Series 01 (American, Rambler, Hornet Concord)

The Series 01 cars have been the backbone of AMC since they were introduced in 1958. They came out as a price leader value car, but ended life as a compact luxury model. There were many changes between bare bones bargain and jet-set luxury, there were even forays into performance car territory on several notable occasions (1966 Rogue 343, 1969 SC/Rambler, 1971 SC/360, 1977-78 AMX).

Without the Series 01 cars, AMC would never have survived as long as it did. They were AMCs heart and soul throughout their production span.

Continue to explore Series 01 models by clicking on the model name and year range below.

1958-60 American


1958-1960 Rambler American

1959 American Super Two Door Sedan
1959 American Super Two Door Sedan

General Information

In an unprecedented move, AMC reintroduced the 1955 100" wheelbase Nash Rambler in 1958 as the "new" Rambler American. This is the only time in automotive history that an old model has been successfully reintroduced to the general public. The U.S. was in a recession in 1958, and the American proved to be the right car at the right time. Not only was the body design reintroduced (AMC simply dusted off the old stamping dies), but the old L-head (flat head) six cylinder engine as well! This was to be a price leading economy car, what better way to get one out quickly? The new car wasn't quite an exact knock-off of the 1955 model. While the major components were identical to the 50-55 Nash Rambler, there were subtle styling differences:
  • Rear wheel wells cut out (1950-54 models had permanently "skirted" wheel openings, fronts were enlarged in 1955)
  • New wire mesh grille design
  • Fake hood scoop removed
  • Rear window enlarged
  • Trunk lid smoothed and flattened
  • Five lug hubs and wheels (1950-55 models used four lugs)
All major mechanical and body components were the same as the earlier model with the exception of the engine. The L-head had received some improvements when it was converted to an OHV configuration for the 1956 Ramblers. The main upgrade was moving the water pump from the left side of the engine (driven from an extension shaft off the back of the generator) to the front of the engine behind the fan (the older model had a fan shaft carrier bolted to the front of the engine block). Cooling was actually more even with the center of the block mounted water pump, but the long hoses required were troublesome.

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Body Styles And Trim Levels

There were three trim levels and three body styles available. The body styles and trim levels can be determined from the model number on the Unit Body Identification Plate. The body styles and trim levels are:
  • 2 door sedan in "Business", Deluxe, Super, and Custom trim (Custom in 59-60 only -- business sedan was stripped model with back seat, for fleet sales only)
  • 2 door station wagon in Deluxe, Super, and Custom trim (1959-60)
  • 4 door sedan in Deluxe, Super, and Custom trim (1959-60)
Unlike the 1954-55 four door models, the 1959-60 American retained the wheelbase of the two door models (100 inch vs. 1954-55 four door 108 inch).

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Engines

The following engines were available:
  • 196 cid L-head inline six, 1bbl (90 hp)
  • 196 cid OHV inline six, 1bbl (125 hp - available in 1960 only; standard in Custom, optional in others)
There is a machined pad on the left (driver's) side of the engine near the front and just below the block/head division. This pad contains the 1958-59 Engine Serial Number or the 1960 Engine Day Build Code. 1956-59 Engine Beginning Serial Numbers A letter was assigned to each engine size with one barrel carburetor, a following "B" was used for two barrel models along with a different letter. The serial number listed was the first used that year. All possible serial numbers are included to help identify replacement engines. No OHV engines were used in 1958-59 Americans, but OHV engines from the Classic will fit as long as the short shaft American water pump is used. Likewise no 2 bbl OHV engines were used, but Classic versions can be retrofitted (entire engine or just manifold and carburetor).
  • 1956 195.6 OHV 1 bbl - S1001
  • 1957 195.6 OHV 1 bbl - D341001
  • 1957 195.6 OHV 2 bbl - CB2001
  • 1958 195.6 L-head 1 bbl - E101
  • 1958 195.6 OHV 1 bbl - B145001
  • 1958 195.6 OHV 2 bbl - CB9001
  • 1959 195.6 L-head 1 bbl - E33001
  • 1959 195.6 OHV 1 bbl - B227001
  • 1959 195.6 OHV 2 bbl - CB36001
Beginning in late 1959 the six character Engine Day Build Code was adopted. The first digit indicates the calendar year the engine was built. 1959 = 1, 60 = 2, 61 = 3, etc. Numbers repeated, but no zero was used (1967 =9, 1968 =1; due to a change in the numbering system, 1980 and later uses the last digit of the year (1980 = 0, 1981=1 etc. The next two numbers will be the month the engine was made in. A letter code will tell engine size and compression. A is 195.6 L-head w/1bbl, C is 195.6 cast iron OHV w/1bbl (there was an aluminum version of the 195.6 OHV, but it wasn't available in the American -- only 1 bbl versions used). It is possible that the engine has been replaced with a newer or older engine. 195.6 cid six cylinder engines made between 1956 and 1965 are direct bolt-in swaps and are externally identical, though water pump design varies slightly on the 56-57 OHV engines. Note: Engine dates are calendar dates and not model year dates. Since model year production actually starts in the previous calendar year, it is possible to have, for example, an engine coded 1958 in a 1959 vehicle and be correct but an engine coded 1960 would not be correct for the same car since no 1960's were manufactured in calendar year 1958.

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Transmissions

The following Borg Warner transmissions were used in 1958-60 Rambler Americans. There is no way of knowing what transmission or type was originally installed in a vehicle made before 1966.
  • T-96 three speed manual, available with an optional Borg Warner overdrive unit
  • Borg Warner "Flash-O-Matic" three speed automatic (air cooled torque converter, cast iron case, vacuum modulator -- predecessor to model 35)
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Production Numbers

Blank columns indicate that the body and trim style were not offered that year.
Body & Trim Style 1958 1959 1960
4 door sedan, Deluxe
-
-
22,593
4 door sedan, Super
-
-
21,108
4 door sedan, Custom
-
-
3,272
2 door sedan, Deluxe
15,765
29,954
23,960
2 door sedan, Super
14,691
28,449
17,233
2 door sedan, Custom
-
-
2,994
2 door station wagon, Deluxe
-
15,256
12,290
2 door station wagon, Super
-
17,383
15,093
2 door station wagon, Custom
-
-
1,430
2 door panel delivery, steel
-
3
-
2 door panel delivery, glass
-
3
-
2 door business sedan
184
443
630
Total
30,640
91,491
120,603
Dates of model introductions:
1958 - October 22, 1957 1959 - October 8, 1958 1960 - October 14, 1959

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Serial Numbers & Body Tag Decoder

Serial Numbers

Before January 1966, all cars had a manufacturers assigned serial number, not a VIN, which was mandated by the U.S. government for all cars built from 1966 (calendar year) on. The serial number is on a tag located on the top of the right side shock tower in the engine compartment. The serial number gives no information except year and model series. Technically, any changes can be made to the car that were available from the factory and it will be "correct". Serial numbers were assigned to the car when it was ordered from the factory. Numbers with a single letter are assigned to cars made in Kenosha, WI.
  • 1958 M1001
  • 1959 M32001
  • 1960 B100001
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Unit Body identification Plate

The Unit Body Identification Plate for a 1958-60 Rambler American can be located on the right side of the firewall under the hood. It can be decoded as follows:

Body

This is the number assigned to the body as it was being produced. It is different than the serial number. Bodies were produced in batches, so the numbers aren't consecutive to each series.

Model

This identifies the body and trim styles. The first two digits are the year, the last two or three identify the series, body style, and trim level. Blanks indicate that the body and trim style was not available for the year in question.
Code w/Body Style and Trim 1958 1959 1960
02 = 2 door business sedan X X X
04 = 2 door station wagon, Deluxe
X X
04-1 = 2 door station wagon, Super
X X
04-2 = 2 door station wagon, Custom

X
05 = 4 door sedan, Deluxe

X
05-1 = 4 door sedan, Super

X
05-2 = 4 door sedan, Custom

X
06 = 2 door sedan, Deluxe X X X
06-1 = 2 door sedan, Super
X
X
X
06-2 = 2 door sedan, Custom

X
04-7 = 2 door glass panel delivery wagon

X

04-8 = 2 door steel panel delivery wagon

X


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Trim

1958-59 trim codes use three digits. The first digit is the last number in the model year (1958 = 8) and the last two represent the seat covering material and color. In 1960 a four character code that may be prefixed by a "T" was adopted. The first character is the last digit of the model year. The second character represents the seat type 1960-63, the model (first digit of series) from 1964 on. The third is the upholstery color, and the fourth is the upholstery material for 60-63 and seat type for 1964 on. Letters after the numeric code indicate the corresponding seat types that were available. Special order interiors were available for large orders (usually fleet vehicles) and will have a code of "00". 1958-59 Upholstery Material and Color Codes(colors not currently available) Cloth
  • 00 - Deluxe and Business models only
  • 12-15 - Super and Custom
Vinyl
  • 01 - Deluxe and Business models only
  • 02-05 - Super and Custom
1960 seat types are as follows:
  • 0 - Standard Bench, Deluxe and Business
  • 1 - Standard Bench, Super
  • 2 - Standard Bench, Custom
1960 trim colors are not currently available.
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Paint

The following colors were available in 1958-1960. The original color can be determined by looking at the Paint code on the Unit Body Identification Plate. If there are two codes separated by a dash, the first code is the primary body color and the second code is the upper body (sometimes roof) or accent color. For example, a car that was black with a white top would have a paint code of 1-72. Paint codes may also be prefixed with a P or suffixed with an A. Note that some cars were painted non-standard colors. These cars will typically have a code such as "00" or "SPEC". This was reserved for large orders in the special color, usually for fleet use.
Paint Code Color Years
1 Classic Black 1958
2
Kimberly Blue Medium
1958
3
Saranac Green Medium 1958
4 Alamo Beige Light 1958-60
5 Autumn Yellow 1958-60
6 Georgian Rose 1958
7 Mariner Turquoise 1958
8
Chatsworth Green
1959-60
9
Pine Ridge Green Metallic
1959
10
Placid Blue
1959-60
11
Nocturne Blue Metallic
1959
12
Alladin Gray Metallic
1959
13
Oriental Red
1959-60
14
Carmel Copper Metallic
1959
15
Aqua Mist Metallic
1959-60
16
Cotillion Mauve
1959
17
Hibiscus Rose
1959
18
Westchester Green
1960
19
Sovereign Blue
1960
20
Dartmouth Gray
1960
21
Harvard Gray
1960
23
Echo Green
1960
24
Auburn Red
1960
25
Festival Rose
1960
72 Frost White 1958-60
90 Mardi Gras Red 1958
94 Cinnamon Bronze Medium 1958, 1960
95 Gotham Gray Medium 1958
97 Brentwood Green Light 1958
98 Lakeshore Blue Light 1958
99 Frontenac Gray Light 1958-60
Instrument panels were painted body color (primary body color if two tone). Remaining interior moulding and trim was painted one of the following colors to harmonize with interior trim. Interior colors were usually semi-gloss to reduce glare.
  • N-45 Satin Black (58-60)
  • N-80 Metallic Medium Blue (58)
  • N-81 Metallic Medium Green (58)
  • N-109 Pine ridge Green Metallic (59)
  • N-110 Nocturne Blue Metallic (59)
Color samples can be viewed at http://autocolorlibrary.com/aclns.html
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Sequential Assembly Number The unlabeled number at the bottom of the Unit Body Identification Plate is the Sequential Assembly Number. This number was assigned to the vehicle as it entered the final assembly line. Vehicles were assembled in batches as needed -- i.e., 10 Americans may be assembled then 20 Classics followed by 15 Ambassadors, etc. Minimum and maximum sizes of batches are unknown -- in some cases single cars may have gone through the lines. At this time there was only one final assembly line in Kenosha; the second line wasn't in operation until 1961. Brampton opened in 1960.

