The first series of Jeeps made for civilians came out way back in 1945 after they were used extensively during the Second World War. These tough 4x4 vehicles are actually the inspiration for today's sports utility vehicles and other light pickup trucks. The brand has bounced from company to company but it's now currently under the management of the Chrysler Group. Nevertheless, the Jeep brand has kept its tough looks and heavy-duty performance in each and every model that they have come up with. One of these trucks, the Jeep J20, was the precursor of the brand's famous Cherokee and Wagoneer models.
The Jeep J20 was actually first manufactured under American Motors Corporation from 1974 up to 1987. When you take a look at it nowadays, you'll probably see that it looks like a cross between the Jeep J10 and the Jeep Gladiator. It also has the same body styling of the Cherokee down to the conventional slab-sided or step-side cargo box. Actually, the J20 was simply an upgrade J10 and even shared the same front axle, dashboard, and Quadra-Trac four-wheel drive system. Even with these similarities, the J20 still stands out on its own thanks to its powerful engine and unique interior design.
Jeep J20 parts included wooden exterior accents, chrome bumpers, dual horns, 12.5-inch power front disc brakes, and a locking glove box. Under the hood, it was powered by a monstrous 360 cubic-inch V-8 engine. Owners had the option of getting it either with a three-speed manual or a three-speed automatic transmission. When Jeep was bought by the Chrysler Group, the entire J-Series truck line was dropped and was replaced by the Comanche. Its short 13-year run saw it move from a couple of different companies, which could be a problem when getting aftermarket parts. Owners are advised to be wary when getting parts for this vehicle and make sure that it's made specifically for the Jeep J20 model that they have.