Go Pack Survivor: 1968 AMC AMX 390

American Motors got into the pony car market in 1968 with two entries. On the one hand, a 2-door, 4-seat coupe called the Javelin that would compete with the likes of the Ford Mustang and Chevy Camaro.  On the other hand, a 2-door, 2-seat GT-style car called the AMX that was muscle machine all the way. Two-thirds of first year AMX’s would come with a 390 V-8 in a small, light package, so they meant business. This 1968 AMX is an early production copy and a nice survivor that came equipped with the desirable Go Pack option. It’s not flawless, but as nice as you could expect for an original 52-year-old car. It’s in Granada Hills, California and available here on eBay for the Buy It Now price of $39,500.

The AMX came to be because the Javelin came to be. AMC didn’t have the deep pockets needed to create one new car after the other from scratch. Just like the Gremlin would be based on a shortened Hornet, the AMX would be based on a shortened Javelin. It got its name from the internal code for the car, “American Motors eXperimental.” Unlike the Javelin, the AMX would appeal to both muscle and sports car segments yet wouldn’t see the same level of sales as its larger brother. Just 6,725 AMX’s were produced in 1968 and 19,134 in total through 1970 when AMC would go in another direction with the car. Instead of a standalone as before, the AMX gained a back seat and would be become an option package on the Javelin until that car stopped production in 1974.

This 1968 AMX has a production number plate on its glove box, designating it as the 437th AMX built that model year. The second owner bought the car from the original owner in 1974 and kept it until 1986. When the third owner acquired the little beast, it went into storage until he died in 2015 and his son-in-law took possession. The seller bought the car in early 2020 and has done a lot of work to bring it to the condition you see today. Mileage on the car is relatively low due to its long-term storage: the odometer reads 67,300.

The AMX looks to have survived nicely and still wears its original paint. It’s not perfect with a few scratches, cracks and dings that have accumulated over the decades. The Hialeah Yellow paint with black stripes shines nicely and looks really good from 10 feet. Because it spent its entire life in California, there is no apparent rust to be found. We’re told that the body, frame, quarter panels, floors and trunk pan are quite solid. The passenger compartment looks equally good, with no tears or wear on the seats, door panels and dashboard. The expansive carpeting behind the bucket seats that fold flat may only be slightly faded. But I’m not sure about the headliner; it might have a case of the droops working.

Besides its overall good original condition, the selling point for this car might very well be that it came with the Go Pack option. With that selection, the buyer got either a 343 or 390 cubic inch V-8, for which the latter went into this car (and is still there), good for 315 hp with a 4-barrel and dual exhaust. In addition, Go Pack cars came with a heavy-duty cooling system, power front disc brakes, heavy-duty suspension, Twin-Grip limited-slip differential, Magnum 500 wheels with wide-tread tires and the racing stripes already mentioned. Besides all that, this AMX got the Shift Command 3-speed automatic transmission, factory air conditioning and power steering. The seller’s AMX was one of 2,287 built that year with the 390 and automatic. That’s about one-third of total production, so it’s clear that most buyers were interested in brute strength.

Since buying the car, the seller has been busy improving the car. The list includes, but is not limited to:

  • New twin turbo mufflers
  • New battery, belts, and hoses
  • New tires, BF Goodrich T/A radials, and shocks
  • New gas tank, sending unit and lines
  • New front disc brakes and master cylinder
  • Complete tune-up, including distributor cap and rotor

Hagerty says the top end for a 1968 AMX is $35,000. Deducting points for the automatic (instead of 4-speed) but adding back the Go Pack gets you to about the same place. The seller is looking to get a premium for this car, but buyers at his price point may be looking for perfection. Perhaps AMC diehards could prove me wrong.

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Comments

  1. alphasud Member

    I work on a customers 68 AMX with the 343 and the go pack. I like the lines of the car and the exclusivity of it’s low production numbers. If I were to own his I would swap the heads for the later dog leg version and consider a 4-speed conversion. Keeping the original parts of course. The 343 is a good running car but when I drive it I find myself wanting more.

    Like 4
    • Larry Lohnes

      I had a 68 343 javlin beautiful car. It was the automatic .

      Like 1
  2. jerry z

    An AMX is definitely in my future. Hope to find a white with red stripe package with a 4 speed, either ’68 or ’69.

    Like 8
    • Cerno

      Great cars one of my favourites owned but I’m on a role to get my ass in as many muscle cars as possible and this brand being no more totally sucks to get anything perfect or the next day . Car went good with a 390 and a 4 speed with the go pac.I would like to hunt for another but hopefully it does not take me another 25 years because these cars will all be rusted to pieces. If your going to spend $40,000 US on a AMC for fun I can’t see buying a automatic !!

      Like 1
  3. 370zpp

    Nice.

