The all-new Jeep Gladiator was a significant departure for the modern Jeep SUV brand when it launched last year. But pickup trucks have been an integral part of the Jeep lineage from the beginning. The Willys Jeep Truck, a one-ton pickup based on the original CJ-2A Willys Jeep, was first built in 1947 as a go-anywhere-do-anything pickup…and a gorgeous 1961 example just popped up for auction on Bring a Trailer.
This Jeep Truck had the Super Hurricane 3.7-liter inline-six engine, which was rated at 105 horsepower and 190 lb-ft of torque when new. That engine is paired with a three-speed floor-shifted manual and a multi-speed transfer case. Overdrive should be able to help this truck up to reasonable highway speed. In fact, if you enjoy peacocking your stick shift prowess for passengers, there are four different levers for you to manipulate.
Consider this Willys Jeep Truck well-cared-for, rather than meticulously restored. It’s an Arizona car and has had just two owners since 1961. The non-functional odometer shows 1,600 miles and is presumed to be far from accurate. Judging from the video on BaT, the engine appears to run well, which is about as much as one could hope for from a 59-year-old workhorse.
Added charm for this truck includes the two-tone white and brown color scheme and the ultra-minimalist gauges consisting primarily of a tachometer (or maybe a speedometer?) that simply reads from 0 to 9.
As of this writing, the bidding for this truck is still below $5,000, which is a steal in vintage off-roader terms. Of course, snagging a piece of Jeep heritage tends to be more affordable than grabbing some Land Rover Defender heritage…barring the odd $50,000 Cherokee Laredo.
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