Kaiser-Willys Jeep Wide-Trac by Crown Coach


Bad ass, right?

This off-roader above arrived before this one, and if this Hemmings article is to be relied upon, the squarely-yet-rakish Jeep "Wide-Trac" is how the company almost provided America (and, later, the world) with an alternative to conventional trucks, vans, and off-roaders.

It's sort of a cross between the Volkswagen Type 2 and a Pinzgauer and a Willys MB, and now with 20-20 vision I can say that it would have made one helluva Icon off-roader. Or Hellcat-powered, cab-forward sport truck. Maybe the V10 could have been an option. Y'know, for towing…

When Brooks Stevens is given less sheet metal to work with, I feel that the results are generally better; this simply made styling mock-up and prototype were utilitarian but still wore Stevens' flair for the gee-whiz.

Reportedly designed to be inexpensive to produce and rugged, the prototype was made by Crown Coach, reportedly from aluminum. I like the idea of a lightweight, urban-sized camper van, even if it needs odd slanted windows…

Do you think the Jeep Wide-Trac would have survived until modern day, or have perhaps been on sale long enough to provide off-road enthusiasts with a viable platform for adventure travel?