Kansas City Jeep Drivers Understand Jeep
At State Line Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, our Kansas City Jeep dealer, you can uncover the history of America’s first and best-loved SUVs. Jeep has and always will be the most capable SUV to ever cross treacherous terrain or refined pavement. No matter how difficult the challenge in front of you, know that you can always accomplish your challenges with a Jeep. Our Jeep dealership in Kansas City is more than happy to assist you.
How It All Began
In July 1940, the US military informed automakers that they were looking for a “light reconnaissance vehicle” to replace the Army’s motorcycle and modified Ford Model T vehicles as they proved insufficient. The Army invited 135 manufacturers to bid on production and developed a lengthy specification list for the vehicle.
At first, Willy’s-Overland and American Bantam Car Manufacturing Company were the only two companies to answer the call. However, not too long after, Ford Motor Company entered the picture, and the competition began among the three companies to see who would receive the lucrative government contract.
Each company produced prototypes for testing in record time. Bantam’s chief engineer, along with a team of Bantam executives, worked out a design, and the company built its field car within 49 days. Willy’s-Overland Vice President of Engineering Delmar G. Roos designed the Willy’s Quad. Ford developed its Model GP (General Purpose), known as the Pygmy, which was powered by an adapted Ford/Ferguson tractor. Each company delivered its prototype to the Army in the summer of 1940 and received approval to build 70 sample vehicles.
After realizing that the weight limit was far too low, the Army issued the next round of contracts in March 1941. Bantam was to produce 1,500 Model 40 BRC vehicles, Ford would build 1,500 modified and improved GP Pygmies and Willy’s would build 1,500 Quads. Further testing and evaluation led to the Army’s selection of Willy’s vehicle as the primary manufacturer.
With modifications and improvements, the Willy’s Quad became the MA, and later the MB. But the Army, and the entire world, came to know this vehicle as the Jeep®.
To get behind the wheel of our most loved SUVs, visit us at our Kansas City Jeep dealer for a free test drive. Contact us at 816-656-3480.