Gone Fishin’ – 1965 Rambler Marlin

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Don’t let this one get away! This is a 1965 Rambler Marlin and it’s located in Eastlake, Ohio, 20 miles northeast of Cleveland on the shores of beautiful Lake Erie. It’s listed on eBay with a current bid price of $1,450.

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1965 was the first year for the Marlin after the success of the Tarpon concept car. It was brought to market in an incredible time of just one year from concept to showroom floor. They were known as the Rambler Marlin only in 1965, after that they were AMC Marlins. The Marlin only stayed around for three years: 1965, 1966, and 1967. As a huge fan of Ramblers and AMCs, this would be a halo car for me, or for any other AMC aficionados. The other car makers were trying to come back with something solid to compete with the red hot Ford Mustang, but I’m not sure if this car was the answer to that question or not.

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This car was designed to seat six people; either people were much smaller in 1965 or they were really, really crammed in there. The trunk opening sure looks small but it should swallow up a lot of luggage, hopefully enough for you and five others. I absolutely love the style of this car, even more so than the Plymouth Barracuda or the Dodge Charger with their classic fastback designs. But, as I said, I’m a Rambler & AMC guy.

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The interior looks fairly rough but the seller says that a new interior that will fit this car comes with it. Although in looking at the front seats and the photo of the rear seats, I would have those listed for sale quicker than a 327 Rambler Marlin. Only an original-spec interior for me, but I’m funny that way. The original rear seat is ripped but it’s more in line with what the original pattern would have been. There seem to be three different interior schemes going on inside this car, from red door panels to an original black rear seat and then some puffy, 1990s-looking seats that the seller is including. This car needs new floor pans but the body and frame are solid, according to the seller. This car has an automatic transmission with a column selector, so it loses a little sportiness there.

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Here’s the good part, this car has the coveted 5.4L, 327 V8 with 270 hp! I don’t see an air-conditioning compressor so it doesn’t appear to have that option. The seller says that it runs off of a gas can but that the fuel line to the tank is disconnected. An extra transmission comes with the car and they aren’t sure if the one in there is good or not. This will be a project, no question about it. But, if you can do a lot of the work yourself you’ll have a great car when you’re done and you hopefully won’t break the bank in the process. What do you think this one is worth? Are there any other Rambler Marlin or AMC Marlin fans out there?

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Comments

  1. DENIS

    I owned a lot of AMC cars(including 2 ’57 Rebels) but never was much of a Marlin fan. I drag-raced these 327s and did well. I would like to have this car but would have to do some mods to suit my preferences ….could be very kool. Isn’t it funny how some cars that you didn’t like back in the day, are now purty to ya?? lol

  2. Jon

    The Tarpon was built on the American frame and with the 327 would have been great competition for the Mustang and beaten the Camaro by 2 years. Sadly it was produced on the Classic frame and became another AMC fumble. Sort of like 57 Rebels only available with 4 doors.

  3. Bill

    These cars always looked as though the fastback roofs were an afterthought.

  4. Abarthbill

    Catch and Release

  5. Jim Benjaminson

    Why, oh why, did they design a special body and then use the short and ugly Classic front clip? A couple more inches of wheelbase up front and a decent grill would have done wonders for this thing. The deck lid is stupidly small but if you can squirrel it in sideways, it will hold a lot of stuff. Another case of AMC dropping the ball midway down court..

  6. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    65 had the best front end….and that 327 wasn’t that bad….under appreciated

  7. JCW Jr.

    love AMC/Rambler, not a fan of the marlin. The proportionskill don’t work for me. Although if someone gave me one or it wS super cheap I could not so no.

  8. Howard A Member

    The Marlin is truly a unique car. The return of the fastback phase ( after a slight hiatus from the 40’s and ’50’s) but was a little too far out there for most. It didn’t really appeal to the luxury car folks, and not practical for a family, so interest was limited. I read, the small trunk opening actually was a deterrent( if only it was a hatchback) Historically, though, this is a great chance to have one of these. Lot of work here, but I’m sure most mechanical parts are around. Underneath, they were great cars. If you want a Marlin, I wouldn’t drag your feet on this one. Great find.

  9. Bobsmyuncle

    What was with the importance of holding 6 people back then? That was one of the design parameters for the Corvair and other models too. Wasn’t the average family a couple with 2 and a half kids?

  10. Bryan

    I really prefer the 1967 model on the 118″ wheelbase Ambassador body; much better proportion and much rarer than the 65 or 66.

    I recently discovered this red 67 with a 343, automatic, and power steering/brakes; rough shape but complete and we’ll optioned with very little rust (hope the pic uploads).

    I think the prices on these neat AMC’s is still too soft to warrant a restoration, though I’m always on the lookout for a decent 67!

  11. Bryan

    Wonder why I can’t upload a 4mb pic to this site? I used to do it all the time and it hasn’t worked for me for the last couple of weeks!

  12. Bryan

    One more try!

  13. Bob C.

    The amc 327 was often confused with chevrolets 327. They actually came out with theirs five years before chevy.

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