“The short wheelbase Wolfs outnumbered the long, as almost five times as many were manufactured”
50 km Route Nut circuit around Salisbury Plain’s dedicated transit routes for military vehicles and when lined up in their packets at Staging Area Emerald on the two days that we were allowed inside the massive restricted access razor wire-enclosed compound to photographically document the exercise.
The short wheelbase Wolfs quite naturally outnumbered the long, as almost five times as many were manufactured. Note, my maths were well adrift last year when working out model breakdown.
On ex-tractable 2016 (TR16) each Wolf 90 that I spotted is described on MOD lists as being a TUL 4x4 FFR High Spec Hard Top Land Rover with EEGR. The letters TUL stand for Truck Utility Light – the Wolf 110 is Truck Utility Medium – and FFR stands for Fitted For Radio.
The term High Spec is a shortening of Higher Specification and is used to differentiate between the Tdi-powered Wolf models with redesigned chassis plus strengthened rear tub and the earlier Ninety/90 and One-ten/110 models with naturally aspirated diesel engines, which are also designated TUL or TUM.
These two vehicles, which both entered service within a few days of each other in late March 1998 were just a couple of weeks short of their 18th birthday when I shot them on TR16. The first of the pair was actually the very first vehicle I pointed my camera at out on Route Nut, when it had covered a couple of kilometres at the head of a Royal Logistic Corps convoy of massive Oshkosh fuel tankers. 90 minutes later I would spot it again leading its convoy in to the final checkpoint after successfully concluding the circuit with no breakdowns or stoppages.
The second Wolf 90 was also heading up an RLC convoy, this time one consisting of MAN Support Vehicle and Leyland DAF This is LT18AA again – these Defender 90 Wolfs have been retrofitted with a FROPS cage Drops (Demountable Racking Off-load and Pick-up System) heavy logistics trucks. Like its sibling, it was towing a trailer and, being a command vehicle, it was fitted with radios and antennae though not with the full Bowman comms package. Both hard tops showed evidence of inverted chevron markings having been applied in the distant past, which suggests both are probably veterans of the opening phase of Operation Telic in Iraq in 2003.
Close inspection confirms that these TUL Wolfs have been retrofitted with FROPS (Front Roll- Over Protection System) internal roll bars to their cabs, just like the Project Remus Wolf 110 fleet, and a look inside confirmed that sound-deadening matting had been added to the cabs just like with their larger siblings.