1944 Daimler Scout Car 818 FUF

This particular Daimler Scout Car was built in 1944 towards the end of production, and is believed to have seen action in the closing stages of the European war. The Daimler Scout Car went into service in 1940 and was made until 1944. Over 6,600 of this type were manufactured. The original Alvis version, which was not selected for production by the War Office, was called the ‘Dingo’ and sometimes early Daimler Scout Cars are referred to as ‘Dingos’.

The contract for the Scout Car was awarded by the War Office to Daimler in May 1939. The intention was to produce a lightly armoured vehicle which would be capable of negotiating rough terrain at relatively high speeds, and being able also to retreat at speed if necessary. The unusual and very advanced design came from a team of engineers led by Sid Shellard.

The deep punt-type chassis and the body were armoured for protection. The wheelbase was 6ft 6in, just less than 2 metres, less than a Mini. The engine was a 2.5-litre six-cylinder unit, as originally found in the DB18 car, and was mounted in the rear of the vehicle, driving forwards through a fluid flywheel to a traditional Daimler pre-selective epicyclic gearbox, although with five forward speeds. The gearbox was connected up to a central differential and transfer gearbox with a complex gear train, from where drive was transmitted to all four wheels via separate prop shafts, which incorporated constant velocity joints. Reverse gear was selected via the transfer box and the car could be driven backwards in all five gears. 

Suspension was fully independent with variable rate double coil springs, giving 8in spring travel, and wishbones front and rear. The overall weight was around 3 tons and with only 55 bhp, a top speed on the road of 50 mph was quite creditable. Once all the mechanical components had been fitted, there was little room for the driver and the co-driver who was navigator, observer, gunner and radio operator at the same time.

A developed version of the basic design was built from 1952 under the Ferret name.

Registration Mark: 818 FUF

Chassis Number: S-6301

Owner: The Jaguar Daimler Heritage Trust

Inventory Number: 147/D.45