Click for Coverage
Due to the EU’s Global Data Protection Regulation, our website is currently unavailable to visitors from most European countries. We apologize for this inconvenience and encourage you to visit for the latest on new cars, car reviews and news, concept cars and auto show coverage, awards and much more.MOTORTREND.COM
  • JP Magazine
  • Dirt Sports + Off-Road
  • 4-Wheel & Off-Road
  • Four Wheeler

Jeep Speak List: Model Designations Revealed

Posted in Project Vehicles on September 1, 1998
Share this
Contributors: Tori Tellem

AMC: American Motors Company, which bought Kaiser-Jeep in 1970 and produced Jeeps.

Camp Jeep: Weekend get-together for Jeep owners, their families, and their Jeeps.

Cherokee: Nameplate primarily applied to two-door Wagoneers starting in 1974, and then applied to downsized Cherokees from 1984 on.

Chrysler Corp.: The company that purchased AMC primarily for its Jeep product line in 1986.

CJ: Civilian Jeep.

CJ-2A: Produced from 1945 to 1949, this was the first civilian Jeep.

CJ-3A: Produced from 1948 to 1953, this was the second-generation civilian Jeep.

CJ-3B: Produced from 1952 to 1968, this was known as a high hood flatfender due to the high hood, which made room for the Hurricane engine.

CJ-4: You'll probably never see or hear about this 1951 cross between a CJ-3A and a CJ-5, so don't worry about it.

CJ-5: Produced from 1954 to 1983, this is the standard round-fender Jeep most people know.

CJ-6: Produced from 1955 to 1981, this was basically a stretched CJ-5.

CJ-7: Produced from 1976 to 1986, this was a stretched CJ-5 with wider door openings.

CJ-8: Produced from 1981 to 1986, this was basically a CJ-7 with a long rear-body overhang. It's called a Scrambler.

CJ-10: Produced in the late '80s primarily for military export and domestic commercial industries, it looks much like a cross between a J-series truck and a CJ-8.

Commanche: Produced from 1984 to 1986, this is a two- or four-wheel-drive small pickup built on the XJ Cherokee platform.

Commando: Produced in 1972 and 1973, this last attempt at a car-type Jeep was an outgrowth of the original Jeepster.

Crackerbox: Slang for Willys wagons produced from 1949 through 1965, since they look like old crackerboxes. The name also applies to the pickups as crackerbox trucks.

Dauntless: Engine name and designation for the Buick V-6 and V-8 engines used in Jeeps from 1966 through 1971.

DJ: Dispatcher Jeep, or two-wheel-drive version of a CJ in any of the numerical designations.

Elvis: '97 Jeep TJ modified by the staff at 4-Wheel & Off-Road. You wouldn't believe us if we told you how it got its name.

FC: Forward Control, as in FC-150 and FC-170. Produced from 1957 to 1965, these cab-over pickups look like the famous Tonka toys.

F-Head: Engine design with the intake valves in the head and the exhaust valves in the block. This is the Hurricane engine that was produced from 1952 to 1971.

Flatfender: The original Jeep from WWII and later civilian production. Named for the flat front fenders; also known as a flattie.

Flathead: Engine design with both exhaust and intake valves located in the block; also known as an L-head.

Gladiator: Name of the pickup produced from 1962 to 1971. Although the name was dropped, production of the trucks continued through 1987. These were also known as J-series trucks and SJ-series trucks.

Go-Devil: Jeep four-cylinder flathead engine, which was the standard engine from 1940 to 1952.

GPW: Designation of the Ford-produced WWII Jeep. The G stands for Government, the P for 80-inch wheelbase, and the W for the Willys design.

Grand Cherokee: Produced from 1993 to present, this luxo sport-ute draws upon years of Jeep experience and heritage to be the winner of more awards than any other vehicle.

High Hood: See CJ-3B.

Hurricane: F-head engine that replaced the Go-Devil and produced 72 horses rather than the earlier mill's 63.

Jeep: Registered trademark of the Chrysler Corporation. Originally a slang term for an unproven person or vehicle in the military and also the name of a cartoon character in the '30s.

J.E.E.P.: Just Empty Every Pocket.

Jeepin': The act of four-wheeling in a Jeep.

Jeep Jamboree: Organized four-wheeling event for Jeep owners produced by Mark A. Smith Enterprises.

Jeepster: Produced from 1947 to 1950, this was a two-wheel-drive convertible sports-car-type vehicle.

Jeepster Commando: Produced from 1967 through 1971, this 4x4 was a jaunty and sporty entry to the SUV market.

Jp: Newly acquired sister publication of 4-Wheel & Off-Road. Dedicated to Jeep vehicles.

J-series: Fullsize Gladiators, Wagoneers, and Cherokees.

Kaiser: Kaiser Steel bought Willys Overland in 1953 and created Kaiser Jeep.

M38: Produced from 1950 to 1953, this was a military version of the CJ-3A.

M38A1: Produced from 1952 to 1971, this was the forerunner of the CJ-5 but was the military variant.

M-715: Produced from 1967 to 1969, this was a military Gladiator pickup.

MB: Produced from 1941 to 1945, this was the first standardized military Jeep on which all other Jeeps are based. MB stands for military Model B.

Peugeot: Type of transmission installed in various Jeeps. Made in France and has a poor reputation.

Quadratrac: Type of transfer case used from 1973 to 1979. Later transfer cases have used the same name but are entirely different.

Rancho Overdrive: Modified Borg-Warner Overdrive fitted to the rear of Model 18 transfer cases in the late '50s.

Renault: Renault Motors came to AMC's financial rescue, and AMC built and marketed the French cars in exchange.

Renegade: Trim package initially offered on CJs in the early '70s consisting of bright paint jobs and snazzy stripes.

Round Headlights: What real Jeeps have.

Scrambler: See CJ-8.

Screaming Chicken: Slang for the Golden Eagle packages on Jeeps where an enormous decal of an eagle was plastered on the hood.

Sedan Delivery: A crackerbox wagon without rear-side windows and with doors on the rear instead of a conventional tailgate.

SJ: Senior Jeeps, to delineate the fullsize from the downsized Jeeps.

TJ: Code name for '97-to-present Wranglers; also thought to stand for Trendy Jeep.

Toledo: Where Jeeps have always been made.

Tornado: Name of 230ci six-cylinder, overhead-cam engine used in the early J-series vehicles.

Tuxedo Park MK IV: Fancy edition of the CJ-5 introduced in 1964. Consisted of lots of nickel-plated doo-dads and cool hood ornamentation.

Vigilante: Name of the 327ci V-8 Rambler/Nash engine used in some J-series vehicles; not related to the Chevy engine.

VJ: Code name for the original Willys Jeepster.

Wagoneer: Produced from 1962 to 1991. The original fullsize SUV.

Warn Overdrive: Overdrive manufactured by Warn and now available from Advance Adapters to fit the Dana 18 transfer case found in many Jeeps.

Wide Track: Cherokees that received wider axles than standard and were fitted with flares front and rear.

Willys: Parent company of Willys-Overland and the most commonly used name.

Willys-Overland: Produced Jeeps from 1940 to 1953, when taken over by Kaiser.

WJ: Code name for '99 Grand Cherokee.

Wrangler: Produced from 1987 to 1998 on two different platforms.

XJ: Code name for downsize Wagoneers and Cherokees introduced in 1984.

YJ: Code name for Wrangler from 1987 through 1995. Also thought to signify Yuppie Jeep.

ZJ: Code name for '93-'98 Grand Cherokee.

Connect With Us

Newsletter Sign Up

Subscribe to the Magazine

Browse Articles By Vehicle

See Results