Forces of Valor 80073 German Opel 4x4 Ambulance - Unidentified Unit, France, 1940 (1:32 Scale)
"The victor will not be asked afterwards whether he told the truth or not."
- German Chancellor Adolf Hitler
The 3-ton Opel "Blitz" truck was the Wehrmacht's principal general-purpose truck during the Second World War. The engine was a water-cooled, straight-six OHV gasoline unit of 3.6 liters that was fueled by a 21.6 gallon gasoline tank situated under the driver's seat.
The story of the Opel "Blitz" began in the mid-1930s when the new German National Socialist government instigated a program of economic modernization with a clearly expressed militaristic direction. At this time the American General Motors concern had already owned the Opel factories for ten years and Opel had quickly become a major German car manufacturer, with a great family of different vehicle types. One of their most successful designs was the Opel "Blitz" S whose production started in 1936. When the 'Western dam' construction began, more than 10,000 trucks of different types were involved. It was the original competition for military cargo trucks and the result was that the Opel "Blitz" won. The Opel factory received a massive order for this new standard Wehrmacht vehicle.
The European conflict which started on September 1st, 1939, gathered pace with many fronts opening up, and obviously huge numbers of trucks were needed. Many thousands of civil Opel "Blitz" S produced before the war was drafted into army units. These civil trucks were brought up to army standard Kfz.305 - the official military designation for the Opel "Blitz". In all about 140 different army modifications were installed on the Opel "Blitz" chassis during the war years - they became radio cars, repair stations, fuel trucks, and even some exotic types like mobile laundries or printing-houses. Many other vehicles like staff buses or fire trucks were also based on the Blitz chassis.
Pictured here is a 1:32 scale diecast replica of a German Opel 4x4 ambulance employed during the Invasion of France in 1940.
Now in stock!
Length: 7-1/2 inches
Width: 2 inches
Release Date: July 2011
Historical Account: "Fall Gelb" - In the Second World War, the Battle of France was the German invasion of France and the Low Countries, executed on May 10th, 1940, which ended the Phoney War. The battle consisted of two main operations. In the first, Fall Gelb (Case Yellow), German armoured units pushed through the Ardennes, to cut off and surround the Allied units that had advanced into Belgium. During the fighting, the British Expeditionary Force (BEF) and many French soldiers were evacuated from Dunkirk in Operation Dynamo.
In the second operation, Fall Rot (Case Red), executed from June 5th, German forces outflanked the Maginot Line and pushed deep into France. Italy declared war on France on 10 June and soon afterwards the French government fled to the city of Bordeaux. France's capital of Paris was occupied on June 14th. On June 17th, Philippe Ptain publicly announced France would ask for an armistice. On June 22nd, an armistice was signed between France and Germany, going into effect on June 25th. For the Axis Powers, the campaign was a spectacular victory.
France was divided into a German occupation zone in the north and west, a small Italian occupation zone in the southeast, and an unoccupied zone - "the zone libre" - in the south. France administered all three zones according to the terms laid out in the armistice. In November 1942, the Axis forces also occupied the zone libre, and metropolitan France remained under Axis occupation until after the Allied landings in 1944. The Low Countries remained under German occupation until 1944 and 1945.