1981 Jeep CJ7 Renegade


  • Fully restored example
  • Stylish Denim Edition
  • Great looking model with off-road capabilities

The Appeal

The longer option in the Jeep CJ line up, the CJ-7 is able to accommodate an automatic transmission. This particular 1981 model makes full use of that making it a more useable example of Jeep four-by-four. 

Sporting the funky Denim Edition nameplate, the car boasts a denim soft top and seats which are sure to fit in perfectly on the glamorous streets of your local city. Though with a beefy 4.2-litre engine and large tyres, this Jeep CJ-7 Renegade will surely be equally as comfortable on the most secluded of off-road tracks.

Imported in 1995 from the US, it underwent an extensive restoration between 2012 and 2017 when the current owner first bought it. Since then, it has covered minimal miles and is ready to make the most of its restoration.

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History and Paperwork

  • Produced in 1981 in US
  • Imported to UK in 1995
  • Current owner has owned the car since 2012
  • Extensive tub off, ground up restoration
  • Just 216 miles in five years
  • Long MOT – until July 2023
  • Many pictures of restoration included in sale

The Interior

  • Denim Edition: Denim upholstery
  • Excellent overall condition
  • Various aftermarket modernisations

Built to the Denim Edition specification, much of this 1981 Jeep CJ-7’s upholstery is denim such as the seat covers and the soft top roof. As standard, the car would also have denim accents on the dashboard, though these have been replaced with a carbon fibre look vinyl.

Thanks to the extensive inside and out restoration, the interior looks in excellent shape overall. The whole shell inside was sprayed with white Protecta-Kote while the dashboard was repaired. New door cards were fitted as was a new windscreen including the frame.

Throughout the interior are elements that have been added or modernised. A dashcam, USB charging ports and additional controls have been added. Some of the gauges have been updated though the owner informs us they can be temperamental. 

Some stitching on the passenger seat has started failing. For the most part however, the car looks to be in great shape from the inside.

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The Exterior

  • Replaced or reconditioned fixtures
  • Chassis protected from corrosion
  • Hard top and denim soft top included in sale

With the owner originally planning to wrap the vehicle, the paintwork has some imperfections and the Renegade motif on the bonnet has not been replaced. Elsewhere though, the car is in great condition with all fixtures being either replaced or reconditioned during the restoration process.

Underneath, much of the chassis was cut and MIG welded to remove any trace of corrosion while many coats of rust protection have been applied. 

In a similar ethos to the interior, the body has been tweaked with the likes of stainless-steel side steps and a reinforced spare wheel carrier. Furthermore, this CJ-7 comes with an additional hard top finished in black contrasting with the car’s white colour. The roof has been fitted with a new tie down cargo system and trolley wheels making moving it much easier.

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The Mechanics

  • Beefy 4.2-litre inline-six engine
  • Automatic transmission with high and low range transfer box
  • Many modernising modifications

Both the interior and exterior set the tone for this car and the running gear certainly follows the trend of a thoroughly refreshed model. The fuel and braking systems have had their lines replaced with copper ones while the whole engine was stripped and reconditioned, and an auxiliary fuel pump was also fitted.

Once moved to the UK, the emissions devices fitted for Californian law were removed and a new exhaust was fitted. Underneath, many of the mountings and couplings surrounding the drivetrain have been replaced so have the leaf springs.

The large gas-guzzling 4.2-litre straight-six is connected to an automatic transmission featuring a 4-high, 4-low, 2-high transfer box. Factor in the large diameter wheels and you have yourself an extremely capable off-roader.

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Having undergone and extremely thorough restoration including various enhancements, this 1981 Jeep CJ-7 is surely one of the best around mechanically. Fitted with denim upholstery on the seats and soft-top roof in keeping with the Denim Edition, this is a car you won’t see many other examples of, especially in the UK.

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1981
  • Make Jeep
  • Model CJ7 Renegade Denim
  • Colour White
  • Odometer 55,140 Miles
  • Engine size 4228
  • Town Warrington
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Private
  • Location Cheshire
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
24 bids
  • miller.•••• £7,700 06/10/22
  • stefan.•••• £7,500 06/10/22
  • Andrewk•••• £7,200 06/10/22
  • miller.•••• £7,000 06/10/22
  • Jcbauto•••• £6,700 06/10/22
  • Rs brot•••• £6,600 06/10/22
  • paul-pa•••• £6,500 06/10/22
  • stefan.•••• £6,400 06/10/22
  • miller.•••• £6,000 06/10/22
  • Jcbauto•••• £5,700 06/10/22

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