‘Missing’ Landy restored to celebrate 70th year

2018-01-18 06:00
<;This Land Rover Series I with chassis number LR3, has been missing for the last 63 years. It is being restored in celebration of Land Rover’s 70th anniversary. Photos:NICK DIMBLEBY/JAGUAR LAND ROVER

<;This Land Rover Series I with chassis number LR3, has been missing for the last 63 years. It is being restored in celebration of Land Rover’s 70th anniversary. Photos:NICK DIMBLEBY/JAGUAR LAND ROVER

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The pre-production Land Rover which in 1948 gave the world its first glimpse of this iconic “world-conquering” vehicle is in the process of being restored.

It has been missing for the last 63 years. The restoration is in celebration of Land Rover’s 70th anniversary.

It was shown at the 1948 Amsterdam Motor Show and for years the whereabouts of this demonstration Land Rover with chassis number LR3 was a mystery.

It was last on the road in the 1960s, after which it spent 20 years in a Welsh field before being bought as a restoration project, but it then lay languishing unfinished in a garden.

Following its surprise discovery just a few miles outside of Solihull, in the United Kingdom – where the car was first built – the experts at Jaguar Land Rover Classic spent months researching in company archives to unravel its ownership history and confirm its provenance.

The team behind the successful Land Rover Series I Reborn programme, which allows customers to own a slice of Land Rover history with meticulously restored Series Is, will now embark on their most challenging project yet: a year-long mission to preserve this historically significant prototype and enable it to be driven again.

The restoration programme will be completed by the end of 2018 to culminate in the revealing of the next generation and heritage edition Land Rover.

The world’s oldest Land Rover is nicknamed “Huey”, owing to its number plate HUE 166.

It was the first prototype to roll out of the factory in 1948 and carries the chassis number LR1. Huey is owned by Jaguar Land Rover and part of the Land Rover Heritage Collection. -HEILIE COMBRINCK

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