$3,500 Commando: 1973 Jeep Commando

The 1973 Jeep Commando is the last of the Commando series for Jeep. In 1972 Jeep broke with tradition and changed the classic Jeep Grille for a full-width eggcrate grille; some loved it, some hated it (big shocker). This C104 Commando is on craigslist with an asking price of $3,500. C104 was the series designation for the last two years of the Commando, 1972 and 1973. It relates to the new, longer 104-inch wheelbase over the former C101 models.

This one is located in Aubrey, Texas, about 50 miles north of Dallas. The body looks rust-free but there’s no mention of it having rust or not having rust. There’s a photo of the underside from the rear showing a new gas tank, and the surrounding areas don’t look like they’re spent 40+ years on salty, snowy roads. You can see some rust lurking in the crevasses here and there, and certainly the bumpers have both seen better days, but for a vehicle that’s over forty years old it looks pretty good. Although, like most of us, it could look better.

There’s the famous/infamous eggcrate grille. I like this grille mainly because it’s unusual but a lot of Jeep traditionalists did not care for it one bit when it came out in 1972. Prior to 1972, the Commando was also known as a “Jeepster Commando” but the Jeepster name was dropped with the C104 series in 1972 and became the Jeep Commando. But, 1973 would be the last year for the Commando.

It’s amazing how far 4×4 vehicles have come as far as luxury and comfort goes. This isn’t a posh, coddling interior in the way that a new SUV is, but for 1973 it was good enough and was that’s all we asked for in those days. Ok, well, maybe that’s not true, but..  The interior of this Commando looks pretty good, although a thorough cleaning would do wonders. The rear seats probably weren’t too comfortable or easy to get to, but you’ll have enough room for a month worth of groceries back there.

This is the 150 hp AMC 304 V8 that appeared in the Commando in 1972. Along with the new gas tank, the seller says that this one has a new Edelbrock carburetor,  fuel filter, fuel sending unit, battery, and brake booster. The only thing they say about it’s operation quality is that it runs, drives, and stops. Have any of you owned a Commando? Is $3,500 a decent price for this one?

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Comments

  1. Howard A Member

    Commando. HA! That conjures up images we can’t show. I’ve always liked this model. Before the bigger 4 door Jeeps came out, these seemed to make the most sense. Not quite a Cherokee ( thank goodness) and not quite a CJ. These last years, I thought the front was too long and didn’t care for the front end. I liked the older ones better. Still, incredible deal here, as with all 4 wheel drives, northerners hung a plow on everything that had 4 wheel drive, and like most Jeeps, these did not survive. Thirsty with the V-8, I’d take a 6, but just a great find here. Don’t wait on this one.

    Like 2
  2. DrinkinGasoline

    To me, they always looked like the front end was ready to fall off at any given moment.

    • Howard A Member

      They DID fall off where I come from.

      • DrinkinGasoline

        Oh believe me Howard, near the Lake Erie salt mine here in the Cleveland area, more than front end’s fall off. Entire quarter panels are seen at the side of the road. Hunk of a fender, piece of a deck lid, what have you. I worked for a trucking co. that hauled the salt out of the LE mine as a mechanic. The only thing left on our Mack tractors were the fiberglass noses.

  3. Car Nut Seattle

    Sweet looking Commando. While its body styling may have been dated by this time, I do like its grille. Handsome. :)

    • Alan (Michigan)

      And here I was just thinking how devastatingly homely the grille was.
      To each his own, I guess! ;-)

      • leiniedude leiniedude Member

        Alan, I agree with the grille. Put that RR grill on there. When I think egg crate grille I think Stingray. At least they didn’t have the rectangular headlights yet.

    • DrinkinGasoline

      Beauty is in the eye :)

  4. rod444

    I had the good luck to find a 69 Jeepster Commando with the infamous Dauntless V6 engine (Buick 225 with 235 torque!) in Hawaii.

