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Old 13th October 2012, 20:42   #1
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Default CJ3B - A Dying breed in India

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Cj3b is supposedly the best Soft top Utility vehicle ever built irrespective of its size and power train.Cj3b sold numbers all over the World and turned fortunes for most of the Companies and Dealers associated with it.

In India, Popular among Rural and Semi-Rural Areas where its Services where put to extreme use, it was also preferred by the urban genre for reason of its rugged and tough looks. People have had them for family purposes and a routine Car at home due to its reliability and low maintenance.

Despite the Success of Cj3b, a nice Proverb caught CJ3B:
There is an end to everything, to good things as well.

Technically there was nothing wrong with CJ3B but financially the Car was losing Ground as suddenly everyone wanted more per car. People had started looking at more comfort, Space and better Technology.

Classification of Vehicles on usage was on a new high, and having a CJ3B meant either you live in a Rural Area or your Work needs demands one. Every Family wanted a saloon! From a mass use Vehicle, the CJ3B now had no command on the market with Cars or other variants taking over the reins. Manufacturer found it financially feasible either to discontinue the model or re-engineer the Cj3b for better sales and practicality of the demand.

CJ3B was dying. In the 80s & 90s the massacre of the CJ3B was at the highest rampage. CJ3Bs either bought at Military/Government Auctions were ripped and dieselized, chassis stretched and resold to Taxi Operators or used as Load Carriers. This is one of the major reasons why very less number of Original CJ3Bs are available and those which still exist are as costly as buying a new hatchback, thanks to the online classified services.

As a CJ3B lying anywhere is a Goldmine for any Dealer but not as a Car but as Scrap - the Value of Iron derived out of it is a lot more than what I will fetch in the local car market.

Sometime back Mahindra & Mahindra in its days of struggle long before the Scorpio or the Bolero sensed a need for such a Jeep such as CJ3B and re christened one as Mahindra Classic which although did OK but was too much cosmetic than in actual Flesh.

Recently, Mahindra again gave us a moment to skip a Heartbeat when rumors were that an Old Jeep is being launched again. Although the Engineers working on it were given a choice to choose a platform for this but MM550 was chosen for many reasons which Cj3b fans wont understand. Thar is a JEEP but not Cj3b.

I would not like to mention places like Dhabwali here as they have achieved to insult the institution of Jeep manufacturing royally.

In India, the story of Cj3b is similar to the Great Indian Tiger who was ruling the Jungle gloriously before we started hunting, butchering and selling it and suddenly we remembered how beautiful the creature is and started all these drives to preserve it.

If anybody has a Cj3b today, they should feel like having a Royal Bengal Tiger of which only few have survived.

Today, after 2 years of search, hunt and disappointment, I have decided to end it and start believing that the CJ3B is a Lost Legend in spite of having such wonderful and joyful Character which we still cherish, Love and desire!

I am not alone there are many more crazy, Mad People like me who the world calls as Junk Collectors although in our own small world known as Jeepers.

Cj3b is dead and everyone is a party to this crime.
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Old 13th October 2012, 21:08   #2
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Default Re: Death of Cj3b

@ kcj3b

I understand the pain behind this article because i myself searched for one for more than an year and finally bought an MM540.

I could find a few but as you already said they had been butchered by local markets. I found a CJ3b modified to be a Classic!

Lets just hope you may find a Survivor-
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Old 13th October 2012, 22:00   #3
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Default Re: Death of Cj3b

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Originally Posted by kcj3b View Post
Technically there was nothing wrong with CJ3B but financially the Car was losing Ground as suddenly everyone wanted more per car. People had started looking at more comfort, Space and better Technology.
Well, everything becomes obsolete in time if they don't evolve. And yes, customer expectations keeps raising, and the vehicle has to cater to that. A Jeep with no seatbelts, no disk brakes, no AC, no doors, etc., can't be used for family transportation.

But the Jeep did evolve in time, now it is known as Wrangler. We in India have no access to it.

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Originally Posted by kcj3b View Post
Although the Engineers working on it were given a choice to choose a platform for this but MM550 was chosen for many reasons which Cj3b fans wont understand.
It is not rocket science actually. The CJ3b or CL340 dies were destroyed long back, but MM550 die still was available.
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Old 13th October 2012, 22:28   #4
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Default Re: Death of Cj3b

kcj3b,

What you are stating is true, the reason why the owners of this breed are never willing to part with their 3B's.

As a tribute to your thread I am attaching a picture of a CJ3B, that was restored to its original glory.
Regards,
CJ3B - A Dying breed in India-topless-015.jpg

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Old 14th October 2012, 01:14   #5
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Originally Posted by Samurai View Post

It is not rocket science actually. The CJ3b or CL340 dies were destroyed long back, but MM550 die still was available.
Actually, the CJ model was discontinued not because of the dies, but because it was not meeting some crucial norms prevailing today.

