Corgi US51601 North Korean T-34/85 Medium Tank - 16th Armored Brigade, Korea, September 1950 (1:50 Scale)
"Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun."
- Chinese Communist Party Chairman Mao Tse-Tung
The T34/85 tank was first produced during the winter of 1943-44 as a response to the growing presence of German Panther and Tiger tanks. It had a new 85mm gun mounted in a cast steel turret originally developed for the KV-85 heavy tank. The rest of the tank was virtually unchanged from the original T-34/76 apart from an enlarged turret to provide space for three crewmen. This enabled the commander to fulfill his main function of commanding the tank rather than helping to serve the main gun. The wide tracks enabled the vehicle to traverse all types of ground including soft mud and snow, which allowed it to operate in areas some of the older German tanks could not travel.
Like the T-34/76, the T-34/85 was employed both as a tank and as an infantry carrier. Hand rails were welded around the hull so that troops could hang onto the vehicle at higher speeds. Later variants included a flame-thrower tank with the flame gun mounted in the bow machine gun position, self-propelled guns, mine-rollers, and bridgelayers. Widely exported after the war, the T-34/85 saw front-line service in Africa as late as the 1980s and some are still in use in the former republics of Yugoslavia and Albania. Sold Out!
Length: 4.75 inches
Width: 2.5 inches
Historical Account: This T-34/85 was one of only an estimated 45 tanks shared by the 16th and 17th Armored Brigades at the time of the NKPA's invasion of South Korea on June 25th, 1950. The Soviet-supplied T-34/85s, numbering 258 in total, were in the vanhuard of the invasion, and they initially swept all before them. The tide was eventually turned in September 1950 by a combination of superior UN air power and the arrival of US Marine Corps' M26 Pershing tanks in-theatre. This particular T-34/85 was almost certainly assigned to the 16th's brigade or regimental commander, as it was numbered 800 -- tanks with turret numbers ending in 00 were typically assigned to command crews. The tank was one of a number knocked out in the fighting along the banks of the Maktong River on September 4th, 1950.