Officially the Australian Army did not start using the Land
Rover until 1958 with the Series 2. However at least one unit
was used for engine trials in 1952 with a Land Rover, Rolls
Royce and Holden engine fitted. A number of Royal Review Series
1 Land Rovers also made their way to Australia at various times
for the numerous Royal Visits, 2 of which even made their way
form the Commonwealth Fleet of vehicles in to Australian Army
service. Information about all of these can be found on the
- In 1952 an Australian Army vehicle appraisal team used a
1948 ¼ ton GS Land-Rover ARN 153-952 for an extended
period, covering 100,000+ miles in service from 1949 to
the late 1950's. It was chassis N°R862994
(80inch wheelbase, 6.00x16 tyres, silver chassis). The
success of 153-952 surely must have helped when the Series
2 Land-Rover underwent Army Design Establishment tests for
the 1958 supply contract. More details at ANZACsteel website
of the REMLR page about Series
1 Engine Trials
- Another ¼ ton GS Land-Rover, ARN 107-678, was factory
fitted with a Rolls Royce engine and also appraised. This
1950 model Landy was chassis N°R06104333 with
RR engine N°B40DB558. (The Australian Army's
Austin Champs used the same engine).
- Some UK MOD 88inch G.S. units were in use by the RAAF at
Queensland Air bases in the 1950's...
- One or two early Land-Rovers were modified and
upholstered for ceremonial use by the Australian Army...
- REMLR hears that some dark blue 107inch utility body
Land-Rovers were used at the R.A.N. Diving Ctr, Port
- The Royal Australian Navy did have some for shore
transport, carried around by warships, although little
information about them exist.
- Some UK MOD 88inch G.S. units accompanied the early
A-bomb testing in South Australia and purportedly they got
buried out there with all the other stuff. However some
MOD units have appeared, and it is unknown if they are
private imports, or ex Woomera units.
- The New Zealand Army used Series 1
units extensively at a time when the Australian Army used
the Austin Champ (1950's). The New Zealand Army initially
used Series 1 units in their Vietnam War effort.