We are counting down the Top 50 hot rods and street cars of all time that have made an appearance in a television series, or a memorable television episode. Starting from #50, and counting down to our #1 pick, follow along with our memories, and see where your favorite show lands.
9. M*A*S*H: 1942 And 1952 Willys Jeep
Set in Uijeongbu, South Korea during the Korean War, the backbone of the fictional 4077th M*A*S*H (Mobile Army Surgical Hospital) was not only the enlisted soldiers and specialists, but also the Jeeps that transported personnel around the territory, which was filmed in the hills of Malibu and Calabasas, California. This outdoor set was used for the entire series run to film exterior and tent scenes, while the interior shots were done inside a sound stage in Century City.
In the television portrayal, having the right dialog, period costumes, and vehicles staged every episode to be as authentic as possible, albeit with a bit of humor thrown in with the sometimes political and harrowing drama. M*A*S*H aired from 1972 to 1983 and continues to be an iconic series that left an indelible impression on society, and in syndication. In fact, it is one of the highest rated television programs in U.S. television history.
Maintaining authenticity, there were many Willys Jeeps used throughout the 11-year run of M*A*S*H, and in particular 1942 MB’s that appeared in nearly every episode, and 1953 military M38A1’s (CJ2A in the civilian model). A 1952 M38A1 is most noted to have delivered B.J. Hunnicut (Mike Farrell) to the base in season four’s premier episode, and the vehicle Col. Sherman Potter (Harry Morgan) makes his introduction to the series driving it in season four, episode three.
Other prominent automobiles included WC-27, WC-54, and M43 ambulances, and 1954 Ford bus from the Korean era used to transport the wounded.