Better of the Jeep Wrangler and CJ particular editions

Go to any Jeep Jamboree, and also you’ll see a whole lot of modified Wranglers and CJ’s. Jeep homeowners experience outfitting their Jeeps for much more excessive off-road obligation or just altering the aesthetics to make them their very own. It’s a pure extension of the automobile man expertise, and it’s a phenomenon a savvy model can faucet into with well timed and tasteful particular editions.

Nevertheless, Jeep didn’t begin dreaming up its personal particular editions till it had bought civilian Jeeps for 15 years, and even then they had been few and much between. That every one modified within the 1970s, when Jeep, then owned by AMC, noticed that homeowners might make an announcement with their Jeeps within the type of graphics packages accompanied by some efficiency and comfort upgrades. Right now, the particular editions come sizzling and heavy, so quick that it’s laborious to maintain up. Thus is the fixed march of promoting.

To assist us compile our record of the most effective special-edition Jeeps, we consulted with Brandt Rosenbusch, supervisor of historic providers at FCA North America. Our analysis and his information helped us choose the next special-edition Wranglers and CJs, in addition to one DJ for good measure.


1964 Jeep DJ-3A Surrey

1959 Jeep DJ-3A Gala

The Gala was the primary time Jeep had enjoyable with the civilian Jeep. It marked an effort to market the Jeep as a piece automobile of a distinct stripe. Meant to be used at tropical resorts in Florida and the Caribbean, Jeep supplied the Gala because the rear-drive DJ-3A (assume postal Jeep) as a substitute of the four-wheel-drive CJ-3A or CJ-5, which had been additionally obtainable on the time. It was obtainable in shiny colours that included Tropical Rose, Coral Mist, and Jade Tine, all offset by Glacier White stripes. With the Gala, Jeep actually created the surrey with the perimeter on prime, because the striped fabric prime was precisely that. In actual fact, Jeep modified the identify to Surrey for 1960 and added Cerulean Blue and Fountain Inexperienced to the colour palette. Jeep bought the Surrey by way of 1964.

1965 Jeep CJ-5 Tuxedo Park

1965 Jeep CJ-5 Tuxedo Park


1961 Jeep CJ-5 Tuxedo Park

Flashy chrome and tailfins dominated the late 1950s and early 1960s. Jeep couldn’t do something about tailfins, but it surely might be part of the chrome revolution. Jeep gave each the CJ-5 and CJ-6 a contemporary look with the Tuxedo Park possibility. It added chrome to bumpers, hood, taillights, and fuel cap, and it got here with a column shifter. It marked one other step ahead away from the Jeep’s work automobile roots and helped make it extra of a highway automobile. The Tuxedo Park “actually pushed the concept of enjoyable, sporty automobile, and that concept that advanced into the Jeepster Commandos later,” stated Brandt Rosenbusch. Jeep supplied the Tuxedo Park Mk. II in 1962, and the Mk III in 1963 and ’64, and the Mark IV in 1965, the choice’s final yr.

1970 Jeep CJ-5 Renegade I

1970 Jeep CJ-5 Renegade I

1970 Jeep CJ-5 Renegade I

The Renegade is a separate mannequin now, but it surely debuted as an possibility package deal in 1970. The primary Renegade package deal consisted of hood stripes with the Renegade script, plus upgraded G70x15 tires on huge Eight-inch wheels, a roll bar, a heavy-duty body and comes, and entrance bucket seats with a rear bench. It was solely supplied in Mint Inexperienced or Wild Plum. First-year manufacturing estimates vary from 250 to 500. In 1971, Jeep supplied the Renegade 2 package deal, which switched to a big black heart stripe on the hood and options slotted alloy wheels. It was initially supplied it as a run of 150 in Massive Dangerous Orange, however that was expanded to incorporate 200 of every in Mint Inexperienced and Baja Yellow, plus one other 50 or 200 in Riverside Orange. It turned merely the Renegade package deal the next yr, and held on as a staple of the lineup for years to return.


1979 Jeep CJ-7 Golden Eagle

1979 Jeep CJ-7 Golden Eagle

1977 CJ-5 and CJ-7 Golden Eagle Bundle

The Pontiac Firebird had its screaming hen and the CJ-7 had the Golden Eagle. In 1977, Jeep supplied the Golden Eagle package deal with the 304-cubic-inch V-Eight and an enormous, gaudy golden eagle decal on the hood with “golden eagle” callouts beneath it. It was initially solely supplied in Oakleaf Brown, but it surely turned obtainable with extra colours the following yr when it retailed for $999. The package deal additionally included physique stripes, wheel lip extensions, off-road driving lights on the roll bar, a chromed or anodized black entrance bumper, a rear step bumper, a swing-away rear tire provider, a tan Levi’s delicate prime, and Eight-inch spoked metal wheels (usually in gold) that mounted white-letter all-terrain tires. Inside, it got here with a sport a sport steering wheel, an engine-turned instrument panel with a tach and clock, and entrance bucket seats and rear bench seats coated in tan Levi’s vinyl. Jeep supplied the Golden Eagle package deal till 1983. “It’s a extremely a product of the late-’70s,” Rosenbusch stated, noting it was for individuals who “didn’t thoughts having a big chook on their hood.”

