One of the car brands that waves its nation’s flag most proudly, Jeep have cornered the American part of the automobile industry with a consistent production of bold and burly cars and trucks since they were founded in 1941. Their deep connection with the American military also cements the brand’s name for stability and durability; the name ‘Jeep’ being derived from the military designation ‘Government Purposes’.
As a global leader in manufacturing rugged and impressive off-roaders and 4x4s, Jeep’s reputation precedes itself in whatever territory their vehicles are sold in. Global sales figures for all Jeep models show that more than 86,000 vehicles were sold during 2015, claiming 0.62% of the market share (European Car Sales Data - Jeep; online at http://left-lane.com/european-car-sales-data/jeep/). Some of the Jeep models included in these statistics are the Grand Cherokee, Renegade and Compass; all of which are available via the Creditplus car search.
Jeep may now have a reliable reputation, but its history is somewhat turbulent. As the US edged closer to becoming involved in the Second World War, a suitable reconnaissance vehicle was needed for its military. Out of the numerous companies that were contacted for help, the American Bantam Car Company and Willys-Overland responded. After negotiations and a successful prototype delivery, production was arranged between Willys-Overland and Ford. It’s this collaborative success that today’s Jeep models are based on. While both companies were a good match, they each had subtle differences to the Jeeps they made. For example, both stamped their own marque’s names on each of their components.
In the post-war years, Jeep models were widely available as surplus vehicles. Their popularity grew globally, so much so that their design was copied in both France and Japan. In the decades that have followed, Jeep have become renowned for manufacturing smart, attractive off-roaders, and have also been involved with a number of different car manufacturers. Just one of these included Mitsubishi who, between 1953 and 1998, built more than 30 different Jeep models in Japan.
Despite Jeep’s historic link to the US military, the brand has been superseded in recent years by the HMMWV - High-Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle - or, as it’s more commonly known, the Humvee. The 2008 war film The Hurt Locker - which depicted an Iraq War Explosive Ordnance Disposal team - featured a Humvee as the EOD’s reconnaissance vehicle.