Thursday, July 3, 2014

Going Commando!

Tucked away in a lot near the Domino Sugar Factory was this 1970 Jeepster Commando! The color is Spring Green Metallic which helps us date the truck. That particular color was only available from 1969-1970, and the turn signals next to the headlights were much smaller in '69.
This is a damn fine looking vehicle that screams FUN! That white metal roof comes right off which leaves you rolling in one of the coolest and most capable convertibles ever made. Underneath that somewhat gussied-up exterior is a standard Jeep; this thing can easily climb mountains, ford rivers, and ride through deep sand or mud. The interior is a little more car-like and comfortable than the standard CJ of the time too.
The hood is wider than the regular Jeep, but from this angle you can see the similarities. It basically looks like a CJ wearing a hoodie. Even the front fenders look like the ones from the CJ, but it's almost like the hood grew over them like a tree absorbing an old barbed-wire fence.
Those tiny coffee stains of rust along the rocker panel are NOTHING! This is as rust-free as Jeepsters get. I would wager that this came from California or the Pacific Northwest as the condition is really solid yet seemingly unrestored. Original hubcaps looking good too; the fronts have a circular opening in the middle for accessing the locking hubs when using 4-wheel drive, and the rears have the large colorful JEEP logo in the same spot.
"Jeepster" in an oblique shape cutting across the large C in Commando; just cool! The hood pin is indicative of the utilitarian roots of Jeep.
More cool emblems, with the middle horizontal line in the number 4 stretching to provide a border between WHEEL and DRIVE. The V6 emblem let's us know that this example is powered by the 160 horsepower "Dauntless" engine. For whatever reason the names of the other Jeep engines were equally nifty, with the "Hurricane" straight-4 and the "Go Devil" straight-4 also powering their trucks.
It was tough to get a shot of the back, but you can just see the Jeep emblem spelled out in Wheel of Fortune individual squares.
Only in a Jeepster would you find a snazzy console with a floor shifter for your automatic! This looks to be a radio delete car as it would have been below that rat where the aluminum plate resides.
I love this little truck and think it would be a blast to drive. That period-correct winch means you'll never be stuck anywhere for long, and with the roof off you've got the perfect beach cruiser. It's almost like the Commando is saying "Put away the gun Bennet; LETS PARTY"

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