Lighting system upgrade (from 1985)
Apart from upgrading to 24 volt electric's, the lighting system of an M201 remained largely unchanged from the original WW2 specification. During the 1970s direction indicators were added to jeeps in regular service but it was inevitable that a point would come where rather more would be needed to comply with road traffic regulations in France. Technical Bulletin No. 1487 (Ref. MAT 1001 A-2-2) dated 28 / 10 /1985 introduced a complete upgrade that was to be fitted initially to some 2000 jeeps. The conversion added new switches and an indicator to the dashboard, included a hazard warning function and required modifications to be made to the rear panel to accept the rear lamp cluster and NATO trailer socket. To make room for all of this the original rear reflector also had to go, being replaced with a smaller simple plastic one in a higher position.
Whilst typically ingenious, the conversion can hardly be described as beautiful and radically altered the traditional appearance of the rear end of the M201. A kit was also devised to fit the same light cluster to WW2 trailers that were still in regular use.
The extract below is taken from bulletin 1487 and shows two M201s used in the development and testing of the kit. Note also the Hotchkiss canvas with rear window. Thanks to JLM for sending me a copy of this document.