I haven’t outgrown my love of scale models. However, I don’t have the skills or time to build plastic kits. So what’s a military vehicle lover to do? The next best thing to building it myself: Diecast or pre-built plastic.
And, because you have probably feel the same way, I am sharing my “Top 12 Military Toy Vehicles under 15 Bucks" with you.
All of these are linked to easy ordering (click on the images or highlighted text). Bear in mind, Amazon is always adjusting prices, so there might be some differences than what I have recorded here.
The upside is: There's a diecast M8 available. The downside: It's in Corgi's undefinable "Fit the Box" scale. Detail is minimal, the guns are too heavy, but for playing in the sandbox, this M8 will provide your smaller scale (1/72?) Army adequate recon capabilities.
An unusual scale, but a fair representation of a WWI MK IV landship. Rivets are over done, but they do emphasize the rough construction of these early tanks. Neat to just have a Great War vehicle on the desk or the toy box. Love WWI tanks? Check out Anthony Tucker-Jones' book, Armoured Warfare in the First World War (pub. 2017).
A nice size (1/32 scale), this WWII Jeep is okay. The detail isn't great, but it is a nice vehicle to have around in case some kids want to play with something--and you want to provide realistic toys. Good news is I found a listing for just $11.50 with free shipping to US addresses (I have seen it as low at $8.50 on Amazon, as well).
Sometimes, quantity simply outshines quality. For $15, you get a variety of military vehicles for the imaginative battlefields. This toy is one for the young kids.
Limited edition diecast Jeep has real rubber tires and quite true-to-scale detail. Once it is out of the package, I am not sure what makes it a "MASH" Jeep (only unit markings are "HQ" on left rear bumperette), but regardless, it is a decently detailed vehicle in a "Hot Wheels" scale.
Sluban produces a variety of building kits, and in particular, this set that allows a ship to wheeled vehicles. Okay, this one isn't diecast either. It is a neat playset to have for when the grandkids come over.
Why did I get this? Because it seems like I always need a gift for some 4-7 year old kid. This roughly 1/55 scale Jeep is a way to share my military interest while still staying within the "Disney-safe" societal boundaries. Don't let the picture fool you, though. It is just a bit larger than a regular Hot Wheels Car. Not too horrible looking, it costs only $11.99.
At just $12.44, this plastic M113 and soldier set is a great value. The scale doesn't quite jive between the soldier and the vehicle, but the moveable parts and gear make up for it.
I really enjoy these puzzles. They are pre-painted. If you follow the instructions, you will end up with two nice 1/72nd scale German tanks for just $12.99
Nothing represents the Warsaw Pact in the Cold War like the Soviet-pattern T-54/55 main battle Tank. This model, decked out as a 1974 Czech Army vehicle is ready to take on Leopard Is or M60A3s that dare enter the Vitava River Sector. At only $14.99 each, you can assemble a battalion of T-54s to take on those NATO aggressors. For more information on this tank, check out James Kinnear and Stephen Sewell's book, Soviet T-54 Main Battle Tank (pub. 2018).
Heck, this one is just too cool on so many levels. A Cold War BTR-60 that certainly appears to have been made during the Cold War! I actually bought a couple of these. One for display...and one to put out on my sale table! At $9.99, why not? Want to relive those Cold War days? Check out Russell Phillips' book Weapons and Equipment of the Warsaw Pact for about $23.
What is more iconic of 21st century land warfare than the M1A1 Abrams patrolling the roads in Iraq? At only $14.99, this M1A1HA is a better investment than a Papa Murphy's pizza...and looks way better on your shelf or battlefield.
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