7 Jeeps That Will Make You Turn Green With Envy April 09 2018
A mainstay on any Jeep fan's calendar is the annual Moab Easter Jeep Safari. Considered by many as the Mecca for 4-wheeling and extreme off-roading, enthusiasts from all over the world flock to the event to take on Moab's slick and treacherous rock.
To commemorate the event, we have put together a list of some of the most memorable, albeit less known, Jeep models through the ages.
1. Forward Control
To make out heads or tails of the Jeep FC, you have to understand what a Cab Over Engine (Forward Control) is. If you look at the styles of most trucks, buses, or vans, they all have a vertical front in common. This is because the cab of the vehicle, and consequently the driver, sits above the front axle, instead of having the engine mounted in front or behind the driver.
This makes the Jeep FC one of the most iconic models to date. It looks like a small truck with its flat face. Produced in the 1950s and 1960s, this model was very much a workhorse like most utility trucks of today.
2. CJ5 Go-for-Digger and Backhoe
This little beast was built for the trenches and is arguably one of the most kitted-out Jeeps that have come of the assembly line. It was made in the 1960s and was a versatile excavator. There was no need for a trailer or secondary vehicle when moving between sites. This machine had all the digging hardware you could want for small excavations.
Apart from the backhoe attachment, it was also fitted with a hydraulic blade for the front that could be adjusted according to desired heights. Under the hood, it was powered by a 4-cylinder Hurricane Engine with a three-speed transmission. What made it so sturdy was its extremely short wheelbase. The original advert claimed that this Jeep could dig 1500 ft. an hour and even do it in reverse. A Jeep worthy of legendary status!
3. CJ-3B "High Hood"
There aren't many Jeeps, let alone any other vehicle that carries the label of "versatile" better than the CJ-3B. Without much effort, it could morph into a tractor, a pickup truck, or a tow vehicle. This model was so reliable that it was used as a United States border patrol vehicle back in the 1950s.
Initially, it was built as a transitional model between the flat-fender CJ-3A and the CJ-5. Its prominent high hood was the home for one of the most efficient engines that was ever built, the Hurricane F-Head.
Production began in the early 1950s, and it was the only CJ model being produced at the time. During the mid-1950s, the CJ-5 and CJ-6 appeared and soon started to dominate the market. Production of the CJ-3B decreased dramatically during this time. Willys produced over 30,000 3Bs in both 1953 and 1954. Some believe that there were over 196,000 CJ-3Bs built.
4. The Hafner Rotabuggy aka Flying Jeep
Back in the day, designers had a bit more creative freedom (and less red tape) and could go wild with innovation. The Rotabuggy was a pure product of experimental independence in the early 1940s during WWII. This 4X4 monster was fitted with a 40-foot rotor and a streamlined tail with twin rudderless fins. To steer this machine, the driver had a steering wheel, and the pilot had navigational controls and a rotor control.
If military gliders had not been invented, this Jeep would have gone far and wide (pun intended). Initial tests revealed severe flaws such as intense vibrations at high speeds, but improvements were made to the prototype. It was, unfortunately, in vain.
5. The Earth Roamer
Camping and outdoor enthusiasts need to look no further for the ultimate experience in off-road exploring. With this beast, you don't even need a tent or a trailer to haul your camping gear through the wilderness. The Earthroamer XV has it all. If it's camp related, it probably has it.
This machine comes with some incredible features. Don't ever be afraid to deflate your tires for those thick sand situations — re-inflate with the onboard air compressor. A Warn-900 winch is built into the front bumper to pull you out of any sticky situation. Furthermore, it has a two-speed transfer case with a 4:1 crawl ratio, off-road bumpers, super duty coil springs, and gas mono-tube shocks. The standout feature of this model has to be the built-in tent.
6. DJ-3A Surrey Gala
Although Jeep is known for being a "big boy toy" with seemingly indestructible feature s and an all-around rugged feel, Jeep also has a lesser-known feminine side. Jeep produced the DJ-3A Surrey Gala from 1959-1964, and it was nothing like its burly brothers.
The DJ-3A was a 2WD manual transmission vehicle that was used for less adventurous purposes. It was very popular as a low-cost rental vehicle for guests at hotels and resorts. It was also featured in many 1960s Hollywood movies. Some people believe that Elvis also used to own one.
This almost-miniature Jeep was fitted with chrome hubcaps, white-wall tires, and soft two-tone paint. The Surrey also featured a standard striped fabric top, which gave it a softer touch.
7. SRT8 WK Jeep Cherokee
If open tops and short wheelbases aren't your things and you have the need for speed, then look no further than the Cherokee. The models, produced between 2006 and 2010 are all that and more.
This SUV can play with the big boys (and at a fraction of the cost). With its 420 hp 6.1L Hemmy V8, it can kill a quarter mile in 13 seconds. It can even outrun a Porsche Cayenne from 0-60. Its skidpad cornering abilities rival that of a Porsche 911 Turbo.
With ample trunk space, this is the perfect family car for any Jeep enthusiast. What more could you want: space, power, speed, control... and to top it all off, it's a Jeep!