NEW! Award 43: 1988 Jeep MJ Comanche 2WD Sport Truck – SOLD?
August 16, 2020 update – The Craigslist ad used for this post expired, so with no replacement found, we’re calling this one “Sold!”
Whenever I see a modern “compact” pickup, I long for the days when you could really get a small pickup such as this 1988 Jeep Comanche two-wheel-drive Sport Truck listed on Craigslist in Needham, Massachusetts with just under 58K original miles and a five-speed manual with an asking price of $12,000. Unfortunately, we have no idea how this private seller came to that valuation as the #1 “Concours” value for a similarly equipped Cherokee in the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool is only $9,300. We confirmed the “Low”, “Average”, and “High” retail value range on the NADA Guides Classic Car Online Valuation Tool is only $2,784, $5,823, and $8,670, respectively. Finally, a check of auction results on the Bring A Trailer results summary confirms and average price of only $6,708 for the five Comanches sold on that site year-to-date. Combine that with the fact this example is only two-wheel-drive, it came equipped with the less desirable inline four cylinder, has a rusted out rear chrome bumper, and a poorly matched reupholstered bottom seat cushion and you have our latest NEW! (short for “No Effin Way”) Award Winner.
Launched one model year after the debut of the very popular XJ Cherokee, Jeep launched the MJ truck that was heavily based on that SUV. Unlike the Cherokee, the Comanche used a conventional body-on-frame design behind the cab and a removable cargo box (Jeep labeled this C-channel based design “Uniframe”). However the cab and front clip retained the unibody construction of the Cherokee.
The Comanche used the XJ Cherokee’s “Quadralink” front suspension, with coil springs and upper/lower control arms on a solid axle, while a Panhard Rod keeps the axle centered under the truck. Modified versions of this same basic suspension system were later used on the 1993-2004 Grand Cherokee, 1997 and newer TJ Wranglers and 1994 and newer Dodge Ram trucks. For the rear suspension, the truck used leaf springs that are considerably longer than the Cherokee’s, which give Comanches good load-carrying capacity without creating a hard ride. The standard rear axle was the same Dana 35 unit used in the Cherokee, except that the Comanche mounted the leaf springs underneath the axle, as do most other trucks, and the Cherokee mounted them on top of the axle.
We came a cross this MotorWeek Review of the Comanche lineup for 1986 on YouTube:
Here’s the seller’s description:
“1988 Jeep Comanche
Under 58,000 original miles
Runs and drives very well
New tires and recent interior refresh
4 cylinder RWD
Duraliner bed liner
In unbelievable shape for a 32 year old truck, no frame rot or rust. Minimal body rust along the bottom.
Do you have a Jeep MJ story you’d like to share? Comment below and let us know!