15k Original Miles: 1972 AMC Gremlin

This has grandma car written all over it: this 1972 AMC Gremlin has just 15,000 original miles and was ordered with essentially no extra equipment other than an automatic transmission. The seller notes it is almost entirely original aside from tires and paint. Bidding is at $8K but the reserve remains unmet – is that too much money for a very nice stripper (cue bad jokes)? Check out the Gremlin here on eBay and located in Minnesota.

You can’t fault the seller for asking fair money, as this Gremlin really does present like showroom new. The features list, as noted, is incredibly sparse, with radio delete, cigarette lighter delete, no power steering, and no power brakes. As the seller notes in the listing, this is an ideal drag racer candidate given how little extraneous equipment there is to delete.

The cabin appears to be in exceptional condition, with mint black vinyl bucket seats and door panels. The seller notes the carpets are original as well, and there are no visible cracks in the dash. All documentation and original owner’s booklets and warranty manuals are included. The seller says the 15,000 miles on the clock is fully documented by records.

Engine-wise, the stripper spirit continues, with the base 3.8L six-cylinder engine under the hood. This put out about 100 bhp, all of which are likely accounted for given the low miles and clean condition. To have this car in such a low spec survive with no modifications is pretty remarkable, so does that make this base-model Gremlin somewhat unrepeatable?

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Comments

  1. Ralph

    We really have to stop with the over use of the word “delete”, I know it sounds all car guy cool and stuff, but you can’t delete what was already optional, this car didn’t have the radio or lighter deleted, those were options, it wasn’t ordered with them. Done.

    52
    • art

      These folks need to browse a few older car brochures to see how few standard features these cars offered. Almost everything was an option on many models. The upside at the time was that the option costs were modest and allowed one to order a car specific to their needs and budget. Maybe just a heater and window washers or just a radio and backup lights or maybe just a tinted windshield and door edge guards. The individual options and combinations were almost endless. The younger folks can’t seem to wrap their heads around the fact that cars back then were not loaded (bloated) with “$tandard” equipment and often useless option “packages” where one has to pay for five options just to get the single one you want or need.
      I really wish we could pick and choose the options individually, including more interior color selections available with ANY exterior color. Seems it was much better before.:)

      48
      • Dave

        The last time I special ordered a truck was 42 years ago. It took Ford eight weeks from order entry to delivery.

        Nobody has time for that anymore. Every car I’ve bought since came off the lot.

        When I go to the dealer the title to what I drive up in is in my pocket. I plan to drive a new car home.

        10
    • roaddiggidy

      you are forgetting packages. sure, you could buy a base model but you could also buy a package, whether budget or performance/luxury, right off the lot. yes, he could have used the term base model a few times

    • Patrick Farmer

      How in the world is the word delete over used??? Why are you writing about the copy instead of the car?? Are you the editor? God knows I am far from a writer, but do know how to express myself. I am car guy cool and stuff, so are a great number of readers of this site. You are obviously not car guy cool and stuff, however, because you are trying establish yourself with authority over the rest of us and your post has a derogatory, disparaging manner to it. Putting on airs. DELETE is not an over used car guy cool and stuff, word. It is latin and it is centuries old. To the Greeks, delete, it is to blot out to smudge away. It found it’s way into english in the 1500’s, in which it meant poisonous, disastrous, sorta like your post. It now means to eradicate, to totally destroy. Of course you can use the word delete against something optional. Optional’s antonym is compulsory, mandatory, which means that delete can be used. I have no idea what car company used it first. It is a proper word to be used in proper english. Far better than your silly over use of slang in your post. You forgot the word “out” after your use of the word “done”. Can you please come up with a new word for “Drop the mike?” Maybe “plunkzee” or “thumpeee” oops, you can’t create them because I just did. Ralph.

      1
  2. Ian C

    Dang!! That is a sharp ride. I would roll it all day. Well worth the bid right now, and I am expecting it to cross 10K.

    8
  3. Bob S

    The only thing that could set this Gremlin over the edge, would be a three on the tree! What a sweet ride!! A steal at current bid!!

    16
    • Larry

      No column shift. Manuals were floor mounted. “Three on the tranny hump”.

      • Dick

        Not true. I my best friend drove a 72 with three on the tree.

  4. That AMC Guy

    Pretty amazing survivor! It would be a shame to cut it up to make a drag racer. These cars were not much fun to drive in base form though. This one at least has the optional bucket seats which are a lot easier on the back than the torture-chamber bench setup. Manual steering is a truck-like six turns lock-to-lock and the 13″ stock tire size doesn’t provide much traction or grip. Being a 1972 model at least you get electric windshield wipers!

    17
    • Howard A.

      I read ’71 was the last year for vacuum wipers. I think AMC was the last company to use them. Good riddance, I say.

