Cohort Pic(k) Of The Day: 1983 Land Rover Santana Ligero – How Do You Say 4×4 In Spanish?

Here’s another unusual find from Corey Behrens’ Cohort feed. It’s the Ligero (lightweight in Spanish), Spain’s version of the classic Land Rover.

The Ligero’s origin dates to Spain’s Franco days, when foreign enterprises where encouraged to invest in Spain’s industry to avoid heavy tariffs. Early on, Santana Motors arranged with Rover to assemble the Series II from knock down kits. Production started in 1958, with ever increasing contents of Spanish sourced materials added as time went by. While most units went to military service, a line for civilian use was released in 1980; the Ligero.

There are quite a few ‘Spanish touches’ on the Ligero, as it’s noticeable in the photos. All Ligeros came with a canvas covering (a fiberglass top was optional), with headlights and other bits coming from SEATs (mostly the 127). Power was supplied by a 2.2L gas or diesel engine, the latter with an optional turbo version. Other mods included disc brakes, coil springs and anatomical seats. When were those goodies added? Hard to tell; online information is fairly scant on these, even in Spanish sources.

A grand total of 17,150 Land Rover-based Santana vehicles were built, though there isn’t a breakdown on how many were Ligeros. I would assume the figure to be rather low; though it seems just the ride for those who like their All-terrain vehicles rustic and in ‘brutalist’ guise.