Look At This Amazing Folding Jeep

A while back a reader named Evan sent me a box full of mid-century Popular Mechanics magazines, and it's been a treasure trove of great stuff. Like this article I stumbled on to the other day about a British jeep that folds up into something that looks like a credenza.

Look At This Amazing Folding Jeep

The article itself didn't mention exactly who made the thing, but a little bit of digging through piles of microfiche revealed the answer: Harrier, but not the Hawker-Siddley Harrier jump jet, another smaller aircraft company. Thanks to commenters for pointing out this oversight.

Look At This Amazing Folding Jeep

Harrier only built four of these collapsable jeeps in 1957, as test vehicles to develop something the RAF could use to parachute down with its airborne forces. The jeep was powered by a 650cc twin-cylinder engine from a motorbike that made a respectable 30 HP and could carry the 700lb vehicle to 60 MPH. That's pretty impressive.

Look At This Amazing Folding Jeep

More impressive is the fact that this thing could be unfolded and deployed in about a minute — holy crap — and could carry a payload of around 500 lbs.

The box itself was10'4" x 1'9" x 3'0", and the crew of four guys that could ride in it are said to be enough to carry it around. Also, it was designed by someone named "J. Dolphin," which is a pretty fantastic name, too.

If anyone knows if any of these survived, I'd love to find out who has it and beg them for video of it an action.