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P-51 Mustang
"North Africa"


Academy, 1/72 scale

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Academy 12401 - P-51 Mustang "North Africa"
Scale: 1/72
Contents and Media: 43 very nicely moulded light grey plastic parts on two sprues, 7 clear parts on one sprue, decals for two aircraft, 125 x 215 mm fold-out instructions with history, build diagrams, parts plan and paint/decal drawings. There is also a 1/72 Willys Jeep with 44 plastic parts on two sprues, no clear parts and decals on the A/C sheet.
Price: Unknown at this stage
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: A long over due model with better accuracy than Italeri’s example and easier build than MPM’s with as much detail.
Disadvantages: No dropped flaps, no open canopy option, Jeep has accuracy problems but could still built with some extra work.
Recommendation: Highly Recommended

Reviewed by Glen Porter

HyperScale is proudly supported by Squadron.com



Well, it’s about time! However it’s been worth the wait.

Academy's 1/72 scale P-51 is beeeeeautiful.

The biggest fault with Academy's previously released 1/72 scale P-51B and C Mustang kits was the windscreen being too long. This was not a major fault by any means. In fact a lot of people were willing to put up with it. Even so, I am glad to say that Academy has fixed it although they haven’t included an option to pose the canopy open. This, also, is not a major gripe as it would be fairly easy to cut it open or you may be able to use the B/C item.

I compared this kit with the P-51B/C kit and the first thing I noticed is that the engraving is much finer. Not that the ‘B’ kit was bad, just that this one is better. Also, the ‘B’ wing could probably be fitted to this kit to produce a British Mk I or II. It would take a little bit extra work as they’re not quite the same but it’s definitely possible.


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

The cockpit comes complete with sidewall detail, nice seat and instrument panel, low mounted radios and accurate camera. Unlike the MPM model, you get optional open or closed radiator outlet with a radiator matrix inside. The cannon shrouds are more tapered than the MPM/ Special Hobby kit and the cannon barrels them selves, are far superior.

The flaps on these Academy kits are not hard to drop as they come on both top and bottom halves of the wing. Some companies mould the flap all on the top half and this makes it much harder to cut out. Still, I wish they would cater for dropped flaps in their moulding as they did in their P-51D kit.

The decals only cater for two aircraft, both USAAF in North Africa. However, the British also used this aircraft, as the Mustang Mk I A. Hopefully Academy will later bring out the British Mk I and Mk II with alterations to the wings and fuselage.

The Jeep? Well, what can I say? It’s the same as in the airfield vehicle kit accept it doesn’t come with a clear windscreen, although it does come with a “follow me” sign. I know the USAAF used these in bomber squadrons but I’m not sure whether they did in fighters. Unfortunately this jeep has many inaccuracies but could still be used with some extra work. Personally I would rather use the Airfix/Heller one.

Well, here it is. You’ve been lamenting that there were no good early Mustangs on the market for so long and now there is. So, go out and buy five or more and make Mr Academy happy!

Most definitely Recommended.

Review Text Copyright © 2004 by Glen Porter
Images Copyright © 2004 by Brett Green
Page Created 27 December, 2004
Last updated 27 December, 2004

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