1972 AMC Gremlin: Half A Hornet

1972 AMC Gremlin

Over the past few days, I’ve been watching this AMC Gremlin, trying to decide if I should feature it. I’ve always found the Gremlin to be a funny little car and while they’ve gotten a bad rap, I think they are great little cars. I had a friend in high school that drove one that was quite similar to this example, well minus the color match bumpers and Hornet grille. On icy days, it was a blast to spin around in the school parking lot! I remember calling it a fish bowl on several occasions, but I actually respected that little machine. Today, finding clean and solid example can be a challenge. Well the one you see here has a few issues and some rust, but the seller has slowly been dropping the price, which makes it far more tempting. You can find it here on eBay in Nuremberg, Pennsylvania with a BIN of $3k. While I typically prefer my cars all original, I kind of like the way this one looks with the Hornet grille and painted bumpers. It has a much sportier look and now just needs a 360 V8 installed with a 4 speed and you’d have one hot little Gremlin. So do you have any fond memories of the Gremlin?


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  1. Mike D

    the glaring ” fault” for me is the Hornet grillwork .. the seller states he bought it that way and the former owner liked the aggressive look.. so, help me out if I am wrong, I say it is the whole front clip the fenders don’t look like Gremlin fenders and why change the “look” on a perfectly good car? couldn’t find Gremmy clip, but a Hornet was handy.. I say this car was in a collision … but, I am not a body man, I very well could be wrong… something about replacing a front clip that is ” almost” the same.. it never looks right

  2. Mike D

    a glaring “fault” I see is the Hornet ” grillwork” the seller states he bought it that way, that the owner before him liked the more aggressive look . I say it is the whole clip . I am not a body man, so correct me if I am wrong. why change the looks of a perfectly good car? I think it was involved in a collision and couldn’t find Gremmy clip, but a Hornet was handy . there is something about replacing a body part ( a clip) with something that is ” almost” the same that never looks quite right ( I could go on and on but that would be getting off the subject) It is a nice car, but be cautious

    • Tirefriar

      Mike, what makes you think the car was sectioned? The grille swap is a straight forward operation because from A-pillar and forward the Hornet and Gremlin were identical, metal wise.

      • mike d

        see blow… I goofed

  3. Ed P

    Gremlins were fun to drive. The 232 inline 6 had a lot of low end torque. The Gremlin shared a lot of body parts with the Hornet. Only the back of the car was really different.

  4. Jason

    I cut my teeth on the Gremlin’s older brother. The 68 Rebel Convertible…

  5. mike d

    I believe the gremlin has a more boxed looking fender, and the Hornet a bit more rounded , it would seem to me that just switching the grille work would be complicated, you’d have to switch the fenders also . Just something looks out of whack to me. just my opinion.. what I didn’t get into in my initial post was take the 65 & 66 galaxie’s the front clips are supposedly interchangeable, I have seen at least one… they are not . I think the previous owner couldn’t locate a Gremlin clip and substituted a Hornet, and being more aggressive was a response to anyone who would question it I did check Gremlins and Hornets that were for sale on Ebay, but neither had a good head shot .. I could be wrong ..

    • Tirefriar

      I just googled the gremlin and the hornet – the front ends look the same.

      • Ed P

        AMC needed this car in a hurry and they only had $5.37 in the treasury. I think the only difference is behind the 2 doors.

  6. jim s

    it is sold.

  7. Andrew johnson

    My Gremlin has 25,000 original miles. Still had factory belts and hoses up until this summer. Runs, drives, and looks like new. Ice cold factory a/c , poly ply spare. 258 straight six. It’s fun to drive, and will smoke the tires easily.

  8. Gregory Brown

    Had one in Alaska was great in the snow and a good car to take fishing but the Levi edition interior was junk trim kept breaking and it spent more time at the dealership than on the road getting trim replaced.

  9. don

    it is not sold, the listing ended, if it had sold thru ebay the listing would say sold, it says ended, seller may have sold it off ebay. this happens a lot. not a bad price for it either way.

  10. bob

    Gremlin fenders are the same as hornet I used hornet ones on my brothers gremlin as gremlin ones are not available. The good is gremlin the guy just changed the grille and bumper.

  11. Dan Farrell

    Think of it as an AMX with a different body style.

  12. Mike Lane

    My 72 has the Hornet grille, installed by previous owner. I like it.

    Like 1
  13. Tony

    Hornet hood flat. This has the correct Gremlin hood.

  14. Frank Talan

    I believe it was nothing more than a grille change, everything else is exactly the same, even the bumper. Hornet and Gremlin are virtually identical. I think the grille looks kind of cool, imo. Certainly nothing that can’t simply be changed back.

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