Lost Land Rover kicks off 70th Anniversary year

In Land Rover, Short Cuts by Jonathan Humphrey

Land Rover has unearthed the oldest missing original vehicle. Now ripe for reconstruction, it’s one of the first built in the recognisable shape of the ‘Landy’ we all know and love.

 
First shown at the 1948 Amsterdam Motor Show, one of three pre-production Land Rovers from the show. One of the most historically significant for the company and missing in action for 63 years it is ripe for restoration. The experts at the Jaguar Land Rover Classic Works in Coventry are ready to preserve this special Land Rover and sympathetically restore it during 2018.

The vehicle was lost for years, it was last on the road in the 1960s, it then spent 20 years languishing in a Welsh field before being bought as a wishful restoration project, it then sat in a garden and was surprisingly discovered outside Solihull close to where it was first built. Experts at the company have spent months researching to certify its ownership and longstanding provenance.

With many events and celebrations ahead in 2018 for the Land Rover 70th Anniversary, this model is being restored by the team responsible for the Land Rover Series 1 reborn programme. This vehicle is embarking on a year-long programme of restoration to bring it back on or off the road.

Tim Hannig, Jaguar Land Rover Classic Director, said: “This Land Rover is an irreplaceable piece of world automotive history and is as historically important as ‘Huey’, the first pre-production Land Rover. Beginning its sympathetic restoration here at Classic Works, where we can ensure it’s put back together precisely as it’s meant to be, is a fitting way to start Land Rover’s 70th anniversary year.
“There is something charming about the fact that exactly 70 years ago this vehicle would have been undergoing its final adjustments before being prepared for the 1948 Amsterdam Motor Show launch – where the world first saw the shape that’s now immediately recognised as a Land Rover.”

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Jonathan Humphrey

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After many, many years of being passionate about cars, spending too much money on cars and too much time driving. I now spend my time running and developing Drive.co.uk and creating a bold expressive new motoring lifestyle website.

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