Gear Grinder
Aug 16, 2010
Willys Model
Willys Year:

I am new to the site and enjoy reading about all the Willys projects. I wonder if anyone else has done a "Jeep/Mitsubishi" conversion? About 8 years ago I built a 51 Jeepsubishi panel. I bought a 86 Mitsubishi 2 door Montero that had an engine fire. I took a tape measure to my 51 panel and said what the heck. It was the most simple conversion I have ever done. We used everything from the Montero, frame, drivetrain, gauges, wiring seats, air condiditoning etc. We extended the Montero frame 12 3/8" (if I were to do it again 13"would be better), extended the rear drive shaft, brake lines etc and mounted the body to the frame. I was surprised to find out that several of the Montero body mounts lined up with the Willys. I was really surprised when it came time to mount the rear Willys bumper. The Montero bumper lined up with the factory Willys holes in the rear valance.
Come to find out that Mitsubishi was making a 4 door Willys wagon under license from Willys up until 1998. I believe it is called a J34. Anyway the entire conversion took four weekends ( I did have a crew of four other nuts helping me) and it was sweet. I had to put spacers on the wheels because the Montero axles were 1.5 inches too narrow. Ended up with a 2.6 four cylinder, 5 speed, power brake, power steering, A/C, front disc brakes going machine. The Willys weighed less than the Montero so even with the stock 4:56 Montero gears I could occasionally hit 25 mpg on the open highway.
Job forced me to move to Texas and I had to get rid of my Jeepsubishi but it remains on my list of "ones that got away".
Willys1018 said:

I am new to the site and enjoy reading about all the Willys projects.

Welcome to the forum Paul... One of the guys here on the forum is doing something similar with an Issuzu Trooper. Looks pretty slick.