Project Description

Article written by Les Lawrence regarding the first and last 107 Station Wagons produced


Although not officially launched until June ’56 the first Station wagons rolled of the line in November 1955. 873600001 was the very first on the 9th and was dispatched 9 days latter to Colonel LeBlanc in Boulogne, France.

LeBlanc was in his sixties by the time he took delivery of this vehicle, but was hooked on adventure, he had flown with the Royal Flying Corps in WW1 and spent the second world war with the Sudan Defence Force. After the war he ran various projects in the Middle East and started using Land Rovers in 1949. In 1951 Rover offered him a job as a travelling salesman, demonstrating the Land Rover in remote areas of Africa and the Middle East.

He accepted, but turned down the salary and expenses in favour of 0.5% commission on all future Middle Eastern sales. The 107 obviously found favour with him as he was issued with another in 1958.

The first home market model was finished on 14th December and dispatched to Henley’s of London on the 29th, showing that Rover still held the export market as a priority.

As we know, the 107 was the last Series One to be produced by the factory – so who owns the very last?

It was produced on the 28th November 1958, Serial number 134801618 and dispatched to Shell Petroleum in Turkey.

The last RHD export model was 132801541, finished on the 25th November and sent to Cape Town and the last home market was 131800120 which went to Oxford. This vehicle was in the Dunsfold collection but was sold around 2002 and went to the USA.

NB:

Odd Chassis Numbers
Whilst going through the dispatch books a while ago at Gaydon I came across an entry for two Station Wagons 132800363/64. These had been painted Caterpillar Yellow for John Brown Ltd and dispatched to Turkey.

However before dispatch they were converted to left hand drive by service department at Solihull and given new chassis numbers 13402001/2. I wonder how many more odd chassis numbers are out there that people may have put down to an error, but in reality may have some history behind them.