whether to start with the Bantam or with the production Jeep. I have an FJ40 I'm going to put a new tub and so forth on, I guess it's worth the effort since I can't find anything new and better to buy and since the Chevy 350 in it has very few miles on it. If I can figure out how to force a diesel into the thing then I'll be happy. Deaf no doubt, but happy.
Fanatics? Nope. Just that there's nothing else more worthy for pouring money into than one's Jeep ;-)
The first Jeep was actually born September 21, 1940 at 4:30pm EST. At least that's when Bantam delivered the prototype to the army for evaluation. Bantam though was a struggling little company, and didn't get awarded the contract for producing them. Instead, both Ford and Willys sent in proposals along with their own design changes based on the original Bantam prototype.
Willys' proposal won over Ford, and they began producing them in 1941. Ironically, Willys couldn't handle the volume necessary and later contracted out Ford as a partner for production anyway. Ford became responsible for producing a good percentage of the original military WWII Jeeps.
Yup. I don't know about hitting a home run (sales wise) but in the automakers' zeal to mass market yuppie-mobiles to the soccor moms, they somehow forgot about that little segment of the population that does use their 4x4s off-road. Now it's hard to find anything with solid axles and 4W-Low mode, and something not covered in plastic that we can still use a hi-lift jack on.
What the hell are we supposed to use for wheelin' or pulling logs out of our woodlots now? A Honda CRV or Ford Escape? A yonk'n Excusion or Yukon? Oh well, at least DMC still sells the Jeep TJ. For now...
we need a REAL SUV. Something that gets away from the 4x4 as luxury vehicle crap and back to real off-road oriented vehicles. Something like the original Bronco, or the Toyota FJ-40, something that looks like equipment, is simple to maintain, built to travel off-road, and NOT intended for Barbie doll shopping at the local Mall. Make it available in only four colors, a) Woodland camo, b) 3-color Desert camo, c) Olive Drab, d) Khaki. Whoever builds something like that in the right price range (i.e. 14 - 20k) will hit a homerun, IMHO.
PS - OK, the color selection thing may be a bit much, so what the hell, add Survival Orange.
No, I don't need an open or creative mind, the ford Designers need a creative mind, and then their marketing must be able to open the minds of most, or at least enough of the populace to the concept in order to make the vehicle profitable... I don't have to do a damned thing.
Personally I think its and idea that won't get out of the "concept car" and for good reason.