Friday, March 21, 2014

Did Jeep come from slurring GP?

This Willy's Jeep with roll bars is an Indian made Mahindra C-4.  There was only one real prototype Willys Overland CJ-4 ever built.  Consequently dubbed the 'Forgotten Jeep'. This 1979 model was spotted at the Lepperton School country fundraiser.

Mahindra started life in 1945 as a steel trading company and won the contract to produe the Willys in 1947.  Based in Mumbai, they now have 180,000 employees world wide and are the biggest tractor producer globally and have fingers in many pies including aerospace.

CJ = civilian jeep
Jeep was said to have been coined by slurring the initials GP (General Purpose or Government Purposes).  Another theory was that it came from comic character Popeye's jungle pet, 'Eugene the Jeep', which was small and able to solve seemingly impossible problems.


  1. Cool Jeep Scott! I see Mahindra has 9 New Zealand dealerships.

  2. Thanks Murray, yes their extensive presence worldwide was a surprise to me too. Often when we look into the background of our sketches we learn something intriguing.