The Willys Overland company was not the first American company to produce four wheel drive vehicles. Willys Jeeps were just a part of the 4×4 story, from the Great War to the present day
Four Wheel Drive Auto, and the Thomas B. Jeffery Company produced four wheel drive lorries for the American Army during the Great War. Nash Motors (founded in 1916) acquired the Thomas B. Jeffery Company during this time. The Jeffery Quad also known as the Nash Quad had four-wheel steering as well as four wheel drive. It was manufactured between 1913 and 1919 with some 11,500 being built, It was also built under license by other companies.
The Marmon Motor Car Company which built cars between 1902 to 1933 was reformed in 1933 into Marmon-Herrington Company. The company turned its attention to building all-wheel-drive trucks, also converting other manufactures vehicles to four wheel drive. In 1937 Marmon-Herrington built five 4×4 Fords for the Army to test. This vehicle is sometimes referred to as the father of the Willys Jeep.