Tag Archives: amc

Holy crap, I think that car might have been mine!

My one shot at a collector car

promotional model cars, AMX, AMC, American MotorsCame in 1987 while living in Green Bay. I always kept an eye out in the papers, this was before that interweb thing got big, looking for, well, I wasn’t sure. Then, bingo, a 1970 AMX was for sale in Milwaukee similar to the image of this model I built to remind myself about the experience. I had to have it. Never mind I hadn’t even seen it yet. They seller didn’t want too much for it, $2,500, which should have been a red flag, but I was laser focused. I needed fast cash since I didn’t have that much saved up and this was an impulse purchase so I went to my local bank Continue reading Holy crap, I think that car might have been mine!

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Almost $1M for an AMC

I’m a pretty happy AMC fan this morning!

gooding & company, gooding's auctions, amx 3, american motors, amx, amc
Photo: Gooding & Company

That’s because last night at the Gooding & Company auction in Scottsdale, AZ  this AMX 3 sold for $891,000 setting a new world record price for an American Motors creation. More than other cars in the auction like a 1935 Auburn 851 SC Boattail Speedster which sold for $693,000 but not as high as the top seller, a 1925 Bugatti Type 35 Grand Prix hammering for $3,300,000. Continue reading Almost $1M for an AMC

Chasing Classic Cars: Not your father’s Pacer

The Racer Pacer

amc pacer, american motors, cab-forward designI had never heard of this before my dad gave me a book to read “The Cars of American Motors”, by Marc Cranswick, McFarland Publishing. The “this” were not the Pacers that rolled off the assembly line in Kenosha, WI. I had one, just like this, a 1975 with a 258. My buddies and I tailgate with this at Milwaukee Brewer games and made a trip to Cleveland in it to visit a friend going to John Carroll University. Side note: Bob Hope was the commencement speaker. What fun. Named it the Astrodome or Astro for short. Later I sold it to my buddy who went to school in Cleveland after he graduated. Sorry Joe but it was good when I had it. The AMC Pacer was built between 1975 and 1980 and was the first modern mass-produced, U.S. automobile design using the cab forward concept. AMC marketed it as “the first wide small car.” Later in the production run a 304 V8 was an option.

Enter Carl Green Enterprises (CGE) who took the Pacers which came with the 304 and dropped in AMC’s 401 along with some other mods. Swapping out engines was no big deal because the blocks were the same size. Here is where the magic started. Green loved the Pacer because its design was a breath of fresh air Continue reading Chasing Classic Cars: Not your father’s Pacer

Barn Find for AMC Enthusiasts

More like a closet find

I love American Motors’ products. Part of my sickness comes from my dad working for the company. Sure they had the clunkers but also had some cool cars. Dad brought home tons of stuff and now it’s time to thin things out a bit.

amc promo model cars, amc ambassador, american motors, amcamc brouchures, amc press kits, amc collector itemsMy collection includes full-line catalogues mostly from the 70’s and 80’s. Dad would bring them home, I’d page through them and throw them in a box. I even have some super-rare Press Kits.

My promo model collects has a little bit of everything. What I’m offering up are a couple of Javelins, AMX’s, and an Ambassador still with the hood ornament on it. Rare. So check out this micro site I put up and then let’s talk.1970 amx, amx promotional model cars, amc javelin promo model, amc , american motors

Chasing Classic Cars: One-of-a-kinds

Rare cars that pop up from time to time

AMC Project IV cars, one of a kind cars, chasing classic carsone-of-a-kind concept cars, chasing classic cars, amc, amxHave you ever seen a car, in person, and it was the only one made? When I was a kid my dad would take me to the Chicago Auto Show. He got the tickets when he worked at American Motors and that was our first stop. There I saw their Project IV cars developed in 1966 for consumer research. Of the four only one still exists, the AMX. It’s an amazing story of how it survived. A factory worker ran into AMC’s then president William Luneburg and simply asked for it. Read this amazing story from Hemmings Classic Car by clicking here.

