A 1970’s guide to Land-Rover expeditions

In the 1970’s and early 1980’s, Land-Rover published a rather nice booklet named a guide to Land-Rover expeditions for customers and users brave enough to take their Series to the end of the world.

The 26 page booklet, packed with tips on how to prepare an expedition with your Land-Rover, showed a list of what spanners and wrenches should be in your Series toolkit and advised on which spare parts to take to countries where dealers were far and few between. These parts lists were named ‘Touring Packs’ and there was a pack for petrol and for diesel versions. The idea of a Touring Pack was first communicated in a Land-Rover Service News Letter in the early sixties, when dealers were approached by Series owners who took their workhorse abroad for holidays (more on that story later). The expedition guide also noted that ‘for more ambitious journeys Rover will provide a suggested list of spares’ on receipt of car data, destination and duration of the expedition.

There are at least three versions of the booklet showing artwork with an expedition clad Series 3 88 inch. Depending on publishing date, the booklets were printed in green, purple and orange (shown above). The orange version, publication no. R1068, was printed in August 1975 and had a circulation of 10.000 copies.

The 1980 publication of a guide to Land Rover (the hyphen between ‘Land’ and ‘Rover’ was deleted in 1978) expeditions shows different artwork from the earlier versions, but the content is roughly the same. The drawn Series 3 88 inch was replaced by an image of a styled setting with a map, camera, pocket knive and the hardback version of the Land Rover V8 owners manual. Oddly there is no mention of the Stage One model as a suitable expedition vehicle throughout the whole guide, e.g. fuel requirements were still only given for the 2.25 and 2.6 engine. The V8 had already replaced the 2.6 by the time Land Rover Limited (founded in 1978) published the guide in December 1980, but was likely regarded as too thirsty to drive from Bristol to Botswana. The publication number is LR/163 and only 2.000 copies were printed, making this version probably the rarest of the guides ‘to Land Rover expeditions’. If you are interested in vintage Land Rover automobilia, I have a spare copy of the 1980 guide for sale. Feel free to enquire.

Back cover of the 1981 expedition guide. Note the Unipart first aid kit

Items & images from my personal collection
Ronald Janus
De Autoboerderij

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