• Very sold rust-free steel body
• Low mileage
• Full weather gear
Built by Minerva for use by the Belgian army these Series 1 Land Rovers were put together from official parts under license from Rover.
“Knocked Down kits” were supplied by the British firm that included the chassis, engine, axle, transmission and various other parts to Minerva in Antwerp who would then build a bespoke steel body to on top.
This particular car (chassis number 36634455) has been in the Netherlands since 2019. It is an ex-Belgium Army model that was released from service in the '90s. With a solid steel body and reliable 2.0-litre Land Rover engine it is a running and driving example.
The brakes need an overhaul due to sticking issues but the gearbox is good and it comes with full weather gear.
There appears to be little in the way of paperwork with just a reprinted owners manual and Dutch vehicle registration card to speak of.
Built for utilitarian military use the interior is sparse at best but what there is is complete and functioning. The front seat covers are wearing well and carry no damage and the driver's side is removable to reveal the fuel tank.
The paint is peeling in places but there is no rust and all of the switchgear and gauges are present and correct. The steering wheel does have some wear and tear but it does not affect its operation in any way.
The bodywork does carry some patina but it's all in keeping with the overall, rugged aesthetic of this particular Land Rover and as mentioned there is no rust, which is surprising for these steel-bodied Minerva cars.
The windscreen is intact and the spare wheel is present, attached to the rear of the vehicle. As stated the car comes with full weather gear which appears to be in good condition. The underside of the car also looks clean and tidy.
The original engine and gearbox run well but the brakes do suffer from some sticking problems and would require an overhaul. The leaf spring suspension looks to be in good shape and the car is fitted with a modern battery with healthy looking terminals.
The car has seen light use as evidenced by the mileage which equates to less stressed components - it seems to be an honest, working example of an early '50s Series 1.
Although not as sought after as genuine, British-built Land Rovers the Minerva Series 1s are generally considered to be more sturdy thanks in part to their steel bodies.
The downside of that is that they don't last as long due to rust but happily that isn't the case with this particular 1952 example and with just a little fettling to the braking system this rugged off-roader could be put to use straight away.
It would make a fine addition to any collection, whether military based or not and with such low mileage it's definitely worth a bid.
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