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For Sale: 1947 Willys-Overland CJ2A in Saint Louis, Missouri

Vehicle Description

Initiated during the late 1930s to meet a new requirement issued by the Pennsylvania National Guard for a light and fast, all-terrain reconnaissance car, the military "Jeep" was the product of intensive development involving several automakers and their top engineers. Following the ground breaking initial work by American Bantam, Willys-Overland's design was selected, with mass-production supplemented by Ford Motor Company and tiny American Bantam shut out and relegated to manufacturing other wartime materiel. Early models were allocated to America's Allies and development continued relentlessly to the definitive GPW (General Purpose Willys) and Ford MB, with their eventual "Jeep" moniker a contraction of the "GP" designation of the Willys-built vehicles. Riding a sturdy frame with a four-wheel drivetrain and simplified sheet-steel bodywork, the Jeep was powered by Willys' "Go-Devil" four-cylinder engine, the product of legendary Willys engineer "Barney" Roos and rated at 61 horsepower. Further refinements by Roos followed disassembly of hard-used test mules with every nut, bolt, part, and component ruthlessly analyzed for strength, durability and lightness, or eliminated. The resulting Jeeps met and exceeded every possible expectation and saw use in virtually every WW II theater, serving in such diverse roles as staff transport, scouting/reconnaissance, communications, courier/messenger, medical evacuation, and even fast and lethal mobile gun platforms. Soon after entering military service and becoming a staple of American forces and most Allied armies under FDR's Lend-Lease program, the ubiquitous Jeep proved far more capable and adaptable than its original concept suggested. According to marque authorities, over 644,000 Jeeps were produced during WW II. By 1943, the military Jeep's brilliant wartime record spurred the consideration of a postwar civilian version. Sensing that such a vehicle would revitalize Willys, company chairman and principal stockholder Ward Canaday hired well-known artist I.B. Hazelton to produce a series of 24 paintings depicting the Jeep in a wide array of uses, ranging from the battlefield to peacetime jobs including snow plowing, firefighting, and agricultural duty. Willys advertisements featuring Hazelton's paintings soon proved so popular, that Life magazine published a feature article on them. Willys even enjoyed widespread free advertising in news releases showing Jeeps overseas with American GI's helping in the transition to peacetime reconstruction. On July 31, 1945, the government contract for Jeep production ended, with Willys-Overland now the sole Jeep manufacturer. Having replaced Joe Frazer as head of Willys-Overland in 1943, famed auto-industry executive "Cast Iron Charlie" Sorensen oversaw the conception, development and production of the new civilian Jeep. Willys now staked its future entirely on the Civilian Jeep or CJ-2A, the company's first new postwar model. The CJ-2A received numerous detail updates aimed at maintaining the Jeep's "go anywhere" capability while delivering greater ease of use and road safety. A wide array of optional accessories included a power takeoff and heavy-duty implement hitches for farm use. Sporting a gorgeous restoration completed circa 2003, this highly authentic and detailed 1947 Willys CJ-2A Jeep is a prime example of these rugged workhorses. Known prior ownership incudes stints in Pennsylvania and with a noted Floridian collector, and the restoration has been exceptionally well-maintained. Smartly finished in Maroon paint with businesslike Gray upholstery, the CJ-2A is nicely accented by Cream-colored "Willys" stenciling and the company's "4 Wheel Drive" tagline, matching the Cream steel wheels mounting period type all-terrain tires. Power is of course delivered by the renowned, Barney Roos-engineered "Go-Devil" L-head 134 CID 4-cylinder engine paired with a 3-speed manual transmission, and 4-wheel drivetrain. Other highlights include the factory gear-speed range guide and ID plates. An early-production example, this CJ-2A includes such desirable additional features as a fold-down split windshield and optional rear bench seat. The Civilian Jeep stands as one of the longest-running and most-popular vehicles ever produced, and with its wonderful presence and presentation, this 1947 Willys CJ-2A Jeep stands as a cornerstone vehicle, worthy of collecting or to enjoy as a runabout on the farm, estate, or beach. Offers welcome and trades considered For additional details please view this listing directly on our website

Vehicle Details

  • 1947 Willys-Overland CJ2A
  • Listing ID: CC-1719370
  • Price: $46,500
  • Location:Saint Louis, Missouri
  • Year:1947
  • Make:Willys-Overland
  • Model:CJ2A
  • Odometer:0
  • Stock Number:7495
  • VIN:145483
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