Promo Model: ’64 Classic 770 Cross Country Wagon

1964-Rambler-Classic-Cross-Country, AMC wagons, american motors, AMC, SavageOnWheels.com
Photo courtesy: AutoWeek

Like any car guy I subscribe to a lot of newsletters. I like to keep up on what’s new, what’s cool, what’s fast:), and collector cars, mostly from the the 60’s and 70’s. This week I received my AutoWeek newsletter, parused it, and low and behold came across this car. Now of course being an AMC geek I took a closer look at the ’64 Classic 770 Cross Country wagon. Since it usually was cash-strapped, AMC knew the could not go head to head with GM, Ford, and Chrysler so they found a segment the Big Three weren’t in. BTW, did you know that in 1962, Rambler was N0. 1 in station wagon sales?

This ’64 was built on the new Classic, which debuted in 1963, and was named the Motor Trend Car of The Year. The new Classic/Ambassador series was the third all-new Rambler and the second of true midsize proportions.  AMC stretched the standard wheelbase from 108 inches to 112 inches, while reducing overall length by almost an inch making for a lower, more modern profile. The wagon accounted for 34 percent of Classic sales. As a point of reference, the Audi A4 rides on a 110 wheelbase while the Cadillac CTS rides on 113 inch wheelbases.
1964 Rambler Classic Cross County Wagon, AMC, AMC station wagons, American Motors, SavageOnWheels.com
’64 ad from my collection

Like a lot of AMC cars it featured lots of innovations such as curved side glass, an industry first for any car outside the luxury class which contributed to a sophisticated look that was supposed to last a decade. “Uniside” construction, which reduced body stampings by 30 percent. Door openings were welded from two stampings rather than 52. All of this reduced the weight as much as 150 pounds for some models. Dual-circuit brakes, soon required on all cars, were carried over from ’62. In my research for this article, besides the ad on the left, I was able to find a radio spot done by Phyllis Diller. She sounds so young.

In the AutoWeek article by John F. Katz on 10/08/2012, he says the example above belongs to Bruce Ritchie, the second owner, “despite 72,000 original miles, seems to have time-warped directly from the Atlantic City showroom where it was sold brand-new. Look past the rocket-age instrument panel, and you see an interior that’s well-appointed and more upmarket in appearance than almost any contemporary midsize car. The seats are flat and soft, and the steering wheel large and close, but those quirks belong as much to the time as to this particular vehicle. The 196-cid, 127-hp overhead-valve six idles in silence and accelerates with a happy thrum. The steering is predictably linear, while the soft all-coil suspension convincingly replicates the ride (and body roll) of a much larger car. But that was precisely the Rambler’s appeal: big-car comfort and style at 23 mpg.” according to Katz.

While this is not a hot collectible, it is affordable. The car’s original list price was $3,233 and examples like this will go for around $7,900. Best of all, parts are available, and all one has to do is join one of the collector clubs, like the American Motors Owners Association, to find out where they are.

promo models, dealer promotional model cars, 1964 Rambler Cross County wagon, American Motors, AMC, SavageOnWheels.compromo models, dealer promotional model cars, 1964 Rambler Cross County wagon, American Motors, AMC, SavageOnWheels.comSo here’s my promo model, a two-tone, white over maroon. I’ve had this car for a very long time as you can see by the dust on it. I’m not sure if it was one my dad brought home when he worked at AMC or I bought it at a swap. I do remember seeing these at swap meets. Examples of good ones like mine go for around $50. I was only able to see one on eBay and the current bid was around $35. I did see a ’63 Classic Sedan with a current bid of $90. I have one of them too. A few years back, my dad and I were at the American Motors Owners Association event in Kenosha, where most of the AMC’s were built, and there were some vendors selling the promo models. I was talking to a couple of guys, one who was into collecting promo models year by year and all the colors they came in while the other was collecting just the wagons which I have. Thinking back now to when I was kid, dad brought some many promo models home, many free while some others he paid 2 bucks for, 2 bucks! Quite a few of those were either burned or blown up in my driveway.
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My resume

