There has been an incredible piece of engineering that have come useful to mankind. Automobiles are one of them, they have served beyond the purpose of transportation of humans, at least.
They have prevailed in the worst scenario and some are a great piece of history. Many have served in the military and protected or taken lives. Even in the Indian army, capable vehicles like Tata Safari or Mahindra ASLV have been involved in the war zones.
Amongst these popular Indian nameplates, there was a Japanese, long forgotten, capable machinery, known as Nissan Jonga that took the Indian soldiers through the toughest terrains. So let’s visit the chapters of the Nissan Jonga once again to remember the world war legend that entered the Indian army as a versatile vehicle.
The Nissan Jonga was built by the Indian army was actually based on Nissan’s global SUV platform known as Patrol. After the horror of world war, the Japanese automakers looked into the need for a robust and off-terrain vehicle that could come in handy to repair the torn nations.
With that, the first-gen of 4W60 model had arrived and Nissan named it Patrol. It was globally offered because of its capabilities, the Indian Army signed a contract with the brand to manufacturer them in India itself. They decided to name it Nissan Jonga wherein “Jonga” stood for “ Jabalpur Ordnance and Guncarriage Assembly”.
It was deputed as a general personal carrier, an ambulance, patrolling vehicle, and gun carrier in the Indian Army.
The Nissan Jonga was an extreme vehicle with undeniable machismo vibes. The big SUV represented some of the very popular, modern, and rugged SUVs. It was one of the popular workhorses along with the likes of Jeep, and that too globally. When Gypsy wasn’t even a thing, the Nissan Jonga was proudly transporting the troops through muds and boulders.
Under the hood was a powerful 4.0L 6-cylinder engine that churned out 112-hp and 330Nm of torque late back in the 1960s. The engine was mashed with a 3-speed manual gearbox and equipped with a 2-speed transfer case with a 4WD system. These specifications are what made the Indian army registers the rights to manufacture it in Jabalpur.
The Nissan Jonga was a legacy, a part of the Indian history that shared a memorable timeline with likes of Jeep’s prowess in the military and off-road vehicles. Recently, the name surfaced up and was a shiny highlight in many media sources. None other than the Captain Cool, MS Dhoni had bought a piece of restored Jonga.
It was the 1ton carrier with restored engine and aesthetics. This particular Nissan Jonga 1 Ton was finished in a bright shade of metallic Emerald Green and retains many of its retro outfit details.
The restored Jonga also equipped an electric winch and snorkel with rugged-looking 17-inch steel wheels. In the rear end, it fitted a horizontally mounted spare wheel with a tool kit and jerry to mimic a tough off-roader.
The touch of modernity was also added by the restorers known as SD Offroaders Nakodar, a restoration house based out of Jalandhar, Punjab.
The interiors were equipped with AC and power steering paired with feel-good features like leather-wrapped seats, a powered driver seat, a touchscreen infotainment system, and a sunroof, all sourced from the aftermarket
Like many iconic nameplates, the Nissan Jonga is also a piece of history and has various references in the history books and museums that denote the pioneer of automobiles in every segment.