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Bibliography

The following sources were used to verify the information contained on this page:
  • AMC Rambler Club 1958-1969 Production Handbook
  • Standard Catalog of American Motors, ISBN 0-87341-232-X, Krause Publications
  • 1958-59 American Motors Technical Service Manual
  • The Compact Chronicles, copyright 1992, Frank Swygert
  • DuPont Automotive Finishes book (1959-71)

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1961-63 American

1961-1963 American

61 2 Door Wagon 63 440H Hardtop
1961 American Two Door Wagon 1963 American Hardtop

General Information

The "new" 1958 Rambler American was a little dated looking when it was introduced. It didn't quite look old fashioned, but it only had a couple of years in it. AMC officials knew this -- if it sold well they would have to revamp the car soon after. There was to little time between the planned new models for 1963 and 1958 to build another new car, and the development cost would be to much. This meant that the American, in order to keep the sales momentum built from 1958-1960, would have to be restyled. There wasn't much money to restyle with -- most of the old car would have to be retained. Ed Anderson, Chief of Styling, was given the job of making the American look new, but at the same time retaining all of the mechanical parts and inner body panels. It was to be a reskinning with only minor changes to inner panels. Anderson worked a miracle! He came up with a car that retained the same glass, mechanicals, and inner panels, yet looked like an entirely different car. All outer panels were changed except the side window frames. This retention was hardly noticeable due to the new squared off roof panel. The only inner panel that was significantly changed was the firewall. This was necessary to improve the heater and get rid of the old fashioned floor mounted brake master cylinder. The inner fender panels, with their intruding hump in the center, were virtually unchanged since the 100" wheelbase car was introduced in 1950. The humps were originally required for the upper shock absorber mount, something that was redesigned as far back as 1954. They serve no other purpose -- the outer fender well panel was changed around 1954, eliminating the hump. The interior of the 1961-63 American also received some attention. The dash panel was redesigned and carried the same instrument cluster as the big cars. This gave it a much more modern look and saved on cost as well. The rest of the interior was pretty much carried over from the 1960 model, but the new dash makes it hardly noticeable. Mechanically (engine, transmission, suspension, rear axle, etc.), the 1961-63 models are identical to the 1958-1960 American. The lone exceptions are the instruments (sending units and operation are the same), brake master cylinder, and heating and air conditioning systems. This makes finding parts relatively easy.

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Body Styles And Trim Levels

he American line-up was increased to five body styles in 1961-63 in three basic trim levels. A sixth body style, a two door hardtop, was added in 1963. The trim designations changed every year during this transition period for AMC. Some models have more than three trim levels, some less. Levels are listed from lowest to highest. Body styles and trim levels can be determined from the model number on the Unit Body Identification Plate. The body styles and trim levels are:

  • 2 door sedan in Deluxe Business (stripped model, fleet sales only), Deluxe, Super, and Custom trim (1961)
  • 2 door sedan in Deluxe Business (stripped model, fleet sales only), Deluxe, Custom, and Custom 400* trim (1962)
  • 2 door sedan in 220 Business (stripped model, fleet sales only), 220, 330, and 440 trim (1963)
  • 2 door station wagon in Deluxe, Super, and Custom trim (1961)
  • 2 door station wagon in Deluxe and Custom trim (1962)
  • 2 door station wagon in 220 and 330 trim (1963)
  • 4 door station wagon in Deluxe, Super, and Custom trim (1961)
  • 4 door station wagon in Deluxe, Custom, and Custom 400* trim (1962)
  • 4 door station wagon in 220, 330, and 440 trim (1963)
     
  • 4 door sedan in Deluxe, Super, and Custom trim (1961)
  • 4 door sedan in Deluxe, Custom, and Custom 400* trim (1962)
  • 4 door sedan in 220, 330, and 440 trim (1963)
  • 2 door convertible in Custom trim in 1961, Custom 400 in 1962, and 440 in 1963
  • 2 door hardtop in 440 and 440H** trim in 1963

* Custom 400 models all had bucket seats and consoles. Console mounted shifters (manual or automatic transmission) were optional. * 440H models were similar to the 1962 Custom 400 described above. They had unique large armrests in the back seat and used the convertible bottom seat cushion with a unique back cushion, making it a four passenger vehicle. Normal seating for the 1958-63 American was considered three passengers in the front seat and two in the narrower back seat.

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Engines

The following engines were available:

  • 196 cid L-head inline six, 1bbl (90 hp)
  • 196 cid OHV inline six, 1bbl (125 hp, standard 1961 Custom, 400, 440; optional all others)
  • 196 cid OHV inline six, 2 bbl (138 hp, 1963 only; standard 440H, optional all others)

There is a machined pad on the left (driver's) side of the engine near the front and just below the block/head division. This pad contains the Engine Day Build Code.
 

Beginning in late 1959 the six character Engine Day Build Code was adopted. The first digit indicates the calendar year the engine was built. 1959=1, 60=2, 61=3, etc. Numbers repeated, but no zero was used (1967=9, 1968=1; due to a change in the numbering system, 1980 and later uses the last digit of the year (1980=0, 1981=1 etc.). The next two numbers will be the month the engine was made in. A letter code will tell engine size and compression. A is 195.6 L-head w/1bbl, C is 195.6 cast iron OHV w/1bbl (there was an aluminum version of the 195.6 OHV, but it wasn't available in the American -- only 1 bbl versions used). It is possible that the engine has been replaced with a newer or older engine. 195.6 cid six cylinder engines made between 1956 and 1965 are direct bolt-in swaps and are externally identical, though water pump design varies slightly on the 56-57 OHV engines.

Note: Engine dates are calendar dates and not model year dates. Since model year production actually starts in the previous calendar year, it is possible to have, for example, an engine coded 1958 in a 1959 vehicle and be correct but an engine coded 1960 would not be correct for the same car since no 1960 models were manufactured in calendar year 1958.

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Transmissions

The following Borg Warner transmissions were used in 1961-63 Rambler Americans. There is no marking anywhere on the car that will determine transmission type.

  • T-96 three speed manual, available with an optional overdrive (OD) unit, 1961-63.
  • Borg Warner "Flash-O-Matic" three speed automatic (air cooled torque converter, cast iron case, vacuum modulator -- predecessor to model 35) used only in 1961.
  • Borg Warner Model 35 (T-35 on transmission ID tag) "Flash-O-Matic" three speed automatic (air cooled torque converter, aluminum case, throttle valve cable instead of vacuum modulator) used in 1962-63.
  • "Twin-Stick" T-96 three speed manual with overdrive. Transmission used different internal gear ratios than the normal T-96/OD. Shift mechanism was wired to provide five forward gears (along with different ratios) -- 1st, 2nd, 2nd+OD, 3rd, 3rd+OD. Normal three speed with OD shifted in this manner would provide little difference between 2nd+OD and 3rd gears. Available only with OHV engines, only in 1963.
  • "E-Stick" with T-96 three speed (with or without OD). This was an automatic clutch that relied on a rather complicated mechanical and vacuum control system to automatically engage and disengage the clutch. It was meant to provide the ease of driving an automatic transmission car with close to the same economy as a stick shift. In practice, the clutch didn't last as long as with a standard stick shift, especially in city driving. Engine oil pressure was used to operate a servo that worked the clutch backs wards -- the more pressure on the clutch arm the harder the clutch was engaged instead of disengaged. As engine rpm went up, so did oil pressure, which meant a tighter clutch. It was only used in 1962 and 1963.

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Production Numbers

Columns with no number indicate that the body and trim style were not offered for that year.

Body & Trim Style 1961 1962 1963
2 door sedan, Deluxe Business (63 220 Bus.) 355 283 162
2 door sedan, Deluxe (63 330) 28,555 29,665 27,780
2 door sedan, Super (62 Custom, 63 330) 14,349 12,710 9,572
2 door sedan, Custom (62 400, 63 440) 4,883 4,840 1,486
2 door convertible, Custom (62 400, 63 440) 10,855 13,497 4,750
2 door convertible, Custom 400 (bucket seats) 2,063    
2 door station wagon, Deluxe (63 220) 5,666 4,434 3,312
2 door station wagon, Super (62 Custom, 63 330) 5,749 4,398 3,204
2 door station wagon, Custom 1,417 - -
4 door sedan, Deluxe (63 220) 17,811 17,758 14,419
4 door sedan, Super (62 Custom, 63 330) 15,741 13,884 9,666
4 door sedan, Custom (62 400, 63 440) 5,920 5,773 2,937
4 door sedan, Custom 400 (bucket seats) 1,629    
4 door station wagon, Deluxe (63 220) 7,260 6,304 4,436
4 door station wagon, Super (62 Custom, 63 330) 10,071 8,998 6,848
4 door station wagon, Custom (62 400, 63 440) 3,679 3,134 1,874
2 door 440 hardtop - - 5,101
2 door 440H hardtop - - 9,749
Total 136,003 125,678 105,296

The existence of serial number sequences indicates that AMC produced Rambler Americans along with Classics  in Canada for the 1961 - 1963 model years.  There was a strong market in Canada for compact cars, so local production, based on exports of raw material from the U.S., made sense.  However, AMC published only total production figures of 4.168 , 17.343 and  27.411 units for 1961, 1962 and 1963 respectively, with no breakouts by car line.  An approximation of American production at Brampton would be  1.389 units for 1961, 5.817 units for 1962,  5.344 units for 1963.

Dates of model introductions:

1961 - October 5, 1960 (Custom 400 late April 1961 -- only produced three months) 1962 - October 6, 1961 1930 - October 5, 1962

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Serial Numbers

Serial Numbers

Before January 1966, all cars had a manufacturers assigned serial number, not a VIN (Vehicle Identification Number), which was mandated by the U.S. government for all cars built from January 1966 on. The serial number is on a tag located on the top of the right side shock tower in the engine compartment. The serial number gives no information except year and model series. Technically, any changes can be made to the car that were available from the factory and it will be "correct". Serial numbers were assigned to the car when it was ordered from the factory. Numbers with a single letter are assigned to cars made in Kenosha, WI. If the first letter is followed by a "K" the car was built at Kenosha as a "knock-down" kit intended for final assembly in another country. These kits usually lacked tires, belts, batteries, and sometimes interior upholstery. Those items were supplied from local sources at the assembly point. If the first letter is followed by a "T" the car was built in the Brampton, Ontario, Canada plant. The first serial numbers used for that year are listed.

  • 1961 B221001, BK10701 BT 100001
  • 1962 B375001, BK13001, BT102001
  • 1963 B515001, BK15001, BT110001

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Unit Body identification Plate

The Unit Body Identification Plate for a 1961-63 Rambler American can be located on the latch edge of the driver's door. It can be decoded as follows:

Body

This is the number assigned to the body as it was being produced. It is different than the serial number. Bodies were produced in batches, so the numbers aren't consecutive to each series.

