In-Box Review
35M Light Tank CV-33
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by: Andras [ SPONGYA ]


The interwar period between 1920 and 1940 was the time of experimentation in armored warfare. After the Great War it was clear that armored vehicles would play an important role in future conflicts, however, nobody was sure exactly what this role might be. This was the time of gigantic, multi-turreted landships and small, turretless tankettes. The Ansaldo-FIAT CV33 and CV35 were produced during this period, and used Ėwith very disappointing results- before and during the Second World War.

The CV33 was a typical tankette: small, light, lightly armored, and armed with machine guns, manned by a crew of two. It was designed for infantry support and scouting roles.

The vehicle was exported to numerous countries, Hungary included. The Army purchased 65 of these tankettes; 45 of which were modified. These vehicles received a new commanderís cupola, a raised machine-gun barbette, and were armed with a Hungarian-designed twin Gebauer machine gun. (The raised commanderís hatch/cupola is a prominent feature of these models; in fact the CV33 in the Kubinka Tank Museum is a captured Hungarian vehicle.)

These tankettes were primarily intended for training purposes; it was clear that their light armor and armament would make them useless in actual engagements. They were eventually used in the short Hungarian-Slovakian war and during the Second World War as scouts, but the results were less-than-stellar. Ten of these vehicles took part in the fights during the siege of Budapest. Considering that this vehicle is smaller than an average car, the crew must have been extremely brave to face the enemy using the CV33. A veteran of the Hungarian tank force said as much during an interview; before the war no one seriously considered taking part in an engagement sitting in one of these metal coffins. As an interesting side-note he really liked the Nimrod self-propelled AAA tank.

the kit

The kit comes in the usual Hunor cardboard box. The parts are placed into Ziplock bags, and protected by packing peanuts. In my sample no parts were damaged. The kit has a surprisingly large number of parts considering its size (35), but the assembly is very easy and straightforward. The resin pieces are delicate and well-detailed. The quality of resin is good, with some flash around the larger parts; a little cleanup is definitely needed. The pouring blocks are positioned for easy removal. The only casting imperfections Iíve found were on the tracks, which will be easy to hide by positioning them accordingly.

The tracks themselves are made up of one piece, and will have to be softened with a hairdryer or hot water before wrapping them around the drive wheels and idlers. The running gear and suspension comes as a single part, which simplifies the assembly considerably. The tools are a bit simplified, but they can be swapped for plastic ones from the spare box. The only issue I had was that the teeth are missing from the drive-wheel; in this scale this detail is probably difficult to replicate in resin.

The instructions are very well done, which is unusual from any small-scale resin company; most resin models I have purchased only came with a photo of the vehicle in question, and maybe some technical drawings. The instructions are clear, and very easy to follow. The decals are provided by HAD, and of very good quality. If you donít like the choices Bison makes one or two sets which are suitable for this vehicle as well. The pre-war vehicles had a quite flamboyant three-color camo scheme and large insignia; during the war these vehicles were quickly repainted to a less-conspicuous muted green color.


All in all, itís a quick and easy build of the Hungarian version of the CV33.

I would like to thank Andras Karacsonyi for the review sample.

Magyar Steel
Highs: Great detail, easy to build even for beginners.
Lows: Tracks have some casting errors.
Verdict: A great little tank!
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:72
  Mfg. ID: 72015
  Suggested Retail: 20 EURO
  PUBLISHED: Feb 16, 2014

About Andras (spongya)

I am a biologist by trade, and as a hobby I've been building scale models for the last twenty years. Recently I started to write reviews of the models I bought. These reviews are written from the point of view of an average model builder; hence the focus is on quality of the model, how easy it is to...

Copyright ©2021 text by Andras [ SPONGYA ]. All rights reserved.


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