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Just One Repaint: 1979 AMC Spirit

79 AMC Spirit grey001_zpswk2fnt6e

When most folks think of the AMC brand, it’s easy to remember it solely for its last and most recognized product, the 4WD Eagle Wagon. Although the wagon was certainly an impressive specimen that combined all-weather capabilities in a roomy, affordable package, some of AMC’s other creations at least deserve an honorable mention for being packaged up in intelligent designs that were ahead of their time. This 1979 AMC Spirit hatchback here on eBay is a 60,000 mile survivor that is largely original aside from one repaint. 

79 AMC Spirit grey053_zpshx7lthbo

In addition to the convenient hatchback design, AMC made liberal use of inline six-cylinder motors, one of the more reliable and easy-to-maintain engine designs ever made (in my opinion – each of my four vehicles has a straight-six heart). With such low mileage, this Spirit’s 258 CI powertrain has lots of life left to give and looks to be free of any oil stains or other fluid leaks. The engine valve cover will be repainted and detailed prior to the new owner taking possession.

79 AMC Spirit grey026_zpslnkapho4

The red interior is certainly eye-catching but it’s also in outstanding condition. That’s not a re-cover either, with original seating surfaces, carpets, dash and door panels still in place. Although a manual transmission would make this Spirit a bit more appealing, these weren’t ever designed to be cars you drove fiercely. Combined with the fold-down rear seats, there is plenty of room to use this Spirit as a trackside support vehicle or for bringing home treasures from the local swap meet or antiques show.

s-l1600 (13)

The repaint is a bummer. But perhaps the car was so solid underneath that it seemed criminal to not correct its one weak point, assuming a car this clean had sun-damaged surfaces or simply years’ worth of swirls generated by those car washes with the big, soapy brushes. Located in Florida with an opening bid of $6,000 and a reserve price set, there’s no action on this AMC just yet. But given how rarely these pop up in such honest condition, I’m betting it will find a new home sooner rather than later. What do you think?


  1. DAN

    red inside is DEAD to me,lol wouldn’t buy a vette if red inside

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  2. Blueprint

    Great memories! Our family car when I was a kid was a 1974 Cherokee. I would explore the Gremlins, Hornets, Pacers and later Concords and Spirits in the showroom while my Dad was there for service. This was a great reboot of the Gremlin given AMC’s limited budget.

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  3. Wayne

    Red interior? Love it

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    • Jk

      I’m with ya on a red interior , love red interiors

      Like 0
  4. AMX Brian

    That is a nice interior. These remind of the F150’s from the 80’s and 90’s. The last one my father had was blue and I’m partial to those two as well as the green. Everyone has a black or gray or even tan interior. It’s nice to see something different.

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  5. jaymes

    survivor cars aren’t repainted

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  6. Kincer Dave Member

    I’m betting it was repainted because silver paint of this era never held up real well, if you didn’t wax at least every six months and if they spent a lot of time in the sun they looked like gray primer in no time.

    Like 1
  7. JPj

    Nice looking car !

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  8. Ron (Florida)

    This is a clean example of this car. The sellers dealership is located down the street from my house and all of his cars are very clean, he has a few original cars, many have been repainted though. He has quite a few cars from the late 70’s and early 80’s.

    Like 0
  9. brad

    The security company I worked for had these for patrol vehicles. Very dependable, nice ride, and the 258 cid engine was very peppy. However, those doors are heavy, and due to the fact that the driver’s door was being opened and closed a LOT, we had to replace the door hinge bushings several times. This one appears to be nicely optioned with cloth seats, AM/FM Stereo radio, A/C, and power windows. Very nice car !

    Like 1

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