History of the Jeep Wagoneer

The History of a Jeep Classic
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The History of a Jeep Classic

Any list of vehicles that were ahead of their time would be incomplete without a mention of the Jeep Wagoneer, a luxury SUV before the sport utility vehicle was even a concept. In 1963, Willys-Overland Motors, founded 55 years prior, placed a refined, car-like body and cabin atop a pickup truck chassis and gave it a torquey engine, four-wheel drive, an automatic transmission, an independent front suspension, and power steering. Trim it up with some chrome and woodgrain and, voila, the Jeep Wagoneer.

Jeep ownership went from Willys to Kaiser Jeep to American Motors and finally to Chrysler before the Wagoneer, then known as the Jeep Grand Wagoneer, was discontinued in 1991.

The Wagoneer has proven to be culturally trenchant. It has a large enthusiast base and expansive parts market, and has been featured in many movies and TV shows. Its 28-year production run was the third-longest in automotive history, and now Jeep is bringing it back. 

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