M201 - roll cage / arceau de sÚcuritÚ
Probably the final accessory to be developed for the M201 was the 'arceau de sÚcuritÚ' fitted to some but not all jeeps that remained in service during the 1990s.
a row of jeeps fitted with the arceau de sÚcuritÚ at
the 'final' sale of M201s at Bordeaux in April 2003
The sturdy tubular steel frame bolted directly onto the body tub and was supplied in an almost gloss finish army green. It also provided mountings for seat belts which one must assume the driver and passenger were obliged to wear. The effectiveness of the frame in protecting the personnel can be judged from the photos below sent to me by Gustavo Cappa Bava.
Gustavo explained that the jeep had been the second M201 that he had owned before selling it to a friend. His friend had left it outside his garage having forgotten to apply the hand brake. The jeep took off on its own and ended up rolling down a mountain side.
Whilst the steering column remained intact, indicating some degree of protection afforded to the driver when present, catastrophic damage to the tub on which the frame was mounted can be clearly seen above. Surprisingly the chassis remained straight and the jeep is in the process of being rebuilt.
Thanks again to Gustavo for these remarkable photos.