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American Motors eXperimental

Factory AMX Proto-Types


1966 AMX Auto Topics

From Auto Topics
April, 1966

What's in the future for American Motors? That query becomes more and more pertinent as AM fails to hold its share of the car market during a period of increasing expansion. One possible answer is supplied by the AMX, a stylish experimental design that may reveal features of tomorrow's AM products.

The car is a small, sports-styled fastback with an unusual, cantilevered roof structure and, of all things, a "Ramble Seat." The latter is like the rumble seat of yesteryear but, thanks to a hinged window, it provides reasonable wind protection and it allows its occupants to communicate with passengers inside the car. The AMX might be just the individual touch AM needs.

A unique American Motors styling project that makes sporty car noises and revives the RUMBLE SEAT!

1966 AMX Proto-type

"Cantilevered roof structure eliminates need for sturdy windshield pillars, allowing improved forward visibility. Body sculpturing is discreet, distinctive".

1966 AMX Ramble Seat

"Unique "Ramble Seat" folds out of rear deck. Rear window hinges up to become windshield and allow communication between inside and outside passengers".

1966 AMX Proto-type

"AMX displays attractive, individual styling and unusual features that could be just the tonic American Motors needs to regain its share of market".



1966 AMX Proto-type

A prototype of a radical new show car which features a unique cantilever roof and three-way seating has been unveiled by American Motors Corporation.

The special sports car, the AMX (for American Motors Experimental), is a two-door hardtop with unique fastback styling. "It is a design experiment which is being pursued to check various design potentials and to test public response to the many unusual features," American Motors President Roy Abernethy said.

The design calls for elimination of the pillar between the front and side windows, resulting in optimum visibility for safety, as well as accentuating the unique roof. In the design, a cantilever-type roof is supported by inner structural members which also serve as a roll bar. When fresh air is desired, the side windows remain closed. The louvers on either side of the hood may be opened and the rear window partially raised to complete the flow-thru ventilation system. The canted louvers near the front of the hood are designed to augment engine cooling.

The AMX is basically a two-passenger car, designed with shell bucket seats in leather and a full length center console.

1966 AMX Proto-type

In addition, the design calls for "jump" seats in the rear, as well as a "Ramble seat." Unlike the rumble seats of yesteryear, the new AMX version is designed to permit passengers in that seat to participate in conversation with those in front by means of the top-hinged windows. This also would serve to protect the "Ramble seat" occupants from the weather and wind.

The entire rear section, from the top of the rear window to the bumper line, could be raised as a single unit, providing flexible storage space. The AMX has an over-all length of 179 inches. It is 72 inches wide, 48 inches high and has a wheelbase of 98 inches.

The AMX seemingly has no taillights because they are covered by a metal mesh which resembles regular chrome. With the lights switched on, the mesh becomes transparent, permitting the red light to shine through. The taillights span the full width of the car.

1966 AMX Proto-type

The car's V-shaped grille complements the "V" windshield. The grille and the rectangular headlights are recessed for protection. Turnpike driving lights are mounted low in the flush bumper.

There are no conventional exterior door handles. A button mechanism would open the hatch-type doors, which wrap up into the roof for easier entry and exit. The ribbed rocker panels are edged with brushed aluminum.

Dual exhaust outlets are recessed into the trailing edges of the rocker panels.

Fifteen-inch "mag-type" wheels are used, with oversized tires in the rear. The tires have a blue stripe which matches the blue body striping along the lower sculpture line. The model is finished in silver blue metallic. Twin gas tanks with flush gas filler doors set on each side of the sculptured rear pillars are a design feature.

The 1966 AMX Proto-Type is a handbuilt steel bodied car. It was completely hand constructed in Turin, Italy by Vignale Coachworks.



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