I rarely get to see military vehicles at the car shows these days – most of the floor or park space is taken up with hot rods, race cars, or restored sedans. But every so often one of the military collectors drives one in.
They are never tanks. I do know that these exist in private hands as I have seen a Stuart in a private museum in South Australia and there is an extensive official collection at Puckapunyal, but no one ever clanks up to an car show in one. I wish this were possible – they would be the stars of the thing. Failing them, there are sometimes trucks, jeeps, or ambulances.
The first item is a Chevrolet quad seen at Whiteman park. I can only suppose it is authentically restored, though there seem to have been so many variants of all military vehicles that any one modification might be allowed. This one seems more of a military design than the later Federal or Studebakers but only because they used some of the metal-shaping techniques that were common in the civilian motor industry. I cannot see the firms in North America trying to sell something as angular as this design to commercial clients – as simple as it may be. It has brute rather than aesthetic appeal. Perhaps a boon to the amateur restorer who might be able to work metal in flat panels rather than beat it out into complex curves.
The second item may be a current vehicle used by the super-secret commandoninjarangerspetznazsealtigers who lurk in Swanbourne and never show their faces. It has all the bells and whistles and smoke grenade launchers and machine-gun mounts and beret dispensers that a self -respecting Stallone could want. But we are not allowed to say…Of course it might only be a tricked-up Daihatsu Sherpa but then if I told you THAT I’d have to kill you. I heard that in a movie and it sounded cool. Yo.