Having just completed the older version of this kit (shameless self-promotional link!
) I can say that I would have welcomed the DS tracks in place of the magic tracks which were difficult to pre-assemble prior to painting and still maintain their integrity during post-painting assembly. When it came time for final assembly, I found it somewhat difficult to get a good fit around the drive sprockets and also noticed a difference in the angle of approach from the ground to the drive sprockets and idler wheel. This is my fault for not watching more carefully during the initial assembly, but this would not have been an issue had DS tracks been available.
In addition, since there are skirts on this model that hide the upper run of track, there is no reason to assemble it as a complete loop meaning that half the links go to waste unless you want to spend the additional build time to clean and assemble the extra links.
And I agree that the metal barrel added no value to the kit since the plastic barrel is a single slide-molded piece with rivet detailing that is missing on the aluminum version.
Overall, I found this to be a highly challenging kit with an abundance of detail and the updates listed here in the newly released version will only make it better in my opinion. In fact, I'd even consider building another one now knowing that I didn't have to fight with the magic tracks again!
Thanks to amoz for the review.