Share Download Print Jeep® Historical Vehicle Summary January 6, 2016 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - 1941-1945 Willys-Overland MB: The Willys Quad and the MA were early prototypes that led to the production of the Overland MB. However, the Army, and the world, came to know it as the Jeep®. Willys-Overland would build more than 368,000 vehicles, and under license, Ford Motor Company built some 277,000, for the U.S. Army. The rugged, reliable olive-drab vehicle would forever be known for helping win a world war. Willys trademarked the “Jeep” name after the war and planned to turn the vehicle into an off-road utility vehicle for the farm – the civilian Universal Jeep. One of Willys' slogans at the time was, “The Sun Never Sets on the Mighty Jeep,” and the company set about making sure the world recognized Willys as the creator of the vehicle. 1945-1949 Jeep CJ-2A: The first civilian Jeep vehicle, the CJ-2A, was produced in 1945. It came with a tailgate, side-mounted spare tire, larger headlights, an external fuel cap and many more items that its military predecessors did not include. Several CJ-2A features, such as a 134-cubic-inch I-4 engine, a T-90A transmission, Spicer 18 transfer case and a full-floating Dana 25 front and Dana 23-2 rear axle, were found on numerous Jeep vehicles in future years. The CJ-2A was produced for four years. 1946-1965 (Jeep) Willys Wagon: When the Jeep station wagon appeared in 1946 it was the first all-steel bodied station wagon sold as a non-commercial vehicle. The post-war boom made contracting with automotive stamping suppliers difficult for low volume producers like Willys-Overland. Company president Charles Sorenson, therefore, gave young Brooks Stevens the task of designing a station wagon body that could be made by suppliers who supplied refrigerator stampings. The stamping size, amount of curvature and the depth were thereby limited. Stevens’ resulting design, featuring shallow panel sections that suggested wood, stayed in production until 1962. Only available with two-wheel drive in 1946, four-wheel drive was added in 1949. 1955-1983 Jeep CJ-5: In 1955, Kaiser introduced the CJ-5, based on the 1951 Korean War M-38A1, with its rounded front-fender design. 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 (205 cm) wheelbase, more than 600,000 CJ-5s were produced over 30 years. 1963-1983 Jeep Wagoneer: The 1963 Jeep Wagoneer was the first four-wheel-drive vehicle mated with an automatic transmission, pioneering the first modern SUV. An independent front suspension was optional. Quadra-Trac®, the first automatic full-time four-wheel-drive system, was introduced in 1973 and available in full-size Jeep trucks and wagons. 1974-1983 Jeep Cherokee SJ: The two-door Cherokee was aimed at a younger demographic than the Wagoneer and was built for the growing recreational vehicle market. It featured a Gladiator grill and had several tape stripe and bright color combinations. It was marketed as an off-road vehicle more than the Wagoneer. 1984-1991 Jeep Grand Wagoneer: The Grand Wagoneer marked the beginning of the luxury SUV, giving buyers unheard of standard features such as leather upholstery, air conditioning, AM/FM/CB stereo radios, added sound insulation and wood grain exterior trim. The Grand Wagoneer also featured a 360 c.i.d. V-8 with increased horsepower and torque and the segments highest towing rating. 1984-2001 Jeep Cherokee (XJ): AMC’s first Jeep design from scratch, and the first all-new Jeep wagon since the Wagoneer, was the Cherokee, or XJ series. The XJs used a hybrid of frame and uni-body construction, a new “Quadra-Link” front suspension to retain the durability of a solid front axle while improving handling and ride, and robotic assembly to improve fit and finish. A half-ton lighter than the old Cherokee, four inches lower (10 cm), six inches (15 cm) narrower and an incredible 21 (53 cm) inches shorter, the XJs had 90 percent of the old Cherokee’s capacity. Available with two 2WD/4WD systems — SelecTrac and shift-on-the-fly CommandTrac and four doors — Cherokee dominated its market segment for years. Cherokee Limited debuted in 1988 and a 4.0-liter I-6 was introduced in 1989. 1993-present Jeep Grand Cherokee: The Grand Cherokee famously first appeared by crashing through the convention center glass at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit during its introduction there on Jan. 7, 1992. The first SUV equipped with a driver’s side air bag, it set new standards for on-road ride, handling and comfort in an SUV.