Japan Ground Self Defense Force
Type 16 Maneuver Combat Vehicle
Developed over a decade between 2008 and 2018, the Type 16 Maneuver Combat Vehicle (MCV) is designed to provide direct infantry support in defense of the Japanese home islands. Smaller and lighter than traditional main battle tanks, the MCV can be deployed more rapidly and operate with less infrastructure and support. It's narrow 8x8 chassis enables it to traverse narrow roads and bridges and to make ready use of prepared roads and highways without the aid of heavy-lift transports. It's 105mm main gun can engage adversary armor, buildings, and troops.
In the Box
Upon removal of the box lid, the modeler is greeted by 5 olive-colored sprue sporting exquisitely detailed and flash free parts. Accompanying the styrene is a pair of polycaps for the main gun trunion, 8 vinyl tires, a small decal sheet with markings for 2 vehicles, and assembly instructions and painting guide.
Turret and Rear Hull Bulkhead
Sweet Turret Detail - Note the Anti-Skid Detail
Tires, Wheels, Suspension, and Fiddly Bits
More Suspension Parts and Other Detail
Instructions and Decals
Not a whole lot to say about the build. It's Tamiya. Toss in a bottle of Tamiya Extra Thin Cement, close and shake the box, and out comes a beautifully-assembled kit. It's almost that easy. Instructions are typical of Tamiya -- clear, logical, bite-sized steps with clear illustrations and color callouts. Everything goes together without any putty. Part seams are along natural panel lines, and parts are keyed to prevent misalignment or misplacement. The following step-by-step shows how easy and pain-free this baby went together.
Step 1 - Hull bottom and top establish the core structure
Step 2 was deferred until later in the build
Step 3 - Hull sides and drivetrain build up the hull
Step 4 - Suspension and Steering Arms Added
Steps 5 and 6 Deferred to Later in Build (On a mission to finish the hull assembly!)
Step 7 - Toss on a viewport and hatch
Step 8 - Tow cable and wheel chocks complete hull assembly
Step 9 - Turret assembly starts with polycaps and main gun trunion
Step 11 - Smoke Grenade Launchers
Step 12 - Turret Sides and Mantlet
Step 14 - Turret Details and Bustle Rack Added
Step 16 - Armament Added
Step 18 - Turret and Hull Mated
Wheels Added from Prior Step
No rocket science was employed in finishing this Type 16 review sample. A simple flat black primer base topped with prescribed Tamiya Acrylic colors, with some modulating and basic weathering, really brought a well-engineered assembly experience to a new level. The following step-by-step gives some insight into the finishing process.
Economy flat black spray paint provided the perfect primer base and pre-shade
A monochrome canvas ready for some color
Kit-prescribed colors give a great camo effect over the flat black primer
Topside colors, each lightened with a few drops of flat white, provide some modulated highlight effects
Toss on the wheels, and the basic kit is almost done
Microscale system was used to apply the decals, which were largely silvering-free.
Decals were sealed with Testors Model Master Acryl Flat
A little more time invested adding antennae, pin washes, and some light pigment effects round out the effects.
Now for the walk-around...
Once again, the crew at Tamiya don't disappoint with this latest addition to their 1/48 armor portfolio with the addition of the Type 16 MCV. Great engineering, clear instructions, and an interesting subject made this build a lot of fun, and it really piqued my interest in modern Japanese armor (yes, I want to snag a Type 10 Main Battle Tank to serve as a companion piece). This kit is an outstanding build for beginners and advanced modelers looking for a visually-interesting modern subject that's just plain fun and satisfying to build.
Highly Recommended for Beginner to Advanced builders.
Thanks goes out to Tamiya for this review kit.
Reviewed by Dave Koukol
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