Building the ICM Opel Kapitän 1/35 scale – an Italian scene

by Federico Collada © Modeler Site

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The Opel Kapitän was the latest model produced when the Second World War started. Produced between 1938 and 1940, Opel introduced with this model the unitary body which was a modern feature for that time. Its’ 2,5 litre engine with 3 speeds allowed a maximum of 118km/h. When the production was interrupted in 1940 more than 25.000 units were built.


When the war finished, in 1948 Opel returned the production improving the design along the different production batches until 1958 in which a new line of cars inherited the name beginning a new “family”

In the beginning of the war, most of the particular cars were requisitioned to be used by the Wehrmacht and Luftwaffe officers, among them lots of Opel Kapitäns that were deployed in all East and West theatres of war.

The kit

I received the ICM Opel Kapitän kit as soon as it was released as part of a batch that the producer sent me for reviewing but unfortunately I couldn’t get started with it until 10 months later. When I finally got my hands on it I started to think of a scene.

I thought that some kind of bucolic ground would fit this elegant car better than a devastated surrounding so typical of many war dioramas. In my mind the scene changed many times, from a roadside viewpoint somewhere in a hill to a garden full of flowers or parked at a nice building in some Mediterranean village.


In the end I decided to park the car at the entrance of a private garden, somewhere in Italy watched by some civilians in a very casual and relaxed attitude as if the war had nothing to do with them.


At the beginning of the project I imagined the people talking with the driver of the car, changing cigarettes or bread or something but finally I decided not to include the Wehrmacht soldier to increase the peaceful “feeling” of the scene.


Looking through my diorama kits I found the Miniart kit 35505 French wall and gate that fitted perfectly for what I had in mind, a simple vacuform kit that builds itself in minutes and is very easy to paint. Luckily enough it included a metal forged fence to enhance the privacy look of the garden behind the walls.

Finally the figures, they came from two different sets of Master Box civilian WWII age kits, 35148 “Women of WWII” and 3567 “civilians, western region WWII” they have no transformations, just sanded the moulding lines and painted with Vallejo colours.

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