Oxford Diecast Royal Military Police Berlin 1954 Austin Champ
Product Code: 76AC003
The Austin Champ was the British Army’s answer to the famous US Army’s Willys MB Jeep, also already immortalised in our 1:76 scale Military series The Austin Motor Company manufactured the Champ between 1951 and 1956 as both a military vehicle and subsequently made for civilian use as well.
Our replica represents the military version which had the official title Truck ¼ ton, CT, 4x4, Cargo & FTW, Austin Mk I or Truck ¼ ton. The civilian version was named simply Champ, by which the vehicle was to become unofficially known. Developed by the Nuffield organisation in the late 1940s, the suspension was designed by Sir Alec Issigonis who later became most famous for his design of the Morris Minor and the Mini.
The Champ was an open four seater 4 x 4 vehicle which featured a Rolls-Royce 26.36cc 80 hp (60kw) 14 petrol engine. A light PVC coated hood, hinged doors and a set of weather screens were also available for use in deployments less weather-friendly. Austin were commissioned to build 15,000 at their Longbridge plant although in the end, the vehicle proved so expensive to produce that the last 4000 were never made. Some were fitted out with additional equipment for deployment as field ambulances, telephone line-laying or even carrying armour and a .303 in Vickers Machine gun or .303 Bren gun. Most, however, served as cargo or personnel carriers and could be fitted with radios. Sadly, the Austin was out-classed by rival Land Rover on economic, performance and driver preference grounds.
Our Austin Champ makes its third appearance as deployed in Berlin with the RMP in 1954-5, less than a decade into the Cold War between Russia and the Western Allies. Berlin was a divided city having been carved up into areas under Russian control and the remainder patrolled and regulated by the Western Allies. Dressed completely in black, our open topped Austin Champ has the beige hood rolled down across the back, grey seating and an otherwise black interior, including the instrument panel. It is registered 47 BE 29 with right hand drive and features a Union Flag on the front nearside bumper below a Berlin badge printed red and black on a white ground .The offside front bumper has a number 4 black on yellow bridge plate. The Military Police identity is printed in red on a white ground on the front of the bonnet and again to the left of the spare wheel to the rear.
It would be 1961 before the Berlin Wall was constructed making a permanent barrier between East and West Berlin until 1989. In between times, the Royal Military Police would have played a key role alongside the serving British Army regiments in the German city.
1:76 Scale Model
Become a member and save on Oxford Vehicles Join Today