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Driverable 1946 Willys Jeep For $2k!

While not in pristine condition by any means, this 1946 Willys Jeep actually looks like it could be a really good deal with a $2k asking price. It has some rust issues that need to be addressed and is going to need a new seat, but there are few classics as simple to restore as a Willys Jeep. This one already runs and drives, so you won’t have to worry too much about fixing mechanical issues, at least not right away. As long as the chassis is solid, this could be a really sweet project to take on, there’s just one problem (more on that below). You can take a closer look at it here on craigslist in Minnetonka, Minnesota. Special thanks to Jacob K for this tip!

So what’s the big problem you ask? Well, the seller didn’t their contact information in their craigslist ad. There’s an option to send them a note in craigslist, but that will only work if they check their email. The mad in their ad gives a basic idea of its specific location, so perhaps someone near Minnetonka can drive around and find it? Given that no one can contact them, chances are you could get it for quite a bit less than their asking price. So, who here is going to track this Jeep down?


  1. Avatar photo Nevadahalfrack Member

    “Yes, dear, I listed the Jeep on Craigslist like I said I would!!!” (“I didn’t say how much effort I would give in selling it..!”)

    Like 13
  2. Avatar photo 36 Packard

    I have often wondered why in 1946 when military surplus jeeps were so plentiful at a great price, why buy a brand new one? Also, I wish I could go back in time and buy all sorts of things then, esp planes!

    Like 6
    • Avatar photo bobk

      Re: buying surplus planes. I recall seeing several P-51D Mustangs for sale in the late 60’s (retired from the Columbian Air Force) for 25k each. Of course, at that time, the most that I could muster was summer hay hauling money. For some reason, my dad wasn’t interested. Talk about your missed opportunities.

      Like 4
      • Avatar photo 36 Packard

        Yup, would of been fun, of course, think of all the aviation fuel that would through. People think an old hemi takes petrol, try a P51. Of course adjusted for inflation, that 25K is like 150K today, so if you can afford that much on a used toy that is going to need a lot of maintenance, then maybe the fuel costs really are not a big concern. Wonder if the 50 cals would have been included? Might be a good way to nab that deer in the fall. Strafing a deer might not be sporting, but I bet really effective.

        Like 1
  3. Avatar photo Bob S

    I would love to buy it, but it is too far away to be practical.

    Like 0
  4. Avatar photo bobhess Member

    Had a ’42 Ford for a couple of years. Great fun to drive around town. Price not too bad either for a running example.

    Like 0
  5. Avatar photo Clipper

    I own a 1946 jeep — I love it! They’re great farm utility vehicles & are fun on (wider) trails…not really good for modern roads except rural backroads. You can see this one has bolt-on non-factory turn signals (and a single brake light). Top speed is low 45-ish unless you install an overdrive. This one if it runs well may be worth the ask IMHO. But not more. Just a little more $ nets a much nicer jeep.

    NOTE: The one is NOT “army issue” — but the 1st generation civilian jeep (CJ2A). The army issue jeeps were Willys M38s with numerous & meaningful differences.

    Like 2
    • Avatar photo Josh Mortensen Staff

      I’m actually surprised how cheaply you can get a nice CJ2A for. I’d want to do all the math on what it will take to fix this one up before buying it. I think if you could get it for $1,500 or less, it might be a reasonable project, but that’s only if you can track down the seller.

      Like 1
    • Avatar photo Dutch 1960

      This one is an early ’46, known as a “VEC” ( very early civilian). The tool indents on the side, under the driver’s door, were present only on the first 25,000 or so Jeeps. That makes it a bit more desirable to many early Jeep restorers (since the work and most of the parts are the same, do it all on one that is a bit more special). Hope it finds a home that appreciates it, and doesn’t chop it up.

