This tidy, little Willys pickup has traveled a little more than 40,000 miles in its 60-plus years of existence, and it was lovingly restored to concours condition in 2013. It is equipped with several options, including a Warn “All-Range” overdrive to augment the standard 3-speed manual transmission. Photos documenting its restoration come with the pickup, as do original Willys sales brochures, posters and owner’s manuals.
The “FC” in the truck’s name stands for Forward Control, describing how its front seats are located ahead of its engine. The FC-150 was introduced in December 1956 as a 1957 model, designed to broaden the Willys line beyond the various iterations of the CJ-5 and wagon already on the market. The FC-150 utilized several off-the-shelf Willys components, starting with a CJ-5 chassis as its foundation. Power came from the CJ’s 4-cylinder, 72 HP F-head Hurricane engine. Adding a 6-foot pickup bed to the CJ’s short-wheelbase frame necessitated the FC’s distinctive design, as the cab was pushed forward to make room for the bed. Despite its diminutive size, the FC-150 was a true half-ton pickup, and its 81-inch wheelbase and standard 4-wheel drive made it more maneuverable than other conventional pickup trucks of the era.
While the FC-150 (and its bigger brother, the FC-170) were never sold in huge numbers, they proved to be utilitarian workhorses in civilian, and later military, applications. They could be outfitted with hard-working equipment ranging from stake beds and utility boxes to backhoes and wrecker hooks. Ambulance and firetruck versions were built. And the aftermarket offered winches, snowplows and other accessories to increase the FC-150’s versatility. Today, these Forward Control pickups and their many variants enjoy a rabid following among Jeep collectors, their rarity only adding to their demand. Owners gather to swap parts, historic literature and restoration tips in a lively online community, and there are even events dedicated to the FC models.
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