For Sale: 1941 Willys Americar in Morgantown, Pennsylvania

Vehicle Description

1941 Willys Americar

The Willys Americar was a line of automobiles produced by Willys-Overland Motors from 1937 to 1942, either as a sedan, coupe, station wagon or pickup truck. The coupe version is a very popular hot rod choice, either as a donor car or as a fiberglass model. The car started production in 1937 with somewhat traditional styling, a product of the internal reorganization that turned Willys-Overland Motor Company into Willys Overland Motors. It was itself an evolution of the aging Willys 77. When Joseph W. Frazer joined the company in 1938, he decided that a modern-looking and cheap compact car was the answer for the struggling Willys. Models 37, 38 and 39 gradually evolved into a more Ford-like appearance, culminating in the very much DeLuxe-like '40 model. Only the 1941-1942 models were called "Americar", (441 and 442 models respectively), following the patriotic trend of the time. It sold 22,000 units in 1941 and 7,000 more in 1942. Its price was about $630. As war broke out, civilian production was abandoned by all US motor companies, in order to assist the military, and the Americar was no exception.

It was the car for everyman, although there were relatively few takers. "On the reefs of roast beef and apple pie are socialist utopias of every society sent to their doom," spoke Warner Sombart to the possibility of a Marxist-style revolution of the proletariat here in America. In other words, fat chance. Mark it down to the shortage of dedicated proletarians. And so it went for every automaker that decided that America needed a proletarian car. All met their downfall in the creampuff Oldsmobiles on the menu at every used car lot. But the few that survived are cherished by their owners because let's face it...not everyone wants a Chevrolet, Olds or Ford. Such was the case with our consignors, who purchased this rarely seen example in 1988 and enjoyed it for tours, local car shows and jaunts to their mountain home. With some recent maintenance performed, this Willys in bright red one of our low hanging fruits ripe and ready to be plucked from our Hallowed Halls.

Very straight rust-free steel panels with well minded gaps adorn all aspects of this 4 door Americar sedan. A simple electric razor style front grille and a bumper with vertical guards and yellow lensed driving lights lead the way below along with the stylized jet hood ornament with AMERICAR embossed in the front. The long beak-like hood leads back to an oval single pane windshield and on either side is a shiny trim spear looking just fab. Chrome bezel headlights lead the way on the bulbous pontoon style front fender which diminish into the rear of the front fenders. We note the hood trim spear continuing down the beltline of this sedan, ending at the sloping rear roof line. On the back are less bulbous rear fenders with Art Deco pyramid style taillights within shiny bezels. Another AMERICAR embossment is on the shiny rear bumper with more vertical pushers attached. Body complimenting steel wheels in beige with eagle and Willys Americar badged moon caps in the center are wrapped by wide white wall tires all around.

Opening the doors we see tan mohair panels with tan metal framing and shiny knobs and actuators for the door panels. A long solid tan mohair bench with light moth damage to the driver's cushions is in front, and another bench with light staining and front matching material in back. Up front a tan metal dash has red painted inserts in front of the driver and passenger and in the center is a long sweeping speedometer and supporting gauges. Cream bakelite pulls are down below and flank a central ash receptacle. A large round tan bakelite steering wheel in 2 spoke format exploits the Americar name on the round central horn button. The 3-speed manual shifter is on the right side of the column and clean textured black rubber mating covers the floors. Above is a tight paneled tan mohair headliner just like the seats. Also, a note to the trunk which has a nice gray checkered vinyl liner and a spare tire along with the jack and lug wrench. All in very nice condition.

More eyecandy under the hood in the form of a 134.2ci L-head inline 4-cylinder engine. It is painted gloss black and has a 1-barrel carburetor on top. A 3-speed manual transmission is on back with a 4.44 rear axle. All presenting well and very simplistic.

As one would expect from a restoration all we see is nicely undercoated rust-free surfaces, and barely any surface rust. We note a repaired fuel tank with a new float, (performed in 2021), and a new master cylinder for 4 wheel drum brakes. Giving the smooth ride is leaf spring suspension front and rear. A single exhaust works its way to the back through the near perfect black metal field.

It was a bit of a tight fit for my crack decoder and myself as we squeezed into the front bench seat, (thank the lord he wore deodorant). It started right up with just a bit of manual choke and after a brief warmup we were off to the test track. Here it ran very nicely, although the shifter seemed a touch sloppy all the gears had positive engagement. A few other frowns also made an appearance on our drive, those being the entire left side of the car had nonfunctional lighting, the headlight switch is broken but the stalk can still be pulled to illuminate the lights and the horn, while working is a touch on the quiet side.

A rarely seen model from the end of an era for the Willys group. Lovingly cared for by our consignor and now ready to be passed on to a new caretaker. Wonderful Art Deco styling combined with simple Willys charm work together to bring this overshadowed model to the forefront. Why not let this pre-war gem become the apple of your eye?

Classic Auto Mall is a 336,000-square foot classic and special interest automobile showroom, featuring over 650 vehicles for sale with showroom space for up to 1,000 vehicles. Also, a 400 vehicle barn find collection is on display.
This vehicle is located in our showroom in Morgantown, Pennsylvania, conveniently located just 1-hour west of Philadelphia on the I-76 Pennsylvania Turnpike. The website is and our phone number is (888) 227-0914. Please contact us anytime for more information or to come see the vehicle in person.

Vehicle Details

  • 1941 Willys Americar
  • Listing ID: CC-1616882
  • Price: $19,500
  • Location:Morgantown, Pennsylvania
  • Year:1941
  • Make:Willys
  • Model:Americar
  • Exterior Color:Red
  • Interior Color:Tan
  • Transmission:Manual
  • Odometer:51123
  • Stock Number:4135
  • VIN:44156761
Listed By:
Classic Auto Mall
6180 Morgantown Rd.
Morgantown, PA 19543

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