Model

This identifies the body and trim styles. The first two digits are the year, the last two or three identify the series, body style, and trim level. Blanks indicate that the body and trim style was not available for the year in question.

Code w/Body Style and Trim 1961 1962 1963
02 = 2 door business sedan (63 220 business) X X X
04 = 2 door station wagon, Deluxe (63 220) X X X
04-1 = 2 door station wagon, Super X - -
04-2 = 2 door station wagon, Custom (63 330) X X X
05 = 4 door sedan, Deluxe X X X
05-1 = 4 door sedan, Super X - -
05-2 = 4 door sedan, Custom (63 330) X X X
05-5 = 4 door sedan, Custom 400 (62 400, 63 440) X X X
06 = 2 door sedan, Deluxe (63 220) X X X
06-1 = 2 door sedan, Super X - -
06-2 = 2 door sedan, Custom (63 330) X X X
06-5 = 2 door sedan, 400 (63 440) - X X
07-2 = 2 door convertible, Custom X X -
07-5 = 2 door convertible, Custom 400 (62 400, 63 440) X X X
08 = 4 door station wagon, Deluxe (63 220) X X -
08-1 = 4 door station wagon, Super X - -
08-2 = 4 door station wagon, Custom (63 330) X X X
08-5 = 4 door station wagon, 400 (63 440) - X X
09-5 = 2 door hardtop, 440 - - X
09-5 = 2 door hardtop, 440H - - X

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Trim

In 1960 a four character code that may be prefixed by a "T" was adopted. The first character is the last digit of the model year. The second character represents the seat type 1960-63, the model (first digit of series) from 1964 on. The third is the upholstery and trim color, and the fourth is the upholstery material for 60-63 and seat type for 1964 on. Special order interiors were available for large orders (usually fleet vehicles) and will have a code of "00". 1961-63 seat types are as follows: *0 - Standard Bench, Deluxe, 220, and Business *1 - Standard Bench, Super, Custom, and 330 *2 - Standard Bench, 400, and 440 *3 - Reclining Bucket, Pleated Vinyl, Convertible only *4 - Reclining Bucket, Custom 400, 400, 440, 440H 1961-63 colors are as follows: *2 - Silver *3 - Blue *4 - Green (Aqua, 1963) *5 - Red *6 - Copper (1963: Ivory for 220/330, Gold for 440/440H) *7 - Maroon *8 - Aqua (61-62) *9 - Gold (61-62) 1961-63 material types are as follows: *C - cloth inserts, vinyl trim *V - all vinyl (porous vinyl, 61-62) *P - porous vinyl (1963 only)

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Paint

The following colors were available in 1961-1963. The original color can be determined by looking at the Paint code on the Unit Body Identification Plate. If there are two codes separated by a dash, the first code is the primary body color and the second code is the upper body (sometimes roof) or accent color. For example, a car that was black with a white top would have a paint code of 1-72. Paint codes may also be prefixed with a P or suffixed with an A. Note that some cars were painted non-standard colors. These cars will typically have a code such as "00" or "SPEC". This was reserved for large orders in the special color, usually for fleet use.

Paint Code Color Years
1 Classic Black 1961-63
4 Alamo Beige 1961
8 Chatsworth Green 1961
15 Aqua Mist Metallic 1961-62
23 Echo Green Metallic 1961
26 Valley Green Medium Metallic 1961
27 Sonata Blue 1961-62
28 Berkeley Blue Medium Metallic 1961
29 Whirlwind Tan Medium Metallic 1961
30 Briarcliff Red 1961-63
31 Inca Silver Metallic 1961-62
32 Waikiki Gold 1961
33 Jasmine Rose 1961-62
34 Fireglow Red Metallic 1961
35 Baron Blue Metallic 1962
36 Glen Cove Green 1962
37 Elmhurst Green Metallic 1962
38 Algiers Rose Copper Metallic 1962
39 Villa Red Metallic 1962
40 Majestic Blue Metallic 1962-63
41 Corsican Gold Metallic 1962-63
42 Sirocco Beige 1962
43 Sceptre Silver Metallic 1963
44 Bahama Blue 1963
45 Cape Cod Blue Metallic 1963
46 Palisade Green 1963
47 Aegean Aqua Metallic 1963
48 Calais Corral Metallic 1963
49 Valencia Ivory 1963
50 Concord Maroon Metallic 1963
72 Frost White 1961-63

Instrument panels were painted body color (primary body color if two tone). Remaining interior moulding and trim was painted one of the following colors to harmonize with trim (seat) color. Interior colors were usually semi-gloss to reduce glare. *R-154 Ravine Medium Gray Metallic (1961) *R-155 Fairbanks Dark Blue Metallic (1961) *R-156 Delmar Dark Green Metallic (1961) *R-157 Whirlwind Dark Tan Metallic (1961) *R-210 Inca Silver Metallic (1962) - used with all colors except blue, green, aqua, and gold trims. *R-213 Aqua Mist Metallic (1962) - used with all aqua trims. *R-214 Corsican Gold Metallic (1962) - used with all gold trims. *R-215 Elmhurst Medium Green Metallic (1962) - used with all green trims. *R-217 Algiers Medium Rose Copper (1962) - used with copper trims. *R-260 Cape Cod Blue Metallic (1963) *R-261 Aegean Aqua Metallic (1963) *R-262 Briarcliff Red (1963) *R-263 Concord Maroon Metallic (1963) *R-278 Black (1963) *R-352 Corsican Gold Metallic (1963) Color samples can be viewed at http://autocolorlibrary.com/aclns.html

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Sequential Assembly Number The unlabeled number at the bottom of the body tag is the Sequential Assembly Number. This number was assigned to the vehicle as it entered the final assembly line.Vehicles were assembled in batches as needed -- i.e., 10 Americans may be assembled then 20 Classics followed by 15 Ambassadors, etc. Minimum and maximum sizes of batches are unknown -- in some cases single cars may have gone through the lines. At this time there was only one final assembly line in Kenosha; the second line wasn't in operation until 1961. Brampton opened in 1960.

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Bibliography

The following sources were used to verify the information contained on this page: *AMC Rambler Club 1958-1969 Production Handbook *Standard Catalog of American Motors, ISBN 0-87341-232-X, Krause Publications *American Motors, The Last Independent; Patrick Foster, ISBN 0-87341-240-0 *Encyclopedia of American Cars, 1940-1970; Richard M. Langworth, ISBN 0-517-294648 *1961-62 American Motors Technical Service Manual *The Compact Chronicles, copyright 1992, Frank Swygert *DuPont Automotive Finishes book (1959-71)*Wards automotive yearbook*Wards Canadian Automotive yearbook*Guide to Canadian car ID numbers, Bill Watson, Amos Press, 2006.

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1964 -1965 American


 

1964 - 1965 American

1964 American Convertible
1964 American Convertible


General Information

The first generation American body (58-63) was essentially the same as the 1950-55 Nash Rambler. It had an extraordinary 11 year run due to Edmund Anderson's very creative restyling in 1961, but looked very dated by its last year. Nothing less than a totally new body was required to bring the American up to date. New bodies cost millions even in the early sixties, so the new small car was planned on a downscaled new for 63 Classic body. As many components as possible were to be shared between the big and small car. While some components are shared, it soon became apparent that the number of shared components would be limited. The suspension, or "frame" rails are shared, for instance, but the floor pan had to be narrower and shorter than the bigger Classic in order to adequately differentiate between the two. AMC ended up with a body that looked modern and up to date and put them back near the top of the compact car market in the US through the end of production in 1969. By the mid 1960s, the compact market had levelled off as intermediates and sporty cars such as the Mustang became more popular. However, there was a steady market for compacts and  the American continued to maintain its production levels against the Nova, Valiant, Falcon and imported entries. The American received  new base base and optional engines, including a V8,  for 1966, as these were now required even in economy cars. In its last year of production, AMC dropped the "American" name - the cars were Rambler, 440 and Rogue. And they did one  extraordinary thing to send off their dull economy car : they offered a 390 high performance V8 option in the Rogue hardtop.  Not many were built, but they are highly collectible today, along with the 1957 Rebel. The American, and the Rambler name went into history as the cars which created the North American market for compact economy cars, with an asterisk for those two models which did not quite fit that definition.

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Body Styles And Trim Levels

The American was offered in five body styles. There were four trim levels offered : 220, 330, 440, and 440-H (this would become the Rogue in 1966). Body styles and trim levels can be determined from the model number on the Unit Body Identification Plate . The body styles and trim levels are:

  • 2 door convertible in 440 trim. This became the Rogue in 1967, its last year.
  • 4 door wagon in 220 and 330 trim. The 330 was dropped after 1965.
  • 4 door sedan in 220, 330, and 440 trim. The 330 was dropped after 1965.
  • 2 door club sedan in 220 and 330 trim. The 330 was dropped after 1965, but replaced by a 440 2 door club sedan for 1966 - 1967.
  • 2 door hardtop in 440 and 440H trim. The 440 H became the Rogue for 1966 - 1969, replacing the 440 hardtop after 1967.

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Engines

The following engines were available:

  • 196 cid L-head inline six, 1bbl (90 hp, standard in 220)
  • 196 cid OHV inline six, 1bbl (125 hp, standard 330, optional in 220)
  • 196 cid OHV inline six, 2 bbl (138 hp, standard 440H, optional all others)
  • 199 cid OHV inline six, 1 bbl (128 hp, substituted for 196 mid to late 1965, not optional)
  • 232 cid OHV inline six, 1 bbl (145 hp, optional all, 1965 only)
  • 232 cid OHV inline six, 2 bbl (155 hp, optional all, 1967 only)
  • 287 cid OHV V8, 2 bbl (198 hp, optional all, 1966 only)
  • 290 cid OHV V8, 2 bbl (200 hp, substituted for 287 at the end of 1966, base V8 through 1969)
  • 290 cid OHV v8, 4 bbl (225 hp, optional V8 through the end of 1966 model year through 1969)
  • 390 cid OHV V8  4 bbl (315 hp, available only on 1969 SC hardtop)

Note that the 195.6 OHV 2 bbl engine was mandatory when air conditioning was ordered. This was necessary because of the greater length of the 199/232 engine. The engine bay of the new body just wasn't long enough to accomodate the new engine and A/C condensor. To fit the 199/232 a special short water pump (later used on 1971 and later CJ-5 Jeeps) was used and the radiator moved forward very close to the grille.

On the 196 there is a machined pad on the left (driver's) side of the engine near the front and just below the block/head division. The 199 and 232 has a machined pad on the right side of the block near where head and block come together between #2 and #3 cylinder. These pads contain the Engine Day Build Code.
 