While it is a different story, that the people behind the scenes (except one person who retired), neither knew or wanted to know the pedigree behind this product.

Spike
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Old 14th October 2012, 18:14   #6
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Default Re: Death of Cj3b

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Originally Posted by Acclero View Post
@ kcj3b

I understand the pain behind this article because i myself searched for one for more than an year and finally bought an MM540.

I could find a few but as you already said they had been butchered by local markets. I found a CJ3b modified to be a Classic!

Lets just hope you may find a Survivor-
Thanks Acclero for the wishes, i wish i could develop some liking for the MM550 or Thar, i tried but failed.... my heart refused to follow!
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Originally Posted by fazalaliadil View Post
kcj3b,

What you are stating is true, the reason why the owners of this breed are never willing to part with their 3B's.

As a tribute to your thread I am attaching a picture of a CJ3B, that was restored to its original glory.
Regards,
Fazal Sahib, if i am not mistaken this is your old cj3b before you started work on the lynx!
Brilliant example of a stock cj3b.
Lynx is not far behind i would any day jump to build something on that platform for which i had PMed you!
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Originally Posted by SPIKE ARRESTOR View Post
Actually, the CJ model was discontinued not because of the dies, but because it was not meeting some crucial norms prevailing today.

While it is a different story, that the people behind the scenes (except one person who retired), neither knew or wanted to know the pedigree behind this product.

Spike
Spike, you completed the whole story, thanks a lot.
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Old 14th October 2012, 19:38   #7
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Default Re: Death of Cj3b

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Actually, the CJ model was discontinued not because of the dies, but because it was not meeting some crucial norms prevailing today.
You didn't understand what I meant. The so called crucial norms (CMVR) is rocket science for most of us. So I wanted to mention the most simple reason. By the time M&M considered re-launching the Jeep, the CL340 dies were destroyed. M&M obviously had no plans to make new ones. Since MM550 dies were still available, Thar happened.

Do you think M&M would have tried developing new dies for CL340 if CMVR was not an issue?
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Old 14th October 2012, 22:22   #8
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Default Re: Death of Cj3b

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Do you think M&M would have tried developing new dies for CL340 if CMVR was not an issue?
Were not the CL/CJ selling in good(?) numbers even when it was discontinued? I have no idea but would love to know.

I was so fond of this model over the 540s, and had one (guess it's the CL500, a 1996 model), though unfortunately had to sell it. I was left wondering why exactly M & M discontinued this one, which I guess was a boon for customers who needed a bare-bones workhorse.
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Old 15th October 2012, 10:39   #9
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Default Re: Death of Cj3b

Have a look at the classified section; Harjeev is selling one of his CJ3Bs and it is a pretty original 3B AFAIK.
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Old 16th October 2012, 01:36   #10
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Post Re: CJ3B - A Dying breed in India

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Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
You didn't understand what I meant. The so called crucial norms (CMVR) is rocket science for most of us. So I wanted to mention the most simple reason.
Oh.

Quote:
By the time M&M considered re-launching the Jeep, the CL340 dies were destroyed.
Not really, there is not much difference between the body panels of a CJ340 and a CL550, the major one being the 11" long, floor panel extension which comes on the CL550. If they could stretch a 80" WB to 91", they could very much shrink back the extra 11" too !

Quote:
M&M obviously had no plans to make new ones. Since MM550 dies were still available, Thar happened.
Going by this logic, even some dies of MM550 / Thar were not available but still it saw the light of day, all because of a few persons. BD Sir knows the full story, how the body was made production ready.

Quote:
Do you think M&M would have tried developing new dies for CL340 if CMVR was not an issue?
Yes. Although, dies were an issue to an extent, but they were not THE only problem. Think of it this way, when Major could not continue, where does CJ340 stand (unless a full fledged powertrain development took place for the 340) ?

Spike
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Old 16th October 2012, 07:13   #11
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Default Re: CJ3B - A Dying breed in India

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Originally Posted by SPIKE ARRESTOR View Post
Going by this logic, even some dies of MM550 / Thar were not available but still it saw the light of day, all because of a few persons. BD Sir knows the full story, how the body was made production ready.
My comments are based on what DB told me in 2008-2009.
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Old 16th October 2012, 11:06   #12
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Default Re: CJ3B - A Dying breed in India

Dear Sharath, Pratheesh and all - as the 90s gave way to the millennium and as the first decade of the millenium gave way to the second, it became "very safe" for people to dis-associate themselves from anything that was not even remotely mainstream. This legend of a vehicle (nothing comes close, not even my Thar) was never mainstream but the guys never understood it, or never wanted to. If you tried, it was like hammering your head against a wall.

