Sd.Kfz. 165 Hummel needs no introduction. Every armor modeler have seen it, knows about it or wants one in scale badly. Sometimes all three. With Tamiya’s releasing one not so long ago, many dreams came true, because, well…its Tamiya. Their superb engineering, pleasure of building and most importantly availability – made the Hummel more accessible to many. If you wonder why, well, there was this point in time, when Dragon were scarce on the market for whatever reason. They were expensive too. And DML are another company offering a brilliant Hummel tooling in 35th scale, although with some instruction flaws and needs-to-be-addressed tricks related to the latter.
Tamiya’s Hummel is relatively cheap and available, Dragon not so much, which made the vehicle rather interesting from a different perspective. Now, remember, that Sd.Kfz. 165 is based on Panzer IV chassis. Lately, MiniArt, Border Model, Rye FIeld Model – all attacked us with Pz.IV kits, eating each other’s market pie and making modelers more than happy. Therefore, it wasn’t a big surprise when Nashorn was announced from Border last year. Logically, Hummel followed.
As of late summer 2023, not one, but two Hummel kits are promised by Border. An Early and a Late. Both described as Hummel 15cm s.FH 18/1 and both featuring boxarts, depicting vehicles seen in summer camouflages. Late model however, can be seen in rather cold surroundings on the boxart, giving us some ideas about winter camo and eventually winterketten…
What we can expect from Border? Well, nothing short of what we got with their Nashorn and hopefully more. Besides proving themselves as a serious model maker and A-lister on the armor market, they will face an old arch-enemy of all armor companies raising again. Dragon, being the Great White roaming those seas are surprisingly re-releasing many of their gem kits with everything modelers wanted to see. Among those new/old releases, three upgraded Hummel kits found their way, all three in 2023 alone. Before that, the last Hummel we saw from them was in 2018 and it featured no new goodies. That will be a rather strong push-back against what Border Model has to offer this year.
Border Models are completely new toolings, true. But Dragon, even though older are considered nearly perfect kits in many ways and now they come with upgrades. That is, on top of everything that they gathered as aftermarket options from supporting companies during last two decades or so. In other words, this will be a fierce battle, because Tamiya, being a third party of this Game of Thrones, offer us a pleasure-building that none of the other two can come close to. And let’s not forget that both MiniArt and Rye Field can /and probably will/ also set foot on the Hummel arena, based on their own Panzer IV chassis.
This is not the end, friends.