Over 75 years ago, a little company by the name of Willys-Overland answered their country’s call to develop and deliver a “light reconnaissance” and utility vehicle for the U.S. Army as the U.S. got ready to enter what became known as World War II. The vehicle they produced would be known as the “Willys Quad” officially, but soon – because of its general purpose designation or “GP” – was more often referred to as the “Jeep”. The Jeep served every theater of the war and every army that fought alongside American forces in that long war.
Our point in sharing the beginnings of the Jeep is to note that it began as a global vehicle in the service of freedom without any realization of the future implications. Now, 75 years later, the Jeep is the most recognized off-road and utility vehicle in the world today – a global leader providing Jeep brand versatile SUV vehicles that go anywhere, anytime with confidence.
Record Sales (again) in 2015
The Jeep brand recorded sales of more than 1.2 million units worldwide in 2015 – the highest total in its 75-year history – setting a global sales record for the fourth consecutive year. Sales of 1,237,583 Jeep vehicles improved upon the brand’s 2014 global record of 1,017,019 by 22 percent.
By model, Jeep vehicle sales were led globally and in the U.S. in 2015 by Cherokee (295,081 global; 220,260 U.S.), Grand Cherokee (277,236 global, 195,958 U.S.), Wrangler (255,283 global; 202,702 U.S.), Renegade (158,351 global; 60,946 U.S.), Patriot (143,003 global; 118,464 U.S.) and Compass (108,626 global; 66,698 U.S.).
2015 was a very significant year for Jeep brand all around the world. Getting ready to celebrate the brand’s 75 year history, Jeep vehicles powered right through December as they continued to set sales records in the U.S. and around the world.
- December marked the Jeep brand’s best monthly sales ever, globally (127,879 units, up 32 percent) and in the U.S. (89,654 units, up 42 percent)
- U.S. sales increase 25 percent to a record 865,028 units in 2015
- Sales of every Jeep vehicle improved in U.S. in 2015
- U.S. annual sales best ever for Wrangler, Cherokee, Compass and Patriot
- Global sales increase 22 percent in 2015 at 1,237,583 units was highest total in brand’s 75-year history and sixth consecutive year of Jeep sales increases both globally and in U.S.
- Global sales marks were set by Wrangler, Cherokee and Patriot
“2015 marked the second consecutive year of more than 1 million Jeep vehicle sales across the globe, the sixth straight year of Jeep sales increasing globally and in the U.S., and the highest total in the brand’s 75-year history,” said Mike Manley, Head of Jeep Brand – FCA Global. “While we introduced the all-new Renegade, which is delighting consumers across the globe, we’re especially pleased that several Jeep vehicles recorded best-ever annual sales, both globally and in the U.S.
The future for Jeep is extremely bright according to Manley as Jeep increases its global production and product offerings in markets around the world.
“In 2015, we began local manufacturing in Brazil and returned to local manufacturing in China after an absence of nearly a decade, further globalizing the Jeep brand,” Manley added. “Now, in 2016, we look forward to celebrating the 75th Anniversary of Jeep, and continuing to deliver a full lineup of class-leading capable and efficient SUVs.”
Jeep Heritage Moment
Way back when – 75 years ago – Willys-Overland answered that call and developed and built, with Ford under license, more than 645,000 vehicles for the U.S. Army. The rugged, reliable olive-drab vehicle would forever be known for helping win a world war. Following the war, Willys trademarked the “Jeep” name and turned the vehicle into an off-road utility vehicle for the farm – the civilian Universal Jeep.
The folks at Willy’s might have had some premonition of just how globally powerful their original military light utility vehicle would become someday when they created the slogan that “The Sun Never Sets on the Mighty Jeep”.
And so it is that, 75 years later, the sun rises – and sets – on a Jeep somewhere in the world every hour of every day.