PAUL DANIEL

262.844.5737 – paulgeorgedaniel@gmail.com – Pewaukee, WI.

http://www.linkedin.com/in/danielpaulg

My Digital Resume: http://bit.ly/DigitalMarketingPro

Senior-Level Marketing Leader, Emerging Digital Technologies/Interactive Marketing/

Integrated Marketing/Brand Management/Project Management

 Career Overview

Craftsman of award-winning marketing programs with an extensive digital toolbox utilized to create and execute high ROI partnerships with some of the world’s most recognized and valuable brands. Highly regarded leader ahead of the trends. Skilled in evaluating brand needs and implementing strategies that increase revenue and brand awareness. Developed a reputation of consistently looking at marketing opportunities from a fresh perspective to achieve corporate objects. Extensive experience in magazine publishing, broadcast, retail/consumer goods and services, healthcare, and automotive. Areas of expertise:

»       Integrated Marketing»       Branding

»       Strategic Planning

»       Digital Marketing Strategy

»       Project Management

 

»       Social Media Marketing»       Research/Data Analysis

»       Experiential Marketing

»       Viral Marketing

»       Partnership Development

 

Career Highlights

Owner, GrowBizGrow

Pewaukee, WI, 2011 to present

Through research discovered an opportunity to develop web sites for small businesses whose owners do not have the time, or the knowledge, to develop their brand in the digital spaces. Utilizing the latest web technologies, I work with the owner to set goals and then create a site that reflects their business’s personality. Services include all SEO and training on how to maintain their site with the content management system. Current clients include SavageOnWheels.com (niche car review site), AAEN Performance Parts (aftermarket snowmobile manufacture), Cardiff Hills (marketing firm), and the Flying Electrons (a radio control flying club).

»   Researched and developed a niche car review blog site that includes car reviews but also content the major car sites do not have such as reviews of diecast models, slot cars, and promotional model cars. Built on the WordPress platform created branding and marketing plan that includes SEO, social and content marketing.

Marketing Manager/Digital Partnerships/U.S. Brands

Reader’s Digest Association, Greendale, WI, 2009 to 2011          

Assumed total responsibilities in most recent position which was previously held by three managers (Senior Digital Marketing Manager, VP-Circulation, CMO). Developed performance-based partnerships for Taste of Home, The Family Handyman, and Every Day with Rachael Ray brands for a global media and direct marketing company, which connects more than 145 million consumers around the world with products and services from trusted brands. Collaborated with cross-discipline teams, served as project manager.

»   Developed partnership business model utilizing digital and print assets, executed program, and campaign analysis. Upon completion briefed VP-Consumer Marketing and CMO to determine the viability of the program. Successes were shared with the global best practices team.

»   Forged multi-channel partnership with Macy’s; instrumental in building a new brand through largest annual store event held in multiple major metropolitan markets. Digital assets, websites, e-mail, social while print assets included, print ads and point of purchase. Partnership realized in a 20% increase in the brand’s website traffic (comScore) and subscriptions.

»   Implemented plan to effectively increase revenue by partnering with global consumer goods and services companies, which shared similar demographics with selected Reader’s, Digest brands. Targeted decision makers, negotiated agreements, executed digital plans, resulting in a $100K (500%) increase year over year.

»   Collaborated across disciplines including, circulation marketing, digital, editorial, and sales in executing successful partnerships with, Army and Air Force Exchange, Ancestry.com, Groupon, Macy’s, and Rue La La.

»   Aligned brands with partners in the retail, CPG, utilizing digital spaces, web, social, mobile and e-mail after extensive research.

Group Circulation Manager

Kalmbach Publishing Company, Waukesha, WI, 2007 to 2009

Developed marketing strategies and plans utilizing digital media, direct mail, and partnership marketing for the leading global publisher of special interest/hobbyist magazines. Managed the marketing for four of the company’s 14 magazines, which generated over $4 million in annual revenue.

