The Cars of American Motors

An Illustrated History


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About the Book

Though American Motors never approached the size of Detroit’s Big Three, it produced a long series of successful cars that were distinctive, often innovative and in many cases influential. This history examines AMC’s cars from the company’s formation in 1954 through its absorption by Chrysler in 1987. The Gremlin, Pacer and Eagle vehicles are examined in detail, as are the AMC custom cars of George Barris and Carl Green. The text details AMC’s 1980s involvement with the French firm Renault and the design legacy of that joint venture, which includes the Hummer. The evolution of Jeep is covered from the 1960s through the 2000s.
Features include some 225 photographs; a listing of AMC / Rambler clubs, organizations and business entities, with contact details; tables of detailed specifications and performance data; data on technical devices, trim packages and all model variations; a comprehensive account of AMC / Rambler appearances in film, television and cartoons.

About the Author(s)

Marc Cranswick is an artist and historian with a history of involvement with car clubs and the hobby of classic car ownership. He has written extensively on high performance German cars.

Bibliographic Details

Marc Cranswick
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 364
Bibliographic Info: 222 photos (27 in color), appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012
pISBN: 978-0-7864-4672-8
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8570-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Foreword: My AMC Days by Carl Green      viii

Introduction: AMC—Ahead of the Game      1

1. Economy, a Survival Recipe      3

2. The Transition from Thrift      18

3. Being One of the Big 4      74

4. Big and Small—Gremlin to Ambassador      147

Between pages 176 and 177 are 12 color plates containing 27 photographs

5. AMC—The Small Car Company      177

6. Bricklin, Gremlin and Jeep      227

7. The Spirit of Hornet Goes Off-Road      247

8. Kenosha Serves Cafe au Lait!      279

Appendix A: Selected American Motors Model Specification Tables      321

Appendix B: AMC Organizations      325

Chapter Notes      327

Bibliography      331

Index      333

Book Reviews & Awards

“a must for any automobile enthusiast who wants to learn more about the place of American Motors in twentieth century American history”—Midwest Book Review.