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1965-1966 Rambler Ambassador

1965-1966 Rambler Ambassador Performance Statistics

The 1965 and '66 performance statistics make for an interesting comparison. Bear in mind while interpreting these figures that the 1965 car was fitted with the manual transmission/overdrive and a 3.54:1 axle ratio, while the 1966 model came with the automatic and a 3.15:1 axle:


1965 Cvt
1966 Htp

0-30 mph (sec) 3.84.0
0-45 mph (sec) 7.97.0
0-60 mph (sec) 12.010.4
Passing times/distances

40-60 mph (sec/ft)5.4/394.25.0/366
50-70 mph (sec/ft)6.3/553.4 6.7/588
Standing 1/4-mile

Time (sec)19.017.8
Speed at end (mph)75

Presumably, a 1966 model with the standard transmission could readily out perform either of these test cars, not to mention what a car equipped with the four-speed might do. Unfortunately, no test figures are available, so we can only guess.

1965-1966 rambler ambassador
At $2404, the 880 two-door sedan was again the price leader, and the poorest seller: 1493 units.

Sales of the newly formulated 1965-66 Ambassador reflected the car's more important status in the AMC hierarchy. One ad during the 1965 model year boasted that "You'll soon see why we've had to increase Ambassador production by four times to meet demand!" And indeed, output soared from 18,647 units in 1964 to 64,145 in the 1965 model year. That was a Rambler Ambassador record (the previous being 37,811 in 1963), but it lasted only one year, as 71,692 Ambassadors were called for in 1966 -- a far cry from the 14,570 built when the Rambler-based Ambassador bowed in 1958. Further, the Ambassador, which would be dropped after 1974, would never better the 1966 results.

For 1967, the Ambassador (no longer billed a Rambler, by the way) continued to grow. Wheelbase was increased by another two inches, overall length by three and a half inches. Weight increased by nearly 300 pounds, and even the styling looked more massive (many would also say even more attractive). Roy Abernethy was about to resign as AMC president, but his influence was just really commencing to be felt. As Abernethy had intended, the Ambassador would continue to grow until it eventually rivaled the full-sized models from the Big Three. In the meantime, the handsome mid-sized 1965-1966 models could best be thought of as "interim Ambassadors" enroute to becoming as big as the Big Three's full-size cars.

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