Objects of irrational desire: the Ural 375 6x6 | Top Gear
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Tuesday 5th December

Objects of irrational desire: the Ural 375 6x6

An ex-military workhorse that should be your next campervan. Here's why

Published: 21 Jan 2016

Yes, this is probably overkill for a camper conversion. But you’d be able to survive like Bear Grylls if you kitted this out properly.

For sale on a well-known auction site, this Ural 375 6x6 comes with a tiny 5,198km on the clock, or 3,330 miles in English. Although with this being ex-military, those miles may have been rather mechanically unsympathetic…

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Under the bonnet is a 6.9-litre ZIL V8 with an unstressed-to-the-point-of-asthmatic 180bhp and a five-speed plus two-step gearbox. It's pushing solid axles with leaf springs, and it's all brought to a halt with drum brakes.

Yep, that’s drum brakes. Mind you, the brakes don’t need to be expensive carbon-ceramics because with the mechanical drag of the 6x6 system and a top speed of only 47mph, it probably doesn’t need much extra stopping. We imagine aerodynamics do their bit too.

It weighs 8,400kg, and manages about 5mpg on a decent run, so you might need a decent fuel tank, or a lorry fuel account. Did we mention it was petrol, too?

At the moment it only has three seats in the cab, but given a bit of time and imagination, you could convert this into one hell of a wilderness adventure-mobile. Airstream interior with Army exterior, perhaps?

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Mechanically simple, tough as old boots and with enough space to make a luxurious and practical little Apocalypse Camper: what could possibly go wrong? Apart from needing to park it, of course, or transport it from Poland where it currently resides…

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