But, lost the design contest implemented by the US Army.
The Jeep was designed by American Bantam, but this small PA company had next to no production capacity, so the contract was awarded to Willys-Overland.
Since the Willys plant in Toledo OH also had limited production capacity, after the US became involved in WWII (December 7th, 1941...a date which will live in infamy!-FDR), Ford was contracted to build Jeeps, assembled more than 200,000 1942/45.
Poor American Bantam got left out, only built the Jeep's utility trailer.
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