Wednesday, April 13, 2011

1974 AMC Gremlin X Levi's Edition.

**This car sold for $4500.00 about 2 minutes after I posted this piece.**

Even if you don't like their cars, you have to give AMC credit for having been innovative. Compared to the "Big 3", they were tiny and had little development money. They couldn't compete on a technology level, so they went for style and character. It didn't always work - think Pacer - but you have to give them credit for trying.

The Gremlin itself was one of those "innovative" cars. AMC needed a "small" car. There was no money to create one from scratch, so they simply lopped the back end off a Hornet and, voila, they had a small car. Few people would have said this out loud back in the day, but the Gremlin really was a cool looking car.

The Gremlin was introduced April 1, 1970, beating GM's Chevrolet Vega and Ford' Pinto to the marketplace by a few months.

In 1971, AMC introduced the "X Package". This was strictly an appearance package. With the "X Package" you got sport wheels, bucket seats (but no floor mounted shifter), stripes, a blacked out grille and a few other "sporty" features. In 1973 they introduced the Levi's interior trim package. This was an interior that was made to look like it was made from Levi's denim jeans, including copper denim rivets and red Levi's logo tabs. (The seat covers were not actually cotton, but made of spun nylon). The Levi "Seat of the Pants" Package cost $134.95, but if you ordered it with the Gremlin X Option it only cost $49.95 extra. For that reason, most Levis cars also have the X Package.

This car, according to the seller, has 35,000 original miles on it. He states that it was owned by a woman who recently lost her license due to her age.

This is not a perfect car. If this were a German car I would question the mileage. But, in the 1970s, the quality of the parts used in American cars was awful, so even though there are some flaws in the car, it's not unreasonable to assume that the mileage is correct. (Documentation would be very cool, however.)

The asking price of $7000.00 is very high. For similar money you should be able to find an "X" with a V8 (Scary fast. I knew someone who had one - with the Levi's Package.), but with higher miles. However, if a low-mileage Levi's package means a lot to you, this car might be worth checking out.

Located in Cedar Rapids, IA, click here to see the eBay listing.

A big thanks to JaCG reader, Blair, for sending me the link to this car.


Blair Russell said...

Yeah, I just stumbled upon the car yesterday and I was wildly amused that there was such an idea in the 70's as a denim (or faux-denim) interior. I hadn't heard of it before so it caught me by surprise.

And a Gremlin with a V8 sounds rather terrifying to me.

Chris Keen said...

A friend of mine had a Jeans Beetle when I was living in Germany in 1990-91... don't remember much other than when I put my foot on the bumper, some rust fell out.

enmotors said...

Sold for $4500. Looks like a solid car. You rarely see these and the interiors are usually just beat. Looks like a fair deal for an odd driver.

cliff D said...

73 Hornet X love the levi and my 401

Robert Ford said...

I used to have on of these. Was Sky Blue color. 304 V8 that gave a lot of cars a run for the money, Friday and Saturday nights. Wish I would have kept it.

Thomas W said...

This was my first car and my father bought it for me to go to university. I loved this car and wish I still had it. Mine was the 258 straight 6 3 speed with Levis interior (no roof rack). This was so cool and I always was stopped by people who just loved it.
I really miss this car.

Graham Clayton said...

The Randall AMC dealership in Mesa, AZ received endorsement from AMC to build a V8 Gremlin using a 401ci (6.6 litre) V8. Known as the Randall 401-XR (X for Gremlin X, R for Randall), 20 were built, each costing $2995.