The 12 Most Reliable SUVs of All Time, Ranked
One of the most iconic SUVs ever made, the Willys Jeep was, like many of the most capable off-road vehicles, originally designed for military use. Its reliability is a result of its simplicity, as the car simply didn’t include anything that didn’t absolutely need to be there. It was created by Willys-Overland at the request of the United States military, which initially challenged designers to make a car that weighed less than 1,300 lb (590 kg), but could carry a payload of 600 lb ( 272 kg), reports Top of the line. The Jeep slightly exceeded this weight limit, but the Army still chose it as the lead candidate, beating out rival designs from Bantam and Ford.
In total, more than 368,000 Jeeps were produced, all painted in the same shade of olive green. They were credited with helping to win the Second World War, as their off-road capabilities meant they could be used to scout roads before the arrival of heavier, slower tanks. MotorTrend drives a restored 1940s Jeep and reported that while the ride was more intuitive than some thought, the steering was difficult to master, as it was light and responsive, almost too much for such an upright vehicle. It might be a world away from driving a modern car, but the Willys is every bit as reliable as anything that’s left a factory in decades past.