1969 Rambler SC/Rambler

Even in the late '60s, the Rambler SC/Rambler stood out as one wild ride. Its looks screamed performance and its mechanicals backed that up.

©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

The idea of a Rambler with the bargain-basement muscle car character of a Plymouth Road Runner may seem pretty farfetched, but a passable attempt was made by American Motors with the one-year-only 1969 Rambler SC/Rambler. At a base price under $3,000, on par with the Road Runner, AMC offered a 390-cid V-8 with 315 bhp, a close-ratio all-synchromesh four-speed gearbox with Hurst linkage and shifter, and 3.54:1 no-slip differential.

Also included were stiff suspension, quick steering, heavy-duty clutch and cooling system, tachometer, dual exhausts with glass-pack mufflers, cold-air induction, and Goodyear Polyglas tires. Added niceties came in the form of chrome hood tie-downs, teardrop rearview mirrors, special exterior paint, woodgrain steering wheel, reclining front bucket seats, and all-vinyl upholstery -- all wrapped in the clean, lithe hardtop Rambler Rogue body styled by Dick Teague for the Rambler American. It was quite a buy, and what you bought you took with no alterations. Said an AMC price list: "no other optional equipment items will be included or permitted."

For a generation spawned on econobox Rambler Americans that had once been compared to army ordnance vehicles, league's heads-up styling department made sure people would recognize the "Scrambler" as a Rambler with a difference. They painted it red, white, and blue, blacked-out the grille, designed a prominent scoop for the cold-air induction, and equipped the car with Red Line tires on smart mag-style wheels. Hurst had been a partner in its development, so it was jointly announced by Hurst and AMC on February 13,1969. Drag strip artists Dave Landrith of Hurst and Walt Czarnecki of AMC had much to do with its development.

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