      11
      • That AMC Guy

        Yes, through 1971 if you didn’t order the optional electrics on AMC cars you wound up with vacuum windshield wipers. This was the case even on higher-end models such as the AMX and Ambassador. (The only AMC model that came with standard electric wipers prior to 1972 was the Metropolitan.)

        AMC customers were accustomed to this but no doubt some that switched over from the Big 3 were caught by surprise.

        5
      • Howard A.

        Well, looks like we’re pretty much on our own here. I was hoping to hear from you. There’s only a few real AMC nuts here, I bet Scotty G. would love this too. While the other folks are bickering over what “delete” is, seems you and I really know what an important car this was. Imports were coming in fast, and something needed to be done. The Gremlin was the 1st to answer the call, and quite frankly, I feel the best one considering what Ford and GM offered. They’re still hacking away at the price, be such a shame to drive it. If I had the money to buy this, I’d donate it to the Wisconsin Automotive Museum in Hartford, Wis. Well worth the visit, btw. They have all kinds of cars, but mainly feature vehicles made in Wisc. Nash, Rambler, AMC, FWD trucks, even a section on vintage outboards from Chrysler. This would fit right in, because someday, someone is going to say, “what’s a Gremlin?”

        13
    • Howard A.

      Also, I believe, a back seat and opening rear window were extra too.

      4
      • Scuderia

        I worked with a fella in the 70’s who had one and didn’t option the rear seat. There was simply a molded plastic tub back there where the seat would go. Hilarious.

        2
  5. Tom Member

    Price/Value on this one will not really, in my opinion, indicate market value or “what it’s worth”. It is like a rare painting….it’s “worth” is what someone is willing to pay for it….because they have the money AND they really want it!

    If the right eyes get on this car it could sell abnormally high based on the comment “where are you going to find another one like it?”…….

    As much as I have owned WAAAAYYY too many red cars (retail/resale red) at least it is a good color combination on a car that was “put away” !!

    5
  6. Howard A.

    You never know what’s in those garages, hey? I recognize the dealer. Goshen was an AMC dealer in Madison, Wis. Sun Prairie is near there. This is pretty amazing. 1st, I’ve seen a lot of Gremlins, and I don’t think this is as much a stripper as it looks. It does seem to have a fancier interior, like the seats and carpet, 2nd, drag racer? Oh, come on, this should be in a freakin’ museum, if any still exist or anybody cared. The Gremlin beat them all. It was the 1st American import killer, and I believe under cut the cheapest car offered at the time, the VW Bug. Everybody in the midwest knew someone that had a Gremlin. They were cheap, I think like under $2 grand, daughters got them for graduation presents, a lot of Gremlins left Wisconsin, and nearly all, except this one, apparently, were junked as fast as new ones came off the line. They were good cars. Some of the people that had Gremlins were, Marge Simpson, Hans Moleman, and Comic Book Guy all drove Gremlins. The fact it has it’s original gas cap should seal the deal.
    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/1d/06/e6/1d06e625cb0b31fb4a02837b15a8839b.jpg

    13
    • stanley kwiecinski

      Broke a few gremlins off the caps. why? stupid yout

  7. JoeNYWF64

    The engine here appears to be mounted at an angle – higher in the front! Or is that a camera trick?
    Front seats may be too close together for an optional console to have ever been fitted to these cars.

    1
    • Howard A.

      That would be AMC’s famous “Tri-Poised Power”,,,

      4
    • Forrest Newman

      Good observation, Joe. I ain’t no mechanic but as I understand, the drivetrain is in a straight line to the rear differential. That is, the crank shaft on many/most engines is higher than that differential so the engine does point downward.

      Thinking I knew more than my dad born in 1929 and he owned a 1932 Ford, he schooled me on this triviality while we were ogling over a toy 1968 Hot Wheels Classic ’32 Vicky Redline. If you know what that is, kudos, and look at how that V8 engine on this model is correctly mounted.

  8. Perry Yasher

    Original except for paint?

    1
  9. Kenosha Grudge

    Too bad it was repainted. I’d rather see it in original paint no matter how tired it was just so your assured the new paint isn’t masking something.

    4
    • Gary S.

      The ad says original paint with minor touch ups…..didn’t see anywhere it had been repainted.

  10. Little_Cars Little_Cars Member

    I agree about the comments of taking its preservation status and rolling it into that museum in Wisconsin. And in all my years of import and import-bashing car ownership I don’t believe I’ve ever laid eyes on a RED Gremlin. Sweet looking thing, that interior is not to be believed. ThatAMCGuy, as has been said before, is spot on about the bench seat being torturous. Who knows, maybe the buyer of this car test drove or sat in one with the bench and said “not for me.” Don’t think there were any consoles offered unless maybe as part of the Gremlin X edition.