1976 Jeep CJ-7 Renegade Levi's Package

1976 Jeep CJ-7 Renegade Levi’s Bundle

1975 Jeep CJ-5, CJ-7 Levi’s Bundle

The AMC Gremlin, Hornet, and Pacer weren’t the one American autos with an obtainable Levi’s package deal. Jeep additionally supplied it for the CJ-5, CJ-7, and Cherokee beginning in 1975. In fact, Jeep was owned by AMC on the time, so the tie-in was pure. For the CJs, the package deal included jean-style vinyl padding on the sprint and solar visors, padded roof materials just like denim denims, reproduction Levi’s stitching on the seats, and vinyl seat materials that appeared like Levi’s denim. A Levi’s badge sat above the Jeep lettering on the cowl. Patrons had a selection of tan or blue supplies for the inside and prime. “The Levi’s Bundle was an excellent advertising and marketing marketing campaign. Levi’s denims had been identified the world over,” Rosenbusch stated, stating that it tied collectively two very American manufacturers. Jeep supplied the package deal all the way in which till 1986.

2004 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited

2004 Jeep Wrangler Limitless

2004 Jeep Wrangler Limitless (TJ)

Jeep tried a protracted wheelbase mannequin method again in 19 with the CJ-6, but it surely by no means actually caught on. The second time was the attraction in 2004. A midyear addition to the lineup, the Limitless stretched the automobile 13 inches, including wanted passenger and cargo tempo. Extra importantly, it expanded gross sales and laid the groundwork for the primary four-door civilian Jeep in 2007, which expanded gross sales additional. “The Limitless actually began to point out the flexibility of the automobile,” Rosenbusch stated, referring to the primary two-doors. “Then it actually modified every part by stretching it to the four-door in 2007. It actually elevated gross sales and boosted the model’s picture.”

2007 Jeep Wrangler

2007 Jeep Wrangler

2007 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon (JK)

The Wrangler was at all times meant as an off-roader, however the Rubicon took it its prowess to the following degree. The Rubicon first hit the market in 2003 and added lockable entrance and rear differentials, four-wheel disc brakes, an off-road suspension, and knobbier tires, but it surely actually got here into its personal with the introduction of the JK mannequin in 2007. That’s when it added a cool disconnecting sway bar that aided wheel journey. It additionally benefited from heavy obligation entrance and rear Dana 44 axles with a four.10 rear gear, rock rails, and Jeep’s Rock-Trac four-wheel-drive system. Rock-Trac featured a shift-on-the-fly switch case with a snail’s tempo four:1 gear discount, although it wasn’t meant to be pushed on dry pavement. Jeep supplied the Rubicon for each the usual Wrangler and the Limitless, which change into a four-door for 2007.

2014 Jeep Wrangler Willys Wheeler Edition

2014 Jeep Wrangler Willys Wheeler Version

2014 Jeep Wrangler Willys Wheeler (JK)

Jeep channeled its historical past with the Willys Wheeler package deal for the JK. The truck’s Willys identify honored the corporate that designed and constructed the primary army jeeps. When it comes to functionality, it break up the distinction between customary Wranglers and the Rubicon with its knobby tires, rock rails, and limited-slip differential. It was additionally a lot less expensive than an equal Rubicon; a pleasant Wrangler Willys Wheeler value about $33,000, which was about the place a base Rubicon started. Jeep constructed the Willys Wheeler by way of 2017. It’s not a collectible but, but when we had been to guess on any JK, the Willys Wheeler could be it.  

2020 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon Launch Edition

2020 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon Launch Version

2020 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon Launch Version

Jeep returned to the pickup truck market with its long-awaited Gladiator. The truck hit the highway in mid-2019 driving on a lengthened Wrangler platform with beefed-up axles and a pickup mattress behind its open-top crew-cab physique. The automaker supplied a single-day pre-order program for the primary four,190 examples (a contrived reference to the 419 space code in Toledo the place the vans are constructed). For $62,310, early adopters bought a completely loaded Gladiator Rubicon with some particular badges and loads of bragging rights.

—Andrew Ganz contributed to this story

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