Go-Kart Fun! 1975 AMC Gremlin by Rupp

Rupp Industries was a manufacturer of go-karts, minibikes, snowmobiles, and other off-road vehicles between 1959-78. One of the hallmarks of Rupp products was their bright red coloring. Sometimes they would license the likenesses of other vehicles, which would include this go-kart version of a 1970s AMC Gremlin. This one has been sitting for nearly 20 years and will need some tinkering to run again. Located in St. Cloud, Minnesota, it’s far from perfect yet good times might be just a few hours of wrenching away. This mini-Gremlin is available here on eBay where the bidding has reached $1,175 with the reserve still waiting to be met.

Founder Mickey Rupp got the company off the ground by assembling and selling go-karts out of his basement. Rupp would branch out after that by producing minibikes and snowmobiles, as well. At its peak, Rupp employed some 400 people, including engineers in research and development, constantly seeking new product ideas. In the early 1970s, the company ran into financial trouble and was sold, but would eventually run out of gas by 1978.

One of their licensed products (we think) is this AMC Gremlin Go-Kart that the seller says is from 1975. It is powered by a Clinton engine which is akin to a lawnmower motor and would put out a whopping three horsepower if tuned up. Since the kart has been sitting for so long, the carburetor will need to be rebuilt and the throttle cable hooked back up. The seat was repaire0d some years ago along with some work having been done on the frame back by the engine. The body and repaint are a bit distressed with some chips and cracks, but that just adds to the charm of the 46-year-old bucket of fun.

The seller isn’t sure how this thing is going to get into the hands of the buyer. If located within a reasonable driving distance, they could meet midway with a truck. Or perhaps a shipping crate could be built and the go-kart moved by commercial carrier to its new home. I’m not sure how fast this thing will go when fixed up, but it would be a standout among all the other karts at your local track!

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Comments

  1. Gary

    The childhood dream, of many a child back in the day. I was a kid before this era, but even in my day there were wants, that my folks of very modest means reminded me were not needs.

    Like 13
  2. Skorzeny

    A friend of mine who used to race go karts told me it’s capable of getting a 5 horse Briggs and Stratton up to nearly 50 HP. That might be fun with this mini Gremlin.

    Like 1
    • Gary

      Only if your life insurance is paid up. Can you even fit in something like this? (Funny , the idea of a 5HP Briggs being a performance enhancement)

      Like 5
  3. Cycle Salvage Kevin

    Rupp’s of all types are highly sought after today. I’ve owned a few snowmobiles and several ‘Roadster’ mini bikes. About 20 years ago I traded a Kawasaki MC1 90 for a Roadster with a blown up engine. I had about $50 in it. Took it all apart, cleaned and listed each piece on eBay, 7 day bidding auctions. That bike brought the highest return of any others. Even the Tecumseh engine w/lighting coil and rod hole brought $127.50! After all said and done I made $1700+. I’ve had a few since but sold them as fixxer uppers. I love Gremlin cars and would love to own this kart but as a keeper not a flipper. It’s about 250 miles NE of me.

    Like 1
  4. AMCFAN

    I remember these. My old man was thinking about trading his 73 Gremlin X on a new 75 Gremlin X seems the 73 didn’t have power steering. The salesman got down to brass tax and agreed to throw a brand new Gremlin go kart in which was only a $200. The old man passed on that deal but I started saving my paper route money.

    While saving a family with 6 kids down the street that seemed to have nothing ended up with it and within a month destroyed the body, I was beyond broken hearted.

    Years later I found one and it was an original. As a little kid this was more than it was.

    Rupp was obviously on it’s last leg when this was made. This is about as flimsy and cheap as a frame and body one could make. The body looks like fiberglass or the very least heavy plastic. It is a thin molded plastic. About as thick as a model kit plastic. So very fragile. As plastic ages becomes more unstable. The body on this is chipped which is typical.

    The seller knows what he has or the very least hopeful. He posted this in the cars for sale on ebay motors @ $90. Plus the bump here. I expect his price is $1500 or more. Sadly some things should stay a memory.

    Like 2
  5. Jim

    My parents won a Corvette like this from a local Chevy dealership when I was a kid….and they took the money instead. I’ll never forget the disappointment I felt. :(

    Like 6
  6. Leon Siegler

    46 years old if a 1975 model, but who’s counting!! Great little cart!!

    Like 3
  7. Terrry

    I knew it! This isn’t a miniaturized Gremlin, the Gremlin was an oversized go-kart!

    Like 4
  8. Howie Mueler

    $1,400 Reserve Met.

  9. Rob Pasquinucci

    My family had two AMCs including a Gremlin. I have a faint memory as a young boy of seeing the dealer showroom full of these little Gremlins and it was amazing.

    Like 1

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