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1974 101” Forward Control Trans-Sahara Expedition vehicle
Chassis number: 95600024A
Registration number: TEC 101 / 76 FL 66
Engine type: 3.5 V8 Petrol
Gearbox type: 4 Speed manual
This 101” Forward Control is one of four pre-production vehicles delivered to RAF Uxbridge in November 1974. They were destined to be used for the Joint Services Expedition in 1975, also known as the Trans-Sahara Expedition. The Expedition was led by explorer Squadron Leader Tom Sheppard MBE and crossed Africa from the west coast to the east.
According to James Taylor, the four vehicles were the only 101s built in 1974 and the first to be built on the dedicated assembly line. They carried chassis numbers 95600021A to 95600024A and ours is the last of these, and is affectionately known as ‘Tail End Charlie’ because on the Expedition it brought up the rear of the convoy. Three, including ours, were fitted with powered trailer drive and towed Rubery Owen trailers on the Expedition.
This very special vehicle was most generously donated to the Dunsfold Collection by long-term owner David Olliver in 2016. It is fully restored and carries its Trans-Sahara Expedition livery. It is still equipped with its powered trailer.
We would like to extend our grateful thanks also to Tom Sheppard, for kindly allowing us to reproduce some of his superb photographs from the expedition.