350-Equipped: 1974 Jeep CJ5

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Choosing the right weapon for wilderness adventures can be challenging. Some people prioritize comfort, while others won’t compromise on off-road abilities. This 1974 Jeep CJ5 could be the ideal choice if you fall into the second category. It is a practical vehicle that could take mud and slush in its stride without its new owner worrying about damaging precious carpet of cloth upholstery. However, the 350ci V8 under the hood will give it the power and torque required to climb over almost any obstacle. There are a few details for the new owner to address before it is ready to tackle harsh terrain, but these are straightforward jobs that won’t cost a fortune. The Jeep is listed here on Barn Finds Classifieds in Wall, New Jersey. The seller is very flexible and will consider reasonable offers.

The Semi-Gloss Black paint and enormous wheels give this Jeep a sense of purpose, telling the world this classic means business. It presents well, with no paint or panel issues. Exterior rust won’t be a concern because this CJ5 features a complete fiberglass body. It is draped over a rock-solid frame finished in Gloss Black, and the fact it has always been garage-kept has allowed it to remain rust-free. Those worried about weather protection shouldn’t be concerned. The owner includes an as-new full top and doors, a summer top, and a winter cover. That will allow the buyer to enjoy this gem all year round. The front-mounted winch is a practical inclusion, while the lights, lenses, and glass are in good order.

Lifting the hood reveals this Jeep’s party piece, with the engine bay housing a Chevrolet 350ci V8. Shifting duties fall to a Turbo 350 automatic transmission, with a Ford 9″ rear end and a Dana 30 front applying the power to Planet Earth. Power steering will make life easier in tight situations, with power brakes bringing proceedings to a safe and sure stop. That small-block must sound glorious exhaling through the long tube headers. Its power and torque outputs are unclear, but it is safe to assume that the figures will be considerably higher than the 150hp and 245 ft/lbs available in the most potent CJ5 version in 1974. The hard work is complete on this build, with only a few minor tasks awaiting the new owner. There is no front driveshaft, and the Dana 30 requires a ring gear and pinion change to match the Ford unit’s ratio. With that work complete, this Jeep will be ready for a life of high adventure.

Buying a luxury off-roader is always tempting because they offer excellent comfort and interior appointments. However, those vehicles also possess a significant weakness that potential buyers must consider. The same upholstered surfaces and deep carpet that make life so pleasant can be a hindrance when the going becomes muddy and slimy. During off-road adventures, some of those substances will inevitably find their way inside the vehicle. The owner then faces cleaning up that mess, with cloth and carpet stains an ever-present danger. The task can take hours, with that period extended as the owner waits for the cloth and carpet to dry. There are no such issues with this CJ5. Its interior is unerringly practical, with no carpet or fabric to cause nightmares. Most of its surfaces could be cleaned with a hose and sponge, with only the dash requiring careful attention. It houses an array of gauges to monitor the vehicle’s health and well-being and a CD player to provide entertainment on the road. The enormous roll cage will offer excellent protection if the Jeep ever winds up shiny side down, with the sports wheel less cumbersome than the larger factory unit in tight situations.

When I examine this 1974 Jeep CJ5’s specifications, the word “practical” keeps popping into my head. The interior is an easy-clean proposition, the fiberglass body means rust won’t be an issue, while the small-block will provide the power and torque to tackle almost any obstacle. Its needs are minor, and it will undoubtedly turn heads wherever it goes. If you are considering delving into the wilderness, doing so aboard this Jeep would be an excellent choice.

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  1. HoA Howard AMember

    Yahhhrrr, matey, I be calling this one, the “6 million dollar man”( dates me, when 6 million was a lot of money),,tis’ more beast than Jeep. It is way cool, that’s right, you read right, a major purist Jeep follower like me, can appreciate ALL Jeeps, no matter how unusual they may be. No front drive takes me back to my ’51 FFW pickup with a SBC. While a later full size Cherokee rear axle ( 3:90) provided a so-so highway truck, for some reason, the original Willys transfer case( possibly driveshaft on wrong side?) and the Cherokee front wouldn’t work without major doing, so I left the 4:88 front in, and used it as a 2 wheel drive truck. This here, someone did an awesome job, whatever they were going for. A note to the UNwise, THESE are the kinds of Jeeps that end up on their sides, or worse. I suppose one COULD drive this on the street, and with no front axle, its probable intended use. It shows to go ya’, Jeeps can appeal to a wide range of people, even like this. It’s a neat one.

    Like 5
    • Nelson C

      Yep. She’s a tumbler.

      Like 3
  2. Rw

    I bet it doesn’t even have a transfer case..

    Like 0
    • Scrapyard john

      It would make for a really short rear driveshaft…turbo 350, plus transfer case, plus lift = short rear driveshaft at what I’d think would be a pretty severe angle.

      I drove CJ 5’s through high school and college. I never wrecked one, so I must’ve been a good driver. Or lucky. I installed a 4” lift on my 79, which appears to be what they’ve done here. Totally ruined the already poor handling. If I ever bought another, I’d want it stock height. I’ll probably never have another. People drive too crazy now.

      Like 0
  3. John EderMember

    The first photo looks as if the driver stopped after running over a happy face emoji…

    Like 12
  4. John H.

    Ahhh, the tippy ol’ CJ5. Fun vehicle for the wilds of da U.P. back in the day for me, until an untimely slow speed traverse of an old railroad grade on an icy road got the 5 sideways and into the ditch I went. Damaged one Bestop Supertop drivers door, new hinges and hooks for the hood, never touched the lightbar attached to the windshield, ended up on it’s wheels, and three fractured vertebrae for me. The eight weeks of being flat on a bed was more than enough to get me looking for a safer ride. I do miss it, though. The fun factor was great. GLWS.

    Like 2
  5. John

    OK, I give up. What is the yellow blob under the front end in the first picture?

    Like 5
  6. Harvey HarveyMember

    Rock slider exhaust.

    Like 0

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