This Unique Collection of AMC Muscle Cars Took 30 Years To Become Complete

When talking about classics from the muscle car era, we usually think about vehicles made by Ford Motor Company, General Motors, and Chrysler Corporation. And that's not surprising given that these Detroit-based giants built the most iconic muscle cars out there.
AMC muscle car collection 14 photos
Photo: If This Car Could Talk/YouTube
AMC muscle car collectionAMC muscle car collectionAMC muscle car collection1969 AMC SS/AMX1969 AMC SS/AMX1969 AMC SC/Rambler1969 AMC SC/Rambler1969 AMC SC/Rambler1969 AMC SC/Rambler1970 AMC Trans-Am Javelin1970 AMC Trans-Am Javelin1970 AMC Rebel The Machine1970 AMC Rebel The Machine
Ford gave us not only the Mustang, but also beefed-up versions of the Fairlane and Torino. Chevrolet offered the Camaro, Chevelle, and Corvette, while Pontiac built the iconic GTO and the Firebird. Then we have Plymouth's Road Runner and Barracuda, as well as a handful of Dodge muscle cars, including the Charger, Challenger, and Coronet.

The list is obviously much longer than that. Chrysler as a brand also built a few beefed-up cars back in the day, as did Oldsmobile and Mercury. But there's one automaker we tend to forget. I'm talking about American Motors, the corporation that came to be in 1954, when Nash-Kelvinator merged with the Hudson Motor Car Company.

Now mostly known as the company that made the Jeep brand successful, AMC has many other achievements to brag about. Yes, it wasn't exactly successful against the Big Three sales-wise, but it kickstarted the midsize car segment and it built a few innovative cars. And yes, AMC also went against Ford, GM, and Chrysler in the muscle car market.

Not only that, but it also built quite a few special-edition vehicles that are worthy of a spot next to gems like the Ford Mustang Cobra Jet, Chevrolet Camaro Z28, or the Dodge Challenger R/T. Heck, AMC was also the only company to make a competitor for the Chevrolet Corvette. And like most Detroit-based carmakers, it also built drag-spec Super Stock rigs.

Photo: If This Car Could Talk/YouTube
These AMCs don't get as much love as they deserve from the muscle car community, but some enthusiasts hunt them down, restore them, and put them back on the road. Dan Curtis of AZ AMC Restorations is one of those guys and the proud owner of a unique collection of American Motors muscle cars.

And by "unique" I mean it's the only known AMC stash to include all limited-edition red/white/blue muscle cars built by the company in 1969 and 1970. There's only five of them, but these muscle cars are as rare as AMCs get, and it took Dan a whopping 30 years to get them. And thanks to YouTube's "If This Car Could Talk," we have the rare opportunity to see them parked in the same place.

The showcase kicks off with the 1969 AMC SS/AMX, a factory-built dragster for Super Stock classes. One of only 52 cars made, it's the rarest AMC in Dan's collection. It's also the final SS/AMX built and a three-time NHRA Northwest Regional Championship winner. Recovered after it's been sitting in a shipping container for nearly 30 years, the car was restored to its championship-winning specifications.

Dan also owns a couple of SC/Rambler specials. Also built in cooperation with Hurst, just like the SS/AMX, this beefed-up Rambler was designed for public roads, but it came with a long list of race-honed features.

1969 AMC SC/Rambler
Photo: If This Car Could Talk/YouTube
The package included a limited-slip differential, race-spec mirrors, Magnum 500 steel wheels, and, more importantly, a 390-cubic-inch (6.4-liter) V8 rated at 315 horsepower. Impressively enough, Dan owns both the "A scheme" and "B scheme" versions of the SC/Rambler.

The differences are only visual, though. While the "A scheme" car features red side panels and a blue arrow and lettering on the hood, the "B scheme" version sports thin blue and red stripes on the lower fenders and doors. The latter is the rarest, at 297 units built, while the former was sold in a little more than 1,200 examples.

Next up, there's a 1970 Trans-Am Javelin, one of only 100 cars built to commemorate AMC's entry into SCCA Trans-Am racing. If you're not familiar with the series, AMC scored second place in 1970 and went on to win the championship in 1971 and 1972 (and then again in 1976).

Finished in the team's distinctive Matador Red, Frost White, and Commodore Blue paint scheme, the road-going model was fitted with several heavy-duty and performance parts, as well as a 390-cubic-inch (6.4-liter) V8 rated at 325 horsepower. Only 50 of these Javelins are known to exist, so this two-door muscle car is the second-rarest AMC out there.

1970 AMC Rebel The Machine
Photo: If This Car Could Talk/YouTube
Finally, Dan's collection also includes what has to be the most iconic high-performance AMC model, The Machine. Based on the AMC Rebel, it was introduced for the 1970 model year as a spiritual successor to the 1969 SC/Rambler. It features a similar paint job and a sportier exterior, heavy-duty suspension, and a massaged 390-cubic-inch V8. The latter came with 340 horsepower on tap, making The Machine the most powerful AMC at the time.

While not as rare as the other AMCs seen here, The Machine is quite scarce too, with only 2,326 built. While AMC also offered the beefed-up Rebel in solid colors, the red/white/blue version is by far the most desirable. Check out this cool collection in the video below.

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About the author: Ciprian Florea
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Ask Ciprian about cars and he'll reveal an obsession with classics and an annoyance with modern design cues. Read his articles and you'll understand why his ideal SUV is the 1969 Chevrolet K5 Blazer.
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