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1947 Willys CJ2A: $1695 Project


There are projects, and then there are projects. Some require boatloads more work than others, but when they are priced accordingly, you can begin to see the possibilities a bit more clearly. This 1947 Willys CJ2A needs everything and then some, but the asking price is at least moving in the right direction to make it more attractive as a major restoration project. Find it here on craigslist in Seattle, Washington for $1,695. 


I’m not sure if this is a case of this early Jeep looking worse than it really is, or if it’s really that bad. The floors do need to be replaced and there is surface rust everywhere, but the seller is quick to point out that lots of original bits are still present and accounted for. From the gauges to the engine to the transfer case, it’s all there – but will require a good amount of labor to get it all operational. The seller is still hunting for the original seat frames.


Should you be scared by this? I’m not sure. It does look like the engine has been exposed to weather, moisture and whatever else Mother Nature could throw at it for years. While the original hood may be in place and the radiator present, it didn’t do much to keep the outside out. The L134 was known as the “Go Devil” engine, and while not very powerful, it served dutifully across a range of military and civilian applications. To help get you started, I found an original intake manifold here on eBay, as well as a set of camshaft bearings (also available here on eBay)!


The only issue with the asking price is that you can buy a decent runner for $4-$5K. One quick Google search reveals plenty of driver-quality (or better) examples, like this one here on craigslist. I have a feeling the seller will need to get a touch below $1,000 for this to be feasible both as a parts vehicle or a restoration candidate, though I do hope it is brought back to life. What do you think its future should be?


  1. jimbosidecar

    Yep, put $5000 into it and you’ll have a $5000 jeep which means you’d “only” be out $1695

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  2. Jason Houston

    I think $1600 is tall money for a car whose engine is a chunk of molten rust. A guy on Phoenix CL sold a perfectly original, unmolested 1946 for $1600 and it was driven away.

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  3. Chebby

    I cannot see a WW2 jeep without thinking of this great book I read when I was a kid. Read it, and you just might fall in love with this heap!


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    • Todd Zuercher

      I love that book too – read it many times as a kid.

      Like 0
  4. HoA Howard A Member

    Any time a vintage original Willy’s like this surfaces, one must take note, however, the ad seems confusing. Is it taken apart? Some pics show it together, others look like a bare frame. The tub doesn’t look that bad. Those “Willys” tailgates are getting scarce. I’d have left it alone, and got it running and bounce around the farm. Like jimbosidecar sez, why stick a ton of money into this? Use it as is.

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  5. dj

    I just restored a 47 Military version Willys Jeep. Jim’s right. He’s got about 7k in a 5k jeep.

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  6. Mark S

    Get it running, media blast the body, patch the floor, and paint it army green. One thing about a vehicle like this is you don’t have to get to fussy with fixing dents and scratches before paint, and you sure don’t need expensive base coat clear coat paint.

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  7. geomechs geomechs Member

    For me, if I wanted something like this to restore, it would be the journey; cost of restoration should be secondary. The experience and the sheer joy of turning a derelict into something new again is worth a lot more to me that searching out a reasonable driver…

    Like 0

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