»   Managed execution of customized marketing programs and budgets. Achieved circulation and profitability goals for assigned magazines, three of which are global category leaders.

»   Analyzed web metrics (Google) and successfully re-launched two magazines websites. Utilizing the latest web technology surpassing circulation revenue goals. In three months, one magazine realized a 45% increase in subscription revenue while the other increased by 50%.

Marketing Director

Laacke & Joys, Milwaukee, WI, 1999 to 2007                                                   

Accountable for positioning, marketing, digital media, market research, public relations, and point of purchase promotions. Recruited to refocus marketing efforts, reverse a flat sales trend, and increase awareness of Wisconsin’s largest independent outdoor specialty retailer.

»   Researched available options for the company’s first e-commerce platform, developed marketing/search engine strategy, and with input from the buyer’s group selected products. Because it was positioned as a niche site, traffic and sales grew 19% faster than projected and within a year generated profits significant enough to begin adding additional staff.

»   Developed a consumer loyalty program through collaboration with cross-functional areas. Crafted marketing plan for launch utilizing multi-channel delivery tactics to deliver messaging and drive memberships. Leveraged e-mails captured from new members; deployed message about upcoming sales event that led to a 15% increase in revenue.

Director, Communications and Marketing

Curative Care Network, Milwaukee, WI, 1996 to 1999

Hired as Director of Public Relations to manage all internal and external communications for the largest tertiary care provider in Southeastern Wisconsin. Within a year was promoted to Director, Communications, acquiring additional duties in developing branding campaigns. Created the organizations first website creatively implementing interactive features.

EDUCATION

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee, WI, Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications

EDUCATION

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee, WI, Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications

AWARDS

Public Relations Society of America-Wisconsin Chapter: Four Excellence Awards and Two Awards of Merit • American Hospital Association: Banner Award • Wisconsin Healthcare Public Relations & Marketing Society: Excellence Award and Two Awards of Merit • Healthcare Marketing Report: Gold Award, Bronze Award and Certificate of Merit

2012 Hyundai Equus Signature

Full-size luxury has a new name – Equus – and plenty of ponies

Hyundai’s full-size Equus is a fine luxury car with one major drawback, the Hyundai name.

Unlike Honda and its Acura line or Toyota’s Lexus or Nissan’s Infiniti, Hyundai has chosen to simply offer its luxury liner as an extension of its standard line. Thus the Hyundai Equus Signature edition that I tested proudly wears its parent company’s name along with a $59,650 price tag. Continue reading 2012 Hyundai Equus Signature

2012 Nissan Murano SV AWD

Luxurious crossover, quiet comfortable family mover

A lot of time has passed since I last tested Nissan’s fine Murano crossover, yet it remains a solid, quiet, comfortable family mover.Nissan Murano exterior

While many folks buy this in front-drive form, Nissan says, I had the next to top level SL model with AWD. That means it goes for nearly $41 grand, which seems high, until you consider many other crossovers with luxury leanings.

The tested dark metallic blue Murano started at $38,000 and ended up $40,855 with mainly a navigation system upgrade adding to the price. If price is a concern, start shopping at the S level, which begins at $29,960 for front-drive and $31,560 for AWD. There are four trim levels, the top, LE, going for $40,560 with AWD. Continue reading 2012 Nissan Murano SV AWD

Diecast: CMC Ferrari 250 California

CMC’s Ferrari detail excels, including first working trunk latch

There are few, if any, models in the die-cast world as finely made as those produced by CMC. And while pricey, they are well worth the cost for serious, selective collectors.Ferrari 250 California convertible

Consider that the new 1:18 Ferrari 250 California is hand-assembled from 1,634 individual parts including wire-spoked wheels with aluminum rims, each spoke hand-mounted with a single nipple and each tire has a valve stem. Wiring and other under-hood detailing is exquisite and realistic looking, as is the car’s underside. No corners are cut here, thus the premium price tag. Continue reading Diecast: CMC Ferrari 250 California

Promo model: The Edsel

The aim was right, well sort of

Edsel Convertible
Edsel Convertible (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ford invested $400,000,000 in its development and those were mid-5o’s numbers. Can you imagine what that would have taken in today’s dollars? Yikes. It would be enough to bankrupt a car maker. The Edsel is most famous for being a marketing disaster and the name “Edsel” became synonymous with commercial failure, and similar ill-fated products. Since the Edsel program was such a debacle, it gave marketers a vivid illustration of how not to market a product.

