Jeep is one of the most highly regarded and the most patriotic car manufacturer in America. It was founded in 1941 and still maintains its original, unique, rugged aesthetic. How much do you know about the iconic off-road automobile brand?
Number Seven: It Was Designed in Two Days
The original Jeep only took a couple of days to design. It was created due to the need for the American troops to drive a small, light, four-wheel vehicle during WWII—that’s how the Bantam Pilot was born, two years prior to the iconic Willys MB.
Number Six: A Sports Car?
Enzo Ferrari once referred to Jeep as “America’s only real sports car.” It’s rumored that his commentary was a passive-aggressive way to insult Chevrolet Corvette!
Number Five: Purple Heart Winner
The purple heart is a military decoration awarded to American WWII soldiers wounded or killed in action. One battered Jeep received one of these emblems and was sent ‘home’ after surviving two rough beach landings!
Number Four: First SUV
America’s earliest SUVs were direct descendants from military vehicles. The Willys Station Wagon was the first recreational SUV in America, and it was soon replaced by the Wagoneer—the first luxury 4×4 and a pioneer in modern sport utility vehicles.
Number Three: The Jeep Copycats
Most car manufacturers tried to (and did) copy the company’s SUV design. But Toyota went a little too far—they advertised their copy as a ‘Toyota Jeep.’ Jeep’s attorney made a call to the Japanese manufacturer, who later changed the name of their car for ‘Toyota Land Cruiser.’
Number Two: Presidential Fans
During his time in office, Ronald Reagan owned a CJ8, which he used to drive around his Santa Barbara ranch. Additionally, Eisenhower said that “The Jeep, the Dakota, and the Landing Craft were the three tools that won the war.”
Number One: Hotel Transportation
In the late ‘50s, the company introduced a model, the Jeep Surrey, meant to be used in hotel resorts only. The car was very similar to the Jeep DJ, except it was painted different eye-catching pastel colors. We hope you enjoyed reading our list!