Site Tools & Extras
1968-1972 Trans-Am Racing
1970 Mark Donohue Signature Edition Javelin
The 1970 Mark Donohue Signature Edition Javelin was created out of a need to homologate the Javelin and its newly designed rear spoiler to compete in Trans-Am events for the 1970 season. The SCCA required that 2500 street cars would have to be sold for homologation purposes.
The Donohue Javelins were all to be SST Javelins and have the Donohue designed rear ducktail spoiler, Ram Air hood, four-speed or automatic on the floor, and a 360 engine with thicker webbing allowing for four bolt mains. The cars could be ordered with a variety of options to include any available colors, air conditioning, tilt wheel, etc. For whatever reason some of the Donohue Javelins received 390 engines and/or non functional ram-air hoods. Some even had column shift automatics. And not all were SSTs.
Unfortunately AMC did not specifically identify these cars in the VIN, door tag, or anywhere else. It is easy to replicate yet difficult to authenticate a Mark Donohue Javelin. Without the original documentation the authenticity of a Mark Donohue Javelin is questionable. Authentic or not, the 1970 Mark Donohue Signature Edition Javelin is one of the best looking pony cars ever built.
Aaron’s 1970 Mark Donohue Javelin
I bought the car in 1998 after locating it on the Internet. I’d been looking for a 1970 Javelin that was optioned in a certain way. I wanted a 390 4-speed with Go-Pak. It turns out I was able to locate not only a 390 4-speed car, but also; Matador Red, red leather, go-pak, 3:90.1 Twin Grip, factory Ram Air, Adjust-O-Tilt Steering column and non-A/C. The car was originally a Colorado car purchased new in Denver, which means it has NO rust at all. The car had 64k original on it, and must have spent much of its life in a garage due to the condition of the interior. Typically Colorado cars have no rust on the exterior, but the interiors are baked. However, the interior on this car was beautiful. The original leather is as soft as I have ever seen in something 30 years old. Just before finding the car in Michigan, the car was transported from Colorado to Zephyr Hills, Florida as part of the Kruse Collector car auction circuit. A small dealer bought the car in Florida, and transported it to his car lot in Michigan, where I purchased it.
Since finding the Javelin, I’ve spent a lot of time and money refreshing it. New paint (Matador Red) and reverse C stripe make the car sparkle. I added a reproduction front underbody "Group 19" fiberglass spoiler. Further additions include Mallory electronic ignition and distributor, Edelbrock "Performer" intake manifold, which really makes the mildly cammed engine crank. I also rebuilt the front end, rebuilding the brakes and replacing all the bushings. Overall ride was upgraded with KYB gas shocks front and rear. I upgraded the clutch by installing a Zoom diaphragm unit and rebuilt the T-10 4-speed. Cosmetic improvements include NOS simulated side exhaust rocker moldings, re-chromed bumpers, and 15X7 Magnum 500 wheels. On the interior I added a new headliner and replaced the woodgrain dash overlay with a NOS unit.
The 1970 Javelin was the peak of AMC development and design. The car makes no excuses in a crowd of Boss Mustangs, Z-28 Camaros and ‘Cudas. The Javelin has beautiful lines and aggressive styling that competes in that crowd, but also has the racing heritage that some of them don’t. And best of all, the car is mine.