A team of crack British automotive engineers went out to the shed and put together a new vehicle that promises to be the envy of IKEA store managers the world over – a flat-pack truck. According to The Telegraph, two prototypes of a plucky little truck called The Ox were unveiled at an event at the Roundhouse, a performing arts and concert venue in London's Chalk Farm neighborhood on September 6. The event was organized by the Global Vehicle Trust, a charity founded by Sir Torquil Norman to address transportation-related issues in the developing world.

Designed by a distinguished team of British automotive engineers, including famed engineer and father of the McLaren F1 Gordon Murray, the Ox is a barebones transporter with a simple, three-position cab, a sturdy chassis, and a surprisingly spacious cargo area. Powered by a small diesel mill out of a Ford Transit, the Ox can carry just over two tons of cargo or up to thirteen passengers in its versatile covered cargo bay.

While it is only rear-wheel drive, the Ox was designed to tackle the kinds of rough terrain found in the developing world. It is also, as claimed by the design team, rugged, easy to maintain, and built to thrive in areas where parts and dealer support are a rarity.

The Ox's biggest selling point is that it can be packaged and shipped in a crate and assembled at its destination without a workshop. An entire truck can be assembled by three people in just under 12 hours. All the tools necessary for its construction, about forty different wrenches and a single Allen key, are included in the kit.

It remains to be seen whether the Ox can make inroads in places like rural Africa or Southeast Asia where second-hand Toyotas and Chinese vehicles currently rule. The designers have high hopes for it however, and with its ease of use and rugged, versatile design The Ox may very well find some success carting people and cargo throughout the world's developing rural areas.

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