Richard Teague: Styling Genius

AMX/3, amx, american motors, concept cars amx/3, amx, american motors, concept carsSales of the AMX were not quite what AMC execs were hoping for but one of the legends of automotive styling was busy designing the next generation of the AMX, the AMX/3, Richard Teague. The body mold was sent to Italian GT maker Giotto Bizzarrini, whose Turin facility hand-made drivable mid-engined, steel bodied cars. Built on a 105.3-inch wheelbase, the Bizzarrini prototypes used the AMC 390 cu in V8 and an Italian OTO Melara four-speed transaxle. Road testing went well and test drivers declared the AMX/3’s chassis one of the stiffest and most neutral handling they had ever tested. AMC had originally ordered 30 but only five were built and two know to be in existence. Read more about them here.

What the 1971 AMX could have looked like

1971 amx, amx, american motors, concept carsRichard Teague wanted the two-seat version to continue and received permission to build one-off the redesigned Javelin but it never made it into production. Too bad. I have seen this car. It’s owned by long-time American Motors Owners Association member Mike Spangler. I found this article which gives the whole story.

Alternative fuel before it was in fashion

chrysler-turbineHere’s another one I saw, the Chrysler Turbine, as clear as it was just yesterday, at the intersection of 84th and Bluemound here in Milwaukee. First off, it looked cool, nothing else like it on the road, and sounded cool with the turbine humming. Chrysler build 55 of these cars from 62-64 in what was first and only consumer test ever conducted of gas turbine-powered cars. When the test was done all but a hand full were destroyed. Seems the legal guys get their underwear in a bundle about letting the public keep concept cars. The best-known car guy with tons of recognition is Jay Leno who owns a Chrysler Turbine and drives it. See more here in this Jay’s Garage video

Concept cars have a long history

RM AuctionsNow here’s a really cool one this Lincoln Indianapolis (photo credit: RM Auctions) created in 1955 by Carrozzeria Boano, using the chassis and running gear from the 1955 Lincoln. The only time it was shown to the public as a new concept study was at the 1955 Turin Motor Show.

Last time seen just over a month ago at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, where it previously appeared back in 2001 and took home the first place for Postwar Custom Coachwork class. It at the 2005 Greenwich Concours d’Elegance in Connecticut, where it just about stole the show at a recent appearance at Pebble, one of its few public outings. Want it? Well, you’re too late because it was sold at auction for 1.5 million bucks.

RM Auctions1955-Lincoln-Indianapolis-design-study

The concept car list goes on

I’ve only scratched the surface on these rare cars. This blog entry could go on for a long time. I found some interesting pictures on this Pinterest Board. Cool “What If” cars.

Chasing Classic Cars: An AMC family reunion

One big happy family of car guys

No mater what car(s) you collect you probably belong to an owners group. It’s a great place for the owners to get together and show off their pride and joy, swap stories, or maybe event parts. But unless your group is located near where your car was built, you probably won’t run into many guys who worked at the factory or their dad did.

The pride of Kenosha

amc, rambler, car collectors, car clubs, kenosha, chasing classic carsSo for our followers, you already know I have a fondness for American Motors‘ cars, mostly because my dad worked there for over 27 years. So I go to this car show the other night and see some familiar cars, a couple of Ambassadors and a Hurst S/C Rambler. Of course I go up and talk to the owners and we eventually get talking how they came to collecting AMC cars. It’s because our dads worked there. Even though it was a long time ago, we start playing the game, hey did your dad know…..? But most important since every car has a story we spent most of our time on that. Check out the video. Hey, maybe your dad, or uncle, or mom worked there.

Die-cast: Ford Country Squire, AMC Pacer

PremiumX models offer good detail at modest price

 In 1964 I was nine and car crazy, like a lot of other kids my age then, and now.

IXO's PremiumX line includes a variety of  U.S. models.
IXO’s PremiumX line includes a variety of U.S. models.

But in the ‘60s cars changed virtually every year, with some sort of styling update, from headlights, to taillights to trim and accessories to make them look slightly updated. Ah, the good ol’ days!I was part of the Baby Boom that made station wagons one of the hottest selling car styles, and one of the more popular ones was Ford’s Country Squire, with its fake wood trim down the full length of the car. Up top, usually a chrome roof rack, set to hold the family suitcases for that trip to Wally World, er Disneyland, or maybe a national park for camping.

Now IXO, long known for its excellent racing models from F1 to LeMans racers, plunges into the American car market with its PremiumX lineup that includes a 1964 Country Squire, along with a variety of other someone obscure models. For instance, I also received a yellow 1975 AMC Pacer X for review, and there are few cars as odd as the Pacer. Continue reading Die-cast: Ford Country Squire, AMC Pacer