Here are the coolest muscle cars ever made by AMC
Born from a merger between Nash-Kelvinator Corporation and Hudson Motor Car Company in 1954, AMC produced high-performance muscle cars before packing up. At its peak, it followed only Ford, Chrysler and General Motors; but by their side, he made a name for himself. Although the automaker has had many cars in its lineup, many people forget that AMC has had its great luck with muscle cars.
Faced with fierce competition from the Detroit Big Three and the inconvenience of operating on a tight budget, AMC could yet create timeless classic cars. By thinking differently, AMC’s designers were able to develop innovative designs that were years ahead of what other automakers were offering. Before its demise in 1988, AMC built several muscle cars that could stand up to the big guys. Here we take a look at some of AMC’s coolest muscle cars.
Hurst AMC Super Stock AMX
The AMC Super Stock AMX was a high-performance version of the AMX 390 designed for the racetrack in 1969. Under the hood, it housed a 6.4-liter V8 engine fitted and tuned to produce 340 hp.
Tipping the scales at just 3,050 pounds, the Super Stock AMX could cover the quarter mile in 10.7 seconds at 128 mph. Distinguished by its blue, white and red color, the $ 5,994 was an excellent muscle car and the fastest built by AMC.
AMC Esprit AMX
The Spirit AMX, built for the 1979 and 1980 model years, was a performance version of the AMC Spirit. Although it was introduced to invoke the earlier AMX models, it was also the last model to carry the AMX brand name.
In 1979, a pair of Spirit AMX became the first American brand to participate in the 24 Hours of the Nürburgring. Thanks to extraordinary engineering and pilots who memorized the 14.1 mile track in one week, the Spirit AMX finished first and second.
AMC rebel machine
Released in 1969 as a 1970 model, the Rebel Machine was the muscle car version of the popular and already powerful AMC Rebel. Under the hood of the machine, AMC’s 6.4-liter V8 engine produces 340 hp at 5,100 rpm and 430 lb-ft at 3,600 rpm.
Driven by this powerful machine, it could hit 60 mph from rest in 6.8 seconds and complete the quarter mile in 14.4 seconds. While not among the fastest AMC muscle cars, its performance could be improved with an optional service kit.
The AMC Javelin was AMC’s attempt to capture market share in a segment dominated by the Ford Mustang and the Chevrolet Camaro. Built and marketed from 1968 to 1974, the Javelin was powered by a choice of several competent V8 engines over two generations.
A high performance edition (the AMX) was added to the Javelin range for the second generation, which featured several modifications for racing success. Compared to the main competitors in the market, the Javelin offered a more spacious rear compartment and a more affordable price.
The AMC Marlin, which began life as Rambler Marlin, was announced in February 1965 and unveiled a month later in a high-profile event. Marketed as a personal luxury car, the Marlin had a quiet interior built with high quality materials and equipped with features such as center armrests and air conditioning.
Aside from an official rebranding and a price cut to increase sales, the Marlin didn’t undergo many changes in 1966. However, the 1967 model got 6.5 inches in length and a new engine lineup. V8.
AMC Hurst SC / Rambler
Resulting from the collaboration between AMC and Hurst Performance, the AMC Hurst SC / Rambler, produced in 1969, was based on the AMC “junior cars” platform. Built as a dragstrip competitor, it got the biggest engine available – a 6.4-liter AMC V8 capable of delivering 315 hp.
Paired with a four-speed manual transmission with a Hurst shifter, it sent the SC / Rambler to 60 mph in 6.3 s and through the quarter mile in 14.3 seconds. The price started at just $ 2,998 for a car that could show off its taillights to most muscle cars of the day.
Launched in February 1975, the AMC Pacer became an instant hit during the energy crisis, and 143,528 units were sold in the first year, making it one of the best cars produced by AMC. Unusually in design, the Pacer was wider than its competition and had a huge glass area which improved visibility and overall weight.
The base I-6 engine was underpowered compared to a weight of over 3,000 pounds, hence the need for a 5-liter V8 in 1978. Due to increasing competition from more efficient Japanese and German brands , demand for the Pacer declined rapidly, and production finally ceased in December 1979.
AMC Hornet 360
The AMC Hornet, introduced in 1969 for the 1970 model year, began life as a compact family car at $ 1,994. In 1971, the muscle car version, the SC360, was introduced and was powered by AMC’s 5.9-liter V8 producing 245 ponies in standard form.
Optional in the SC360 was a Hurst four-speed manual or automatic transmission and a $ 199 “Go” package that boosted horsepower to 284 hp. With its light weight, that was enough power to take it to 60 mph in 6.7 seconds and through the quarter mile in 13.78 seconds.
Created by shortening the AMC Hornet, the AMC Gremlin was introduced in April 1970. The Gremlin was priced at $ 1,879 for the two-seater and $ 1,959 for the four-seater. One of AMC’s most successful nameplates, 671,475 units of the Gremlin were produced in one generation until the AMC spirit succeeded.
In 1972, AMC gave the Gremlin the “muscle car treatment” by stuffing a 5-liter V8 engine in the hood. Even with the detuned 150 hp engine, the AMC was still faster than other subcompact cars on the market.
The Matador was a line of mid-size and full-size cars produced by AMC over two generations from 1970 to 1978. Built to succeed the AMC Rebel and the AMC Ambassador (in 1974), the Matador came with several options. engine.
With the optional “Machine Go package,” available only with the 5.9L and 6.6L V8s, the Matador performed exactly like the Rebel Machine. It was popular with law enforcement as it could accelerate to 60 mph in 6.5 seconds and had a top speed of 144 mph.
It’s been over three decades since AMC passed away, and the memories of all of the company’s cool muscle car accomplishments have faded.
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