The SAS, the world's most famous special operations unit, made its name in the desert of North Africa, shooting up Axis airfields from specially modified Willys jeeps. Following the start of the El Alamein offensive in October 1942, the SAS used jeeps effectively in reconnoitring and ambushing the retreating Afrika Korps. After the conclusion of the North African campaign, the Willys underwent several small but significant changes, including the introduction of the .303 Browning machine gun.
Between June and October 1944, the SAS brigade operated deep inside Occupied France, harassing Germans reinforcements heading to Normandy, calling up air strikes on installations, and carrying out reconnaissance missions - all made possible with jeeps dropped by the RAF. Jeeps were also used in the push into Germany in the spring of 1945. Transported across the Rhine in 'Buffalo' amphibious landing craft, they formed part of the vanguard of the Allied advance, and their agility, speed and firepower proved crucial in crushing fanatical pockets of Nazi resistance.