The Registry Of Ex-Military Land-Rovers Au, NZ, etc


This history is by no means complete, if you have any information about any of the Project Perentie vehicles, or any photographs of them please send or e-mail them to REMLR.

Project Perentie stemmed from the Australian Army requirement for a replacement for the Series 3 fleet, and the remaining Series 2 and 2a specialist vehicles. The Armies requirements were first released at a briefing to industry in July 1982, and tenders were released to manufacturers for supply of three vehicles in each category for evaluation by the Army. Those categories being 1 ton and 2 ton payloads.

For News Articles about the project, see the Articles Page of REMLR

For information on Prototypes, Development Vehicles etc, Look at this page.

Of the seven 1 ton submissions, the army chose three for further evaluation and comparative trials. These were:

Of the seven 2 ton submissions the Land Rover 110 6x6 and Mercedes-Benz Unimog U1300 were selected for evaluation.

The evaluation vehicles were then handed over to the Army for extensive testing. One of each vehicle type was subjected to accelerated durability trials at the Army's Trials and Proving Wing at Monegeeta near Melbourne. Whilst the other two vehicles were involved in a very comprehensive series of user studies. This included hot wet trials at Tully in North Queensland, and cold weather trials at Khancoban in the Snowy Mountains. Various Army units around Australia were also given an opportunity to trial the different vehicles.

Tenders for production numbers of the vehicles closed in October 1983. This tender called for 2500 1 ton and 400 2 ton vehicles to be produced over a three to four year period commencing in May 1986 with initial vehicles. The volume of the vehicles were to be delivered beginning in May 1987. Six basic types of the 1 ton and three types of the 2 ton were specified.

1 Tonne
Cargo/Personnel (Soft Top)
Cargo/Personnel Fitted For Radio (Soft Top)
Survey Vehicle (Hard Top)
Command Post (Hard Top)
Formation Commanders Vehicle (Station Wagon)
Personnel Carrier (Station Wagon)

2 Tonne
Cargo Truck
Artillery Vehicle
Ambulance

Although these vehicles were based on civilian specifications, the Army vehicles differed in regard to the provision of Army fittings and equipment, the level of Australian content, and the severity of vehicle operations.

An interesting side note is the fact that 2 years after the 3 competing vehicles were entered into service, and before they were authorised for disposal, 2 registrations after the nine 4x4 vehicles were allocated to 2 Base Workshop for trials of two LWB Toyota Landcruisers. From here, history tells the story. The Land rover was the eventual winner for both contracts, and they have been going strong ever since, including a full rebuild to extend their service life in around 2006. So now a closer look at the competitors.

 

 
Designation
Year
ARN
Manufacturer
Engine No
Chassis No
Other Information
Auth For Disposal
LU1 ? 1983 37-824 Land Rover 4x4 909768 SALLDRAZ1AY400002 Parade Photos -
LU2 1983 37-825 Land Rover 4x4 909769 SALLDRAZ1AY400003 Parade Photos. At the Army Tank Museum -
LU3 1983 37-826 Land Rover 4x4 910052 SALLDRAZ1AY400004 On Display at the Army Museum Bandiana Pucka and Monteega Trials -
 
LT5T ? 1983 37-836 Land Rover 6x6 909767 SALLDMAZ1AY600002 Located at Army Museum Bandiana. Narrow Cab -
LT6 ? 1983 37-837 Land Rover 6x6 909770 SALLDMAZ1AY600003 Narrow Cab -
- 1983 37-838 Land Rover 6x6 909772 SALLDMAZ1AY600004 Narrow Cab -
N/A 1983 N/A Land Rover 6x6   SALLDMAZ1AY600005 LRA Reference Vehicle.
Became Wide Body prototype, then Dual cab prototype.
Still owned by LR, NSW rego ZCF-358. Archive Photo. Donated to Army Museum Bandiana
N/A
 
JU2 1983 37-827 Jeep 224197 000197 Pucka and Monteega Trials. Pictured Below. 07.10.1986
JU3 ? 1983 37-828 Jeep 224191 000199 - 07.10.1986
JU1 ? 1983 37-829 Jeep 224206 000206 - 07.10.1986
 
MU1 1983 37-830 MB 300 GD 000038 031612 - 26.11.1986
MU3 1983 37-831 MB 300 GD 000039 031613 Trials vehicle
Hot/Wet trials.
24.10.1986
MU2 1983 37-832 MB 300 GD 000040 031611 Trials vehicle.
Pucka and Monteega Trials
24.10.1986
 
- 1983 37-839 MB Unimog 758915 103061 - 24.10.1986
- 1983 37-840 MB Unimog 758911 103106 Trials vehicle.
Pucka and Monteega Trials
26.11.1986
- 1983 37-841 MB Unimog 758918 103107 Trials vehicle
Hot/Wet trials.
24.08.1987
         6.6.1985: Toyota Trial 2 years later?
- 1985 37-833 Toyota Landcruiser - - - -
- 1985 37-834 Toyota Landcruiser - - - -

 


The Land Rover 110 4x4 (Commonly referred to as the Perentie)

REMLR obviously contains a great deal of information about the eventual winner of Project Perentie, the Land Rover 110. You can access that information in the Perentie Index.

The images below are of one of the Project vehicles, 37-826, which survives today in the Army Museum Bandiana.

