Automotive

Jeep celebrates 75 years with throwback Wrangler Salute

Jeep celebrates 75 years with ...
The Jeep Wrangler Salute is a shameless throwback to wartime Willys past
The Jeep Wrangler Salute is a shameless throwback to wartime Willys past
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The Wrangler, both in civilian and military forms, has evolved since 1941
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The Wrangler, both in civilian and military forms, has evolved since 1941
Willys-Overland won a contract to build military vehicles for the US Army in 1941
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Willys-Overland won a contract to build military vehicles for the US Army in 1941
One of the many iterations of the Willys Jeep that saw wartime action
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One of the many iterations of the Willys Jeep that saw wartime action
The Willys-Overland is the foundation of modern Jeeps
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The Willys-Overland is the foundation of modern Jeeps
Jeep has always been willing to roll out the Wrangler's military heritage
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Jeep has always been willing to roll out the Wrangler's military heritage
A military Jeep where it's most at home - off road
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A military Jeep where it's most at home - off road
The Jeep Wrangler Salute is a shameless throwback to wartime Willys past
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The Jeep Wrangler Salute is a shameless throwback to wartime Willys past

A lot has changed since Willys-Overland won the contract to build off-roaders for the US Army in 1941, but the basic Jeep formula has remained largely the same. That clear family lineage is thrown into sharp focus with the Wrangler Salute concept, a modern car dressed up to celebrate its 75 year-old forebears.

Based on a Wrangler Sport, the Salute design turns back the clock by dropping the b-pillars and doors of the regular car and adding styling elements that bring World War II to mind. That means the exterior is finished in olive-drab green, and the whole package sits on 16-inch steel wheels wrapped in 32-inch non-directional tires.

There are latches on the hood, a rear-mounted spare wheel, steel bumpers with integrated tow hooks and commemorative badging on the flanks. Inside, comfort and safety is set to 1940s levels with passengers treated to low-back canvas seats. The drivetrain, on the other hand, has a modern flavor, with power coming from a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6, mated to the six-speed manual gearbox standard in the Wrangler Sport.

The Willys-Overland is the foundation of modern Jeeps
The Willys-Overland is the foundation of modern Jeeps

"We are creating this unique Jeep Wrangler 75th Salute concept vehicle in celebration of the brand's legendary history, and to demonstrate that 75 years later, today's iconic Jeep Wrangler is instantly recognizable and clearly connected to the original Willys MB," says Mike Hanley, Head of Jeep.

While the Salute might make it to the Easter Safari, there's no indication that it could actually reach market, which regulators will be happy to hear. Besides, civilians keen to cash in on Jeep's military heritage already have access to special editions of the Wrangler, Cherokee and Renegade.

Source: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles

5 comments
Buellrider
I like it. After high school I bought a 1952 Willy's M38 Military Jeep and drove it for many years. Looked very cool but the brakes were near non-existent and it seemed to suck gas faster than a thirsty camel. Finally unloaded it on someone who wanted more than me. Can't say as I miss it but this new 75th anniversary Jeep sure looks nice to me.
Buellrider
After reading the entire article I see it is a concept vehicle which is a real letdown. I really like the looks.
Lardo
The feds would never let them get away with those low-back seats. But still... I want one.
Grunchy
Want,want,want,want.... I still want the Mighty FC and the J-12, whatever happened to those fantasy wagons? Sigh.
KaiserPingo
And with the nice Ford frontgrill and all the other improvements form the other competitors.