The first digit indicates the calendar year the engine was built. 1963 = 5, 64 = 6, 65 = 7, etc. Numbers repeated, but no zero was used (1967 =9, 1968 =1; due to a change in the numbering system, 1980 and later uses the last digit of the year (1980 = 0, 1981=1 etc.) . The next two numbers will be the month the engine was made in. A letter code will tell engine size and compression or carburetor type. A is 195.6 L-head w/1bbl, C is 195.6 cast iron OHV w/1bbl, L is the 232 w/1bbl, J is the 199 w/1bbl. It is possible that the engine has been replaced with a newer or older engine. 195.6 cid six cylinder engines made between 1956 and 1965 are direct bolt-in swaps and are externally identical, though water pump design varies slightly on the 56-57 OHV engines. The 199 and 232 cid sixes used in 1965 can also be directly replaced with any 199, 232, or 258 cid six made between 1964 and 1971. It should be noted that 1965 232 engines used in an American have a special short water pump and that air conditioning was not offered on these cars due to space limitations. A 1971-75 Jeep CJ-5 pump is the same as the 65 short pump. The bell housing bolt pattern changed to match the larger V-8 pattern in 1972.

Note: Engine dates are calendar dates and not model year dates. Since model year production actually starts in the previous calendar year, it is possible to have, for example, an engine coded 1963 in a 1964 vehicle and be correct but an engine coded 1965 would not be correct for the same car since no 1964's were manufactured in calendar year 1965.

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Transmissions

The following Borg Warner transmissions were used in 1964 and 1965 Rambler Americans. There is no marking anywhere on the car that will determine transmission type.?

  • T-96 three speed manual, available with an optional overdrive (OD) unit.
  • Borg Warner Model 35 (T-35 on transmission ID tag) "Flash-O-Matic" three speed automatic (air cooled torque converter, aluminum case, throttle valve cable instead of vacuum modulator).
  • "Twin-Stick" T-96 three speed manual with overdrive. Transmission used different internal gear ratios than the normal T-96/OD. Shift mechanism was wired to provide five forward gears (along with different ratios) -- 1st, 2nd, 2nd+OD, 3rd, 3rd+OD. Normal three speed with OD could not be shifted in this manner -- standard gearing would provide little difference between 2nd+OD and 3rd gears. Available only with OHV engines.
     

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Production Numbers

Columns with no number indicate that the body and trim style were not offered for that year.

Body & Trim Style 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969
220 2 door sedan

32,718

26,409

4 door sedan, 330 trim 19,379 15,143
4 door sedan, 440 trim 6,590 5,194
4 door sedan, 220 trim 18,225 13,709
2 door sedan, 330 trim 15,171 9,065
2 door convertible, 440 trim 8,907 3,882
4 door station wagon, 220 trim 8,062 5,224
4 door station wagon, 330 trim 20,587 12,313
2 door hardtop, 440 trim 19,495 13,784
2 door hardtop, 440H trim 14,527 8,164
"Knock Down" (these are exported cars that were shipped unassembled) 3,340 (3,744)
Total 163,661 112.878

 An additional 11,731 Americans were built in Canada for the 1964 model year, 9,390  for the 1965 model year. No breakouts by body style are available, but for 1964 only 220/330 models were built in Canada. The 440 hardtop and convertible were added for 1965, with an additional 20 Americans shipped from Kenosha.

Dates of model introductions:

1964 -
1965 -

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Serial Numbers

Serial Numbers

Before January 1966, all cars had a manufacturers assigned serial number, not a VIN, which was mandated by the U.S. government for all cars built from 1966 on. The serial number is on a tag located on the top of the right side shock tower in the engine compartment on 64 and 65 models. The serial number gives no information except year and model series. Serial numbers were assigned to the car when it was ordered from the factory. Numbers with a single letter are assigned to cars made in Kenosha, WI. If the first letter is followed by a "K" the car was built at Kenosha as a "knock-down" kit intended for final assembly in another country. These kits usually lacked tires, belts, batteries, and sometimes interior upholstery. Those items were supplied from local sources at the assembly point. If the first letter is followed by a "T" the car was built in the Brampton, Ontario, Canada plant.
 

  • 1964 - 650001 and higher
  • 1965 - AMC started from 100001 and did not skip numbers based on body style as was done in 1965. Serial numbers starting with P indicates a 196 cid six was used, W indicates a 232, and Q indicates the 199.

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Unit Body identification Plate

The Unit Body Identification Plate for a 1964-65 Rambler American can be located on the latch edge of the driver's door. It can be decoded as follows:

Body

This is the number assigned to the body as it was being produced. It is different than the serial number. Bodies were produced in batches, so the numbers aren't consecutive to each series.?

Model

This identifies the body and trim levels. The first two digits are the year, the third the series, fourth body style, and fifth trim level. Base trim level is often left out (only four digits). Blanks indicate that the body and trim style was not available for the year in question. Replace "xx" with last two digits of year for complete model number.

Code w/Body Style and Trim 1964 1965
xx07-5 - 2 door convertible, 440 trim X X
xx08 - 4 door station wagon, 220 trim X X
xx08-2, 4 door station wagon, 330 trim X X
xx05 - 4 door sedan, 200 trim X X
xx05-2 - 4 door sedan, 330 trim X X
xx05-5 - 4 door sedan, 440 trim X X
xx06 - 2 door Club Sedan, 220 trim X X
xx06-2 - 2 door Club Sedan, 330 trim X X
xx09-5, 2 door hardtop, 440 trim X X
xx09-7, 2 door hardtop, 440H trim X X

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Trim

This identifies the interior trim style, color, and seat types. The trim code is a 4 character number that may be prefixed by a "T". The first character is the year, the second the trim level, third color, and the fourth is the seat type. Letters after the numeric code indicate the corresponding seat and fabric types that were available. Special order interiors were available and will have a code of "00". Codes are as follows:

Trim Level 1964 1965
220/330 422 - Silver/Black (220 only)
432 - Silver/Black
433 - Blue
434 - Green
435 - Red
436 - Gold
436 - Turquoise
522 - Black/Gray
532 - Black/White
533 - Blue
534 - Green
535 - Red
539 - Taupe
537 - Aqua
440/440H 441 - Black
442 - Silver/Black
443 - Blue
444 - Green
445 - Red
446 - Gold
447 - Maroon
448 - Turquoise
541 - Black
543 - Blue
544 - Green
545 - Red
546 - Cordovan/Taupe
547 - Aqua
548 - Black/White

The list of seat types is as follows:

  • C = Cloth
  • D = Cloth bucket
  • E = Vinyl bucket
  • G = Cloth bucket, optional
  • H = Vinyl bucket, optional
  • K = Cloth bucket, optional
  • L = Vinyl bucket, optional
  • P = Porous vinyl
  • V = All vinyl

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Paint

The following colors were available in 1964-1965. The original color can be determined by looking at the Paint code on the Unit Body Identification Plate. If there are two codes separated by a dash, the first code is the primary body color and the second code is the upper body (sometimes roof) or accent color. For example, a car that was black with a white top would have a paint code of 1-72. Paint codes may also be prefixed with a P or suffixed with an A (A is Acrylic Enamel paint). Note that some cars were painted non-standard colors. These cars will typically have a code such as " 00" or "SPEC". This was reserved for large orders in the special color, usually for fleet use.
 

Paint Code Color Years
1 Black (Called Classic Black in 1965) 1964, 1965
3 Antigua Red 1965
4 Mystic Gold Metallic 1965
5 Legion Blue 1965
6 Viscount Blue Metallic 1965
7 Seaside Aqua 1965
8 Marina Aqua Metallic 1965
9 Atlantis Aqua Metallic 1965
10 Montego Rose 1965
11 Barcelona Taupe Metallic 1965
12 Corral Cordovan Metallic 1965
13 Solar Yellow Metallic 1964, 1965
14 Silver Metallic 1965
43 Scepter Silver Metallic 1964
51 Rampart Red 1964
52 Sentry Blue Metallic 1964
53 Forum Blue 1964
54 Woodside Green Metallic 1964, 1965
55 Westminster Green 1964
56 Aurora Turquoise 1964
57 Lancelot Turquoise Metallic 1964
58 Bengal Ivory 1964
59 Emperor Gold Metallic 1964
60 Contessa Rose Metallic 1964
61 Vintage Maroon Metallic 1964
72 Frost White 1964, 1965


Color samples can be viewed at http://autocolorlibrary.com/aclns.html
 

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Sequential Assembly Number

The unlabeled number at the bottom of the body tag is the Sequential Assembly Number. This number was assigned to the vehicle as it entered the final assembly line.Vehicles were assembled in batches as needed -- i.e., 10 Americans may be assembled then 20 Classics followed by 15 Ambassadors, etc. Minimum and maximum sizes of batches are unknown -- in some cases single cars may have gone through the lines. There were three assembly lines in operation at this time. There was an East and West line in Kenosha (these may be prefix by an E or a W to indicate which line it was built on) and a line at the Brampton, Ontario plant.

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Bibliography

The following sources were used to verify the information contained on this page:

  • AMC Rambler Club 1958-1969 Production Handbook
  • Standard Catalog of American Motors, ISBN 0-87341-232-X, Krause Publications
  • American Motors, The Last Independent; Patrick Foster, ISBN 0-87341-240-0
  • Encyclopedia of American Cars, 1940-1970; Richard M. Langworth, ISBN 0-517-294648
  • Cars & Parts Catalog of American Car ID Numbers 1960-1969, ISBN 1-880524-11-2
  • The Compact Chronicles, copyright 1992, Frank Swygert
  • 1964-65 American Motors Technical Service Manuals
  • DuPont Automotive Finishes book (1959-71)
  • Standard Catalog of Independents, ISBN 0-87341-569-8, Krause Publications
  • James C Mays. My private archives - 1964 Rambler. Old Autos, 7/19/04.
  • 6500 series summary - U.S. production and options - passenger cars.  AMC interdepartmental letter, 1/5/66.
  • Automotive news almanac, 1964, 1965
  • Wards automotive yearbook, 1965, 1966.
  • Bill Watson. Catalog of Canadian car ID numbers. Amos Press, 2006.

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1966-69 American, Rogue, and Rambler


 

1966-1968 Rambler American
1966-1969 Rambler Rogue
1969 American Motors Rambler
1969 American Motors Rogue

1967 Rambler American Four Door Wagon 1968 Rambler American Four Door Sedan
 
1967 American Four Door Wagon (shown in 440 trim) 1968 American Four Door Sedan (shown in base trim)

General Information

The Rambler American was restyled in 1966. The main reason for this restyling was to gain more clearance in the engine compartment so that air conditioning could be used with the new 199 and 232 in-line six cylinder engines ( 232 introduced in Classic in 1964, first available in the American in 1965, 199 replaced the 196 in 1966). 1965 Americans with A/C had to have the 196 because the 199 was longer, and there was no room for the A/C condenser with the longer engine. To solve this problem, the 66 models were made 3.8 inches longer, with three inches added to the inside of the engine compartment in front of the wheels, maintaining the same 106" wheel base. The extra length was obtained by reshaping the exterior body panels only -- the bare unit body is identical in all respects to the 64-65 unit body. This redesigned body was used through 1969 but there were several significant changes made for the 1967 model year that limits the body panels that can be shared with the later cars. This information is detailed in the 1966-1969 Series 01 Parts Swap Guide. Note that due to significant differences, 1969 SC/Ramblers are detailed separately.

AMC began phasing out the Rambler name in 1966, selling the Ambassador and Marlin as AMC models without the Rambler nameplate. The Rebel was also sold as an AMC beginning in 1968, leaving just the Rambler American and Rambler Rogue. For 1969 "Rambler" was dropped from the Rogue name, making it an AMC model, and the American was simply called the Rambler.