Then there was this large bunch of guys "in there" whose only job was to give "gyan" (enlightenment) to us, saying - "Question Everything" blah blah! That's all they did and it was just a lot of talk. I have been an unfortunate participant in meetings where even the basic purpose of having 4WD was questioned, based on the discussion that "somebody had with somebody in a swanky conference room" on the subject, that if "something" is provided, (guess what guys, guess. Pratheesh, please keep quiet), 4WD is not required at all and "cost will be saved"! HaHaHa. How funny!

When I asked "what happens to low range?", expecting an answer, I finally got "gyan" that day! I understood that the swanky conference room types did not even know that there is something like low range (but they would never admit)!

The guy who took the decision to scrap CL340 dies resigned and went away merrily 3 months after the deed was done. The reason for scrapping was to clear the "so-called un-used" inventory of tools, which must surely have been based on some advice of some "Guru" who used to come, say something and go! I am not joking!

LONG LIVE CJ3B IN OUR MEMORY. IT IS THE BEST 4*4 ONE CAN EVER HAVE.

A 1964 model CJ3BLHD (my dream vehicle), the vehicle in which the then Pope drove through the streets of Mumbai still stands inside Kandivli plant. MH01P2541, a yellow Invader based on a 1994 model CJ340 still stands next to it. I hope they stand there forever! I hope one day M&M builds a museum just like many other manufacturers, including Mercedes have.

Thanks Fazal for posting the eternal photograph. There is nothing more to say!

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar
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Old 16th October 2012, 14:20   #13
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Default Re: CJ3B - A Dying breed in India

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1) ... based on the discussion that "somebody had with somebody in a swanky conference room" on the subject, that if "something" is provided ...

2) When I asked "what happens to low range?", expecting an answer, I finally got "gyan" that day! I understood that the swanky conference room types did not even know that there is something like low range (but they would never admit)!

3) The guy who took the decision to scrap CL340 dies resigned and went away merrily 3 months after the deed was done. The reason for scrapping was to clear the "so-called un-used" inventory of tools, which must surely have been based on some advice of some "Guru" who used to come, say something and go! I am not joking!
Same story in all organizations.
Welcome to the American Style capitalism.
We have high-flyers who know nothing about the business trying to run the business.

My first exposure to the CJ3B platform was via: http://www.film.queensu.ca/cj3b/

Also in real life - Cl340 DP (classic).

Which Mahindra model had a 38 bhp engine?

Also what is the diff between a high hood and a low hood design? (seen a few "willys", possibly fakes, with low hood)
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Old 16th October 2012, 21:28   #14
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Default Re: CJ3B - A Dying breed in India

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Originally Posted by DHABHAR.BEHRAM View Post
Dear Sharath, Pratheesh and all - as the 90s gave way to the millennium and as the first decade of the millenium gave way to the second, it became "very safe" for people to dis-associate themselves from anything that was not even remotely mainstream. This legend of a vehicle (nothing comes close, not even my Thar) was never mainstream but the guys never understood it, or never wanted to. If you tried, it was like hammering your head against a wall.
Thanks Fazal for posting the eternal photograph. There is nothing more to say!

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar
Dear DB Sir.
This is what this thread is all about.
Great Product, potential buyers but no one understands the concept! Its like you want Maggi Noodles but the Guys are offering you Chowmein and contesting its the same thing.

I wish we had a small company who can take up building cj3b something like the dabwalis or the hyderabadi market but in a more organised manner with original specs and parts. That so called company can easily book 100-200 jeeps per year with both soft tops and hard tops.Any takers????
Seriously, A real good market is out there. I wish automotive companies can sometime use a marketing tool called survey monkey or something like that.
Long Live Cj3b but in our hearts.
The Gyan guru who ordered the scraping of the CL340 dyies needs to be sent to the Gallows in a jeepster's world.

Last edited by Technocrat : 16th October 2012 at 22:32. Reason: Please avoid quoting anetire large post as it causes inconvenience to our mobile readers, thanks
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Old 16th October 2012, 22:28   #15
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Default Re: CJ3B - A Dying breed in India

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I understood that the swanky conference room types did not even know that there is something like low range (but they would never admit)!

The guy who took the decision to scrap CL340 dies resigned and went away merrily 3 months after the deed was done.
These so called Conference room types are a real pain in ...
I myself have seen this in my previous organization. They just talked. I wonder why no one asked them ever that if you are so good at it why did you not build up an impressive company and leading it? All you are doing is just talk talk and talk (and some Powerpoints and excel sheets). At the end of it they made money and went off.

I firmly believe that people who are passionate about something, be it camera or bike or Jeep, should be the ones leading at front for that product.

Anyone remember John Sculley? A well adorned MBA who led Apple to ruin?

I digress. I am out.
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