The two biggest news stories of early 2014 have been the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, and the Russian invasion of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula. Both of these stories are happening right across the Black Sea from the northern coast of Turkey. As if Turkey didn't already have enough to be nervous about, with Syria sitting on its southern border.
Both the Tuzla Jeep plant near Istanbul, and the city of Amasya where these photos were taken, are near the Black Sea coast.
Serhat Güvenç watched an induction ceremony for new conscripts of the Turkish Army's 12th Infantry Training Brigade in Amasya, on 28 February 2014. He took some new photos of an interesting Tuzla-built Jeep model, which we have seen before in Turkish Jeeps in Army Service.
This parade truck has a YJ Wrangler-style front end, with the exception of the parking lights being in the bumper rather than the grille panel, and the angular outer edge of the front fenders.
The Commanding Officer takes the salute in the PA-equipped Jeep. A quick look at the bodywork near the "Turbo Diesel" plate and "1013 TUZLA" stamping on the cowl (70K JPEG) suggests the body is handmade. Since the military's takeover of the Tuzla plant in 1972, it has been officially known as the "1013 Military Equipment Main Repair Factory."
Prior to building the long-wheelbase YJ's, Tuzla produced a number of Jeep Gladiator-based personnel carriers for the Turkish Army. This one was photographed in Istanbul in 1966 by Wolfgang Sievers. (Photo from the Wolfgang Sievers photographic archive at the National Library of Australia.) With rear fender extensions, this appears to be the dual-rear-wheels version of the truck.
Historic Military Vehicles Directory by the late Bart Vanderveen includes this photo of the Turkish Gladiator, and mentions the existence of the 1.5-ton DRW version. The bodywork was apparently designed by Kaiser to be simpler to produce overseas than the standard Gladiator sheet metal. (But American-built Gladiators were also exported to Turkey by Kaiser Jeep International Corp. in the 1960s.)
Tuzla also built other long-wheelbase Jeeps. This pickup version has elements of both the CJ-6 and CJ-8, and was photographed by Serhat Güvenç on a previous trip to the Black Sea region of northern Turkey, in 2012.
A little closer to a standard early CJ-6 is this example spotted by Serhat. The deluxe camper hardtop (with curtains) accomodates the soft doors.
Probably the most unusual Jeep-related truck I've seen from Tuzla, is this mini hydraulic dump truck, advertised on an online used vehicle site as a Tuzla product with a BMC (British Motor Corporation) diesel engine.
See also a photo of the dashboard (70K JPEG).
It's not completely clear how much, if any, of this truck is original. (The Mack bulldog on the hood certainly isn't.)
I don't have a lot of information about the output from Tuzla since the CJ-3B days -- let's hope we can gather more. Meanwhile, it's back to the news from the other side of the Black Sea...
Thanks to Serhat Güvenç for sending his photos. -- Derek Redmond
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