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The AMX Carved Its Own Niche

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Topics:  AMC AMX

The AMX Carved Its Own Niche

William Jason
February 2, 2011

William Jason

The AMX is famous for being a touring sports car that was made by the American Motors Corporation or AMC around the years 1968 to 1970. There was a continued increase in the making of muscle cars around this time. There was also a demand for more high-performance luxury cars or GT in style and approach than the real sports car. Thus the AMX muscle car was launched to the market in order to compete with the Chevrolet Corvette, which was the only two-seater muscle car in the US during that particular period. However, the AMX really had its work cut out if it wanted to steal the spotlight from such a famous and beloved car. While it didn't succeed, the AMX did carve out a nice niche for itself.

The name AMX came from the code of 'American Motors eXperimental' that was used on a concept vehicle as well as on 2 trial products that were shown on the 'Project IV' car which was used back in 1966

The AMX engine was a high-compression medium block 390 cubic inches, with a V8 that was optional. The car offered a great performance in spite of its affordable price. Although it had proved its outstanding performance and received an overwhelming reception from the media and car enthusiasts, the sales of AMX never increased. However, the automaker had better and larger objectives - to refocus the image of AMX on quality performance as well as to attract younger customers to visit their dealer showrooms. Fortunately, these broader goals were achieved successfully.

The manufacturing of the AMX's muscle car was halted after three model years. And this resulted in the transfer of the present AMX signature design to a higher performance version of its four-seat sibling through 1974, which was known as the Javelin..

In 1965 when the original AMX models were modified by the American Motors Corporation, it was done with the use of the sophisticated styling studios under Charles Mashigan, the creative director. Robert Evans was the one who requested the AMX car to be put into the assembly immediately and this started the development programs for the production of the muscle car. Those special programs consisted of an enhanced Javelin and an entirely new car that was bodied with fiberglass. The enhanced Javelin was chosen in order to allow AMC to utilize its unibody assembly expertise and available technology to create quite an inexpensive adjustments to the Javelin.

William Jason has admired classic cars ever since he was a young child and you can read his blog at: http://musclecarmonster.com/

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