The original Jeep's specification was drawn up in July 1940, when the United States Army let it be known to 135 potential suppliers that it needed a "Light reconnaissance vehicle" to assume duties previously undertaken by modified cars and motorcycles. Ref. Source 5
On Thursday, Jeep fans everywhere had a reason to celebrate: the Jeep was patented 75 years ago on April 7th, 1941. The actual production of the first American Jeep was a joint effort, with American Bantam creating the winning design and receiving Ref. Source 9h.