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#WANT: Jeep Mighty FC Concept

Jaarlijks worden er gemakkelijk 100 nieuwe auto’s onthuld. Van kleine tot grote over rode en mallotige, maar zelden bekruipt mij het gevoel dat ik het showmodel meteen een ring moet omdoen – liefst direct op de stand. Anders bij één van de concepts die Jeep in mekaar knutselde voor de Easter Jeep Safari-week in Moab, Utah: het Mighty FC Concept dat veel weg heeft van de Russische GAZ-trekkers uit de Koude Oorlog. Nier, long, appendix of een lever – take your pick.

Het beste aan de Forward Control (naar de Jeep Truck die van 1956 tot 1965 van de band liep) is dat het zo’n McGyver-job is; de 4×4 pick-up is helemaal opgetrokken uit onderdelen die nog in de fabriek rondslingerden. En dat betekent – naast cartooneske assen, banden en de obligatoire winch – in de eerste plaats een Pentastar V6 die gemakkelijk 300pk uitbraakt. Combineer dat met het extreme cab-forward design, en je krijgt volgens Benjamin Preston van Jalopnik drifts all over the highway. Om het met de onsterfelijke woorden van gonzojournalist Dan Strong te zeggen: If that ain’t cool, then what is?

Minder cool is het feit dat de FC nooit ofte nimmer in productie zal gaan. De NHSTA, Amerika’s strenge evenknie van de Euro NCAP, heeft het niet zo op wagens waarbij de benen van de bestuurder over de vooras bengelen, en dat is maar begrijpelijk ook. Toch kon het Jeep er niet van weerhouden om een select clubje journo’s in de woestijn te laten spelen, met onderstaande getuigenis van Preston tot gevolg:

Driving the Mighty FC is absolutely bizarre. There’s something foreign about riding in front of the wheels that steer the vehicle, and with its high stance, going up and down steep inclines provides a heightened sense of adventure.

Ascending, all you see is sky, and descending, you get an intimate view of the downward slope. Its relatively short wheelbase makes the FC difficult to high-center, and there’s absolutely no front or rear overhang to worry about scraping as you go from one impossible pitch to the next.

The bottom line: if you have a load of RPGs that absolutely must be delivered over brutal terrain in a timely manner, the Mighty FC isn’t a bad choice of conveyance. Just don’t expect to see it in production anytime soon, though.

As an offroad journalist schralped a huge rock pile in the animal-like machine Monday, someone in the crowd of onlookers bellowed, “Americaaaa, f&$# yeah!”

[Photos & Quotes: Jalopnik.com]

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3 Responses

  1. Martijn (via Facebook) says:

  2. bruno. says:

    Serieus cool apparaat. Een mooie reïncarnatie van wat Land Rover een halve eeuw geleden op basis van de Series II bouwde, ook Forward Control genoemd.

    Die staan her en der nog te koop …

  3. Ken Divjak says:

    Interessant!

    History

    The vehicle was primarily produced to meet the Army’s requirement for a gun tractor, and was designed to tow a field gun (the L118 Light Gun) with a ton of ammunition and other equipment in the rear load space, giving it the alternative name of the Land Rover One Tonne. The vehicle was designed to be easily transported by air; the positioning of the 3.5 litre Rover V8 engine beneath and to the rear of the cab eliminates the bonnet at the front, making the vehicle more or less cuboid thus reducing unused space in transport aircraft.

    The official name of 101 Forward Control is derived from the vehicle’s 101-inch (2,565 mm) wheelbase, and the position of the driver, above and slightly in front of the front wheels which used a fairly large 9.00 inch × 16 inch tyre. To cope with the extra height above the ground, the wheels feature an unusual feature for a Land Rover (but used for many years on the much older and similar Mercedes Unimog S404); a flange around the centre of the wheel has an embossed tread pattern forming a step for the crew when entering the cab, otherwise named a wheel-step.

    Development of the 101FC started in 1967, with a design team led by Norman Busby (14 October 1931 – 30 June 2005). Production took place between 1972 and 1978. In common practice of the armed forces, many vehicles were not used for some years and it is not unheard of for military vehicle enthusiasts to pick up these vehicles after only a few thousand miles service. All the vehicles produced at the Land Rover factory at Lode Lane, Solihull were soft top (“rag top”) General Service (GS) gun tractors, although later on many were rebuilt with hard-top ambulance bodies and as radio communication trucks. A rare variant is the electronic warfare Vampire body. It is thought that only 21 of these were produced and less than half of these survive today with one being rumoured to have been destroyed in the Buncefield Oil Terminal Fire. [Source: Wikipedia]

    De RAF gebruikte ze zelfs om Rapier-raketten op te monteren…!

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