The chassis numbers of the 4x4 vehicles are nominally 400002, 400003 & 400004. However 3 were built for the Army and one for Land Rover Australia, but one was damaged in a crash (400004 ) on the way to be delivered and had it's identity swapped with the LRA vehicle 400001. The Trials 4x4 vehicles were imported from the UK as as CBU (Completely Built Up) vehicles with UK Vins. However they were then stripped down and completely rebuilt on Australian Chassis with 4BD1's and LT95 gearboxes. Naturally there was a raft of Australian Equipment fitted at the same time and given an Australian Vin number. However along the way their Vin Numbers were changed once again to the numbers seen on the vehicles today.

The 6x6 vehicles chassis numbers were 600002, 600003 and 600004. 600005 which was the LRA reference vehicle still exists and is owned by LRA. It is registered as a company vehicle. However, the vehicle is now a wide cab crew cab, having been converted from the original narrow cab reference vehicle into the prototype wide cab and subsequently into the prototype crew cab, now donated to the Army Museum Bandiana.

For more information on the Trials and Prototypes vehicles, visit the Trials, Prototype and Land Rover Development Vehicles page.

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Copyright Richard Green

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Copyright Richard Green

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Inside the front of the prototype 110. This was one of only 3 built. This photo was taken in 2008. Copyright Richard Green

 

The below photos are courtesy of Land Rover Australia. Copyright Land Rover Australia

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The Trials vehicles in review. Two of the 4x4 Land Rovers.

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Two of the 6x6 Land Rovers

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Four of the five vehicles taking part in the trials, the jeep is notably absent, possibly broken down?

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A file photo of one of the 4x4 trials Land Rovers.

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The Land Rover 110 6x6 2 Ton

Land Rover had no 2 ton vehicle within it's fleet, so in order to submit a vehicle to the Army tender, first they needed to create one!

Development began with a couple of series 3 vehicles converted to 6x6, Later came a Sandringham 6x6 (Series II, Stage 1 based) that was imported from England. This 6x6 was a coil sprung vehicle, however it was determined that this configuration was not suitable. Rumour has it that it was broken within 48 hours of the commencement of testing. Eventually this vehicle had it's chassis replaced with an Australian built unit to overcomes the problems found with it, although it retained it's original VIN.

All of the developed "Perentie" 6x6 vehicles had a slightly wider rear and the normal front end. However once Land rover won the 1 and 2 ton categories they requested that a wider cab for the 6x6 vehicles be developed for the production models.

Like the 4x4, there were 4 trials vehicles built. Three for the trials, and one for Land Rover Australia. It was the Land Rover vehicle that was converted to the first true "Wide Cab" vehicle, along it's way to becoming a Dual cab vehicle, Which incidentally is still owned by Land Rover. It is understood that the other prototype vehicles were eventually destroyed. The fate of the trials vehicle is mixed. Obviously Land Rover has one, and the Army Museum Bandiana has another, whoever the other 2 are of unknown location and condition as of early 2011.


The Mercedes-Benz 300GD

If you have any information or images about the Mercedes Benz vehicle that tool part in the trials, please let REMLR know.

 


THe 300GD on Trials. Photo Copyright of Land Rover Australia.

 


The Jeep AM10

Information about the AM10 Jeep are reasonably scarce and it is thought that at least one of the vehicles brought to Australia survives today in Australia. This vehicle appears to be a development on the civilian J10 Jeep ute. It is thought one of the reasons that the Jeep failed in it's attempt to secure the contract was it's automatic gearbox which was considered inadequate, and apparently axle breakages were also common on the trials. However the Jeep was automatically excluded because of it's petrol engine, and the requirements were for a diesel.

A very similar variant of the same vehicle was accepted and uses in US Airforce service.

The photographs below are from Jeep Action Magazine and further information from them about this vehicle will be arriving soon.

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Timeline

This is a rough chronology of the development of the military "Perentie" 110.

  • Late 1970's: There was drive in the Civilian sector for a Land Rover with a bigger diesel to compete with Japanese offerings. The result was the Isuzu into a Land Rover Stage 1. A Number of development vehicles were built, but there was no military interest.

  • 1980/81: Leyland was interested a replacement for the Series 3 in use by the Defence Department. Leyland decided that the Isuzu SIII Stage 1was a good starting point, but realised 2 Ton capacity also needed. Various schemes were considered (including widening 101) but 6x6 configuration chosen.

  • A 6x6 Sandringham was purchased from The UK. Trials proved chassis and rear suspension/drive unsuitable.

  • One of the Isuzu 4x4 development vehicles subsequently converted to a development 6x6 (not trials). This also proved that the UK chassis extension impracticable in strength and cost. A second 6x6 was built from a 4x4 for company trials from Stage 1.

  • UK Sandringham was converted to an Australian 6x6 narrow cab chassis with coil front suspension and definitive 6x6 driveline and rear suspension. This is in effect the first definitive 6x6 prototype. (This is why the poms claim to have designed the Australian 6x6, they don't realise it was totally rebuilt but retained it's original VIN and even the ACT registration number).

  • 4x4s are not as clear, but photos indicate the development of company trials vehicles (as opposed to the delivered Army Trials Vehicles) followed a similar path. Certainly Stage 1 Series threes were involved prior to the importation of the first 110 into Australia

  • 1987 and 1992: Perentie Production dates.

  • 1994-1998: Additional vehicles built under Project Bushranger (Phase 1). These vehicles have rego numbers from 200-000 upwards and include existing designs, and new designs and improvements.

 

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