ORW 360 was the 13th Series I Land Rover with a 107in wheelbase to roll out of Solihull, and boasts a fascinating history starting with a five year stint under the ownership of Harry Ferguson Ltd.
According to folklore, Mr Ferguson’s time spent behind the wheel would inspire his later 4x4 tractor developments.
David Johnson, a former employee and personal friend of Harry Ferguson, recalls Ferguson talking about the new 107in, and how it would be more suitable for towing than the existing wheelbase (the 107in was launched at the same time the original’s 80in wheelbase was stretched to 86in). In fact he wonders if Ferguson’s towing requirements may have been instrumental in Land Rover developing the longer 107in wheelbase.
It wasn’t long before Ferguson designed his own ‘turntable’ trailer for transporting farm machinery behind the Series I. Johnson and Ferguson would later take the Land Rover to Ireland for a week, trailer in tow, to perform demonstrations together at dealerships.
In 1958 the 107in was bought by Ferguson’s chief demonstrator for his brother to use at a farm near Coventry, where it lived until 2002. It was finally restored in 2006 by Fred and John Goldup.
The engine sadly isn’t original but the chassis number 47200013 matches the original buff logbook (which accompanies the vehicle) and the Land Rover’s history has been verified by the British Motor Heritage Trust.
Also included in the sale are invoices documenting the Land Rover’s restoration, together with a pile of old MoTs.
The Series I will be auctioned on November 14 by Cheffins and Clarke & Simpson at Camp Farm, Roundham, Norfolk. More information can be found on the Cheffins website.