    1
  11. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Sweet……..

  12. Terry

    Had a Gremlin in the 80s. It developed cracks at the top rear of the quarter glass headed for the hatch glass. One day the car flexed a bit too much and the rear glass shattered. I screwed a piece of paneling over the hole, cut an opening for rearward vision and taped plastic over it. Twas a good car.

    1
  13. John West

    Please don’t use this for a drag car. There are too many other makes or bodies that could be trashed for that purpose.

    2
  14. Del

    Wow. A new Gremlin.

    Where else you going to get one ?

    And Red to boot.

    His reserve will be high and rightly so !!

    4
  15. Miguel Member

    How can he ask a premium for the car because it only has 15,000 miles and then in the same breath say it wold make a good drag car.

    Who is going to pay top money for a car like this then cut it up?

    It makes me question the seller in a lot of ways.

    4
  16. Craig F.

    this car is a nice restoration. too much satin clear coat all over engine.

  17. Forrest Newman

    “… this is an ideal drag racer candidate given how little extraneous equipment there is to delete.”

    Egads! What collector-car value this has would be lost to modify this. What’s the saying? “It’s only original once!”

  18. Ryan Hilkemann

    One word to describe this car would be RETRO.

    1
  19. Derek

    Stunning I don’t think I’ve seen a Gremlin like this in 30 years. I might just add power steering and drive it as is. I’ve never needed power brakes on these cars. Love it in red too. It’s gorgeous as is.

  20. Karl

    Words like “sharp” “Gorgeous” “museum” “preservation” Is there a car in this picture that I dont see? All I see is a amc gremlin, I thought they were hideous when they came out brand new and I see nothing different now! Gremlin, Chevette, pinto yugo they all pretty much belong in the same basket to me!

  21. Derek

    How snobbish why are you even here? Most of us enjoy seeing any old car. Many cars I didn’t like when new I like now. Always someone that has to be a wet blanket

    1
  22. Jon Hochstetter

    I owned a ’72 Gremlin X from new, picked it up at the dealer the day I graduated from high school, May 27, 1972.

    The so called “delete” were options, the radio, lighter, bucket seats, right outside mirror, as was remote (cable) control outside mirrors. The standard front seats was a full width bench seat. IIRC, the “X” package provided metallic paint and vinyl side stripes, bucket seats, carpeting on the floor and “cargo” area and a “space saver” spare. Manual transmission was standard on the column, floor shifter was an option. There was no center console at all. The AMC fathers provided a full width shelf below the dash board for stowage. This full width shelf had A/C vents when optional air conditioning was ordered.

    A comment mentioned the easily removeable Grimlin on the gas cap. The Gremlin on the gas cap was only filchable from the optioanl/accessory locking gas cap. The standard gas cap had the Gremlin logo stamped in to 4-5″ diameter cap. If you removed the Gremlin you removed the whole gas cap.

    And my ’72 Gremlin had a 21 gallon fuel tank and returned 18mpg overall. I have the fuel/maintence log book hiding in a drawer in my house some 40+ years since I sold the car.

    All-in-all this ’72 Gremlin is a cool example of a gramma car for grocery gettin’, travelin’ to the quilting club basic car.

  23. Patrick Farmer

    Beautiful Car. It is amazing that cars like this exist. AMC was a wonderful car company. They were always the underdog. This made them come up with most outrageous designs. The Javelin and the AMX are just as unique and good looking as a 1969 Camaro or Mustang. I am saying this a Pontiac/Ford nut. The Eagle is the first crossover. It was based on the Hornet. There is a movie, Brewster McCloud, that has Sally Kellerman driving a 1970 Gremlin with a 401 in it. I have had a street race with one that was driven by a girl. She won and I had a very hard time living it down.

  24. chainsaw

    last I saw it was 12,300 reserve not met.

  25. Stevieg Member

    The price is too rich for my blood, but I absolutely love it!
    I would drive it & enjoy it. Maybe it should be in a museum, but I would have to drive it if I owned it.
    The Wisconsin Auto Museum in Hartford is a great museum. My now deceased boss left some of his cars to it. He & I used to go there a couple times a year prior to that. I still go once in a while, look at his cars & remember hanging out with him.
    But besides that it is still a great museum. Anyone from this website who vi.v sits Wisconsin really needs to check it out.

    1
    • Miguel Member

      Hey Steve. I found this car last night where I am.

      • Miguel Member

        Here is the kicker. Yes those are kilometers, not miles.

  26. Miguel Member

    In case anybody was wondering, it is a stick shift.

  27. Stevieg Member

    Miguel, I have been telling all sorts of people about your website! Great stuff!
    Neat little Datsun.

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