    The owner was moving off island and was very relunctantly giving up her dream of restoring the island cruiser of her youth. Unfortunately it was stored outdoors in the rain and it’s questionable whether the rear wheelwells will remain attached the body but after 20 years of sitting the Dauntless fired right up, true to its name.

    It took an entire day of schmoozing to slowly slide it away from the owners grasp, but I have a bit of room for restoration material as she sold it to me at almost scrap metal price of $300.

    Pic isnt my wunderbeast but in my opinion the front end was WAY better looking in ’69.

    Best part; Can say “Yeah its a Jeepster Commando with a Dauntless V6” Best names ever!

    • DrinkinGasoline

      Now that’s a Commando ! Undergarments aside, umm, err, yeah.

  5. Rustytech Member

    Loved the Comandos but, Did’t like this front end treatment, I call it the un-jeep. Looks more like a Tonka Comando. I like my Jeeps to look like Jeeps. (see rod444’s).

  6. Blyndgesser

    Isn’t the Commando chassis basically the same as the CJ6?

  7. Rustytech Member

    I believe the chassis was the same as the Cj, just sprung a little lower as I recall.

  8. Tom

    I own an original 1971 Jeepster Commando, a grand national winner. Yes the grill was changed for 1972 and accommodated a V8. Look at all SUV’s today, they don’t have the vertical slats, because jeep patented that look years ago. Today Jeep still keeps to it’s heritage. Although in college mine took me through streams, got bashed on rocks was rolled over twice and drowned hip deep in a lake, amazing climber! The 225 took a licken and kept on tickin! I fully restored her 20 years ago and to this day is still a show stopper in a sea of over 400 cars. What a tough car/truck! Thanks for being ‘Barn Finds’ you make my day.

    Like 2
  9. Tom Sterlacci

    Tommy Jeepster here. My yellow was the last year of the Military grill. I love this car. amazing off road ability, surpassed only by an FJ40 maybe. Theses vehicles were dependaable went places other 4×4 only dreamed of. A lot of interest in the ford Broncos of this vintage. Trust me I drove them. They could not hold a candle to the Jeepster Commando. It was better built, more comfortable and more capable off road. There were a lot of Broncos made there were only about 7,000 Commandos built in 1971. Ye s they rusted. Every off road was vulnerable to rust as an off road vehicle with no undercoating. Once the stomes bounced up and scratched the underbelly paint, rust had an entry point. Mine had both rust and dents. Heck it was bashed against rocks, through streams, rolled over twice. Even drowned her in a lake. Yes she was a war waggon for sure getting me through College in Colorado. But I decided a great car was destined for rebirth and here she is Nelly Bell a truely amazing relationship of 46 years. Grand National champion I love this car. And yes the one listed is well worth the 3k plus if everything works.

    Like 3
  10. Rusty Salmons

    I bought a 73 one back in 83 from a ad in the paper, no pics. It listed it as having a 401 AMC V8, Turbo 400 Trans, Twin Stick Transfer Case, Pipe Bumpers on both ends, Set up for a Winch but not included, Runs but has a broken front axle, $600 or best offer. Drove 3 hrs to buy it. It was painted orange with black stripes and a soft top with the rear seat being from those jump seats out of the bed of a Suburu Brat. It had a spring over axle lift with 38″ mud tires. 8 lug 1 Ton rear axle that was narrowed and narrowed Dana 44 in the front with 5:38 gears and lockers. LF axle shaft was broke where they had welded it together. Asked if I wanted to drive it? I said only to load it on the trailer and talked him down to $500. The drivetrain itself was worth more than that. I tig welded the axle shaft back together. Took it to Mud Bogs, a Tuff Truck Challenge, and enjoyed beating on it for 2 years. Bought other nicer 4 X4’s and finally traded it off. As far as the grill, mine was cut out for a Winch. Pieced back in with electrical conduit as a tube grill. To me it looks more like a 72 Chevy Blazer grill…

  11. Pacekid

    The additional power of the V8 is a temptation for sure. I met a guy who had a 73, but his wife liked the military front end better. So he extended the hood and front fenders of a pre-72 and hr had both the look and the V8,

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