The Ford GPW Jeep shown here is representative of the "Motorpool Class". It is original and correct in every detail with a Ford chassis, body and engine but some Willys parts. It was delivered to the government around October 15, 1943. It ended up in Italy at the end of WWI, where its present owner, Herman Pfauter of Santa Barbara, CA, purchased it from an Italian farmer in 1981 and shipped it back home.
Afer a frame-up restoration, mostly by the owner , which took a number of years, this granfather of all Jeeps is now used in parades, vintage car shows and other commemorative events throughout Southern California.
|Crew, operating 2||Passenger capacity, including crew||5|
|Shipping Dimension||(cu ft) 331||(sf) 57|
|Ground Clearance||Net||inches||8 3/4|
|Tread||center to center||inches||49|
|Capacities||Fuel, 68 octane gasoline||gal||15|
|Turning Radius (Ft)||Right 17||Left 18 1/2|
|Angle of Approach||degrees||45|
|Angle of Departure||degrees||35|
|Fuel Consumption, average conditions||mpg||20|
|Cruising Range, average conditions||miles||300|
|Maximum allowable speed||mph||65|
|Number of speeds forward, with transfer case||6|
|Type||In-line, 4 cycle||No. of cylinders||4|
|Governed speed||Not governed|
Willys made available to their competitor, Ford, all engineering drawings and technical specifications and Ford was ordered to produce the Willys Jeep. All parts had to be interchangeable, and with very few exeptions, they were. Ford did not like the ide - so to distinguish their copy from the original, they stamped almost every part with the characteristic Ford logo - even most botts and other fasteners were marked in this manner. The early models also had the Ford logo embossed on the rear panel, just like the early Willys models displayed the Willys logo in the same location. Of course, the GI's didn't care and neither did the fellows in the motorpooll - this is why most WWII Jeeps surviving today aree a metange of Willys and Ford parts. Some collectors, however, spare no expense to restore a Ford GPW Jeep to "FactoryClass" with correct Ford NOS parts only.
Ford Motor Company, who designated the vehicle as model GPW (G = governmental vehicle, P showed the wheelbase, and W = the Willys design). Willys and Ford, under the direction of Charles E. Sorensen (Vice-President of Ford during World War II), produced more than 600,000 jeeps. Besides just being a "truck" the jeep was used for as many purposes as you can think of.
The jeep was widely copied around the world, including in France by Hotchkiss et Cie (after 1954, Hotchkiss manufactured Jeeps under licence from Willys), and by Nekaf in the Netherlands. There were several versions created, including a railway jeep and an amphibious jeep. As part of the war effort, Jeeps were also supplied to the Soviet Red Army during World War II.