Royal Australian Navy Fleet
The RAN fleet of vehicles differs from the Army and RAAF vehicles because they were purchased by units, rather than bulk orders for the most part, and even fewer photographs of RAN vehicles exist, than of RAAF vehicles.
FLEET INFO on this page:
The navy's vehicel fleet have almost always been essentially civilian vehicles with Navy or commonwealth plates. Little or no information exists on any Navy Land Rovers, however photos are appearting here and there. From the late 50's through to the late 80's Navy Land Rovers appear to have been painted a Sky blue with a white roof. the same colour was available on the civilian market, but apparently only with a cream roof. In fact most navy vehicles of this time were painted this colour. Before then it's thought that RAN vehicles were painted navy blue like their RN and RNZN counterparts.
Information came to light in 2003 as to the chassis number (and other details) of 80 inch land rovers purchased by the navy in the early 1950's. Interestingly a Tickford Station Wagon was amongst these purchases. More information as to these details can be found on the Series 1 ARN page.
Photographs exist of a number of series 1 land rovers stowed on the decks of RAN ships. Presumedly these vehicles were utilised when in port for transport for the crew to undertake their duties.
REMLR member Bruce Peelgrane sent in these photos of a Series 2 which he recently bought. Apparently it was used at HMAS Albatross as a slasher for the airstrip. The stickers inside are very similar to those used at military airstrips today. More photos and information can be found here.
REMLR now has some information on RAN Land Rovers. you can find this information on the Series 2RAN Registrations page.
The R.A.N. used some Series 3 109" Station Wagons. They were blue in colour. The blue colour looks like that used for many years in the 'Home market' Land-Rover wagons of both 88" and 109" types. R.E.M.L.R. has one pic so far. The wagon has the old Commonwealth Of Australia 'Z' plates (the Z character was red, the 2 other letter characters and 3 numbers black and the plate was white overall). Info is scant, and maybe after their port-side service in the salty sea air, they have all disappeared due to chassis cancer or wharfies.
Recent information has surfaced that indicates the RAN purchased some Stage 1 Land Rovers. That information appears in the form of some photographs of the vehicles in the standard RAN colour of the time, a pale sky blue. The same blue as the series 3 station wagon and series 2 were painted in as well as other RAN vehicles of the time.
The Royal Australian Navy were the first with 110" models.
"The R.A.N. has taken delivery of a number of new Land Rover One Ten four-wheel-drive utilities. The Navy Land Rovers are the first One Tens to go into service with an Australian Defence Force.
"Land Rover has enjoyed a long association with the Australian Navy and, whilst the Navy does not buy in numbers as large as those of the Army, it nonetheless has been a staunch supporter of the famous British all-terrain vehicle.
"The new Land Rover One Tens, painted in pristine Navy-white will go into service at major port facilities and will be used by Naval Police and will also be taken on board during naval exercises.
"Navy personnel are reportedly very satisfied with the new coil-sprung Land Rover, highlighting the improvements to ride, general comfort, and performance.
"With the sailors now sampling One Tens, JRA Limited awaits the outcome of more than one year of intensive testing of the new Land Rover in a bid to win the prestigious contract to supply both four-wheel-drive and six-wheel-drive Land Rover to the Australian Army as replacements for its current Land Rover fleet. Land Rover has supplied the Australian Army for more than 25 years."
The accompanying photo was of a standard civilian issue One Ten truck cab utility without the County stripes. The only naval aspect is that the unit is parked at a wharf with a warship behind (Bush Driver magazine, May-June 1985)
A copy of the article can be seen here.
Some more information from REMLR member 256, Paul in 2009.
I spent 1982, 1983 & 1984 at the Shoal Bay Receiver Station while stationed @ HMAS Coonawarra (Darwin). Amongst a lot of other things, I looked after "Naval Stores" for one of the electronic sections, which meant quite a bit of running around. The vehicle I used for this was a diesel 110 (I now know that to be an Isuzu). The OIC (maintenance section) also had a 110 but his had a V8 engine. As you mentioned the Naval Police also had a Land Rover 110, but not sure of the power plant. I do remember that they were all blue with white roofs. I do not recall seeing any "all white" versions in Darwin during my service there.
The Navy still uses a number of Defender 130 vehicles for the Clearance Divers. These vehicles are High Capacity Dual Cabs with a caged canopy over the tub for carrying diving equipment and towing small boats. One such vehicle spotted by the REMLR administrator at Anglsea Barracks, Hobart, noted that the chassiss showed significant surface rusting, presumably because of frequent dunkings in the ocean.
If you can add any in-depth information or correct our guide you are welcome to email REMLR.
ARNs - AUSTRALIAN ARMY REGISTRATION NUMBERS