GTK Boxer A0, A1 and A2 The Multirole Armoured Wheeled 'Mothership' of the German Infantry
by: Darren Baker
The following introduction is as provided by Tankograd Publications:
Since the introduction of the multirole armoured wheeled vehicle GTK Boxer (nicknamed the ‘mothership of the infantry’) no other vehicle family in the Bundeswehr has seen a more intensive modernisation effort. With the most modern ‘A2’ standard now being fielded the following variants are currently in active service: Armoured Personnel Carrier, Command Vehicle, Heavy Armoured Ambulance Vehicle and Driver Training Vehicle. This publication covers the history of the entire Boxer-family and goes into extensive detail with its most modern production batches, the A1 and in particular the A2, with many hitherto unpublished in-detail and in-action photos.
This Book looking at the GTK Boxer is one of the latest releases from Tankograd Publishing and covers the A0, A1 and A2 versions of the vehicle. I need to add at this point that this offering is a new book and not a reprint of the 5039 Boxer offering. This offering is printed in portrait style and offers 80 glossy pages that show the photographs off well. The book is authored by Ralph Zwilling. This is one of the duel language offerings from Tankograd Publishing and so you get German text on the left and English text on the right of each page; this does not detract from the title in any way and is a good way of tackling the needs of your market place.
This offering starts with four pages covering the history of the vehicle. This starts with how the vehicle development started as a duel operation with France and Germany and was later joined by the UK, France dropped out with the reasons explained briefly and this was later followed by the UK leaving. The trials vehicles are covered to a good degree as are the countries that have shown an interest in procurement of it. The section is brought to a close with a selection of images covering some of the trials vehicles.
We are then presented with a series of technical details of the Boxer and how it is designed to survive threats from a number of sources. This section also covers how the armour package can be modified to the requirements of the environment the vehicle will be fighting in and the types of threat it will be presented with. This section is brought to a close with a look at some of the protection offered by the vehicle, its modular aspects and power train.
Next up is a look at the Boxer A0 and A1, or more specifically their offensive and defensive attributes. Also covered here is how to identify the A0 from the A1 and so on and it needs to be considered that the A0 variant have been upgraded to A1 standard, the A0 is also no longer fielded in the armed forces of Bundeswehr. The section closes with a good number of photographs covering the A0 and A1 vehicles and even includes a few interior shots for good measure.
Now it is the Boxer A2 that comes into few and starts with the changes that have taken place in what can be considered the current version of the Boxer. Two of the changes that caught me out cover the exhaust being moved and the air cooling vents being mixed with more cool air to prevent dust being kicked up and so making the vehicle harder to spot at distance. The text is followed by a great walk around of the A2 variant of the Boxer, an aspect that Tankograd Publishing does very well. The walk around covers the vehicle as a whole and provides close up images of interesting aspects, Tankograd also provides photographs of the interior that will prove useful for those looking to have an interior in a model. Of particular interest to me is the scale drawings of the Boxer in 1/35th scale, an aspect that I appreciate greatly.
The rest of this title is for the most part a mix of great photographs of the Boxer and covers all variants of it. The Command, Ambulance and Driver Training vehicles come in for particular attention and this makes for a nice touch and addition to the title. The quality of the photographs is high and so offers a great look at the details that many of us as modellers look for when seeking reference. I suspect that again it is the sections covering the interior that will prove of most interest to many as these are the hardest type of image to find.
The Boxer is proving a popular vehicle in European armies and so is likely to be of interest to a good number of modellers. With this being a replacement for the M113 in many of those nations it is likely to become a very regular site to anyone living in areas where the various armies are located. There is more text in this offering from Tankograd Publishing compared to what I am familiar with, and I have to say I approve due to the more information I was presented with, it will also likely make the book of more interest to people with no interest in modelling. This increase in text has not been provided at the cost of photographs either as this title has 80 pages rather than the more usual 64. All told this is a very good book covering the Boxer.
Highs: As a modeller I really appreciate the inclusion of the 1/35th scale drawings. Lows: NoneVerdict: A great book covering a subject that I feel will garner more and more interest as time goes on.