Attack Hobby's 1/72
Tatra T-87

By Chris Banyai-Riepl


The Tatra T-87 was a development of the T-77, answering many of the problems the latter had. By shaving the weight down considerably (losing nearly 900 pounds) and shortening the wheel base, the weight distribution as well as power-to-weight ratio greatly improved performance and handling. Uni-body construction helped make the vehicle safer while the conventional positioning of the A-pillars greatly improved the driver's forward visibility. The view behind, though, was still poor due to the streamlined rear hood. The positioning of the engine back behind the rear wheels helped to reduce interior noise to almost nothing. A top speed of around 100 miles per hour and gas mileage of around 19 miles per gallon was about average for sedans of its age, and like most luxury sedans the suspension ensured a smooth ride. Over 3000 T-87s were sold between 1936 and 1950.

The Kit

I think that I am safe to say that this will be the only injection-molded kit in 1/72 that we'll ever see of this car (could be the only injection-molded kit period).  It is definitely an interesting subject matter and once built will be unique item on your shelf. The kit's construction is a bit unusual, mainly due to the odd shape of the vehicle. The main body is split into right and left halves, with a separate hood and rear decking. This will make for a bit more work in putting it all together, but all of the seams fall on either lines or in easy-to-sand areas. This will make cleaning up the body a snap, both on the inside and on the outside.

Speaking of the inside, the kit provides a decent interior, although it will need some extra work in cleaning up.  The floor is molded in one piece and makes up the underside of the vehicle as well.  Onto this two bench seats (front and rear), a forward "firewall" with the steering wheel & gearshift provided separately (it's not really a firewall, as the engine is in the back). The front and rear axles also fit onto the floor piece, and will need a bit of cleanup.  The wheels are molded as one piece and will need some sanding on the tread, but not much else will be needed to finish out the suspension.  The only thing left is to add the bumpers, which are both thinly molded and really look nice.  The only worry I'd have is in breaking them during the cleanup process.

There are two color schemes given in the kit, both military options.  With a bit of research, though, some civilian options could easily be done as well, just for something different.  The first marking choice is that seen on the boxtop and is an example used by the RAF in 1945.  It's painted in olive green (possibly from RAF or army stocks) and features stars on the sides and hood.  RAF roundels are present on the tops of the fenders. The second example is a German vehicle in Norway, finished in panzer gray. The markings are sparse on this example, with just an emblem on the rear fin and license plates.  There are decals for what appears to be a third example of the Czech army, but no information is included in the kit for these decals (consisting of two sets of pennants and license plates).


While I'm sure this car hasn't been at the top of many 1/72 armor modelers, it is an interesting subject and looks to be a fairly quick build.  If you want to do something a bit off the wall, this might just be what you're looking for.


While I have nothing in print on this vehicle, there are several interesting websites out there dealing with Tatra vehicles. Easily the most informative and useful is 'The Unofficial TatraAutomobile Pages' website. This site has photos, a list of reference books, a history of the company, and even a message board for current Tatra owners. Whether you plan on building this kit as a military or civilian vehicle, this site will definitely help.

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