The BRDM-2 (Boyevaya Razvedyvatelnaya Dozornaya Mashina-2) is a 1960s Soviet/Russian-made scout, reconnaissance vehicle that served the Soviet Army and Naval Infantry units during the Cold War. It was intended to replace the open-topped BTR-40 and BRDM-1 as the standard Soviet scout vehicle. It is made of welded steel together with an engine that has a water jet capability to assist in amphibious operations.
As a scout vehicle, it has a centralized tire pressure system plus 2 pairs of bogey wheel that can be lowered if needed to traverse rough terrain and to add in cross-country mobility. Crewed by 4 personnel, this amphibious vehicle possess a 14.5 KPV machine gun and a coaxial 7.62 machine gun housed in a BPU-1 turret which is similar to the BTR-60PB series. Similar variants of the BRDM-2 exist. The best known are the BRDM-3 equipped with 9M113 Konkurs ATGM and also the SA-9 Gaskin which is a surface to air missile variant.
This vehicle like most other Soviet designs, have been widely exported and has seen action around the globe like in Middle East, Africa, Caucasus and Afghanistan.
The kit came in the following package:
- 8 grey-molded sprue
- 1 clear sprue
- 1 PE sheet and copper wire
- a set of polycaps
- 8 large and small rubber/vinyl wheels
Even though it’s still a testshot, I am happy to say that the kit is flash free. Another thing that made this testshot easier to decipher is the inclusion of an instruction manual [Ed. Note: Testshots do not usually include instruction manuals, and it is left to the builder to figure out where everything goes]. The instruction manual is clearly defined and the steps are not ‘exploded’ in a way that complicates the build.
The first part that I assembled, as per the instructions, was the under chassis. The under chassis and the suspension assemblies are well defined and detailed compared to the existing 1/35th scale Dragon BRDM-2 kit. The leaf spring and the shock absorbers fit well and rested perfectly on the lower hull.
The vinyl tires were also finely detailed especially the treads. These tires fitted well and when mounted to the vehicle and align perfectly when the vehicle is put on a flat surface. The center of the bogey tires still need to be cut out to fit them onto the wheel hubs, but this may only be because this is still a testshot. This is not a big deal and neither is it is a difficult task.
Trumpeter continues to surprise me as they include interior details on their kits. These are not just plain interiors such as a steering wheel and rudimentary stick shifts but they also include ammo boxes, radio sets, cannon and machine gun assemblies. The interior parts seem superfluous for me as they will be hard to see if you prefer the kit to be built with a sealed roof. However, Trumpeter managed to design the kit with a separate roof that you can opt not to glue if you want to take a peek into the kits interior assembly from time to time. The roof, if not glued does not leave a blaring gap. Kudos to trumpeter for this option.
The last part of the build is the turret. The turret details, both inside and outside are superb. The gun mantlet is a PE part and is finely detailed. The KPV and PKT machine guns are also perfectly moulded from barrel to the body. The turret also boasts a seat for the gunner, plus sights, and control levers for turret traversing.
External details are perfect, like the fog lights, horn, periscopes and stanchions and hooks.
I can say that trumpeter made a good kit for this type of Red armor. I’m hoping that many variants, such as SA-9 and BRDM-3 will be based on this kit in the same way that Trumpeter did with the T-62 series.
The Red Armor nuts like me will be happy to wait, see and buy this.
Many thanks to Trumpeter for sending the test shot to IPMS Philippines Bert Anido and for releasing this remarkable surprise in the scale modeling market.