The first NASCAR race for modified stock cars was held at Daytona Beach. President Harry S. Truman was re-elected. The Jeep® Willys Jeepster made its debut. 1948 was an important year in American and automotive history, and the classic Jeepster holds a unique place in the storied history of Jeep brand vehicles.
Known internally as the VJ, the 1948 Jeepster was powered by the L134 “Go Devil,” a 134-cubic-inch, 4-cylinder engine (the same engine that powered the CJ). A three-speed manual transmission with a column shifter included standard automatic overdrive. As a rear-wheel drive vehicle, the Jeepster was intended to be a passenger car to appeal to a different market than the more rugged CJ and the family-geared Jeep Willys Station Wagon.
This iteration of the Jeepster lived a relatively short life, as it was only manufactured from 1948 to 1951, although the Jeepster name would return in the 1960s with the production of the Jeepster Commando. Today, the legendary 1948 Jeepster is a rare bird. Approximately 19,000 Jeepsters were manufactured during its short run, so consider yourself lucky if you spot one on the road or at an automobile show.
Bonus Photo: Check out these 1948 Jeep Willys Station Wagons.