by: Frederick Boucher [ ]
Originally published on:
Herpa continues to add to their series of 43 operational vehicles, police cars, fire engines, and vehicles of famous relief organizations like the Malteser, Johanniter and the Red Cross. This new MB Sprinter box wagon type fire engine with portable pump is one of the new models. This model was produced exclusively in advance for the superstructure manufacturer Ziegler for the “Interschutz” fair.
The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter is a light commercial vehicle, built by Daimler AG of Stuttgart, Germany as a van, chassis cab and minibus, and sold as a Mercedes model, except in the U.S. where it is built from complete knock down (CKD) kits and sold by Freightliner. The first generation Sprinter was launched in Europe in 1995 to replace the famous but outdated Mercedes-Benz T1 van. The second generation Sprinter was introduced in Europe in 2006. The first generation (VA Chassis) North American Sprinter was launched in 2001 in the U.S., and originally branded as a Freightliner. Units sold to the rest of North America were badged as Mercedes until 2003 when they received Dodge branding.
In the Box
This Herpa model MB Sprinter box wagon is a fire engine with portable pump. The fire brigade superstructure is a Ziegler design and is a new development. Herpa releases models in this series painted for various municipalities and organizations, as well as decorated but unmarked, such as the subject of this review.
This model continues Herpa’s tradition of quality. The Sprinter is fully assembled and packed in a light plastic form-fitted tray, secured in a light cardboard box with a plastic display window, with tab opening ends. On one end is a metallic holographic license label by Daimler.
The molding is almost flawless. The cab, superstructure components, and wheel hubs are molded in color. The paint is thin, opaque, and mainly glass-smooth. The Mercedes-Benz logo is hand painted, and partially rubbed off. The Ziegler emblems, and “FEUERWEHR” are sharply printed, not decals. Herpa does not use decals.
There is one flaw, so inconspicuous that I only found it while examining the greatly enlarged photographs. On the hood, nicking the first "E" in “FEUERWEHR,” is a raised blemish, almost like a paintbrush hair caught under paint. It is so small that I did not see it until reviewing the photos.
Side view mirrors are boxed attached to their sprue. The model has slots where these are inserted, and it is a simple process.
Details, ”It’s what’s inside that counts . . . ”
Herpa’s interior is almost worth popping the cab off for. Inside are five bucket seats, the steering wheel, console, stick shift, dashboard detailing, and door interior details!
The underbody is very well done, especially under the firefighting rear portion. It even has a spare tire!
Herpa engineered the soft plastic tires to slip over the rims.
Individual clear and tinted lenses simulate the headlights, emergency running lights in the grill, tail lights, and emergency lights.
Atop the superstructure are four detachable ladders, and what I believe is a pump apparatus. These are mounted on a safety tread roof. The rear has a pair of grab rails and these are molded on.
I appreciate that Herpa issues models with basic livery that can be decorated as the modeler desires. The finish, the interior and exterior detailing are second to none, with the exception of the blemish on the front hood. This is the first blemish I have found on any of the Herpa models reviewed to date. This model will enhance any present day HO model scene. Highly recommended.
© 2010 HERPA Miniaturmodelle GmbH
© Mercedes-Benz 2010
Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on RAILROADMODELING.