Of all the tank designs to reach a 20th Century battlefield, no other vehicle has attained such legendary and mythical status as the German Tiger heavy tanks. Backed up by undeniable battlefield effectiveness, the Tiger's mythos grew to legendary status and struck terror into the hearts of those faced with the challenge of defeating it.
The origins of the Tiger tank date back to 1937, when a 30-35 ton heavy tank was discussed by German planners. The idea was dropped in favor of the more lightweight and mobile Panzer III and IV series, which proved adequately effective against allied forces in Poland and France. When Hitler turned his forces against Russia, they were soon shocked to be faced against the formidable T-34 tank (a closely guarded secret weapon up to that point). The Panzertruppe found themselves outgunned, and facing certain defeat, unless they were equipped with more powerful weapons.
On Hitler's orders, a new 55 ton heavy tank was to be produced, armed with an adaptation of the deadly 88mm anti-aircraft cannon, and 100mm of frontal armor. The winning prototype was designed by Henschel and was ordered into production in July of 1942. While sequentially following the much sleeker Panther tank, the Tiger was clearly a throwback to earlier design work. Instead of sloping armor, the Tiger relied on shear brute strength of it's armor for protection. This simplified design helped speed the Tiger into production, although not without such innovations as a semiautomatic transmission, power steering (allowing the driver to steer with a wheel instead of a pair of brake levers), and a hydraulically powered turret.
The Tiger made it's battlefield debut in September of 1942 and immediately proved effective at knocking out virtually any adversary well before itself was within effective range of opposing fire. The Tiger successfully served the Panzertruppe on all fronts on the European continent until the end of the war. The Tiger's near invincibility against any other allied armored vehicle instilled a fear known as "Tigerphobia" and reports of battlefield encounters with Tiger tanks were censored by British commanders to prevent panic amongst the troops.
While the Tiger (and predecessor Tiger II) was undoubtedly one of the most formidable weapons present at any battle in WW2, only 2500 were produced due to it's enormous material cost. Even though it was one of the greatest tanks of all time, achieving an unequalled legendary status in AFV history, it never reached the battlefield in sufficient numbers to the turn the tide of the war. Although inferior in almost every aspect, the mass-produced medium tanks of the allies (Sherman and T-34) were deployed in sufficient numbers to overwhelm the limited number of German heavy tanks, even while suffering grievous losses to their own units.
Additional information about this Brickmania custom Lego® kit:
This is a re-release of our extremely popular (and equally as rare) Tiger I Ausf E premium custom kits, originally released in early 2012. While this re-release is practically identical to the original, we took the opportunity to include custom-printed Panzertruppen minifig torsos and added extra tracks on the glacias plate. Due to the severe rarity of certain elements, it is extrmely unlikely that we'll be able to make any future editions of this kit.
Features of this model:
This Brickmania model kit is made from genuine, unused LEGO® bricks and is shipped disassembled. This kit included are full-color, printed building instructions, a signed certificate of authenticity, and is packaged in a sealed box.