The public also had difficulty understanding what the Edsel was, primarily because Ford made the mistake of pricing the Edsel within another of its car lines, Mercury and its market price segment. Theoretically, the Edsel was conceived to fit into Ford’s marketing plans as the brand slotted in between Ford and Mercury. However there became issues when it was priced to close to the best-trimmed Ford sedan and $63 less than Mercury’s base model. In its mid-range pricing, Edsel’s Pacer and Corsair models were more expensive than their Mercury counterparts. Edsel’s top-of-the-line Citation four-door hardtop model was the only model priced to correctly compete with Mercury’s mid-range Montclair Turnpike Cruiser model. The Edsel was produced from 1957 to 1959 although some models were manufactured that borrowed heavily on other Fords and most notably the horse collar grill.

Edsel Ranger
Edsel Ranger (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Edsel did however offer several innovative features, among which were its “rolling dome” speedometer, warning lights for such conditions as low oil level, parking brake engaged, and engine overheating, as well as its Push-button Teletouch transmission shifting system in the center of the steering wheel. Other unique features included ergonomically designed controls for the driver and self-adjusting brakes, offered such advanced safety features as seat belts (which were available at extra cost as optional equipment on many other makes) and child-proof rear door locks that could only be opened with the key. I remember my dad taking me down to the dealership when I was a kid and vividly remember the push button transmission shift.

Even though the car bombed, more than a half a century after its spectacular failure, the car has become a highly collectible item among vintage car hobbyists. Fewer than 10,000 Edsels survive and are considered valuable collectors’ items. A mint 1958 Citation convertible or 1960 Ranger convertible may sell for over $100,000.

Plastic scale models of all three Edsel years were produced by AMT, in its usual 1/25 scale. Both promotional and kit versions were sold.  The promo models are also considered valuable collector cars and they command premium prices today, especially the rare 1959 and 1960 models. Because of the way the models were molded, there can be some warping, especially on the earlier models. These images are from Wheat’s Nostalgia and were priced anywhere from $80 to close to $200. Not a lot of money for holding a piece of automotive history in your hand.

59 EDSEL CORSAIR HT, 58 EDSEL PACER CONV, edsel promo model, automotive marketing disasters, ford motor company, edsel
59 EDSEL CORSAIR HT,
58 EDSEL PACER CONV, edsel promo model, automotive marketing disasters, ford motor company, edsel
58 EDSEL PACER HT
58 EDSEL PACER CONV, edsel promo model, automotive marketing disasters, ford motor company, edsel
58 EDSEL PACER CONV
60 EDSEL RANGER CONV, 58 EDSEL PACER CONV, edsel promo model, automotive marketing disasters, ford motor company, edsel
60 EDSEL RANGER CONV.

2013 Acura ILX Premium

A handsome winner that slots below TSX

Acura created one of the finest entry-level sport sedans with its TSX a few years back, but now introduces another winner to slot in just under the TSX.2013 Acura ILX

For 2013 Acura rolls out the ever so slightly smaller ILX to fill the entry slot as TSX has crept up to a $31,010 base price. The new ILX wedges in at a more approachable $25,900, yet is only about 6 inches shorter overall and rides on just a 1.4-inch shorter wheelbase. In reality, this is the size that cars like the Honda Accord, Toyota Camry and Mazda 626 used to occupy before the Japanese car makers grew them to fit U.S. mid-market appetites. Continue reading 2013 Acura ILX Premium

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