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Body Styles and Trim Levels

There were three trim levels and five body styles available. The body styles and trim levels can be determined from either the model number on the door tag or the 4th, 5th, and 6th numbers of the VIN (see VIN Decoder and Unit Body Identification Plate for additional information on decoding the VIN and door tags). The body styles and trim levels are:

  • 4 door sedan in 220* and 440 trim (66-68 American, 69 Rambler)
  • 2 door sedan in 220* and 440 trim (66-68 American, 69 Rambler)
  • 4 door station wagon in 220 trim (66-67 American)
  • 4 door station wagon in 440 trim (66-68 American, 69 Rambler)
  • 2 door convertible in 440 trim (66 in 440 trim, 67 in Rogue trim)
  • 2 door hardtop (66-67 American in 440 trim, 66-69 Rogue)

* 220 designation not used for 68 & 69 base models.

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Engines

The available engines are as follows. The 7th character of the VIN is the Engine Code and indicates original engine size:

  • Engine Code J, 199 cid inline six, 128 hp, 8.5:1 compression ratio, 1 bbl, 1966-69
  • Engine Code L, 232 cid inline six, 145 hp, 8.5:1 compression ratio, 1 bbl (or 155 hp, 2 bbl), 1966-69 (2 bbl only in 66)
  • Engine Code M, 290 cid V-8, 200 hp, 9.0:1 compression ratio, 2 bbl, 1966-69
  • Engine Code N, 290 cid V-8, 225 hp, 10.0:1 compression ratio, 4 bbl, 1966-69
  • Engine Code Z, 343 cid V-8, 280 hp, 10.2:1 compression ratio, 4 bbl, 1967 only

If you are unsure of the size of the engine currently installed, you can check it's size by the following methods:

  • For inline six engines, there is a machined pad on the distributor side of the engine between the first and second spark plugs. This contains the six character Engine Day Build Code. The first digit indicates the calendar year the engine was built. 1966=8, 67=9, 68=1, 1969=2, etc. Due to a change in the numbering system, 1980 and later uses the last digit of the year (1980 = 0, 1981=1 etc.). The next two numbers will be the month the engine was made in. A letter code (usually the same as VIN engine code) will tell engine size and compression. It is possible that the engine has been replaced with a newer or older engine. 199, 232, and 258 cid six cylinder engines made between 1964 and 1971 are almost externally identical as are the engines made from 1972 through 1983. The bell housing bolt pattern changed in 1972, so only 72 and later engines are direct bolt in swaps. There will also be a number of different mounting holes on the intake depending on the year as well as valve cover variations. If the original intake and accessories are used there should be few problems swapping in any 71 or earlier engine.
  • For V-8 engines, the best way to tell size is to look at the size cast into the engine block near the first and second core (freeze) plugs on either side of the engine. Note that service replacement blocks do not have the displacement cast into them and tear-down to measure bore and stroke is the only way to positively identify the installed engine. The second way to identify engine size is from the tag attached to the valve cover. The valve cover tag will be coded the same as the inline six Engine Day Build Code (see above description).?
  • V-8 Engine Notes. It is not unusual to find an American with a V-8 engine instead of the original inline six, or a larger or newer V-8 to replace the 290 (or rare 343) the car was manufactured with. See performance section for details.

Note: Engine dates are calendar dates and not model year dates. Since model year production actual starts in the previous calendar year, it is possible to have, for example, an engine coded 1966 in a 1967 vehicle and be correct but an engine coded 1968 would not be correct for the same car since no 1967 models were manufactured in calendar year 1968.

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Transmissions

The following Borg Warner transmissions were used in 1968 Rambler Americans. The general transmission type can be determined by the third digit of the VIN.

  • T-96 three speed manual (199 cid six)
  • T-14 three speed manual (232 cid six)
  • T-15 three speed manual (290 cid V8)
  • T-10 four speed
  • M36 three speed automatic (199 cid six)
  • M37 three speed automatic (232 cid six)
  • M40 three speed automatic (290 cid V8l)

Note 1: All three speed manual transmissions were available with an optional overdrive unit.
Note 2: All 1967 Americans with a 343 used T-10 four speed transmissions.

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Production Numbers

Columns with a '-' in them indicate that the body and trim style were not offered for that year.

Body & Trim Style 1966 1967 1968 1969
4 door sedan, 220/base 15,940 12,078 15.144 16,234
4 door sedan, 440 14,543 10,083 11,179 11,957
2 door sedan, 220/base 24,440 26,196 39,480 51,062
2 door sedan, 440 5,252 3,317 - -
2 door convertible 2,092 921 - -
4 door station wagon, 220 5,809 3,667 - -
4 door station wagon, 440 6,603 4,407 10,414 13,233
2 door hardtop, 440 10,255 4,994 - -
2 door hardtop, Rogue 8,718 4,249 4,765 3,543
Total 93,652 69,912 80,981 96,029

An additional 9,314 Americans were built in Canada for the 1966 model year, 6,832 for 1967, 25.289 for 1968 and 24.178 for 1969. No breakouts by body style are available, but all body styles were built in Canada except for the 1966 440 2 door sedan and the 1969 SC/Rambler - Hurst. The surge in production for 1968 - 1969 represents units built in Canada for the U.S. market.           

Dates of model introductions:

1966 - Oct 7, 1965
1967 - Oct 6, 1966
1968 - Sept 26, 1967
1969 - Oct 1, 1968

1966 - 1969 MSRP & Option Listing
1967 American & Rogue Detailed Options Listing
1968 American & Rogue Detailed Options Listing

Notable low production number models:
1966 500 Rogues with the 290 engine. 2 tone yellow/black paint
  28 440 converts with the 290 engine - 25 w/auto, 3 w/4 speed
1967 921 Rogue convertibles
  58 cars had the 343. 3347 had the 290
  986 Americans had the 4 speed
  217 Americans had disc brakes
1968 116 4 door sedans with the 290 engine
  2604 cars with the 290 engine
1969 33 4 door sedans with the 290 engine
  14 2 door sedans with the 290 engine
  1608 Americans had a 4 speed (and 1512 were SC/Ramblers)

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VIN Decoder

Model years 1966, 1967, and 1968 will have a VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) tag located on the top of the right side shock tower in the engine compartment. Very early 1966 cars will have a serial number instead of a VIN. Model year 1968 cars manufactured after January 1st, 1968 will have a VIN tag in this location as well as on the left side of the dash board. This was due to a new federal law that standardized VIN locations for all manufacturers. This second location is visible through the windshield. Model year 1969 cars will have a VIN tag on the dash board only. The VIN is also stamped into the left frame sill behind the steering gear box. It is necessary to remove the steering gear box to view the VIN in this location.

1966 American Beginning Serial Numbers

It is unknown how many early 1966 vehicles used serial numbers instead of VIN's. It is quite possible that only a few very early production vehicles used them, and they could have had the serial numbers replaced with a VIN before being sold. If you have a 1966 model with a serial number instead of a VIN, please e-mail farna@att.net.

Engine Size
 
Beginning Serial Number
 
Beginning Export Number*
 
199 cid, 1 bbl
 
A100001
 
AK100001
 
232 cid, 2 bbl
 
B100001
 
BK100001
 
290 cid, 2bbl
 
C100001
 
CK100001
 
290 cid, 4 bbl
 
D100001
 

 

* The "K" indicates vehicle was a "knock-down" kit to be exported and assembled at destination. No 4 bbl 290 V-8 cars were exported.
 

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1966 & 1967 VIN

The VIN can be decoded as follows (sample VIN is a Kenosha built 1966 American convertible with column shifted 3 speed and 232 cid 6):

Company Year Assembly Plant Transmission Body Type Trim Level Engine Sequential Serial Number*
A 6 K S 7 5 B 100001

Note: Digit 1 is always an A (American Motors).

Digit 2 - Year
6 1966
7 1967
Digit 3 - Assembly Plant
B Brampton, Ont. Canada
K Kenosha, WI
Digit 4 - Transmission
A Automatic column shift
C Floor shift automatic
F Four speed floor shift, w/console
M Four speed floor shift, w/o console (1967)
O Overdrive column shift, 3 speed manual
S Standard column shift, 3 speed manual

 

 

 
Digit 5 - Body Type
5 4 door sedan
6 2 door sedan
7 2 door convertible
8 4 door wagon
9 2 door hardtop
Digit 6 - Trim Level
0 220 trim
5 440 trim
7 Rogue trim
Digit 7 - Engine
A 199 cid, 1bbl
B 232 cid, 2bbl
C 290 cid, 2bbl
D 290 cid, 4bbl
E 232 cid, 2bbl (1967)
X 343 cid, 4bbl (1967)

*The last six digits are the numbers assigned to the car when it was ordered from the factory. Numbers starting at 100001 are assigned to cars made in Kenosha, WI. Numbers starting at 700001 are assigned to cars made in the Brampton plant in Ontario, Canada.

Note: All 1967's with a 343 were only available with a four speed manual transmission.


 

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1968 & 1969 VIN

The VIN can be decoded as follows (sample VIN is a 1968 Rogue with a 4 speed w/console and 232 cid 6):

Company Year Transmission Type Series Body Type Trim Level Engine Sequential Serial Number*
A 8 F 0 9 7 B 100001

Note: Character one is always an A (American Motors) and character four is always a zero (American/Rogue/Rambler).

Char. 2 - Year
8 1968
9 1969
Char. 3 - Transmission Type
A Automatic column shift
C Floor shift automatic
F Three speed floor shift
M Four speed floor shift
O Three speed overdrive column shift
S Three speed column shift
Char. 5 - Body Type
5 4 door sedan
6 2 door sedan
8 4 door station wagon
9 2 door hardtop

 

 

 
Char. 6 - Trim Level
0 Base trim
5 440 trim
7 Rogue trim
Char. 7 - Engine
A 199 cid, 1bbl
B 232 cid, 1bbl
C 232 cid, 2bbl
M 290 cid, 2bbl
N 290 cid, 4bbl

 

*The last six characters are the numbers assigned to the car when it was ordered from the factory. Numbers starting at 100001 are assigned to cars made in Kenosha, WI. Numbers starting at 700001 are assigned to cars made in the Brampton plant in Ontario, Canada.
 

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Unit Body Identification Plate

The Unit Body Identification Plate for a 1966-69 Series 01 can be found on the latch edge of the driver's door. Cars built in Canada usually have a "1" in front of the standard numbers listed below. The tag can be decoded as follows:

Body

This is the number assigned to the body as it was being produced. This number is different than the last six digits of the VIN.

Model

This identifies the body and trim styles.?The first two digits are the year, the third the series, fourth body style, and fifth trim level. Base trim level is often left out (only four digits). Blanks indicate that the body and trim style was not available for the year in question. Replace "xx" with last two digits of year for complete model number.

