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Willys MB Jeep . The classic World War Two Jeep, still the best 4x4xfar... . Made between 1941-5, during which time Willys and Ford between them produced more than 600,000 of these brilliant vehicles. This model is 22 studs wide and features (deep breath), selectable four wheel drive, a four speed gearbox, a dual-range transfer case, a four cylinder engine, live axle suspension all round and working steering. It comes fully equipped for action: Pick, shovel, grab handles, jerry can, spare wheel, mirror, bonnet clamps, tow hook, hood rail - it's all here. That all-important generous ground clearance. And an exhaust - side pipe - sporty! The luxuriously appointed interior... wait, what ? Those levers between the seats all have a purpose, controlling the various transmission features. Just in case the wind in your hair isn't enough, how about some flies in your teeth...? In the pic below, it's in low-range 4th gear, and 4wd is selected. Here, it's in high-range 1st, rear drive only. The 2.2 litre I-4 engine, called the 'Go Devil', apparently... Plenty of room in the arches for generous suspension travel... ... see ? I wouldn't lie to you... That geartastic underside. The gearbox is in the centre, the selector for 4 wheel drive runs alongside it (above in this picture) and the transfer case is at the rear. The front live axle, located by four leading links and sprung by coils (should be leaf springs...), with steering built in. An effective and robust solution, and reasonably compact - there's room for plenty of travel and the engine above it. Rear axle - trailing links and coil springs - it might even survive a run down Senator Chinchilla's driveway... You might be expecting a pic of 'everything open', but there's little point with this - I suppose I can bang the 'screen and bonnet together... these original jeeps didn't even have a tailgate, so neither does the model. Still, I can make it up with greebles... The red model is an oldie; I made it using only my childhood collection shortly after my dark ages; it has most of the features of the new one, and all with entirely pre-1982 pieces! Looks a little basic, though...

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