The Hotchkiss H39 was a development of the H35 light infantry tank. This improved version performed well and was used extensively by French forces during the Battle of France, and then by the Germans.

The Hotchkiss H35 suffered from many faults but was produced in large numbers for political reasons.

The improved H39 had a more powerful engine that made it faster, more reliable and easier to drive and the improved L.35 SA38 canon that gave it greater anti-tank capability.

It began replacing the H35 on production lines in 1939 and there were plans to produce 300 a month by October 1940.

However, at the end of the Battle of France only around 230 had been produced.

The Germans captured about 550 H35s and H39s and still had 60 in service as late as December 1944.

This model represents a Hotchkiss H39 in service with the 26th tank battalion of the 1st DCR during the Battle of France.

RPM 1/72 kit completed by Leigh Edmonds in May 2010.

Work Bench Notes


MODEL: Hotchkiss H39

ROLE: light tank

TIME PERIOD: 1939-1956

ENGINES: one Hotchkiss 6 cylinder of 89kw

WIDTH: 1.05m

LENGTH: 4.22m

GROSS WEIGHT: 12.1 tonnes


RANGE: 129km


ARMAMENT: 37mm L/35 SA38 37mm cannon and one 7.5mm machine gun

SCALE: 1/72



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