Code w/Body Style and Trim 1966 1967 1968 1969
xx05-0 = 4 door sedan, 220/base trim X X X X
xx05-5 = 4 door sedan, 440 trim X X X X
xx06-0 = 2 door sedan, 220/base trim X X    
xx06-5 = 2 door sedan, 440 trim X X X X
xx07-5 = convertible, 440 trim X X    
xx08-0 = 4 door station wagon, 220 trim X X    
xx08-5 = 4 door station wagon, 440 trim X X X X
xx09-5 = 2 door hardtop, 440 trim X X    
xx09-7 = 2 door hardtop, Rogue trim X X X X

Trim

This identifies the interior trim style, color, and seat types. The trim code is a four character number that may be prefixed by a "T". The first character is the year, the second the trim level, third color, and the fourth is the seat type. A blank indicates that the body style was not available for the year in question. Letters after the numeric code indicate the corresponding seat and fabric types that were available. Special order interiors were available and will have a code of "00". Codes are as follows:

Trim Level 1966 1967 1968 1969
220/base 623 C/P - Blue
628 C/P - Black and White
629 C/P - Tan
723 C/B - Blue
728 C/B - Black and White
729 C/B - Tan
828 C - Gray and White
828 B/M/N - Black and White
923 A/B/C/D - Blue
928 A/B/C/D - Parchment
440/Rogue 641 C/D/E/P - Black
643 C/D/E/P - Blue
644 C/D/E/P - Green
645 C/D/E/P - Red
647 C/D/E/P - Aqua
648 C/D/E/P - White
649 C/D/E/P - Saddle
7414,5 B/C/D/E - Black
7435 B/C/D/E - Blue
7443,5 B/C/D/E - Green
7455 B/C/D/E - Red
7471,3,5 B/C/D/E - Aqua
7482,5 B/C/D/E - White
7495 B/C/D/E - Tan
843 C/B - Blue
844 C/B - Green
845 C/B - Red
848 C/B - Black and White
941 A/B/C/D - Charcoal
943 A/B/C/D - Blue
9446 A/B/C/D - Green
9457 A/B/C/D - Red
Convertible 641 C/D/E/V - Black
643 C/D/E/V - Blue
644 C/D/E/V - Green
645 C/D/E/V - Red
647 C/D/E/V - Aqua
648 C/D/E/V - White
649 C/D/E/V - Saddle
741 B/E - Black
743 B/E - Blue
744 B/E - Green
745 B/E - Red
747 B/E - Aqua
748 B/E - White
749 B/E - Tan

 

 

The list of seat types is as follows:

  • A - Base level, bench, Brigadier Pattern (1969 440 only)
  • B - Vinylair, Tahiti pattern
  • C - Fabric bench seat, "Lancaster" Pattern (1966, 1967) / Saratoga Pattern (1968, 1969)
  • D - Bucket seat with fabric insert, "Lancaster" Pattern
  • E - Porous vinyl bucket
  • M - black and white standard fabric (Regiment Pattern), optional individual reclining seats
  • N - black and white standard vinyl (Tahiti Pattern) optional individual reclining seats
  • P - Porous vinyl w/fabric insert, "Yucatan" Pattern - station wagon only
  • V - Porous vinyl bench - convertible only

Notes

1 - Fabric only
2 - Vinyl only
3 - 440 only
4 - Rogue only
5 - 440 uses B and C seats, Rogue uses B (convertible only), D (hardtop only), and E seats.
6 - Vinyl for station wagons, all others are fabric
7 - Sedan only
 

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Paint

The following colors were available in 1966-1969. The original color can be determined by looking at the Paint code on the body tag. If there are two codes separated by a dash, the first code is the primary body color and the second code is the upper body (sometimes roof) or accent color. For example, a car that was black with a white top would have a paint code of 1-72. Paint codes may also be prefixed with a P or suffixed with an A. Note that some cars were painted non-standard colors. These cars will typically have a code such as " 00" or "SPEC". This was reserved for large orders in the special color, usually for fleet use.

 

Paint Code Color Years
1 Classic Black 1966-68
3 Antigua Red 1966
8 Mariana Aqua Metallic 1967
9 Bright Red 1969
10 Bright Blue 1969
15 Brisbane Blue Metallic 1966
16 Britannia Blue Metallic 1966
17 Crescent Green 1966
18 Grenada Green Metallic 1966-67
19 Balboa Aqua 1966
20 Cortez Aqua Metallic 1966
21 Marquessa Mauve Metallic 1966
23 Samoa Gold Metallic 1966
24 Caballero Tan Metallic 1966
25 Apollo Yellow 1966-67
31 Strato Blue Metallic 1967
32 Barbados Blue Metallic 1967
33 Royale Blue Metallic 1967
34 Alameda Aqua 1967
36 Yuma Tan Metallic 1967
37 Sungold Metallic 1966-67
38 Stallion Brown Metallic 1967
39 Matador Red 1968-69
40 Flamingo Burgundy Metallic 1967
41 Rajah Burgundy Metallic 1967
42 Satin Chrome 1967
43 Saturn Blue Metallic 1968
44 Caravelle Blue Metallic 1968
45 Blazer Blue Metallic 1968
46 Laurel Green Metallic 1968
47 Rally Green Metallic 1968
48 Tahiti Turquoise Metallic 1968
49 Laredo Tan Metallic 1968
50 Calcutta Russet Metallic 1968
52 Scarab Gold Metallic 1968
54 Turbo Silver Metallic 1968
58 Hialeah Yellow 1967-68
59 Pale Green Metallic 1967
62 Ascot Gray 1969
63 Castillian Gray Metallic 1969
64 Beale St. Blue Metallic 1969
65 Regatta Blue Metallic 1969
68 Alamosa Aqua Metallic 1969
70 Surf Green Metallic 1969
71 Hunter Green Metallic 1969
72 Frost White 1966-69
75 Willow Green Metallic 1969
76 Pompeii Yellow 1969
77 Butternut Beige Metallic 1969
78 Cordoba Brown Metallic 1969
79 Bittersweet Orange Metallic 1969
80 Black Mink Metallic 1969
88 Bright White 1969


 

Color samples can be viewed at http://autocolorlibrary.com/aclns.html

 

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Sequential Assembly Number

The unlabeled number at the bottom of the body tag is the Sequential Assembly Number. This number was assigned to the vehicle as it entered the final assembly line. Cars assembled in Kenosha will have an "E" or "W" preceding the number. This designated the East or West assembly line. Cars assembled in Brampton will have a "B" preceding the number. Vehicles were assembled in batches as needed -- i.e., 10 Americans may be assembled then 20 Classics followed by 15 Ambassadors, etc. Minimum and maximum sizes of batches are unknown -- in some cases single cars may have gone through the lines. The first number used each year was 000001. Earlier years used a different numbering system.
 


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Bibliography

The following sources were used to verify the information contained on this page:

  • AMC Rambler Club 1958-1969 Production Handbook
  • Cars & Parts Catalog of American Car ID Numbers 1960-1969, ISBN 1-880524-11-2
  • 1966-69 American Motors Technical Service Manuals
  • 1966-1969 American Motors Collision Parts Guide
  • Official AMC production records and trim codes acquired from Thomas Benvie, AMC Historian, tbenvie@attbi.com
  • Wards automotive yearbook, 1966 - 1970.
  • Bill Watson. Catalog of Canadian car ID numbers. Amos Press, 2006.

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1966 - 1969 American, Rogue, and Rambler MSRP Listing

1966-1968 American
1966-1969 Rogue
1969 Rambler
MSRP Listing

Retail delivered price in US dollars. Prices reflect a base model, no option car. A '-' indicates that the model in question was not available. Dealers could also add freight to the price of the cars. The price guide from the Boston zone shows the freight charge added to the cars was $64.50 for Sedan and Hardtop, $71.00 for Station Wagon and Convertible.

Note 1: Power Brake totals are for drum brakes, disc brakes are noted separately.
Note 2: Options on this page are the major options for each year. If a detailed listing is available for a particular year, it will be noted.

1966 220 440 Rogue
4 door sedan $2086 $2203 -
2 door sedan $2017 $2134 -
2 door hardtop - N/A $2370
Convertible - $2486 -
Station wagon $2369 $2477 -

1966 Option Prices:

Option Price
V8 $298 (includes 4 speed or auto transmission)
Automatic transmission $168
Power steering $84
Power brakes $42
Radio $57
Air conditioning $303 (5439 total cars with A/C)

 

1967 220 440 Rogue
4 door sedan $1945 $2083 -
2 door sedan $1839 $1997 -
2 door hardtop - $2319 $2266
Convertible - - $2442
Station wagon $2231 $2368 -

1967 Option Prices:

Option Price Cars Made With
This Option
V8* $113 3405
Automatic Transmission $174 38086
Power Steering $84 8320
Power Brakes $42 1171
Radio $57 23302
Air Conditioning $311 3259
Twin Grip rear differential $37 2903
Disc Brakes $91 217
Power Tailgate Window $32 477
Bucket Seats See detailed
options page
4276
Vinyl Top $75 1770

*Price is for 290 V8. Exact 343 V8 price is not currently available but is estimated to be $204.
We also have a complete factory options listing for this year.

1968 Base 440 Rogue
4 door sedan $2024 $2166 -
2 door sedan $1946 - -
2 door hardtop - - $2244
Station Wagon - $2426 -

1968 Option Prices:

Option Price Cars Made With
This Option
V8 $106 2604
Automatic Transmission - 6 cylinder $171 44399 Combined
Automatic Transmission - 8 cylinder $190
Power Steering $84 7980
Power Brakes $42 1182
Radio $61 22026
Air Conditioning $311 4703
4 speed manual transmission N/A 312
Disc Brakes N/A 136
Vinyl Top N/A 969
Twin Grip rear differential N/A 2216

 

1969 Base 440 Rogue
4 door sedan $2076 $2218 -
2 door sedan $1998 - -
2 door hardtop - - $2296
Station wagon - $2478 -

1969 Option Prices:

Option Price Cars Made With
This Option
V8 $116 3530
Automatic transmission - 6 cylinder $171 48583 combined
Automatic transmission - 8 cylinder $190
Power steering $90 12524
Power brakes $42 932
Radio $61 25094
Air Conditioning $324 6967
4 speed manual transmission N/A 1608
Disc brakes N/A 1529
Vinyl Top N/A 782
Twin Grip rear differential N/A 3569


Bibliography

The following sources were used to verify the information contained on this page:

  • Official AMC MSRP records acquired from Thomas Benvie, AMC Historian, tbenvie@attbi.com

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1967 American and Rogue Options Listing

1967 American
1967 Rogue
Options Listing

Factory Installed Options

Prices shown are in US dollars as of October 24, 1966. This page lists only factory installed options. There were also dealer installed such as the tissue dispenser, compass, vent shades, etc. Those items are not listed on this page.

