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1/35 Tamiya Italian Carro Armato M13/40

The Fiat-Ansaldo M13/40 was an Italian World War II tank designed to replace the Fiat L3, the Fiat L6/40 and the Fiat M11/39 in the Italian Army at the start of World War II. It was the main tank the Italians used throughout the war. The design was influenced by the British Vickers 6-Ton and was based on the modified chassis of the earlier Fiat M11/39. M11/39 production was cut short in order to get the M13/40 into production. The name refers to “M” for Medio (medium) according to the Italian tank weight standards at the time, 13 tonnes was the scheduled weight, and 1940 the initial year of production.

The M13/40 was used in the Greek campaign in 1940 and 1941 and in the North African Campaign. The M13/40 was not used on the Eastern Front; Italian forces there were equipped only with Fiat L6/40s and Semovente 47/32s. Beginning in 1942, the Italian Army recognized the firepower weakness of the M13/40 series and employed the Semovente 75/18 self-propelled gun alongside the tanks in their armored units.

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1/35 Tamiya Italian Carro Armato M13/40

1/35 Scale. The first Italian AFV in the 1/35 MM Series gets a makeover with new modern features to make it an even more desirable model. New parts include metal gun barrel, assembly-type tracks, tools and muffler cover for enhanced realism.

Kit Highlights
  • Tamiya Item#: 35296
  • Aluminum 47 mm gun barrel
  • Separately molded on-vehicle equipment and turret hatches
  • Seated tank crewman, standing officer
  • Photo-etch parts (MG sights, hull logo, latches, and registration plates).
  • Also includes new tool drive sprockets, exhaust cover, jack and tools.
  • Decals and painting reference for multiple vehicles in North Africa: 132nd Ariete Armored Division and 133rd Littorio Armored Division (choice of tank number, platoon, and company); plus a single captured tank in Australian Army service – includes uniform insignia for figures.

I haven’t built recently an armor kit as fun as this Italian Carro Armato M13/40 from Tamiya. The kit comes with a small photo etch fret and aluminum gun barrel. I thought I had to call customer support, as I couldn’t find it in the box. After a good 15 minutes looking for it, a voice in my head told me ”look under the lid” and there it was, duh!

This is the classic Tamiya model kit with a lot of simplicity without sacrificing detail. Those photo etched parts are a bonus, especially the gun sight and the metal gun barrel when compared to the stock one, it a nice improvement. The jerry cans are shown on the instructions over the engine. But after looking at some reference pictures, I decided to build the side rack with .030 styrene.

The kit comes with a sitting Lt. tank crew and a standing tank crew officer. There is a 3rd figure however but there is no mention of it anywhere. So I’m assuming that this figures is from some previous tooling/version.

The tracks are provided as individual links and have the proper sag on the top guide rollers. No rubber tracks option is provided this time. This particular kit was painted with Tamiya XF-59 Dark Yellow with my Aztek A-470 double action airbrush. A few layers of selective washes and Dust Effects from AK Interactive was applied. To add a little of accumulated ‘filth’, thinned puddles of AK wash were made and left to air dry. Repeat until you achieve your desired level.

Decals are the typical Tamiya decals. Except from the Australian Army Captured Tank in North Africa, you get up to 9 unit markings.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR

This was an 8 hours build. I’m be more than confident to recommend this kit to a fellow model kit builder any time. As always, No sugar coating.

This kit was courtesy of my wallet from my local hobby shop.

George Collazo
George Collazo
George has been hosting review sites and blogging about toy collectibles, travel, digital photography and Nikon digital imaging since 1998. His first model kit build was a Testors 1/35 DODGE WC-54 in 1984.
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