Inside war-torn Europe, probably sometime in 1944: U.S. soldiers enter the bomb-blasted town of Vergato, Italy, about 40 miles southwest of Bologna. The bullet-riddled homes, rubble-filled streets, and blown-out windows testify to the ferocity of the battle to take this town. Note that the tank in the background has a plow blade attached to its front.
A good friend of mine from church always razzes me about Jeep. In my work, I am privileged to represent many different automakers. I have yet, however, to represent Jeep in any capacity – the opportunity hasn’t fully presented itself.
My friend, a longtime Jeep fan, is retired from Chrysler. He often inquires about when I am going to come to my senses and finally work for the iconic American brand.
A Jeep Thing
Very few vehicles hold such wide appeal and recognition as Jeep. Most everyone knows the Jeep Wrangler by the location of its infamous spare tire. There are the olive colored military transporters, rugged and heroic; contrasted with the more elegant Grand Cherokee, Jeep’s luxury flagship. Then comes the catchphrase, seen on bumper stickers and apparel alike: “it’s a Jeep thing, you wouldn’t understand.”
Or, my personal favorite: “if you can read this, flip me back over.”
Jeep: The History of America’s Greatest Vehicle highlights over 70 years of Jeep history, starting with the brand’s contribution to the Allied Powers in World War II. The book expounds on Jeep’s more difficult years, its storied survival, and rightful place in American history. With over three hundred rare photos, Jeep: The History of America’s Greatest Vehicle is a book every Jeep lover should own.
Patrick R. Foster is a widely known and respected automotive writer and historian. He is an authority on AMC and its various sub-brands. Foster has written a number of books on AMC, as well as Jeep and Studebaker. In 2011, he was honored with the Lee Iacocca Award, one of the most distinguished honors in automotive writing. Foster also penned Airstream: America’s World Traveler, one of our absolute favorites in this Book Garage series.
Jeep: The History of America’s Greatest Vehicle is available throughAmazon or Motorbooks.