A group of grifters placed ads and used the "Jeep in a Crate" tactic to reel in their cash. For only $20, you could send your money away in hopes of receiving boxed parts in return. Adjusted for inflation, that $20 would be between $200 and $300 today. But did anyone receive a crate? And if so, what was in it? Here is an overview of the WWII "Jeep in a Crate" and everything we know about this phenomenon today!
What Is "Jeep in a Crate’d"?
Jeeps are usually shipped uncrated, but we do have documents of shipped single unit packs (SUP) and twin unit packs (TUP) in crates. The stacked process allowed Jeeps to travel overseas and remain protected from saltwater ocean spray and inclement weather. But this process slowed before the 80s.
The shipment of these crates was wildly expensive. Regarding the scammers, their primary goal was to collect money on the backs of the shipment process of crated Jeeps.
Unfortunately, the war's conclusion brought an interesting twist to the famed Jeep. In 1949, an astounding number of parts, Jeeps, and crates found a new home on the Island of Okinawa. Stacked, filed, and parked closely together, it is unclear what came of this graveyard. But many speculate that they rotted away and became casualties of war.
When the Jeeps arrived at their resting place on Okinawa, this became a possible root cause of the ads featured in the back of comics and magazines. Some of the dumped vehicles were still in shipment mode, which meant they featured condensed shapes, missing parts, and a crate-like base.
The ads highlighted an ex-army G503, the military's G-series designation, and referenced various vehicles, the Ford GPW, the Willys Command Reconnaissance MB, and the 1/4Ton. When the civilian post-war market boomed, and the ads hit print, it was easy to understand why civilians believed they would soon receive their Jeep in a Crate for only $20.
In this overview of the WWII “Jeep in a Crate,” we learned that the post-WW II consumer could not get a Jeep in a crate. Consumers today, however, can get their hands on original vehicles and parts, though they are rare.
Contact Army Jeep Parts today to receive authentic 1964 Willys Jeep parts. These original components can assist you in restoration, hobby hunting, and more.