      Like 2
  6. Avatar photo Cruiser

    I had a couple of ’46 Willy’s Jeeps back in the 80’s (buy 2, build 1). The one I ended up with was pretty nice, but I was too tall to ever be comfortable so I sold the Jeep and all parts for $1500 (in Virginia) 10 years later I received a call from a garage in New Jersey saying that they had my Jeep and I owed them $900 in impound fees! Apparently the buyer never bothered to title or register the truck! I just laughed and told them “good luck”

    Like 2
  7. Avatar photo Ikey Heyman

    Even with the demand for old Jeeps here in Colorado, the best I could hope for is breaking even after paying for shipping. Too bad, looks like a decent deal.

    Like 1
  8. Avatar photo Chebby Member

    Everything about that ad looks like a scam, by a scammer too dumb to put contact info….

    Like 0
  9. Avatar photo Clipper

    Josh is right. I would offer less for this one. And if you want a nicer jeep, shop elsewhere rather than try to fix this one up. It will need a new “everything.”

    A scam? Maybe…buyer beware. But then scammers usually offer up something with a higher value and wide appeal, then ask an unusually low price to grab attention. Neither is the case here.

    Like 0
  10. Avatar photo Johnmloghry

    Back in the late 50’s I was about 11 or 12 y. o. My dad was chairman of the school board. I recall he was always getting solicitation from military surplus for schools. They bought a few items from time to time, a few Jeeps were purchased as well as telescopes, binoculars and other such items. A non functional jet airplane was offered but not purchased. They thought it could be mounted on steel mounts to make it look like it was taking off and place it on school grounds for children to play in. And life goes on.
    God bless America

    Like 1
  11. Avatar photo Matt

    When 36 Packard said,
    “I have often wondered why in 1946 when military surplus jeeps were so plentiful at a great price, why buy a brand new one? Also, I wish I could go back in time and buy all sorts of things then, esp planes!”

    I remember asking my Dad, let’s buy surplus jeeps, fix and sell them!! He said, they are there and plentiful, but Uncle Sam cut them into pieces as a part of the disposal process.
    So, I wonder? What was the surplus availability? My Dad was in WW2 and an Army vet, and I at the time, just home from Viet Nam war games as a BUF Crew Chief at a B52 base in Thailand. So, I don’t know what the real availability is or was ?

    Like 1
  12. Avatar photo Brakeservo

    Your headline days “DRIVERABLE” ?? What about a passenger?

    Like 0
    • Avatar photo Nevadahalfrack Member

      Comes with a free ski rope and skateboard for them..
      Have to warn them ahead of time to be careful during right hand turns in heavy traffic though.

      Like 1
  13. Avatar photo Stevieg

    My old boss from the hearse dealership that I worked @ had a 1947 civilian Jeep. He used it at his lake home he had in a a distant suburb called Oconomowoc. When he sold the lake home, he asked me to help him get the Jeep back to Milwaukee. I had seen him use the Jeep on the land @ the lake home, but I never thought the old girl could be driven on the actual streets. It didn’t have any functioning lights lol. It was so crusty underneath that the body was crooked on the frame, leaning to the right.
    We drove to the lake house & he fired her up, blue smoke blowing everywhere lol. I followed him to the nearest filling station where he filled her up, & off we went. Oconomwoc is roughly a half hour from the hearse dealership by freeway. It took us over 2 hours to get to the dealership taking back roads. He had a great time, smiling for hours after it was parked.
    A week or so later I asked if I could take it for a drive around the neighborhood. He said ok. I pried my fat a$$ between the steering wheel & seat lol. It was rough, smelly, bouncy, & I didn’t really fit. But WOW, was it fun! He sold it a couple months before he passed away for $4,500. This one is an absolute creampuff compared to Walter’s Jeep. This one is priced very fair, if it is not a scam. I wish I had bought Walter’s Jeep. I miss my old friend. Thank you BF for the memories!

    Like 2
  14. Avatar photo dan

    I just bought this jeep a couple months ago and I really have enjoyed it so far. its a little rough around the edges but with new tires, fuel pump and master cylinder. she needs some body work but for now I will enjoy her just the way she is.

    Like 2

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