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Willys-Overland was the first to produce consumer-based Jeep models after WWII. The Jeep model was based on the military vehicles used in WWII produced by Willys-Overland. After the war ended Willys-Overland won the full rights to use the 'Jeep' name and began production on the Civilian Jeep series, known as the 'CJ' models for short.
Production of Willys Jeeps
Production for consumer based models started in 1944 with the introduction of the civilian-based Jeep model prototype simply dubbed as the CJ-2. The CJ-2 consisted of a 4x4 drivetrain system, powered by their infamous L134 engine, nicked named the 'Go Devil' engine. The engine had a power output of 60 HP at 105 TQ. The CJ-2 lead towards a full-scale production model that was released in 1945. Thus the CJ-2A, was produced, and production steadily increased with over 210 000 units being produced. Willys Jeeps continued to prosper and the focus drifted from farming and industrial type applications to the common commuter. The final Jeep to be produced directly by Willys-Overland was the CJ-3B. The CJ-3B was powered by Willys an updated engine, and shortly afterwards Willys Jeep was sold to Kaiser Motor Co.
Willys Jeep Models
The CJ-2 was the first offered model released in 1945, originally sold for under R14 000. It was powered the 2,2 litre 'Go Devil engine. Also featured larger headlights and flushed mounted seven slot grill. It was the first consumer based model and was offered primarily towards industrial workers. The next Jeeps to be introduced were the CJ-3A in 1949 and CJ-3B in 1953. Each newer model presented updates in styling and the CJ-3B received an updated engine dubbed as the 'Hurricane'. The CJ-3A was sold for under R14 000 as well and the CJ-3B was sold for under R22 000.
Used Willys Jeeps
The values of Willys Jeeps have risen over the years and many with prices ranging from R85 000 to R130 000 depending on how well it is restored. Used Willys Jeeps are available around the globe having been distributed to South Africa, United Kingdom and other countries as well. Secondhand Willys Jeeps can be found locally and are considered a collectors favourite.
Willys-Overland created the first consumer based Jeep bringing a new innovation to the auto market. As such, avid consumers and enthusiasts continue to stand by the quality of Willys Jeeps.