The If.8 Infantry Cart was a very versatile vehicle with many uses. As can be seen in our photo, it was a small cart which might be pulled by a single horse but would often have simply used manpower. They were very widely used by the forces of the Third Reich throughout the war, and as general purpose carriers could be used for many things by the hard-pressed infantry. The model in this set, which is only 1:87th scale and has a body that measures just 10mm by 8, is nonetheless a quite beautifully engineered little thing, as are all Preiser models. The variety of configurations and loads that can be achieved with the many parts supplied is bewildering and best illustrated by the instructions which we include here. From these you can see that the cart can have a hood or just a frame, and can have one of several loads. Although not mentioned in the instructions, the forked tongue to hitch it up to a horse is also provided, as are the fittings to allow several carts to be linked together in tandem. One option that is missing is the wheels, which are of the steel disc with rubber tyre variety - a perfectly valid choice, but other types of wheel were also sometimes used.
The six figures are all wearing standard German winter gear of greatcoats and an assortment of steel helmets and caps. As usual with Preiser a wide variety of extras are provided (see sprue image) with which the customer can equip the men as desired. Naturally enough the poses are all concerned with moving the carts, and since this is not particularly easy to imagine from our own photos above we also include the nicely displayed examples from the back of the product box, which gives you a good idea. All the figures have some element of assembly, so the resulting poses are very natural and well chosen. The sitting man is particularly interesting as his use is not quite so obvious, but doubtless the troops used these carts as impromptu seats on many occasions.
The cart model is superb, and the figures are well done too. Having four carts in each set allows the customer to have a play with some of the varieties available, and to quickly put together a little column on the march. The results are excellent, so it is a pity that the advertised scale of this set makes it difficult to integrate it with true 1/72 figures.