If you’re in the market for a new Jeep, you probably want to know where Jeep is made. New consumers may have concerns about the quality of products made outside the United States. Learn the truth about Jeep and what’s behind the label.
The Quick Answer
The majority of Jeep vehicles are still made and assembled in America. Originally produced as military vehicles by Willys-Overland of Toledo, Ohio, and now manufactured by the multi-national conglomerate Stellantis, Jeep remains a prized brand for both committed off-roaders and American manufacturing loyalists alike.
In the current Jeep lineup, the Jeep Wrangler, Cherokee, Grand Cherokee, and Gladiator are all assembled in the US. The Wrangler and Gladiator are made at Jeep’s headquarters in Toledo, Ohio. The Cherokee is produced at the Belvidere Assembly Plant in Belvidere, Illinois, which also produced the now discontinued Jeep Patriot, and the Grand Cherokee is made at the Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Detroit, Michigan. While these models might use some foreign parts and components, they are made in America. However, Jeep now operates ten plants located across the United States, Italy, Brazil, China, India and Mexico to help support the Jeep’s growing international reputation. The Renegade, Compass, and a foreign model of the Cherokee are currently assembled outside US soil.
Important Places for Jeep Manufacturing:
During World War II, Willys-Overland began producing the first military Jeeps for the US Army from their home base in Toledo, Ohio. After the war, they shifted production to civilian Jeeps, commonly known as CJ Jeeps. The company changed ownership several times in the ensuing decades. Willys-Overland merged with Kaiser Motors and created the famous Kaiser Jeep (KJ Jeep). Kaiser Motors was then bought by American Motors Corporation (AMC) with supplementary investments from Renault in 1979. Jeep was owned by Daimler Chrysler, then Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), and finally now held by Stellantis. Yet, through all the ownership changes, Jeep’s headquarters has proudly remained in Toledo, Ohio.
Their current factory, the Toledo South Assembly Plant, a major constituent of the larger Toledo Complex, was rebuilt in 2006 for the updated production of the Jeep Wrangler. The Toledo South Assembly Plant incorporated two separate units for various stages of the production: the Stickney Plant and the Parkway Annex, the latter being the original site of the Willys-Overland factory.
The Jeep Grand Cherokee, a range of midsize SUVs, has been assembled at the Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Detroit, Michigan since the model’s inception in 1993. The Jefferson North Assembly Plant is the only auto assembly plant located entirely within the Detroit city limits, a deliberate effort by Chrysler to support American manufacturing in the Motor City. Opened by Chrysler in 1991 and expanded in 1999, the Jefferson North Assembly Plant made the now-discontinued Jeep Commander between 2006 and 2010. It is also the assembly home of the Dodge Durango.
After emerging from Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2014, Chrysler Group merged with Italian automaker Fiat to form Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA). Jeep then moved its assembly of all North American and European models of the Jeep Compass from its plant in Belvidere, Illinois to Melfi, Italy. Following the merger, Jeep also introduced the Jeep Renegade, a subcompact crossover SUV, to be manufactured and assembled primarily in Melfi. The Renegade and Compass are now produced alongside the Fiat 500x.
In 2015 Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) officially began operations at the FCA Jeep Assembly Complex in Goiana, located in northeastern Brazil. This 6.2 million square-foot production complex includes an employee training center, a 1.5 km test track, and research and development facilities, in addition to its various stamping and assembly plants. Both the Renegade and Compass are assembled in Goiana for South American markets, alongside the Fiat Toro. Since production began in Goiana, Brazil trails only the United States in sales of both the Jeep Compass and Jeep Renegade.
Guangzhou, ChinaChinese production of Jeep vehicles began in 2015 with Fiat Chrysler’s 50/50 joint venture with GAC Group, a Chinese automaker headquartered in Guangzhou, China. Since then, Chinese models of the Cherokee, Renegade, and Compass have been produced at GAC Fiat Chrysler’s Guangzhou plant.
Where Does Jeep Manufacture Their Parts?
Jeep’s domestically assembled models -- the Wrangler, Gladiator, Cherokee and Grand Cherokee -- all rank in the Top-40 of cars.com’s 2021 American-Made index. This index ranks the “most American” vehicles built and sold in the US based on the following criteria: assembly location, parts content, engine origins, transmission origins, and U.S. manufacturing workforce. Among the 90 cars listed, the Jeep Cherokee (#4) and the Jeep Wrangler (#38) have historically boasted some of the highest figures when it comes to domestic parts. Likewise, both models’ engines and transmissions are manufactured almost exclusively at their respective plants in Belvidere, Illinois and Toledo, Ohio.
To support its growing international market, however, Jeep also now manufactures and assembles parts for its Renegade and Compass models across Italy, Brazil, Mexico, India, and China. The Renegade, Jeep’s flagship subcompact crossover SUV, is the first Jeep model to be manufactured and assembled entirely outside of North America. It’s primary assembly plant is located in Melfi, Italy, although it is also produced in Goiana, Brazil and Guangzhou, China.
