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History of Jeep

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Jeep CJ-3A: 1949-53
Introduced in 1948, the CJ-3A was very similar to the previous model, but featured a one-piece windscreen and a more robust rear axle, and retained the original L-head four-cylinder engine.

Jeep CJ-3B: 1953-68
The CJ Model was updated in 1953, becoming the CJ-3B. It had a taller front grille and hood than its military predecessor in order to accommodate the new Hurricane F-Head four-cylinder engine. The CJ-3B remained in production until 1968 and a total of 155,494 were manufactured in the U.S. In 1953, Willys-Overland was sold to Henry J. Kaiser for $60 million. The Kaiser Company began an extensive research and development program that would broaden the Jeep product range.

Jeep CJ-5: 1955-83
In 1955, Kaiser introduced the CJ-5, based on the 1951 Korean War M-38A1, with its rounded front-fender design. It was slightly larger than the CJ-3B, as it featured an increased wheelbase and overall length. Improvements in engines, axles, transmissions and seating comfort made the CJ-5 an ideal vehicle for the public’s growing interest in off-road vehicles. The CJ-5 featured softer styling lines, including rounded body contours. With an 81-inch wheelbase, more than 600,000 CJ-5s were produced over 30 years.

Jeep CJ-6: 1956-75
A long-wheelbase (20 inches longer than the CJ-5) model was introduced and was known as CJ-6. Apart from a longer wheelbase, the CJ-6 was almost identical to the CJ-5, but with more cargo space. Jeep also introduced a forward-control cab-over-engine variation to the CJ line in 1956. AMC equipped both the CJ-5 and CJ-6 with heavier axles, bigger brakes and a wider track. In 1965, a new “Dauntless” V-6 engine was introduced as an option on both the 81-inch wheelbase CJ-5 and 101-inch wheelbase CJ-6. The 155-horsepower engine almost doubled the horsepower of the standard four-cylinder engine. It was the first time a Jeep CJ could be equipped with a V-6. Beginning in 1973, all Jeep CJs came equipped with AMC-built 304- or 360-cubic-inch V-8 engines.

Jeep Pickup: 1947-65
A 118-inch wheelbase pickup that realized few product changes. It was Willys-Overland’s first attempt to diversify the Jeep brand from the CJ.

(Jeep) Willys Wagon: 1946-65
A 104.5-inch wheelbase wagon that was long an enthusiast favorite. Four-wheel drive was introduced in 1949.

Jeep Wagoneer/Grand Wagoneer/Cherokee (SJ): 1963-91
In 1962, Jeep introduced the first automatic transmission in a four-wheel-drive vehicle with the Wagoneer line (a predecessor to the Jeep Cherokee). The 1963 Jeep Wagoneer was also the first four-wheel-drive vehicle with an independent front suspension option. Quadra-Trac®, the first automatic full-time four-wheel-drive system, was introduced in 1973 and available in full-size Jeep trucks and wagons, and later in the CJ-7.

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