The Ferret Scout was a car developed in the 1940s by the British Military. They were produced in the early 1950s and were use in the armed services in 1952. A few years later, they were also used in Australia.
The Ferret Scot Series: Mark1 and Mark2
A number of prototypes for the Ferret Scout went into development in the 1950s. The primary ones were the Mark1, which did not have a turret and could hold a three man crew and the Mark 2, which included a turret and carried a crew of two (a driver and a commander only).
Features and use of the Ferret Scout
The Ferret Scot was classified as a light armored vehicle, and was designed mainly reconnaissance work. They were fast and agile and extremely well suited to the task. They were designed by Daimler and loosely based on the World War II Daimler Dingo and the Canadian Ford Lynx but was made with a much larger a larger fighting section than the Daimler and Lynx. They were small enough to be suited for missions in urban areas but sturdy enough to be off road vehicles.
The vehicle was outfitted with armor which was increased with each model. It was powered by a Roll Royce B60 motor that gave it approximately 29 break horse power per ton. The Ferret Scout weighed 3.6 tons. This increased to just over 4 tons when weaponry was added. It was 12 feet long, 6.2 feet high, just over 6 feet wide with a ground clearance of 1 foot. It had a top speed of 50 mph. It was constructed from a welded steel body (which made it very noisy) and had run flat tires that could continue to be driven if punctured or otherwise damaged in the field.
Weapons and Communication
Ferret Scouts were outfitted with .30 cal. Browning Machine guns, as well as a local S.M.G. Other options for weapons would usually be the 9 mm Owen Machine Carbine, or the 9 mm Austen. Weapons could be stored in a compartment beside the driver on the right. It was located just above the lever used to change gears. A .303″ Bren, Light Machine Gun, could also be carried. This would be stored by the left side door on the driver’s side.
Models that incorporated the turret could also carry one machine gun. Three grenade launchers could also be placed on each side of the hull.
The Vehicle came equipped with the C42 and B47 series of radios. These could be used as intercoms which was necessary for clear communication in a loud vehicle. The radios could also be used as a re-broadcast centre, so that a portable radio carried by a troop could be re-broadcasted by the Ferret Scouts longer range and more powerful 24 volt radio. It also worked for regular communication between troops.
The Ferret Scot was used by the Australian Arm up until the late 1960s. They were sold to the public through auction in the early 70s. It has been in service in over thirty six countries many of which still use it today. They are popular collector’s items and costs between $20,000 – $60,000 depending on condition.