Option or Group Contains Price
Sports Steering Wheel   $23.15 for the 220
$15.55 for 440 and Rogue
Custom Steering Wheel   $7.60 for 220
Standard on 440 and Rogue
Appearance Group A rocker moldings, Turbo Cast wheel covers $76.55 for 220 and 440
$55.40 for Rogue
Appearance Group B rocker moldings, wire wheel covers with spinners $81.40 for 220 and 440
$60.25 for Rogue
Appearance Group C rocker moldings, wheel discs $36.90 for 220 and 440
$15.75 for Rogue
Turbo Cast wheel covers   -220 and 440-$60.80 Rogue-$39.65
Wire wheel with spinners   220 and 440-$65.65 Rogue-$44.50
Wheel Discs   220 and 440-$21.50 Rogue-standard
Hub Caps   220 and 440-standard. Rogue-NA
Bumper Guards- front and rear (except wagon)   $22.70
Bumper Guards- front only (wagon)   $11.35
Visibility Group Remote left mirror, visor mirror, electric wipers and washers $26.80
Remote left mirror   $9.10
Light Group trunk or cargo light, two courtesy lights, glove box, park brake warning, front door switches for the 220 $15.15
Electric wipers and washers   $17.85
Electric wipers only-   $12.30
All Season Air Conditioning Heavy Duty cooling, 60 amp battery (standard on 343), 40 amp alternator $310.80
Auto transmission cooler (standard V8)   $15.25
Tachometer   $48.05
Twin Grip rear differential   $36.85
HD cooling Heavy duty radiator, flex fan and shroud. Standard with All Season Air Conditioning $16.05
HD Radiator   $8.05
Engine Block Heater   $7.60
Exhaust Emissions Systems   Air Guard V8 - $50.05
Air Guard 6cyl - $45.10
Engine Mod - $11.00
Heavy Duty Battery - 70 amp   $7.40
Battery - 50 amp   standard
40 amp alternator   $10.10
Two tone colors 220 and 440 (roof only)   $18.90
Two tone colors Rogue hardtop (hood, roof, and deck lid)   $51.70
Convert with black, white, or tan top only   $39.40
All Vinyl seat material (standard on convert and bucket seats)   $24.45
Power steering   $84.40
Power disc brakes (V8 only)   $90.60
Power drum brakes   $42.15
Power tailgate window   $31.40
AM Manual Radio   $49.25
AM Push Button   $57.40
Third Seat belt-front or rear   $9.45
Individual reclining seats   Standard on Rogue
N/A for 220
$44.65 for 440
Reclining buckets with center armrest (Rogue only)   $78.05
Reclining buckets - With armrest and console (floor shift transmission Rogue only)   hardtop-$19.65.
Convert-$97.65
Headrests (bench seats only)   Right only - $14.60
Left only - $14.60
Both - $29.15
Headrests-buckets-(Rogue only)   Right only - $22.70
Left - $22.70
Both - $45.30
Solex Glass (excludes rear window on convertible)   28.70
Solex Glass - Windshield only   $14.05
Heavy Duty shocks-V8 only   $3.60
Heavy Duty springs and shocks-6cyl only   $6.50
Handling Package (six cylinder) Front sway bar and HD shocks $11.35
Handling Package (V8) HD spring and shock plus 5 1/2" rim $11.35
Front sway bar (V8 only)   standard
HD Clutch-290 3 speed only   $5.20
Black or White vinyl top-440 and Rogue only   $74.75
Console shift auto-Rogue only   $192.35
Auto column shift-(NA with 343)   $173.85
4 speed (console NA)   $184.25
Column shift Overdrive (NA with 290 and 343)   $109.45
Undercoating   $16.95
290 4 bbl   $150.45
290 2 bbl   $118
343 4 bbl (not available until after Jan 1, 1967)   Estimated $204

Available Tire Sizes

  • 6 cyl standard (except wagon) - 6.45 x 14 4 ply rated 2 ply
  • 8 cyl standard, wagon standard, optional others - 6.95 x 14 4 ply rated 2 ply
  • Optional - 6.95 x 14 8 ply rated 4 ply
  • Optional except V8 - 6.85 x 15 4 ply rated 4 ply
  • Optional V8 - 7.35 x 14 4 ply rated 2 ply
  • Optional V8 - 7.35 x 14 8 ply rated 4 ply
  • Optional V8 (except wagons) D70 x 14 red Line Wide Profile Hi-Perf 4 ply rated 2 ply Nylon

Bibliography

The following sources were used to verify the information contained on this page:

  • Official 1967 AMC Price Guide records for Rambler American and Rogue acquired from Thomas Benvie, AMC Historian, tbenvie@attbi.com

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1968 American and Rogue Options Listing

1968 American
1968 Rogue
Options Listing

Factory Installed Options

Prices shown are in US dollars as of ????. This page lists only factory installed options. There were also dealer installed such as the tissue dispenser, compass, vent shades, etc. Those items are not listed on this page.

Option or Group Contains Price
Two-tone paint    
Black or off-white vinyl roof (Rogue only)    
Vinyl upholstery (standard on wagons)    
Individually adjustable reclining seats    
Headrests    
Shoulder belts (standard after Jan 1, 1968) and mid-passenger seat belts    
All-Season air-conditioning 60 amp battery,
40 amp alternator,
heavy duty cooling
 
Power steering    
Power brakes    
Power disc brakes (V8 only)    
Automatic transmission cooler (standard on V8 models)    
Twin-Grip rear differential    
Sports wood-grain-look steering wheel (440 and Rogue only)    
Custom steering wheel (base model only, standard on Rouge and 440)    
Solex (tined) glass, windshield only    
Solex (tined) glass, all glass    
Wheel discs    
Turbo-Cast wheel covers    
Wire-wheel covers    
Appearance Group rocker-panel moldings,
wheel discs
 
Electric wipers    
Visibility Group remote-control left-side mirror,
visor vanity mirror,
electric windshield washers,
electric windshield wipers
 
Light Group trunk or cargo light,
two courtesy lights,
glove-box light,
parking brake warning light,
headlights-on warning buzzer,
front door switches for base models
 
AM push-button radio    
Roof-top travel rack (wagon only)    
Bumper guards, front and rear (wagon, front only)    
Insulation Group undercoating,
hood insulation
 
Heavy-Duty engine cooling (standard with air-conditioning) radiator,
power-flex fan and shroud,
70 amp battery (40 amp alternator standard with air-conditioning)
 
70 amp battery and 40 amp alternator (cars less air-conditioning)    
Engine block heater    
6 Cylinder Handling Package front sway-bar,
heavy duty springs and shocks absorbers
 
V8 Handling Package larger sway bar,
heavy duty springs and shocks absorbers,
5 1/2" rim wheels
 
Heavy-Duty clutch for 3-speed transmissions (128 HP six and 200 HP V8 only)    
Tachometer (V8 only)    
199 Six 128 HP (standard except Rogue)    
232 Six, 1V 145 HP (standard on Rogue)    
290 V8, 2V 200 HP    
290 V8, 4V 225 HP    

Available Tire Sizes

  • 6 cyl standard (except wagon) - 6.45 x 14 4 ply rated 2 ply
  • 8 cyl standard, all wagon standard, optional others - 6.95 x 14 4 ply rated 2 ply
  • Optional - 6.95 x 14 8 ply rated 4 ply
  • Optional V8 - 7.35 x 14 4 ply rated 2 ply
  • Optional V8 - 7.35 x 14 8 ply rated 4 ply
  • Optional V8 (except wagons) D70 x 14 red-line Wide Profile Hi-Perf 4 ply rated 2 ply Nylon w/5 1/2" rim wheels
  • Official 1968 AMC sales brochure
  • 1969 SC/Rambler


    1969 American Motors/Hurst SC/Rambler

    1969 SC/Rambler Two Door Sedan 'A' Scheme Paint
    1969 SC/Rambler Two Door Hardtop 'A' Scheme Paint
    Photo courtesy of Vince Scamardo
    1969 SC/Rambler Two Door Sedan 'B' Scheme Paint
    1969 SC/Rambler Two Door Hardtop 'B' Scheme Paint

    General Information

    In a bid to generate buyer traffic and excitement beyond the Javelin and AMX models and to capitalize on the rapidly expanding small car muscle market, AMC launched Hurst modified SC/Rambler in 1969. This was a corporate watershed year in which AMC sought to bow out was the "old Rambler guard" and usher in a new era of AMC only lableled models. The successful Hornet series would replace the American in the next model year and with the rebirth of a famous model name from the Hudson days or yore would come the end of the line for the venerable American series. What better way to retire the old player than going out with a last hurrah as the rough and tumble Captain of the team?

    The "new"  and radically different Hurst SC/Rambler was notabe for its performance 'extras', the likes of which had never been seen on an American series car before, that differentiated it from the rest of the American line.  While the major body and interior was the same as other '69 Rambler two door hardtops the very notable modifications listed made this car radically different than all other model in the series:
    • Front and rear wheel wells lips rolled to accomodate larger tire sizes and drag slicks
    • "letter box" snorkel hood scoop with functional "Ram Air"
    • Cold ram air induction w/vacuum operated metal flapper and inner/outer air cleaner tub assembly
    • rear "torque links" similar to those used on the AMX and performance equipped Javelins
    • 16 :1 quick ratio manual steering as compared to 20:1 steering on other American non power steering cars
    • Power assisted brakes with front disc rather than front drums
    • Blue pinted Magnum 500 styled steel wheels with deep dish center caps and brushed trim rings
    • AMX 390 V-8 with 315HP and 425 lbft Torque
    • heavy duty 4 speed manua floor shift transmission (T-10) with Hurst competition shifter 
    • 3.54 "Twin-Grip" limited slip differential dana 20 rear end
    • SC Rambler/Hurst emblems on sides and rear sail panel
    • Black taillamp lenses and sail panel
    • Chrome hood pins with retainer cables
    • Thrush glass pack style mufflers and baloney slice tipped 2" dual exhaust sytem
    • red, white, & blue headrests square back split bench front seats
    • triple spoke woodgrain edged sports steering wheel
    • hosed clamp, steeering column mounted Sun S635 tach
    • left and right rear view mirrors like those used on the '68/'69 Hurst Olds

    While a few of these items came from the factory, all body modifications and special components were added and procured by the Hurst Corporation. Major mechanical and body components were upgraded or different than other Ramblers including the Rogues from which the SC was derived. Although some maintain that the SC floor pan chassis is different from other '69 Americans it is widely accepted that there were no substantial differences beyond the additional frame mounts necessary to connect  the AMC torque links from the AMX and performance equipped Javelins to the Rogue based frame. Luckily, ALL Americans from '68 on had an added layer of skin to the inside of the rocker panels to stiffen them up, just in time to acccomodate the dramatic increase in torque from the AMC 390 that became the primary driver behind creating the legendary SC/Rambler performance capabilities!  There is no documented evidence that an SC chassis is stiffer in any way other than the mount plates for the torque links and the staggered shock access plate on the left hand side of the trunk although some sources contend that the SC used additional bracing that was used for convertible models to increase structural stiffness.

    One option distinction was notable - there was only a single factory option avaialbe, an AM radio!  That was it - there were no other factory order options.  All other options had to be ordered as dealer options and were limited primarily to the Group 19 Option list with items such as a 290 Hydraulic camshaft, heavy duty lifter and double valve springs, Mallory dual point rev pole distributor, AMC logo'd Edlebrock R4B intake manifold and a Holley 930 CFM three barell carburetor with an enormous vacuum controlled secondary that required the notch-out seen today in the rear of the carburetor opening in vintage AMC R4B manifolds.  Company memos support the statement that there were no options available other than the AM radio and that all performance enhancements had to be ordered through the dealer.  And ordered they were, with most SC/Ramblers upgraded to race and terrorize the F Class at local dragstrips around the country. 

    Nearly all body parts are shared with the 1967-69 American body. There are some differences that limits the body panels that can be shared with the earlier cars. This information is detailed in the 1966-1969 Series 01 Parts Swap Guide.

