Junkyard Find: 1976 Jeep Wagoneer

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
junkyard find 1976 jeep wagoneer

Since Willys/Kaiser/Jeep/AMC/Chrysler built the Wagoneer from Biblical times until ten minutes ago (actually 1963 through 1991), and I live in Jeep-centric Colorado, I see these things just about every time I visit a wrecking yard. Mostly, I don’t photograph them (unless I see an unusually late example, such as this ’89, or one resplendent in purple paint and tape stripes, like this ’81), but today’s Junkyard Find— spotted in a San Francisco Bay Area self-serve yard a few weeks ago— was just so incredibly Malaise-y that I felt compelled to document it in its final parking space.

Imagine having the guts to buy something this thirsty just a few years after the 1973 energy crisis, and the sinking feeling that the owner must have experienced when the 1979 energy crisis hit!

Still, if you need a work truck you have to be willing to pay the fuel bills.

Fake woodgrain, refreshingly uncomplicated HVAC controls. Some things about the middle 1970s were pretty good.

The AMC 360-cubic-inch V8 stayed in production all the way through 1991, thanks to Chrysler’s absorption of AMC in 1987.

Still some good parts left on this one.

Toughest four-letter word on wheels!

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  • Nigel Nigel on Nov 12, 2013

    My family had a 79 followed by an 84. The 84 was full of problems. The nylon track for the power windows would break and you walk out to a down driver side window in the morning. The A/C would freeze the interior or it would be off. No middle ground. I drove it for seven years of taking myself to school and it lasted my family for total of 15 years. Great leather/cordoroy seats that were comfortable as hell. Dad sold it after she was pretty well used up for a grand to a friend of a friend and six months later it had an electrical short and burned up. It was a total loss. Insurance company paid them 2 grand. It was a great gas guzzling vehicle.

  • Hifi Hifi on Nov 13, 2013

    I would love this.

  • Mike1041 At $300K per copy they may secure as much as 2 or 3 deposits of $1,000
  • Sgeffe Why on Earth can’t you just get the torque specs and do it yourself if you’re so-inclined?!
  • Sgeffe As was stated in another comment, the FAA nominee went down in flames. But the NTSB chairwoman certainly didn’t, and she’s certainly not qualified either!Lots of this kind of stuff going on both sides of the aisle—Ben Carson would have arguably made a better Surgeon General than HUD Secretary under Trump, for example.
  • Art Vandelay Interesting, the Polestar 2 I had as a rental utilized Android Automotive which is what GM said it is going to exclusively, yet it still offers Apple CarPlay according to this. Wonder if GM will do the same.
  • Stuart de Baker EVs just aren't ready for prime time for those with a single car and who take road trips. Being able to charge as soon as you arrive at a charging station, and even the chargers working on your car is a crapshoot. In the former case, you could have to wait for nearly an hour while someone else is charging.I also don't find EVs particularly fun to drive (I've driven a Tesla Model S and an Ionic 5.) I LOVE driving my '08 Civic (stick). I love the handling, the feel and responsiveness of the engine, the precise steering (the Michelin Pilot Ultra Sport tires help, but even with the snows on, the car is a joy). I have 152k on the clock, and hopefully another 25 years or so of driving (I was born early in the Eisenhower Administration and I have exceptionally healthy habits), and I'm going to try to keep the Civic for the duration.My Civic causes a less global warming emissions than some of these humongous battery operated trucks.