Dragon DRA60170 Limited Edition German PzKpfw VIII Maus Super Heavy Tank - "The Fall of the Reich", Kummersdorf, Germany, Summer 1946 (1:72 Scale)
"If the tank succeeds, then victory follows."
- Major-General Heinz Guderian, "Achtung Panzer!"
In June 1942, Porsche of Stuttgart was ordered by Hitler to start designing a super heavy tank, mounting a 12.8cm gun, and having maximum possible armor. Trials were to commence in May 1943, however, many difficulties arose. For example, the air-cooled motor never materialized, and the V1 vehicle had to be fitted with a modified MB509 aircraft engine, the V2 with a MB517 diesel. The Porsche longitudinal torsion bar suspension had to be abandoned as there was insufficient space for the number of stations needed to carry the continually growing weight. Meanwhile, an order had been placed for a production series of 150, but in October 1943, that was cancelled. The V1 prototype was tested with a simulated turret in December 12943, and with a turret and armament in June 1944. The turretless V2 started tests in September 1944, but the engine was destroyed in an accident and was not replaced until April 1945. Both prototypes were eventually blown up at Kummersdorf.
This particular vehicle combines the first model hull with the second model turret and comes with a numbered certificate of authenticity and display tin. Now in stock!
Length: 5.75 inches
Width: 2.5 inches
Release Date: September 2005
Historical Account: "Fall of an Empire" - The Third Reich is an Anglicization of the German expression Drittes Reich, and is used as a near-synonym for Nazi Germany, that refers to the government and its agencies rather than the land and its people. The term was first used in 1922, as the title of a book, by conservative writer Arthur Moeller van den Bruck. It was adopted by Nazi propaganda, which counted the Holy Roman Empire as the first Reich, the 1871 - 1918 German Empire the second, and its own regime as the third. This was done in order to suggest a return to alleged former German glory after the perceived failure of the 1919 Weimar Republic. The disorder and poverty caused in the wake of the Wall Street Crash allowed the Nazis to easily seize power, and take advantage of former foes who had no taste for more bloodshed.
The Third Reich was sometimes also referred to as the "Thousand Year Reich," as it was intended by its founder to stand for one thousand years - similar to the Holy Roman Empire. The Nazi Party attempted to combine traditional symbols of Germany with Nazi Party symbols in an effort to reinforce the perception of them as being one and the same. Thus the Nazi Party used the terms "Third Reich" and "Thousand Year Reich" to connect the allegedly glorious past to its supposedly glorious future. Initially Hitler's plans seemed to be well on their way to fruition. At its height, the Third Reich controlled the greater part of Europe. However, due to the defeat by the Allied powers in World War II, the Thousand Year Reich in fact lasted only 12 years (from 1933 through to 1945). There is evidence that Hitler himself disliked the term Drittes Reich, because of its suggestion that his new order stood in a subordinate position to its predecessors, but a copy of Moeller's book was found in the Berlin bunker where both Hitler and his Reich came to their violent end.