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Supermarine Spitfire Mk.XII


Xtrakit, 1/72 scale

S u m m a r y

Catalogue Number: Xtrakit XK 72006 Spitfire Mk. XII
Scale: 1/72
Contents and Media: 58 mid-grey plastic parts on one sprue; 2 clear parts on one sprue; decals for 4 aircraft plus a 10 page A5 sized instruction booklet with history, parts plan, 9 build diagrams, 1 page of stencil placement instructions and 4 pages of paint/decal drawings.
Price: From GBP£8.50 available online from Hannants website
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Long awaited subject, excellent surface detail, injected canopy is clear and thin, optional main and tail wheels; extremely good decals with a full set of stencils.
Disadvantages: Cockpit side wall detail a bit sparse; canopy in one piece; side door not separate
Recommendation: Highly Recommended

Reviewed by Glen Porter




The Spitfire Mk. XII was the first Griffon powered Spitfire design. It was planned primarily to combat the hit and run raids against the east coast of England. Fw 190s and Bf 109s approached at low level to avoid British radar, so the Mk. XII did not need to have a good high altitude performance. With clipped wings and a single stage two speed blown 36 litre engine, it had the performance required to deal with these surface hugging raiders.

Only 100 Spitfire Mk.XIIs were built, and these were issued to only two Squadrons – Nos. 41 and 91. No Mk. XIIs left England, and they operated solely in the defensive role.



Of all the Spitfire Marks, the XII is the one we've been waiting for the longest. Sure, there have been conversions in this scale and one short-run plastic kit from an obscure Eastern European company which wasn't worth having, but nothing of any quality.

So was the brand new 1/72 scale Xtrakit Spitfire XII worth waiting for?

You betcha.

Xtrakit’s new Spitfire Mk.XII comprises 58 mid-grey plastic parts on one sprue, 2 clear parts on one sprue, decals for 4 aircraft plus a 10 page A5 sized instruction booklet. The plastic is glossy and of high quality, with crisp and finely engraved panel lines supplemented with a small number of recessed fasteners.


Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:


The kit offers optional wheels – covered hub or five spoke - and fixed or retracting tail wheel, but only the early elevators without the kinked horn balance. The undercarriage torque link option is not supplied either, but the upper wing wheel bulge is separate so it can be left off if so desired.

The fuselage halves are moulded very similarly to Fujimi's Mk. XIV with separate upper cowl sections.

Interior parts are broken down in a similar manner to Tamiya's small scale Spitfires except the seat is a more realistic width, but the sidewall detail is a bit disappointing. Other than the framework, there is nothing there - no throttle quadrant or undercarriage controls, nothing. Behind the seat mount frame, there is not even any framework, just two oxygen bottles a la Tamiya. The pilot’s access door is moulded closed but that should pose no problem for most modellers. I would be inclined to look for a suitable resin cockpit set although all components other than the sidewalls are acceptable. The one-piece injected canopy looks very similar to the item in the Hasagawa Mk. VIII/IX kit but is thin enough to be cut open to show off a resin interior.

I can't vouch for the absolute accuracy but the kit certainly looks the goods in the box. There has been a lot of talk about the level of accuracy of Spitfire wings, but I have never been able to determine exactly what the problem was. I compared Xtrakit’s wings to Tamiya's Mk.VB, Hasagawa's VIII/IXC and CMR's Mk.XVIE and they all looked the same except for armament and cooling systems. Certainly, the plan form was close enough that I couldn't tell any difference.

The decal sheet I assume is from Xtradecal, but it does not say so.



There are markings for four aircraft, all 41 Squadron coded EB. “A” is B, MB882, the last Mk. XII produced and flown by Australian pilot Flt. Donald Smith, Friston, April 1944. “B” is aircraft H, MB794, dated 1943 and “C” is D, MB858, another well photographed aircraft, Westhampnett, late 1943. Last is “D”, aircraft V, EN237, one of the earlier production flown by Sqn. Ldr. Thomas Neil, CO of 41 Squadron RAF, Hawking, spring 1943. All four aircraft are in the same Day Fighter Scheme of Dark Green, Ocean Grey uppers and Sea Grey Medium on the lower surfaces. All have a Sky Type “S” band and spinner with yellow leading edge on outer wing panels. Codes are Sky with a small aircraft letter under the nose also in Sky. All national markings look accurate in colour and size with perfect register.

There is a full set of stencils including walk-way lies and red MG patches.





At last we have a good quality Spitfire Mk.XII in 1/72 scale.

This is a very good kit indeed that won't need a lot of experience to construct.

I just hope it leads to other variants of Spitfire being produced.

Highly Recommended

Thanks to Hannants for the sample

Xtrakits, Xtraparts and Xtradecals are all available online from Hannants' website

Text Copyright © 2007 by Glen Porter
Images Copyright © 2007 by Brett Green
This Page Created on 08 October, 2007
Last updated 24 December, 2007

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