- A recently auctioned Cuthbertson Land Rover

The Allure of Madness

Now I learned about the existence of these magnificent things through the recent sale of a concourse example:-

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My immediate reaction to the article was... Wow. I want one.

The Cuthbertson Land Rover

Now these do look like a truly awesome machine. They were brought into existence by a company called Cuthbertson who still exist today. Cuthbertson did quite a few of these for a niche market, but I'll be honest - I've never seen one on the road.

The Cuthbertson Land Rover

Now they definitely look an intimidating vehicle. In a collision, the part where you sit is actually beyond the impact zone of most other vehicles.

The Cuthbertson Cockpit

The high ride-height would give you a commanding view of the road ahead. Perfect for the school run! You couldn't be accused of rolling up in a 'Chelsea Tractor' in this!

Driving the Cuthbertson

Okay, I accept the seats and controls don't look too ergonomic. Long journeys might become a little bit tiresom.

The Cuthbertson Boot.

However LOOK at that boot! It's fantastic! Imaging popping out to the shops in your Cuthbertson, you could fit a £4000 shop in that... Or £8000 if you shop at Waitrose...

The Cuthbertson Petrol Engine

It even has a petrol engine, so you won't fall foul of the coming anti-diesel legislation.

I mean seriously? What's not to like? Look at the thing GO!

Have I sold it to you yet? Do you want one? I do! Even though I know buying one would be an utterly stupid decision. Probably about sensible and painful as stapling my scrotum to a table, and I understand that. But a little part of me STILL wants one.

It's that little voice in my head that also would like an Aston Martin Lagonda...

The old Aston Martin Lagonda

Or the Lamborghini LM002...

Lamborghini LM002

I'll be honest these are utterly ridiculous, near-useless, stupid, stupid cars... But that doesn't stop a little part of you wanting one does it?

It's a bit like the voice in your head that says if you won the Euromillions you'd go out and buy a Bugatti Chiron. You'd be mad to. And when you had your millions in the bank and weighed it all up, you'd probably buy a nice house and a Porsche 911. You COULD buy a Chiron, but then you'd have issues parking it, you'd be worried about people damaging it. It'd cost a fortune to run. You'd really probably only buy one to garage and bring out on special occasions. Much the same as you would with any of these things. They wouldn't be your daily drive.

Why is it we want these things? Is it just a human instinct to want to be different, to be noticed? Is it just curiosity? That we want to know for ourselves why you can't use these things as a daily drive, in a way which you can only truly understand by owning one?

I don't know. I can't answer that. I know the 10 foot height of the Cuthbertson would create certain issues. You'd need to carry steps around to get in and out. You couldn't drive into any area with less than 12 feet height clearance. It's also very wide. It's got a terrible turning circle. It'd be noisy and the ride would be jarring. Don't forget at it's heart it's a very old Land Rover which means you'd probably have to fill that massive boot with tools and spare parts if you want to make a serious journey. On the plus side getting underneath it wouldn't be a problem...

Oh, and did I mention it will only do 35 mph and is only REALLY spectacularly good on marshy, reasonably flat grassland. Okay, it's got a great wading depth but...

You get the picture. It's a strange machine in that it's awesome and awful in equal measure. There's no way in a million years you would voluntarily use this car for your daily commute and would probably enjoy it most when you were standing in your LARGE garage admiring it.

All that aside, despite the ridiculousness... I WANT ONE!

Martyn Stanley

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