Trumpeter – 07196 – Faun SLT-56 Franziska Panzertransporter

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Description:

Unassembled plastic model kit in 1/72 scale of a German heavy tank transporter SLT56 (Franziska) introduced in the 80s.

With the introduction of the Leopard 2 Main Battle Tank (MBT), the German Army identified the need for a new tank transporter capable of handling the increased weight of this advanced generation of tanks. In contrast to the off-road SLT50 Elefant tractor with eight driven wheels, the newly developed transporter, named SLT56, is an 8×6 tractor vehicle produced by Faun, the FS 42.75/42 (referred to as Sattelzugmaschine, schwer, 8×6 – semi tractor trailer, heavy, 8×6). The accompanying trailer, designed to carry 56 tons and manufactured by Kässbohrer, is known as Sattelanhänger 56t, Tieflader, tmil, 12×0 (semi-trailer 56t, flat bed, military, 12×0).

Unlike the unofficially named Elefant for the SLT50, the SLT56 does not have an official name like “Franziska.” The German Army procured 49 of these transporters in 1989.

Belonging to the Bundeswehr’s 3rd generation of vehicles, the heavy transporter Franziska enhances the capability to transport extra-heavy tanks. While externally similar to the SLT 50, the SLT56 is an entirely new and independently developed vehicle. Distinguishing features include tandem lights in the SLT56’s front bumper, in contrast to the Elefant’s single lights. The vehicles differ in their drive train and engine, as well as the configuration of winches and boxes. Similar to the Elefant, the SLT56 is equipped with two Rotzler winches for pulling tanks or disabled vehicles onto the trailer. The trailer’s platform measures 8.9m by 3.15m, and the weight is distributed across 24 wheels, with two wheels per short axle and six axles per side (the front two being steerable).

In 1993, modifications were made to the SLT56 based on experiences during deployment with the UN in Somalia. Strengthened fenders, modified winch anchoring, air-suspended driver seats, and increased storage space were incorporated into the updated design.

Newly tooled kit in 2023, include rubber tires and decal sheet with one single marking.

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