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    Body Styles and Trim Levels

    The only body style available was the two door hardtop in Rogue trim. (see VIN Decoder and Unit Body Identification Plate for additional information on decoding the VIN and door tags).

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    Engines

    The only available engine was the 390 cid V-8. The 7th character of the VIN is the Engine Code and indicates original engine size and is always an "X" for a true SC/Rambler.

    There are many faked SC/Ramblers in the world today. What better way to fetch a premium price for an otherwise lower valued Rogue hardtop than to pass it off as a genuine SC/Rambler? One issue is that many cars had the original engine replaced due to the extreme conditions experience as the race track or even from street racing.  A Group 19 equipped SC/Rambler could easily run the quarter mile in the 12 second range which is far quicker than its advertised 14.3 second from the factory capabilties.  Despite all of the many race proven designs in a Group 19 equipped car, the one weak spot in the AMC 390 was the cast pistons which, after a couple of seasons of hard racing, had a tendency to develop fissures and cracks in the piston's wrist pin area which could ultimately result in a "blown" (blown up) engine.  For those who were savy in the art of drag racing, the stock AMC cast piston were replaced with after market forged pistons long before there was a problem.  Unfortunately most SC/Rambler owners had little prior experience with drag racing and only learned of the limitations of AMC's cast piston design after it was to late to prevent a catastrophic engine failure, hence the high number of replaced engines in SC/Ramblers.  Although engine replacements in AMC were fairly routine and relatively easy to do, not having the original (or at least a 1969 390) does lower the car's collectable value in today's collector car market.  For AMC V-8 engines, the best way to tell cubic inch displacement is to look at the nubmers cast into the side of the engine block near the first and second core (freeze) plugs on either side of the engine. Note that service replacement blocks do not have the displacement cast into them and their displacement can only be deterimied in a tear-down to measure bore and stroke, the denominators in the formula for cubic inch designation.

    Cars that are considered to have a higher probability of being original will at least have the original valve covers and date code tags on the engine. This tag is located at the front of the right valve cover but you may need to check the rear of the left cover due to AMC valve covers being interchangeable from side to side resulting in the ends somtimes being reversed.

    Note: Engine dates are calendar dates and not model year dates. Since model year production actual starts in the previous calendar year, it is possible to have, for example, an engine coded 1966 in a 1967 vehicle and be correct but an engine coded 1968 would not be correct for the same car since no 1967 models were manufactured in calendar year 1968.

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    Transmissions

    The Borg Warner close ration T-10 four speed transmission with the Hurst competition floor shift was the only transmission available. The transmission type can be determined by the third digit of the VIN, which would be "M" (4 speed floor shift, floor mounted) for the SC/Rambler.

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    Production Numbers

    The generally accepted production number for the SC/Rambler is a total of 1512. Although the exact makeup is unknown (AMC record keeping on this subject was always a little sketchy on the SC/Rambler), AMC collectors universally acknowledge that the first batch of 500 were painted in the "A" paint scheme which include a base white painted car with red sides,  blue stripes down the center of the roof and trunk and large decals on the hood with a large blue decal of an arrow pointing at the hood scoop with accompanying large red letters boldly proclaiming "RAM AIR" between the arrow and the scoop plus matching size large red numbers and letters of "390 CI" on the top of the scoop.  Although the "A" scheme design was a major attention getter at the race track, it was often considered over the top by most street car owners and sure bet to gain the attention of local police patrols around the country.  The second batch of 500 SC/Ramblers were done in the more subdued "B" paint scheme which included a base white colored cars with a narrrow red decal stipe over a wider blue stripe on and just above the rocker panels. Although the "B" schemes cars also had the fabled Ram Air hood scoop with funtional cold air inlet, the decals on the hood, roof and trunk were not included in the "B" scheme graphics package. 

    The last batch of 512 SC/Ramblers' paint scheme is a somewhat controversial subject, but many agree that they were most likely painted in the "B" scheme due to the cost and complexity of the "A" scheme although there are clearly far more "A" scheme cars out there today than "B" scheme cars.  Most believe that the vast majority of the "A" scheme cars were used primarily as factory developed race cars while many of the "B" scheme cars were used as personal transportation for their owners.  Regardelss, the paint code listed on the SC/Rambler's door tag gives no indication of which paint scheme was originally used so it is likely that over the years many owners simply painted their cars in the flashier and more recognizable "A" scheme.  An interesting aside is that in 1969, the "A" scheme cars languished on the dealers lots due to the outlandish and previously unheard of factory paint job on the SC/Rambler and a fair number of both scheme SC/Ramblers were sold as leftovers in 1970 or even 1971 for far less than their 2995 window sticker price.  Additionally, some dealers even went as far as to change "A" scheme cars to the more moderate "B" scheme or even a single color other than white to move the cars off their lots.

    It should be noted that there were also a least 6 and possibly a few more Baha SC/Ramblers which were special versions of the SC/Rambler with chasis lifts and special drivetrains specfically designed to be raced at the Baha Pennisula.  James Garner was documented to be one of the drivers.  It is unknown if the Baha SC/Ramblers were included in the 1512 tally of SC/Ramblers or not and it is unknown to this writer whether any of them remain in existence today.

    The SC/Rambler was officially introduced March 8th, 1969 at the 61st Chicago Auto Show.

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    VIN Decoder

    Model year 1969 cars will have a VIN tag on the dash board only. The VIN is also stamped into the left frame sill behind the steering gear box where it is often necessary to remove the steering gear box to view the VIN in this location.  Some SC/Ramblers may have and incorrect dashboard VIN code due to the tendency of the SC/Rambler dash pads to crack when exposed for prolonged periods to the sun resulting in someone replacing the dash with one from an American or Rogue.  The sure fire test of whether or not a given car is a true SC/Rambler is to look at the VIN that is also behind the steering box on the driver's side lower frame behind the steering box. 


    The SC/Rambler VIN can be decoded as follows:

     

     

    Company Year Transmission Type Series Body Type Trim Level Engine Sequential Serial Number*
    A 9
    M
    0 9 7 X
    100001

    Note: Character one is always an A (American Motors) and character four is always a zero (American/Rogue/Rambler).

    *The last six characters are the numbers assigned to the car when it was ordered from the factory. Numbers starting at 100001 are assigned to cars made in Kenosha, WI. Numbers starting at 700001 are assigned to cars made in the Brampton plant in Ontario, Canada. All SC/Ramblers were built in Kenosha.  All SC/Ramblers had the engine code of X in the seventh digit of the serial number and the letter M in the third digit.  If either of those digits are wrong, the car is not a true SC/Rambler

     

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    Unit Body Identification Plate

     

    The Unit Body Identification Plate for a 1969 Series 01 can be found on the latch edge of the driver's door. Cars built in Canada usually have a "1" in front of the standard numbers listed below (All SC/Ramblers were built in Kenosha). The tag can be decoded as follows:

    Body

     

    This is the number assigned to the body as it was being produced. This number is different than the last six digits of the VIN.


    Model

     

    This identifies the body and trim styles. The first two digits are the year, the third the series, fourth body style, and fifth trim level. Base trim level is often left out (only four digits). Blanks indicate that the body and trim style was not available for the year in question. All SC/Ramblers will have a model number of 6909-7.


    Trim

     

    This identifies the interior trim style, color, and seat types. The trim code is a four character number that may be prefixed by a "T". The first character is the year, the second the trim level, third color, and the fourth is the seat type. Letters after the numeric code indicate the corresponding seat and fabric types that were available. Special order interiors were available and will have a code of "00".

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     Paint

    The SC/Rambler was definitely a "non standard" color regardless of which scheme was used. All SC/Ramblers have a door tag paint code of "00", "SPEC" or Special.

    The three colors used were Bright White (P88), Bright Red (P9), and Bright Blue (P10).

    Color samples can be viewed at http://autocolorlibrary.com/aclns.html

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    Sequential Assembly Number

    The unlabeled number at the bottom of the body tag is the Sequential Assembly Number. This number was assigned to the vehicle as it entered the final assembly line. Cars assembled in Kenosha will have an "E" or "W" preceding the number. This designated the East or West assembly line. Cars assembled in Brampton will have a "B" preceding the number. Note that all SC/Ramblers were built in Kenosha. Vehicles were assembled in batches as needed -- i.e., 10 Americans may be assembled then 20 Classics followed by 15 Ambassadors, etc. Minimum and maximum sizes of batches are unknown -- in some cases single cars may have gone through the lines. The first number used each year was 000001. Earlier years used a different numbering system.


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    Bibliography

     

    The following sources were used to verify the information contained on this page:

    • Cars & Parts Catalog of American Car ID Numbers 1960-1969, ISBN 1-880524-11-2
    • 1969 American Motors Technical Service Manual
    • 1966-1969 American Motors Collision Parts Guide
    • The Compact Chronicles, copyright 1992, Frank Swygert
    • First hand knowledge and experience of a 35 year AMC owner/enthusiast and current SC/Rambler owner

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    For additional Information

    including video clips, photos and historical documentation as well as access to SC/Rambler parts vendors and memorabilia visit www.AmazingMuscleCars.com.  AmazingMuscleCars.com is a site devoted to the preservation and support of the few remaining SC/Ramblers. 

     

     

     

    1970-78 Hornet <--- Empty

    Page Title


    car pictures go here

    General Information

    Surely someone knows something about this car.

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    Body Styles and Trim Levels

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    Engines

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    Transmissions

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    Production Numbers

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    VIN Decoder

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    Unit Body Identification Plate

    Body

    Model

    Trim

    Paint

    The following colors were available in ????-????. The original color can be determined by looking at the Paint code on the body tag. If there are two codes separated by a dash, the first code is the primary body color and the second code is the upper body (sometimes roof) or accent color. For example, a car that was black with a white top would have a paint code of 1-72. Paint codes may also be prefixed with a P or suffixed with an A. Note that some cars were painted non-standard colors. These cars will typically have a code such as " 00" or "SPEC". This was reserved for large orders in the special color, usually for fleet use.

    Paint Code Color Years
    1 Classic Black ???

    Color samples can be viewed at http://autocolorlibrary.com/aclns.html

    Sequential Assembly Number

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    Bibliography

    The following sources were used to verify the information contained on this page:

    • Resource 1
    • Resource 2

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    1979-83 Concord <--- Empty

    Page Title


    car pictures go here

    General Information

    Surely someone knows something about this car.

    top

    Body Styles and Trim Levels

    top

    Engines

    top

    Transmissions

    top

    Production Numbers

    top

    VIN Decoder

    top

    Unit Body Identification Plate

    Body

    Model

    Trim

    Paint

    The following colors were available in ????-????. The original color can be determined by looking at the Paint code on the body tag. If there are two codes separated by a dash, the first code is the primary body color and the second code is the upper body (sometimes roof) or accent color. For example, a car that was black with a white top would have a paint code of 1-72. Paint codes may also be prefixed with a P or suffixed with an A. Note that some cars were painted non-standard colors. These cars will typically have a code such as " 00" or "SPEC". This was reserved for large orders in the special color, usually for fleet use.

    Paint Code Color Years
    1 Classic Black ???

    Color samples can be viewed at http://autocolorlibrary.com/aclns.html

    Sequential Assembly Number

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    Bibliography

    The following sources were used to verify the information contained on this page:

    • Resource 1
    • Resource 2

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