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Michigan: Chrysler show celebrates 70 years of Jeep production

May 09, 2011|By Jay Jones | Special to the Los Angeles Times
  • A rare, restored 1941 Willys MA vehicle, a forerunner to the Jeep, is displayed at the Walter P. Chrysler Museum in Auburn Hills, Mich.
A rare, restored 1941 Willys MA vehicle, a forerunner to the Jeep, is displayed… (Walter P. Chrysler Museum )

A rare "Jeep" – one of the first commissioned by the U.S. Army – is the focal point of a new exhibit at the Walter P. Chrysler Museum in Auburn Hills, Mich. The show, "70 Years of Jeep," traces the history of the iconic, all-terrain vehicle from the early years to today, showcasing vehicles along with other memorabilia.

The restored 1941 Willys MA78621– Willys was the forerunner to the Jeep – is one of only eight such vehicles known to exist in the U.S.  After being built in Toledo, Ohio, this vehicle was delivered to the Army on July 5, 1941, museum officials say.

A rotation of Jeeps, eight at a time, will be on display. In addition to the early Willys, they include a 1973 CJ-5, a 1991 Grand Wagoneer and a 2001 Willys II concept vehicle.

The show will motor on through Dec. 30. The Chrysler Museum, just across the street from the company’s world headquarters, is open Tuesdays through Saturdays. Admission is $8 for adults, $7 for seniors, and $4 for 6- to 12-year-olds. Two-for-one admission coupons are available online.

Info: Walter P. Chrysler Museum, (888) 456-1924

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