Jeep CJ5 and CJ7 are two models of the iconic Jeep. The CJ5, which is often called a “short wheelbase” jeep, was first manufactured in 1952. It has been produced for 60 years. In that time there have only been three variations: the CJ3b, CJ5a, and CJ7a. The CJ7 was first manufactured in 1974 as an off-road vehicle designed to compete with Land Rovers and Range Rovers from Europe at the time.
The Jeep CJ5 and the CJ7 have iconic status in America. The production run of the former is longer than any other jeep ever manufactured while the latter is a “last of its kind”-the last model from this range, called by some as a great breed. What are their differences?
Jeep CJ5 Vs. CJ7: What’S The Difference?
Both these iconic Jeeps are loved for their off-road capabilities and versatility, but which one is better between the two when it comes to size? The Jeep CJ5 has a wider wheelbase than that of its successor model, the more modern looking (and taller) 1978 – 1986 Jeep “CJ” series 7 Cherokee or Wagoneer.
But how much does this matter in terms of capability on rough terrains like sand dunes or desert tracks where you need as little ground clearance possible so your vehicle can be closer to terra firma while still being able to move in any direction freely without getting stuck even with less traction available from the wheels?
How do you choose between these two Jeeps that each has something unique to offer? This article will help guide your decision with comprehensive information about both models so there can be no confusion over which one would suit your needs best!
A Brief History Of The CJ5 And The CJ7 Jeeps
A popular off-roading vehicle, the CJ5 was manufactured from 1945 to 1986. Introduced in 1955 by Kaiser Motors, it is one of five generations and replaced the CJ3B model in 1957. It had a military influence with rounded front fenders just like M38A1s during that time period. The original design wasn’t intended for family or commuter use.
However, its popularity made it an all-around Jeep suitable for many different purposes such as farming and ranching work – not only rugged outdoor projects but also more intense tasks too!
The Jeep CJ5 is indisputably the most popular vehicle in history. The production run spanned from 1954 to 1984, which was one of the longest production runs for any model produced by Jeep. As a testament to its popularity and longevity, it has been noted that Kaiser established manufacturing plants all over 30 countries around the world as well as made them available in 150 different nations!
Shortly after American Motors Corporation acquired Kaiser Jeep, AMC introduced the CJ7. The new design featured a longer wheelbase and an automatic transmission which allowed it to carry more weight than previous models. Despite these changes in features, many considered this model less popular because of its tendency for rollovers at low speeds on television’s 60 Minutes demonstration show.
AMC’s CJ7 was a far more reliable Jeep. The wheelbase of the vehicle allowed for auto transmissions, and consequently smoother rides that did not make drivers feel as if they were “driving on eggshells.”
American Motors Corporation’s (AMC) first significant change in the design of their flagship product since it acquired Kaiser Jeep occurred 20 years after acquiring them with an introduction to its most popular model: 1977’s modernized CJ7.
This iteration is said by many experts to be AMC‘s best work ever achieved due to features like an elongated wheelbase that allows auto transmission capability and less bumpy experiences while driving, so much better than when people would say you’re “driving on eggs shells”.
The CJ7 was one of the last Jeeps produced in 1986, and it came with a factory dash plaque that read “Last of A Great Breed.” It ended an era as this collector’s edition ends production.
Which Is Bigger: CJ7 Vs. CJ5
The Jeep CJ5 and CJ7 are two very different types of Jeeps. The easiest way to tell them apart is by looking at their size, with the larger but more sluggish 7 being taller than its shorter 5 counterparts.
This distinction in height impacts other features like legroom where those who need a little bit extra may prefer going for the bigger option that has better headroom as well; while others will enjoy having an easier time parking due to narrower dimensions meant specifically for tight turns which make it perfect if you’re always on-the-go!
The door openings can also be used as one good distinguishing factor between these two models: S-shaped doors open onto rows of seats whereas U shape doors only have front row seating meaning they are more compact and easier to walk through.
The Pros And Cons Of The CJ5
The Jeep CJ5 is a model that has been around for 50 years, and people have always loved it. They love its classic look of the past with something new to offer in terms of handling capabilities.
The shorter wheelbase makes off-road driving easier as well as more fun because you can explore tight trails without getting stuck or damaging your vehicle’s suspension system – this means less time spent on repairs!
Lack of Leg Room
One of the biggest downsides to what many people call a classic car is that it sacrifices comfort for style. The CJ5, while having plenty of space in its front seat and trunk finishes last when it comes to legroom.
For those with back or knee problems don’t get your hopes up as you’ll be squished like an accordion after just 10 minutes on this vehicle’s rough road surfaces (especially if you happen to have long legs).
Some find the door opening too small which makes getting out difficult–and there are fewer storage compartments than some other vehicles so make sure anything valuable stays within arms reach at all times!
A center console may be the last thing you would think to add when customizing a Jeep. But if you want to have some storage space in your CJ5, then check out this one by Rampage Denim Black Deluxe Locking Center Console (view on Amazon).
It has two hidden lockable containers for CDs, DVDs and other small stuff that can fit within it. The console also doubles as an armrest which is surprisingly comfortable with cup holders included!
