Jeep Buyers Guide

If you're thinking about buying a jeep this year, Cliff can help guide you through that all important decision with excellent advice. Here, he gives his best advice on what to look for in a Jeep if you’re new to the hobby. Please note, since all global buying markets are different, this only applies to our knowledge of the Jeep market for GPW and MB jeeps in the United Kingdom.

Don't buy a Jeep before looking at it

It may seem obvious, but I see this all the time. So many jeeps are not what they seam. Go see it and drive it, get a feel for the Jeep.If you can, take an expert with you who may pick out red flags. If you don’t, this could be a very expensive mistake.

Go look at lots of Jeeps

You’ll see some beautiful well looked after examples, and some real howlers; this will allow you to understand what’s about and reach a middle ground. You’ll find it easier to come to a decision where you’re confident you’re really getting the pick of the bunch.

Do your research

Swat up on all things GPW and MB by reading essential handbooks like  The Standardised War-Time Jeep Volume 2 by John Farley and the all important Maintenance Manual For Willys Truck 1/4 ton 4X4, Ford GPW – we sell both of these in our shops and have seen these books be the departure point for well thought through Jeep ownership.

Don't buy a Jeep on credit or loan

Jeeps are expensive and the cost of parts could put you out of scope. Always ensure you’re getting good value for money on parts by shopping around for quality parts by top dealers. A cheap part may cost you dearly later on, and lead to an unsafe vehicle. Be careful buying new parts from auction sites. 

Gear Box

If you know what you’re looking at, check out the gear box. A rebuild could cost up to £2,000 so ensure that this part of the jeep is in good running order. If in doubt, ring us and we can help.

It’s a labour of love

Remember you’re not buying a modern second hand car which will be reliable til the day it ceases and you trade it in for another; even the most expensive, original and beautifully rebuilt jeeps will need an element of care and maintenance. Things will need to be replaced. This is an antique vehicle, much of which parts may have seen action, either on the way to the pub or in battle, so go easy on your expectations. You wont be the same at 80 years old as you are now, after all!

Price range (as of 2024)

0 - £5,000

Unfortunately Jeeps for in this budget are hardly ever possible to find in the UK. Its not unheard of to find them at this price in perhaps, say - the USA, so if you choose to buy from abroad, be aware of import duty, import restrictions and as mentioned above, always buy in person.

Possibility to find in today's market: Extremely rare.

£5,000 - £10,000 (rather - top end!) 

A non-runner that would need a complete restoration. Expect to spend around £15,000 - £18,000 to get this up to standard. This could take 2 – 5 years once all parts have been restored and sourced. 

Possibility to find in today's market: Quite hard to find, but they're out there.

£10,000 - £18,000

This Jeep would start and drive but would need a complete restoration, now or later on. It might have lots of reproduction parts, or need more parts added to it to make it correct for its age. for example, it might need to be altered to have the correct insignia, a respray, better quality parts, etc. 

Possibility to find in today's market: Entirely possible.

£18,000 - £25,000

This is the most common price band. A jeep in this price range will be in good all round condition which may need work later on like body panels and cosmetic attention, but will be great to use on trips abroad all the time it’s maintained properly. A good set of canvas would be expected here, and a V5 for registering for the road in England.

Possibility to find in today's market: This is what most people should be paying, just hold out for the best one.

£25,000 - £30,000

Restored showroom condition Ford GPW and Willys MB’s from top dealers will sell at this price. Or if rebuilt by the private seller, will have been looked after and garaged, maintained and serviced throughout ownership. This jeep may have been rebuilt, or been overhauled, so be sure to look at as many original parts as possible. Don’t get blindsided by extras like sirens and frills – these can be purchased separately later. No jeep is the same, and you will have a chance to make it your own.

Possibility to find in today's market: This is what allot of people are paying which is driving the price up. Good if you have the cash and want a jeep right now.

£30,000 to £35,000

As above, but with a documented history of restoration and images of it in ownership, which has been in a singular ownership for a long time, thus well maintained and looked after, cared for and serviced regularly. This could be an original British Airborne Jeep, or a Jeep which would have had a special job. 

Possibility to find in today's market: Purists and those who may be on their third or fourth Jeep are looking for these. There are some great examples around in this category.

£35,000 - £50,000

Expect to find an earlier 1941 Slat Grill Jeep at £40,000  in fully restored condition, and a Ford GP at around £50,000 to £60,000 depending on the amount of original parts it has.

Jeep prototypes are of this price range. The earlier the jeep – the more you pay. Look out for original pancake air filters on Ford GP’s – as they’re rare to find if you need to add on, and have been seen to cost  around £3,000! 

£50,000 upwards (and we mean.... upwards!)

Other Jeeps to look out for are Willys MA (amongst the rarest examples £60,000 - £80,000 when they do) and Bantam BRC which could fetch up to £100,000 or more.

It's not unheard of that a rare and water-tight Ford GPA amphibious Jeep sells north of £150,000 - and one has in recent years. These are usually from private collections and don’t come up onto the market that often.

Be careful to inspect jeeps thoroughly, as a poor judgement will be very costly. These highly sought-after jeeps often are released to much anticipation, so it's worth understanding more by discussing the 'find' on notable Facebook pages, or by contacting jeep clubs such as the IMPS.

Also be aware that parts for prototype Jeeps are much harder to find, so you may have to make do with a less-original part until you find something more correct. People often stockpile these parts for their own vehicles so it may be worth asking specialist groups about availability before you buy that jeep.

As they are highly desirable, when they do come onto the market, they are snapped up quick, regardless of price (there's always someone with a retirement fund waiting to pounce on that rare Ford GP!) so don't delay when making an enquiry. They're rare jeeps for a reason.

Where to find them

  • Classified ads will show you a large selection of jeeps in the UK and Europe.
  • Auctioneers like Historics, Bonhams and other automotive auction houses regularly sell Jeeps. But - be sure to have an understanding of the auction house's buyers premium which could increase the price by 40% - which isnt a true reflection of its end value, its just the price realised that you pay.
  • be aware of false listings and scammers. Always view before taking delivery - and transfer money in person, never online.
  • Classic Military Vehicle magazine, quarterly, at all good newsagents. Find the classifieds section on the back page.
  • Word of Mouth - Join a club, the IMPS is great - we are members too.

Whether you are looking for a project to rebuild yourself, a second hand jeep to take custody of, or thinking of ordering a perfectly rebuilt bespoke restoration from our Surrey workshop, call us on 01483 860403 or email us for more information and availability.


updated March 2024


Product Compare (0)

The Standardised War-Time Jeep Volume 2 by John Farley

The Standardised War-Time Jeep Volume 2 by John Farley

NOW SADLY OUT OF STOCK - NO MORE WILL BE PRODUCED.The Standardised War-Time Jeep 2 is the ultimate c..


TM-10-1513 Maintenance Manual For Willys Truck 1/4 ton 4X4, Ford GPW

TM-10-1513 Maintenance Manual For Willys Truck 1/4 ton 4X4, Ford GPW

The essential companion when owning a Willys MB or Ford GPW, this manual has been reprinted in paper..


Showing 1 to 2 of 2 (1 Pages)