HiPM & MPM's 1/48 Pe-2 Kits Compared
For such a successful World War Two twin-engined plane, it has taken a long time for an injection kit to come out in 1/48. Now we have two different kits available, one from MPM and the other from Historic Plastic Models. We've had the MPM Pe-2 in the pages of Internet Modeler before (First Look in the April 2000 issue and a build-up article in the October 2000 issue), and recently they have issued a new version, the Pe-2UT. There is a lot of commonality between this kit and the original release, with extra parts being provided for the trainer option. The HiPM kit is listed as a Series 1-105 Pe-2, which is slightly different than the MPM version.
Starting with the interiors, both kits provide decent renditions. The MPM kit provides the majority of the details in resin (with the Pe-2UT having two resin cockpit tubs for the instructor & trainee). The HiPM kit has no resin detail pieces, but chooses to use PE instead, coupled with plastic parts. Both choices will result in good-looking interiors and neither really has much of an edge over the other.
HiPM Kit Parts
The exterior of both kits are well done, with engraved panel lines throughout on both kits. The panel lines on the wings differ between the kits, but it appears to be a difference more of what to choose to depict rather than gross errors. The HiPM kit appears to be slightly smaller than the MPM kit, while the MPM wings are slightly more pointed than the HiPM kit. Both of these issues are slight, though, and only the most AMS-afflicted modeler will notice it.
The engine nacelles in both kits are almost interchangable, both having excellent detailing throughout. The MPM kit has the wheel cutouts in the lower wing faired in while the HiPM kit just has holes. The air brakes on the wing are also different between the two kits, with the MPM kit providing these in resin and the HiPM kit having them in photoetch. The amount of flash on the resin parts definitely give the edge to the PE parts in this area.
Both kits have injection-molded clear parts (with the odd trainer canopy in the MPM Pe-2UT kit being vacuformed). Both kit's clear parts are very well molded and very clear.
The final difference between the two kits is the decals. The MPM kit provides markings for three Pe-2UTs; one Soviet, one Czech and one Polish. The Polish and Czech examples are in simple green over blue gray, while the Soviet one is as seen on the boxtop.
MPM Kit Parts
The HiPM kit also offers three choices, this time two Soviet and one Finnish. One Soviet example has a temporary winter camouflage that is very interesting, consisting of the standard camouflage covered with large spots of temporary white paint. The Finnish example is listed as being camouflaged in dark green and green over light blue in a pattern very similar to German WW2 bomber scheme. Both kits have well-printed decals and are in excellent register.
Since the HiPM kit is of an early Pe-2 and the MPM kit is of the later
Pe-2s, the kits compliment one another nicely. The slight size difference
between the two shouldn't be too noticable, even when built side-by-side.
Either way you go you'll end up with a nice-looking Pe-2 on your shelves.
Both kits are available from Roll
Models, with the MPM at $30 and the HiPM at $36.