Tales of a 3.9 litre Tdi Bushie Ute

Bushie Ute

“Everything should be as simple as possible, but not simpler.” – Albert Einstein
“Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
“There are many roads to ancient Rome and everybody will have to find his own.”

This is the story of “Bushie Ute”, a 1987 Land Rover 120 ute that has had the body replaced by a Bush Ranger kit purchased from John Davis.

Bushie Ute was originally a four door Bush Ranger, but needs changed so it was converted into a ute to provide capacity to carry all of my needs for extended trips to remote areas. While many would not consider a Bush Ranger for four-wheel drive touring, it should do what I want.

The axles from the Land Rover 120 were replaced with units from a Toyota Landcruiser HZJ105R. The main weakness of Landcruiser 105 series axles was cured by fitting a Nissan H233B, high pinion differential and stronger constant velocity joints in the front axle. Both front and rear differentials have ARB air lockers.



The original aluminium tray from the Land Rover 120 has been shortened, to reduce the rear overhang, and narrowed, for better clearance on tight tracks. A new subframe made to support the tray, is based upon the subframe under the load area on Land Rover XD (extra duty) chassis (see photographs below).

A rear winch, auxiliary fuel tank, water tank, batteries (Bushie Ute has a 24 volt electrical system), recovery gear, etc. are located underneath the tray.



The seats in the 120 donor were in poor condition and were replaced by ARB Paratus “Pararally” seats (Paratus seats are now Paradrive), using the standard Land Rover seat slides. I suffer from back pain, but when I had these seats in another vehicle they were very comfortable when driving long distances. The seats are protected by canvas seat covers from Dingo Seat Covers at Tolga on the Atherton Tableland, who make the best seat covers.