Where are Jeep Wranglers Built and Assembled Today?
American car purists will be happy to know that Jeep Wranglers are still completely and exclusively produced at the Toledo Supplier Park inside the Toledo South Assembly Plant. Many of its distinctive parts and components, including the chassis and the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine, are manufactured on US soil as well. As one of the oldest manufacturing facilities in North America, the Toledo South Assembly Plant has been producing Wranglers since their inception in 1986. The plant employs almost 6,500 workers, all of whom play a crucial part in getting the next Jeep Wrangler into the hands of Jeep enthusiasts and onto the road for stylish adventure.
During WWII, the plant focused solely on military Jeeps. But now, its assembly line rolls off civilian Jeeps, such as the hot new JL Wrangler, the next generation of the JK Wrangler, which ceased production at the Toledo facility in 2018. The site also produces the Jeep Gladiator, a utility pickup truck with extreme off-road capability.
Where has Jeep Been Made in the Past?
The Toledo Complex has been assembling Jeeps, including four-wheel drive models, since the 1940s, when it was first owned by Willys-Overland. However, while certain models such as the Wrangler remain 100 percent American-assembled, some of Jeep’s vehicles, such as the Renegade and Compass, began international production in the last decade.
In the past, Jeeps have been built under license by various manufacturers around the world for foreign use. Mitsubishi, for instance, produced military variants of the CJ-3B for the Japanese police and forestry agency in 1953. Versions of the CJ-3B were also produced in Mahindra, India—re-dubbed the “Mahindra CJ”—and in Iznit, Turkey, by Türk Willys Overland.
So is Jeep Made in the USA or Made in China?
The Jeeps we buy in America are mostly manufactured right here in the USA. To some American consumers, it’s essential that their Jeep vehicle is made and assembled in the US. The Wrangler, the Gladiator, the Cherokee, and Grand Cherokee are the models for those buyers.
Certain Jeep models are, in fact, built for the Chinese market in Guangzhou, but Jeep consumers outside of China will not likely find themselves in a Chinese-made Jeeps. The Compass and the Renegade, the only Jeep models that are sold in the North American market but not manufactured in the US, are built in Melfi, Italy.
Frequently Asked Questions:Why is Jeep so popular?
After 80 years of production, Jeep isn’t just an American household name. It’s an icon, with its roots going back to the very first Willys MB models from World War II. Some suggest that these models first earned the “Jeep” name from soldiers citing the Popeye cartoon character, Eugene the Jeep. Others suggest the name derives from the initials GP, which stand for General Purpose. Regardless, while Jeep has held onto the durability and strength of its first models, it has only improved in comfort, style, and utility. Whether it be the newest Wrangler Rubicon, the original CJ, or perhaps even the classic XJ Wagoneer, Jeep’s balance between tradition and innovation has established the brand’s many models as among the most collectible cruisers on the market.Are Jeeps made in Italy?
Some Jeeps, like the Renegade and Compass, are made in southern Italy at the Melfi Assembly Plant, one of the most efficient plants in Italy.
Where was the Jeep invented?
The easy answer is that Jeep was invented in the US. Willys-Overland of Toledo, Ohio was the first company contracted to build Jeep vehicles for the US Army in WWII, along with Jeep cargo trailers. But the specifics are a bit more complicated. Who can truly claim to have invented the Jeep, when three major players were involved? American Bantam Car Co. of Butler, Pennsylvania; Willys-Overland of Toledo, Ohio; and Ford Motor Co. of Detroit, Michigan all had a hand in creating the Jeep that consumers know and love today. Despite the unfeasible deadline the U.S. Army set for the first Jeep prototype, Bantam created the first design and made the first bid; Willys, with the Bantam design, later gave it the powerful engine; and Ford gave it some of its most recognizable features, including the “T” latch and the flat hood. But after the war, Willys-Overland was ultimately awarded the Jeep trademark.
Where are Jeep engines made?
Today, Jeeps are known for their fuel-efficient Pentastar V-6 engine, with 3.6-liter, 3.2-liter or 3.0-liter displacements. Three North American facilities produce the Pentastar V-6 engine: the Trenton Engine Complex in Trenton, Michigan (3.6-liter, 3.2-liter, 3.0-liter); the Saltillo South Engine Plant in Saltillo, Mexico (3.6-liter); and the Mack Avenue Engine Plant, in Detroit, Michigan (3.6-liter, 3.2-liter). Other brands like Dodge, Chrysler, and Ram also use the V-6.
Where are right-hand drive Jeep Wranglers being made?
The Ranjangaon Assembly Plant in India is the sole export facility for right-hand-drive (RHD) vehicles for global markets. The Ranjangaon plant, like many of Jeeps assembly plants around the globe, implements World Class Manufacturing (WCM) to produce world-class quality vehicles.