Breaking Bad: 1985 Restored Jeep Grand Wagoneer Limited – SOLD!

Dec 2019 | Classifinds, Wagon Wednesday

January 2020 Update – we confirmed the seller of this “Classifind” deleted their listing, so we’re now able to call this one “SOLD!” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call Rudy directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.

Jeep’s Grand Wagoneer remains a popular choice among vintage SUV enthusiasts 29 years after AMC ceased production.  That popularity was further solidified when Skylar White in the TV series Breaking Bad drove a similar Garnet Red metallic example similar to the one once listed on Criagslist in December 2019 in North Salem, New York. The current caretaker is asking $19,000 for their restored example, which relies on the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool as a guide shows the current caretaker has their Grand Wagoneer priced $2,400 less than the #3 “Good” estimate of $21,400.

While the Jeep Grand Wagoneer produced through 1991 gets credit as the first luxury full-size SUV, from its introduction in the early 1960s it was originally marketed as a station wagon. Only savvy Jeep enthusiasts remember that the Grand Wagoneer’s design dates back to the days when Kaiser Jeep Corporation owned Willys-Overland. With competition from the major U.S. auto makers encroaching on Jeep’s four-wheel-drive market, Willys management decided they needed a new and more advanced vehicle. Subsequently, the new Wagoneer replaced the original Willys Jeep Station wagon that dated back to the end of World War II.

Industrial Designer Brooks Stevens designed the 1963 Wagoneer with a relatively low stance and car-like manners. He accomplished the body’s skirt-friendly entry height with a married transfer-case and a thoughtful design that tucked the running gear up tight. Careful suspension tuning of the leaf-spring, the solid-axle design gave it a good ride, but because it was still a truck at heart, it could haul and tow as needed. Inside the Wagoneer, its luxury features and normally-reserved-for-car options (think power steering and air conditioning) set it apart from the utilitarian offerings from every manufacturer at the time.

In 1970, American Motors (“AMC”) acquired Kaiser Jeep Corporation and throughout its ownership continued to reduce causes of noise, vibration, and harshness while continuing to add more luxurious features such as the innovative Quadra-Trac full-time four-wheel-drive system, which broadened the appeal of Jeep products to people who wanted four-wheel-drive traction without the inconvenience of manual locking hubs or a manual-shift transfer case. When AMC Jeep introduced the all-new, compact, and more fuel-efficient unibody-based Jeep Cherokee (“XJ”) in 1984, their original plan was to replace the SJ-body Wagoneer models with rebadged XJ-based ones, however, but continued high demand prompted the company to keep the old SJ-body Wagoneer in production despite the fact its design, largely unchanged since 1962, was becoming increasingly antiquated.

So, in 1984 AMC renamed the SJ the “Grand Wagoneer” and added a number of handling improvements, Select-Trac four-wheel drive, and a  fully revamped interior including a new dash pad, new instrumentation, new door panel design, shorter nap cut-pile carpeting, new leather seat cover designs and front seats that now featured adjustable headrests. Changes were made to the instrument panel that now featured square gauges, and contained an improved climate control system. These enhancements and more luxurious exterior styling touches allowed the Grand Wagoneer through 1991, four years after Chrysler took over AMC.

This is one of the nicer Grand Wagoneers we’ve seen in a while and based on the condition the price seems fair.  We love when owners put 32-inch tires like this example as it gives it an even more bad ass stance.  The installation of a Howell fuel injection system likely makes this Grand Wagoneer easier to start than the original fuel system could ever dream.  Seriously, wouldn’t you rather drive one of these than be invisible in the plethora of bland styled SUVs roaming today’s streets? Good luck with the purchase!

Here’s the seller’s description:

“1985 Jeep grand wagoneer
– Garnet Metallic with garnet leather interior.

-Howell fuel injection system
-new radiator
-new battery
-new belts, hoses, water pump

-brand new suspension including new leaf springs, new shocks, bushings.
-custom made driveshaft for suspension modification.
-brand new full exhaust system
-new brake lines,
-brand new 32” all terrain tires
-new starter
-Bluetooth capable stereo.
-fresh garnet metallic paint job with new wood grain trim kit
– undercarriage rust proofed

Car is in incredible condition. No leaks, no rust, no engine issues. Most
reliable car I have owned. Plenty more pics and info, feel free to reach out.


Asking $19000 obo

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