1964 J-300 Thriftside The Jeep Thriftside bed is what people today call a stepside. It was a carryover of the long, narrow bed found on the old-style Willys pickups, and trucks so equipped were a few dollars less than the more stylish Townside models. In the '63-'70 Gladiator era, signified mostly by the "bucktooth" grille, Jeep trucks were offered in a staggering variety of configurations, three wheelbases, and around 10 GVWs. Through 1964, the only engine was the 230ci OHC "Tornado" six. It was snappy enough, but Jeep needed a V-8 to compete. That came in '65 in the form of an AMC 327. AMC's 232 OHV Six replaced the Tornado. Kevin Banonis' '64 Thriftside represents the last of the Tornado era at Jeep.1964 J-300 Thriftside The Jeep Thriftside bed is what people today call a stepside. It w The New Trucks: 1963-1987 When the Wagoneer debuted, so did a new line of pickups that used a similar style and shared the same chassis. Where the old utility pickups had been at least a generation behind in many ways, the new J-Series trucks were on par with the cutting edge, if not ahead of the curve in some ways. Available independent front suspension in the 4x4s from 1963 to 1965 was an industry first. A staggering array of GVW, bed and wheelbase combinations were available initially. The truck line evolved with Jeep, but with the heavy competition in the truck markets, they began to get less and less of a development budget. As business got tighter and tighter, and with each successive new buyout, Jeep truck production numbers dropped and the model lines were consolidated. The Chrysler buyout in 1987 ended Jeep truck production altogether, except for the XJ-based Comanche midsize truck which continued through 1992. 1968 J-3000 Townside By 1968, the AMC 327 had been discontinued, so Jeep contracted with Buick for a two-barrel version of its 350 V-8, and the Jeep Gladiators began to truly scoot. The Buick engine is generally regarded as the best V-8 offered in the Kaiser era. The AMC 232 soldiered on as the six-cylinder option, but the 225 V-6, also originally a Buick engine, came this close to being the base engine. Its odd-fire roughness bothered the engineers, so it never went past the experimental stage. This factory photo just screams "Truck!"1968 J-3000 Townside By 1968, the AMC 327 had been discontinued, so Jeep contracted with 1979 J-20 The '70s were not kind to the Jeep truck line-nor to AMC, its parent company. This J-20 is still a snappy truck, but other than the AMC engine changeover of the early '70s and slight cosmetic changes, such as the grille in this '79, the trucks weren't getting a lot of upgrades or attention. AMC was in dire financial straits at this point.1979 J-20 The '70s were not kind to the Jeep truck line-nor to AMC, its parent company. 1979 J-10 Honcho Townside The wide-track Honcho debuted in 1976 alongside the Cherokee Chief as a wide-tire, muscular 1/2-ton that could be ordered with engines as big as 401 cubic inches. The graphics changed slightly by year and there were a number of different Honcho color schemes. They could be ordered in Townside (shown) and Sportside beds, but they were all on the short 118-inch wheelbase.1979 J-10 Honcho Townside The wide-track Honcho debuted in 1976 alongside the Cherokee C 1988 J-10 Townside Yeah, yeah, we know the J-series truck sales were officially discontinued in '87, but '88 press kits were created, from which this pic was pulled. There has also been one verified '88 truck found that indicates at least a few were released. There were virtually no changes from 1987 listed in the press info. It was a sad end for a proud line of trucks, but triage surgery was needed to focus the Jeep line in a new direction and nobody can argue with the results.1988 J-10 Townside Yeah, yeah, we know the J-series truck sales were officially disconti 1983 J-10 Honcho Sportside Richard Gump's '83 Honcho is a low-miles original truck and the last of the Honcho breed. The line was discontinued that year, and only the Sportside bed was available. This one has the biggest engine available, the 360ci two-barrel V-8.1983 J-10 Honcho Sportside Richard Gump's '83 Honcho is a low-miles original truck and t 1978 J20 Stakeside All through its life, the Jeep J-series truck was used in many commercial operations, and Walter Zimmerer's stakeside illustrates this. Unlike most commercial rigs, which are "rode hard and put away wet," his is a 25,000-mile creampuff and all original. This was the last year for the "toothy" Jeep grille that had been introduced in 1965, first for Wagoneers.1978 J20 Stakeside All through its life, the Jeep J-series truck was used in many commer « | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | View Full Article By Jim Allen Enjoyed this Post? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, or use your favorite social media to recommend us to friends and colleagues!