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In-Box Review
135
Moskvich 401-420 Saloon
Moskvich 401-420 Saloon Soviet Passenger Car
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by: Darren Baker [ CMOT ]

Introduction

The following introduction is as supplied on the instructions from ICM;
The passenger car Moskvich 400 had been in production in a Moscow small car plant (ZMA) since December 1946. It was an exact copy of the pre-war 4 door Opel Kadett K38 variant. It was replaced by improved Moskovich 401 model with an engine of increased power from 1954. Moskvich cars were produced in different types. The Mokovich 401-420 cars with 4 doors closed saloon bodies being the most numerous. There were a total of 216,006 saloons produced between 1946 to 1956.

Contents

This product is packaged in a cardboard tray with a card lid. Inside there is a re-sealable plastic bag which contains the sprues. Inside the box you will find;
  • 3 tan sprues
  • 1 clear sprue
  • 5 vinyl rubber tyres
  • 1 decal sheet
  • An instruction booklet

Review

Instructions
The instructions are printed on a light weight semi-gloss paper. The instructions start with a short introduction in Russian and English; this is followed by a painting guide, but only supplies colours by name and by Model Master. There is then a list of cautions to exercise during construction, this is followed by a sprue layout guide. The construction of the model is then shown in 21 stages using black and white line drawings. The instructions finish with four finishing paint schemes for the model.

Sprues
The sprues are nicely laid out with some thought appearing to have gone into part placement; by this I mean that the body parts are placed on two sprues with the third consisting primarily of mechanical parts and the seats. The layout also provides good access for removal of parts from the sprue; the gates joining the parts to the sprue area are a reasonable size and not excessive in number. There are a lot of flow marks on the parts, but these do not appear to have created any issues in this example. There are a number of ejector pin marks on a number of areas, some of these are quite large; however ICM looks to have done a good job of having these in hidden locations on the model I believe.

Decals
The four finishing options supplied with the model do have four sets of number plates for them. The suggested finishing options are;
2 versions of the Moskovich-401-420, USSR, Late 1950ís
2 versions of the Moskovich-401-420, USSR, Late 1960ís

Engine and Gearbox
The 26hp M-401, 4 cylinder, 1.1 litre engine is very nicely reproduced by ICM, in fact every car and lorry kit I have seen from ICM shares this nice feature. ICM did have a habit of leaving the rear face of the radiator hollow, but that is not the case here; the radiator is moulded as a single piece with nice grill detail front and rear. There are 4 ejector pin marks in the grill detail on the rear but it is my belief that these will be hidden by the engine when the model is assembled. The purists out there could have a great time adding wiring to the engine to really give the model that something extra. One thing ICM has remembered and added which impressed me is the battery, this is something I cannot remember seeing in any other kit I have built. The fire wall on which the battery is mounted is also very nicely done, and this kit begs to be given some TLC and added scratch work to make a really stunning engine compartment.

Wheels, Axles and Drums
The front axle in this model attaches directly to the engine, with no obvious suspension parts of any kind; that would make for a very rough ride especially on British roads of late. The hubs of both front and rear wheels have some nice detail on the rear; these are areas where ICM puts in a lot of effort, which for the most part will never be seen again after assembly. The rear axle is nicely detailed as are the leaf springs that are attached with each metal slate being well detailed at the sides. The wheels supplied with the kit being vinyl rubber will not please everyone, however having taken a good look at them the joint only appears to be obvious on one of the tyres. There is no flash present on the very finely reproduced tread pattern and also with some nice tyre wall detail as well. Oddly there is a spare tyre on the sprues in the box, which is marked as not used; this is the only part on which there is any obvious flash present.

Interior
ICM has done a very good job of the vehicle interior. They have taken the time to hide the ejection pin marks on the rear of the front seats by providing a separate back for both of them; the front seats also sit on metal legs which have been reproduced. The dashboard does have some moulded detail present such as dials and glove box detail (there is glove box detail on both side of the dash board). ICM has supplied dial detail decals for two locations on the dash. Hand brake, gear shift, and all three foot pedals have been supplied in the box. The door cards and interior trim detail is provided as separate parts as are the door pillars; ICM look to have even included a separate sun visor for the driverís side. the steering wheel of the model concerns me slightly as the centre stalk is a separate part from the actual wheel, this may cause some fitting issues in terms of getting it aligned correctly. However as with the engine and bay this is another high scoring area of the model.

The shell
The body shell for this model is made up of a number of parts and so dry fitting will I believe be the order of the day. The various parts look very good with nice moulding detail, which even includes separate door handles. The only obvious downside I can see is that fact that the doors cannot be depicted open without some surgery being done. On a very big plus side it looks as if ICM have been reading my reviews and have included the option of having the bonnet/hood either open or closed; this is another good reason to do some work on that engine and bay. While back in the area of the engine ICM has supplied separate wheels bays here with some very nice detail on both faces; while they are obviously too thick scale wise this fact is hidden once installed and add more great detail to this area of the model. The front grill moulding is worthy of attention due to the great lines, nice detail, and recessed lights to give some depth behind the clear lenses.

Conclusion

I believe this is the best car model I have seen from ICM, it has a great level of detail from the box and the scratch builders out there can have a field day making this one into a stunning model. Sure there are areas that concern me such as the hub cap detail missing on two wheels (or so it appears), and the doors not being supplied in a way to show them open. The interior detail and engine bay are especially well done, and the external detail is not to be sniffed at either. With all that said I believe that ICM have earned a big pat on the back for this one.
SUMMARY
Highs: A great interior and engine bay that could easily I believe made to look stunning.
Lows: The inability to show the doors open straight from the box.
Verdict: A very highly recommended and impressive little model.
  Scale: 1:35
  Mfg. ID: 35479
  PUBLISHED: Jan 15, 2014
  NATIONALITY: Russia
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 87.16%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 84.60%

Our Thanks to ICM Holding!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Darren Baker (CMOT)
FROM: ENGLAND - SOUTH WEST, UNITED KINGDOM

I have been building model kits since the early 70ís starting with Airfix kits of mostly aircraft, then progressing to the point I am at now building predominantly armour kits from all countries and time periods. Living in the middle of Salisbury plain since the 70ís, I have had lots of opportunitie...

Copyright ©2018 text by Darren Baker [ CMOT ]. All rights reserved.



Comments

Here's a version that is not included in the box This car appears to be very popular amongst Russian customizers... H.P.
JAN 15, 2014 - 03:53 AM
great photo Frenchy ! Great looking car, with a 6.3 AMG engine would be a 1940's rocket
JAN 15, 2014 - 04:25 AM
The pictured car is fitted with a BMW 325i engine : http://zaz-tuning.com/gallery/msk_bmw/ Here are a few restored ones : http://gpmar.ru/page70.php http://100avto.ru/stock-975.html H.P.
JAN 15, 2014 - 06:05 AM
We broke our quick reply box. Working on it. Until fixed go to topic to reply.
Thanks.
   

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