Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Boxart
Boxart

Well it’s finally out. After two years of promises and a lot of online desperation on modellers’ end it’s in the shops and tonight it reaches my bench.

Two sprues of sand-colored plastic, a black sprue for the threads (total part count is 97) and a small decal sheet plus instructions and safety precautions for $8. Let’s see what’s in.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Sprue 1
Sprue 1

I am impressed! Part of the roadwheels are molded as a single detail, however the suspension arms are separate parts, as are the OVM tools! I am sure modellers will find something else to complain about, however before I actually start building the kit I will only comment on the way this kit is molded and so far it looks rather good to me.

A few detail shots:

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Turret
Turret

The upper hull is cast as a single piece, hatches closed.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Upper hull - front
Upper hull – front

The mesh screens on the engine deck are not present, but detail is pretty decent for a wargaming piece 😉

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Upper hull - engine deck
Upper hull – engine deck

A side shot – note the molded welding seams .

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Upper hull - side profile of the engine deck
Upper hull – side profile of the engine deck

The Panther’s business end. Again, note weld seams, as well as the bolt details over the hatches. There are two hardly-noticeable sinkholes just over and to the side of the two sprue connectors.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Hull front
Hull front

Three-part idlers + axle and some tools.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Idlers
Idlers

Separate suspension arms:

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Suspension arms
Suspension arms

OK, let’s move to the second part of the sprue. The big plastic piece connects the upper hull and the tub. Also, the side screens are hanging from it. The oval piece on the lower right has the cooling fans  molded on its reverse.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Sprue 2
Sprue 2

Driver wheels are two-part, this is the outside section.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Drive sprocket
Drive sprocket

One of the roadwheel sections.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Roadwheel detail
Roadwheel detail

The base of the commander’s cupola is molded as a part of the turret, while the top is a single detail with the hatch molded shut. Vision blocks are realized as cutouts.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Commander's cupola and final drive housing
Commander’s cupola and final drive housing

Notice the complicated shape of the final drive housings.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Another look at the same details
Another look at the same details

And one more. It’s a pity these will be mostly hidden when the model is completed.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 The covers again
The covers again

Hull tub with profiled holes to accept suspension arms:

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Hull tub
Hull tub

A look at the side:

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Hull tub 2
Hull tub 2

The track run on each side is made of a single part, which is to be bent around the wheels.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Tracks
Tracks

Notice the recessed straight lines – these are supposed to help bending the track around the driver and idler. Also, the hook for fixing the track run to the wheels is visible.

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Track inside
Track inside

Another look at a different angle:

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Track inside
Track inside

Outside:

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Track outer details
Track outer details

Notice track ridge profile:

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Track outer details 2
Track outer details 2

Onto the decals – representing two machines from Pz. Abt. 51, Kursk, 1943:

Zvezda 1/72 PzKpfw V Panther Ausf D, kit 5010 Decals
Decals

There is a fine white border around the numbers, which I was unable to adequately capture on a photo. Schemes look a bit boring to me, but they fit Zvezda’s game scenario. Nothing a few Dragon spares can’t fix 🙂

See you next time, when I will be building the beast!