Hard To Find Replacement Parts
Another problem with the CJ5 is that it’s difficult to find parts for this old model. For instance, 1974 Jeep CJ5 hardtops and full doors are scarce, and those in good condition are even rarer. But if you’re looking for a dash pad from 1976-1986 models of the CJ?
The Omix Ada Dash Pad may be just what you need! It fits perfectly using factory mounting holes (has easy installation) – made out of sturdy material–and has an amazing finish too.
Another problem with Jeeps is finding replacement or repair pieces because they have been around since before people knew how cars should work long ago; when things were built differently than today’s standards so many items can’t be replaced with what’s available on the market today.
Short Wheelbase: Off-Road Good – On-Road Bad
Some say the shorter wheelbase can be a negative when rock climbing and descending. They also claim that the ride is rougher because of this lack, which becomes more of an issue with beefed-up suspension systems in place.
Switching to a manual transmission may prove difficult for some drivers who are used to automatic transmissions – but it’s possible! An extended rear driveshaft on your vehicle could hinder your ability to use all of what you’ve got down those backroads due to limited suspension travel at the base level (not counting any parts or upgrades).
You can move the rear axle back a few inches, but you might need to relocate your fuel tank or get an external gas tank and put it where the back seat would be. This means even less space for your gear and storage!
Are CJ5s Dangerous?
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety director called the CJ5 ‘the most dangerous thing on four wheels.’ Three out of every four flipped when going 22 miles an hour in a 90-degree turn. Further, three out of three turned over at 32 miles per hour during obstacle avoidance tests.
IIHS staged a demonstration to prove how unsafe the CJ5 was on 60 Minutes and after years of television, an article published in National Review claimed that testers had 435 runs to achieve 8 rollovers. The article also revealed IIHS told tester’s hidden corners where weights were hanged from which created worst-case conditions for stability.
Is the CJ7 a Better Investment?
The Jeep CJ7 is more popular and easier to find on the market than its predecessor, the CJ5. Because it’s newer, parts for a hardtop or tub are easy enough to come by; if you need either of these replacement items in your 1970’s-1980’s era model vehicle then chances are that there will be an option available at any one time due simply because they’re still being manufactured.
This ease with which parts can be found means that proprietors such as yourself don’t have much reason not to invest in this vintage classic from Chrysler – after all, how often do people who own jeeps go looking for new ones? In other words: never! It doesn’t matter whether it rusts soon or later–
The Jeep CJ7 is the perfect vehicle for tall drivers. With its extra legroom, taller people can comfortably sit behind the wheel without feeling cramped or having to contort themselves in order to fit their legs under it.
This truck also has a larger door opening than previous models which makes getting out of and into this beast much easier. Even if you’re carrying something large with you! The back seat area isn’t sacrificed either since there’s plenty of storage space available for all your gear at any time while still retaining rear seats that fold down when needed too.
The CJ7 may be just what an outdoorsman needs who loves exploring new trails on weekends but hates being uncomfortable during long drives as well as sitting uncomfortably close to other passengers for hours on end. This car also has a smoother ride than the CJ series, which is great if you find yourself in some less than desirable weather conditions and need to be comfortable while driving through it all!
The CJ7 is more popular and easier to find on the market than the CJ5. Because of its popularity, it’s also easier to buy parts for a new CJ7 like hardtops or tubs that are easy to rust without any worry because they’re newer models.
The only thing you have to be worried about replacing if your Jeep has been out in the weather too long is just the tub- but don’t fret! A replacement isn’t hard at all: there’s plenty available as well as TJ replacements which can easily replace rusty pieces from older Jeeps with ease so no one will ever know what model you own behind those white walls (unless someone takes off your fenders).
So Which Is Better, CJ5 or CJ7?
When you’re choosing between two Jeep models, there are many considerations to take into account. Some of the most important things include what exactly your needs are and how much time you plan on spending off-road.
For instance, if all that is necessary for your use is driving around town with occasional trips out onto back roads and dirt trails when needed; then the CJ5 would be more appropriate than its bigger sibling—the CJ7! This will keep gas costs down while also taking up less room at home since it has no “fancy” features like an automatic transmission system or legroom accommodations for larger passengers.
In contrast, if you’re the type of driver who spends more time off-road than they do on the pavement; then a CJ series Jeep would be preferable to avoid having your vehicle gets stuck and damaged. The CJ’s also have larger legroom for taller drivers which is nice when spending hours at a time driving.
CJ7 is faster than a CJ5 because it has more power due to its larger engine and transmission, but the CJ5 still can go pretty fast. The two jeeps have different transmissions so they are not interchangeable without some modification of their driveshafts or other parts that would need to be changed too in order for them to work together.
They also have different engines which make one better at off-roading while the other excels on the pavement; this means you’re going to want to take into account what type of terrain your driving will be taking place on when deciding between these two models. If you’ve been trying to figure out whether a Jeep CJ5 vs CJ7 comparison might make sense for your needs.
Thanks for reading and stay dirty