Rare 1973 Super Jeep a Standout at Toledo Jeep Fest

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1973 Super Jeep CJ5

CJ-5 Jeep was a highlight of the festival, this hometown hero was one of only about 300 built at the Toledo plant.

The 1973 Jeep CJ-5 Super Jeep was a very cool and rare limited edition Jeep that was created out of necessity. The story goes that the 1973 Super Jeep was created by Toledo-based company as a result of a shortage of alloy wheels used for CJ-5 Renegade models. The company only made about 300 Super Jeeps at their Toledo, Ohio plant. They are very rare, highly collectible, and always a thrill to come across. So attendees of this first ever Toledo Fest were in for a treat when they got to opportunity to see Gene Smith’s Super Jeep on display.

Local ABC news affiliate WTVG talked to Smith ahead of the Jeep Fest about his impressive ride. Smith first acquired the car after discovering it at a flea market. “A guy in Indianapolis had it” said Smith. “He bought it at an AMC dealer in Chicago, and I got it from him in 1976.” Smith paid $6,000, which is remarkable as today it would likely fetch six figures. “That’s if you can find one,” says Smith.

Smith’s vehicle is currently not running and is in need of some repairs, namely a new carburetor. But Smith is no doubt qualified to do any work the vehicle requires as he worked at the Jeep Toledo plant for 25 years. Smith used to race the Jeep and modified if for the track, but wisely kept all the original parts. “It came with its original tires, original top, windshield and seats. I have all of that, and it would be easy to put all those parts back in.”

1973 Super Jeep CJ5

The 1973 offering featured stock steel wheels, a curved chrome front bumper, soft top, and groovy stars and stripes graphics on the hood and fenders. The package also included rubber wheel-lip extensions, and L78-15 Goodyear Suburbanite Polyglas whitewall tires on white rims. It was offered in Champagne White or Jetset Blue, with red and white striped vinyl seats. There was also an option with orange and white stripes on a body of either Butterscotch Gold, Daisy Yellow, Copper Tan, or Fairway Green. Buyers could choose from a V6 or V8 engine. Smith fortunately got a Super Jeep with a rocking 304-cubic inch V8.

It is an interesting story and a beautiful ride, and thankfully Smith is always happy to show it off to other enthusiasts. It’s always cool to get to experience a little head-turning history along with a fleet of amazing rides at a gathering.

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Longtime automotive journalist S.J. Bryan has been covering the automotive industry for over five years and is an editor with Ford Truck Enthusiasts and regular contributor to F-150 Online, Harley-Davidson Forums, and The Mustang Source, among other popular auto sites.

Bryan first discovered her passion for all things automotive riding in her parent's 1968 Ford Mustang. The automotive expert cut her teeth growing up riding on Harleys, and her first car was a Chevy Nova. Despite her lead foot, Bryan has yet to receive a speeding ticket.

The award-winning former playwright was first published at age 18. She has worked extensively as a writer and editor for a number of lifestyle and pop culture publications.

The diehard gearhead is a big fan of American muscle cars, sixth-gen Ford trucks, and Oxford commas.

S.J. can be reached at [email protected]

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