American Motors, or AMC, may never have been at the top of muscle’s literary canon. The company’s relatively compact street fighter, the Javelin, was sort of the AMC equivalent of Ford’s Mustang. Even so, they would have been one of the last names, among those associated with American auto making, that would have been placed in the very caliper of a Corvette, let alone a Mustang.
But with the AMX-optioned Javelin, the rules of the game changed. Regardless of performance or any other options, musclecars of the late 1960s and early ‘70s still had to cater to everyone. The AMX is said to be American Motors’ direct, two-seater response to the Corvette. With an overall production of around 19,000 cars between 1968-70, the AMX was also a performance car that was built in volume.
Historical significance is, however, what makes a lot of our most cherished muscle cars valuable, intrinsically or otherwise. For this reason, it’s interesting to note that 1968 Playmate of the Year, Angela Dorian, was the original owner of our featured Javelin AMX.
Current owner, Mark Melvin speaks of AMC’s eagerness to compete with GM, “In 1968 when they took this up against a Corvette, the Corvette was just a few seconds faster than the AMX,” says Melvin. Our featured AMC holds a 290 cubic-inch, “Typhoon” V-8. The original motor chases a Borg-Warner, 3-speed automatic transmission. Around 4,000 Playboy AMXs were built; of these, about 400 cars are said to exist with the 230 horsepower package.
Other accessories that are era-correct to the Playboy AMX include a Ford A/C compressor, Delco Remy distributor and Ford power steering pump with a Saginaw steering box. Perhaps pink is not the “manliest” of colors when laying paint on your muscle classic. But then with a performance package like our Javelin AMX, is anyone really going to argue with it?!
Fanatical about everything LS and Buick Turbo-6, it goes without saying that Sal Alaimo Jr. is on it, when it comes to covering anything late-model. But his musclecar roots can be traced back to Chevelles, Skylarks and the rest of the A-Body family of GM performance!