    Like 3
  4. David Bailey

    I believe the dash plaque numbers were randomly drawn on production line so there isn’t an accurate build sequence from those. The headliners were molded eggcrate plastic and are known to droop on even the best of show cars.

    Like 5
    • Ronald Sauro

      Hi David, I bought my AMX with a go pak right out of the Service in Sept 1968… I ordered it from the dealer the way I wanted and paid $3500 for it… My Plaque was 1001 and I asked the factory if it indicated a random number or actual production number and was told the number plaques were assigned consecutively as it came off the assembly line after passing inspections.

      Like 1
      • David Bailey

        Hey Ronald. You’re the first original owner of an AMX I’ve ever ‘talked’ to. I used to be in the 2 AMC Clubs(CACI, and AMO) and I’ve heard your story and I’ve also heard other stories. I’ll take your word on it. By the way, as a younger person(14 years old at the time) my parents went shopping for a new car. They bought a stripper 1968(maybe left over 1967) Rambler American, 3 spd., 232(?), NO radio as we couldn’t afford the $14 or so. No power–Anything. My 2 older brothers and I lobbied my Dad for an hour to buy a Javelin–We’d even pony-up for a 290 V-8 and the difference between the American and a stripper Javelin. We came close, but my Dad was worried my oldest brother would wear the car out with a 3 on a tree(?) , or 4 spd. manual!…PS The same year VW claimed they were cheapest car in America, but without radio our American sold for below $1849!

  5. Chris Londish Member

    I fell in love with these when I read an article in an American magazine 135 mph from the factory and the best lines of the bunch, would love to own this as they are extremely rare here with only about 250 assembled in RHD

  6. DRV

    I’ll take this over any Camaro or Mustang. It’s just do much more interesting.

    Like 3
  7. Jcs

    Shocked that this beautiful AMX has only generated 4 comments thus far.

    Perhaps it is the fact that it certainly seems like all the money. Very cool car nonetheless.

    Like 3
  8. Rosco

    I get it that it’s being sold as an original survivor, but even if this were a perfect car it’s not worth the asking price. Also, in my opinion, not the most desirable color for an AMX or any muscle car.

    Like 1
  9. JoeNYWF64

    Where are the ’68 Javelins!! – all used up? I’m sure they sold a lot more of those, which have a back seat.

    Like 1
  10. Joe Samascott

    JoeNYWF64…I have to admit, in the late 70’s, early 80’s, as a kid, I bought , and stripped my share of javelins to get parts for my 68 Javelin, and 69AMX. They were widely available for a couple hundred bucks. I’m afraid I wasn’t the only one.

  11. S.Domko

    It’s a really Nice car, but the price seems a bit high. I’d rather get a new Scat Pak Challenger for the same money.

  12. Ron Sauro

    Hey David, nothing like reminding me I am getting old…grins..My Go Pak was a custom one..At the time I ordered this you could spec basically a full blown race car..I ordered a 390, with a 3/4 race cam, full headers in white, and dual quad carbs….5-7 mpg. It was lime green with black stripes..I think I have a picture of it in my albums.. I was living in San Jose at the time..Loved the car and wish I still had it but new baby coming meant trading it for a VW bug..Big come down!

  13. David Bailey

    Hey Ron, Was this basicly a dealer “Back-Door” type of deal like the AMX-SS?..Your car and the AMXs were the fastest 1/4 milefactory cars, even faster than the HEMI-DARTS.(?)…

    • Rosco

      Group 19 parts. These were high performance parts that were available through the dealers.

      Like 1
    • Ronald Sauro

      Hi David, The factory had a program that cost extra but the idea was to have a Corvette killer… The dealer was part of the process… Rosco is probably right about the name but all I knew was the dealer had me fill out a “desire” list for my car and then gave me assurance it would be built to my spec…The delivery was bumped up because it was important to take on the Corvette..I got a ticket on the 17 freeway one night at 3 am for speeding and the cop that pulled me over asked for my registration… He stepped back to look at the car having never seen one before and asked me what it was…and I told him it was a Rambler… I was doing around 130mph just to see if would go really fast… He laughed and said he couldn’t tell his cop friend that he had been outrun by a Rambler or he would be laughed out of the dept…. He gave me a ticket for 75mph because he thought that a “real Rambler” would max out at 75 going downhill!!

      Like 2
  14. Tooyoung4heyday Member

    Nice car but a touch high in price. Hardly see them get past $30k and top out typically around $35k for really nice ones. Hard to get that as an automatic. The a/c is a nice option as an alternative but in the long run these cars were destined to be a true sports car, not a cruiser. As for the production sequence number, I too have heard both sides of that story but tend to side more with the random attachment. There are still guys by me that worked at the plants back then and have stories to share. Sometimes you don’t want to hear the things they say….

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