New route for my wagon


Sharpest Tool
Nov 22, 2009
cleaning rust off something
Willys Model
Willys Year:
I JUST got an 89 Grand Wagoneer with the AMC 360, dana 44 front and rear and I'll be in the process of swapping the body onto that beast. I CAN'T WAIT!!! No messing around with Axle swap, wiring, yada yada. It's TREAD is 57-58...I hope 57 for an exact match. The wheel base is 4" more. But with the open front and dana's front and rear I can stuff some 33-35's under it and not have to jack it to the moon.

My build just got a whole lot easier.................I think :) I hope :thumbupleft:

SO in the next few weeks I'll let ya guys know if there are parts to be had. I may have axles, frame, 327, trans, t-case, drivelines for sale

Keep your fingers crossed!!
Biggest challenge may be getting the wiring/ECM out without damage to reuse. Should be a cool build, take some pics for us.
I did a little looking, Jeep was behind the times and was using a 144HP :( 5.9liter carb engine in the grand wagoneers, so no computer to worry about. :D
Well good news all the measurements came out good!!!
The main one I was worried about was the rear fender/tire/tread and it's ok,there's enough room, almost identical. These are all "inside" measurements.

Here are some measurements I came up with to use (I might leave firewall and floor from wagoneer)

willys wagon wagoneer
dash width 47 3/4 58 (gonna have to cut on pass side, no big)

front of door 473/4ish 56

rear of door 55 56

between rear hump 43 44 (no carpet in willys, carpet in wagoneer)

Inside rear fender 68 1/2 68
to fender


As far as the HP goes......................I'm not worried about it.
I'll clean it up get it breathing a little better. It's a drivetrain that's 37 years newer and pretty darn close to a perfect match.
O.K. you have had about an hour, are you done yet?

Lower horse power isn't a problem for the weight of these wagons, just seems like an inefficient motor to get 144HP from 360 cubic inches.
cnsay said:
just seems like an inefficient motor to get 144HP from 360 cubic inches.

That's fo sho........It's not the best hp and there is certainly room for improvement. That's the nice thing about puting it under the willys ......I don't have to worry about all the smog BS that it has.
Once it's allowed to take a full breath I think it will make a world of diff. It's not gonna be 300hp but it's kinda like the 351M, smogged to hell, low compression, and less carb and exhaust than it should have.
OK, new update.
It will work but I will need to move the motor and trans back.
The rough measurements I came up with from the center of the real wheels to the fire wall.

SO, with the big motor and 4" more in wheelbase it's telling me that I must move the motor in order for it to fit.
Slide the motor back 6-8", lengthen the steering rod and the front should be right.
Now the back is another issue where I come up with an extra 6" as well. I'm hopeful that the total length measurement (that includes bumpers) makes up for about 1/2 that. It might be more.........I hope.
I plan on spending labor day weekend......................


and getting this figured out.
I've been following this post, but now i'm a bit confused. I'm no math whiz, that's for sure, but let me throw this out there.
You're putting the Willys body on the the wagoneer frame with drive train.
You're planning on moving the engie and trans back 4" to meet properly with the firewall.
I understand whole "open" front end thing, but in my head I see those front wheels way too far out there which is going to have the whole Mud Racer look to it. Is this what you're after?

It would seem to me, that if you are going to make this work properly, you would have graph in some sheet metal and stretch the nose out 4" to make things look proper.

Am I off target here??
From talking to Kevin he said his wheel base is now at 108. The beauty of going longer in the front is you can put on the bigger tire/wheel combo and not have to worry about hitting anything. If for some reason it does look WAY out of place I could move the front axle back a few inches but I think by the time I put bigger (than stock) rims and tires it will fill up the wheel well pretty good.

:? Now you got me nervous..................I was, I just spent half hour looking for the wheelbase of midnight's and it is in fact 108. I think it looked just as good with the smaller tires as the big ones so I think I'll be fine.

Don't scare a guy like that, lol. :cheers:
:lol: That's my job; it's what I do. ;)
Remember, I'm the purist in this group. If I can't make someone say OH ^&%*, what good am I? :mrgreen:

I'm sure it'll all work out for ya. Get some pics comin' this way too. :cheers:
I got the camera and batteries. I should be good to go. Hopefully it all goes smooth (it won't) and there won't be any surprises (there will) and I can get some serious work done..