lamps are molded with the body. Bumpers, rearview mirrors, and windshield wipers are separate. Emergency beacons and a siren mount on the roof. The beacons are clear and need paint.

The decals make this a unique model. You can choose from four colorful fire brigade markings: three German and one Italian. Even using warm water, the decals don’t like to release from the backing paper. When they do, it is with a snap. Take care!

The stripes come as single pieces and are not easy to handle. I cut mine at the door opening to make them easier to apply. I used a decal setting solution for the roof decal and over-body accents. Tamiya paints were used throughout, except for the Mercedes-Benz emblem on the grille painted with Alclad II Chrome (No. ALC-107).

Primarily due to the decals, this kit should be approached by an experienced builder, particularly with applying waterslide markings. There is no question that when the finished model sits on your shelf, the Italeri 1/24 scale Mercedes-Benz G 230 Feuerwehr will grab viewers’ attention.
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