Maxi Blue Survivor: 1974 AMC Hornet X

Some people don’t know how good they have it. The seller of this 1974 AMC Hornet X seems almost apologetic for what he describes as “patina”, noting a paint job would do wonders for this rare Maxi Blue example. However, take note of the location: North Dakota. Let me tell you, seller, what we describe as “patina” out east is nothing like what is seen here. It’s practically showroom, comparatively. Check out the Hornet here on eBay listed with a Buy-It-Now of $5,000.

Sure, it’s not a trailer queen, but it’s damn nice for a car that likely wasn’t kept in a bubble in a garage from new. It was used, and the seller suspects lots of highway use based on pedal wear. If that holds water, then it does help to explain the condition, as a highway cruiser would fare far better than a car prone to getting banged up in town. The interior is nicely preserved, with just some greening of the blue carpets as its most noticeable flaw.

Apparently, this is some of the patina the seller is referencing, as you can see some paint burned off on the right rear corner. There are chips and paint scratches along the nose of the car, too, but really nothing you need to fret about. All of the original air conditioning equipment is still present, but of course it doesn’t work. The 258 six-cylinder engine is said to run well and is paired to an automatic transmission; no hot rod but a fine cruiser.

And if a Hornet doesn’t suit your fancy, we’ve listed this well-patina’d AMC Javelin SST as a Barn Finds Exclusive, and it’s located more east-ward if you happen to be on this side of the country. AMCs in general have a passionate following, but they can be hard to find just the way you want one given the lower overall production runs, but this SST is a nicely preserved canvas that you can take all the way or drive with the grunge in place – just like the Hornet above.



    The Hornet in my opinion isn’t “bad” enough to leave it as is, it would be stunning with a fresh repaint as original, that Javelin while a good candidate for restoration would be just fine as is, sort of like mine. People will walk past a restored car to ask about my junk yard find.

    Like 8
  2. Bama

    Roadkill part 2?

  3. don

    With the prices some AMC cars are going for, this seems like a steal – Amazingly well preserved; even the front door panels were spared from having speakers cut into them ! I would try to blend in the bare spot on the hatch , find another rear bumper filler and enjoy it !

    Like 6
  4. Bultaco

    This would be really cool with a Jeep 4.0 transplant (same basic engine as the 258, only 190 hp) and a 5-speed.

    Like 7
  5. Ted

    Even if that Hornet has what appears to be a serious amount of mud in the fenders by the headlights and some holy work in the pan this is a steal. I like Bultaco’s idea of the swap, and that could be done on the cheap.

    How can you not smile when a Hornet comes up?

    Like 5
  6. Pookie Jamie

    Hmmmmm a lot of AMCs showing up lately here on Barn Finds. I look forward to my emails every day!

    Like 4
    • Miguel

      Jaime, do you get an email for each individual car?

      I used to but they don’t come anymore.

      Like 2
      • leiniedude leiniedude Member

        Hi Miguel, I do not get them anymore myself. I miss a lot of articles for some reason, even with the early access. Too bad, BF had done that before , taking down the instant access. I am sure you know they brought it back for a short time. I have mentioned your question on other posts and never hear back from the staff. I miss it. Take care, Mike.

  7. rosco

    Really no bargain for the amount of rust underneath. Would also be concerned about the rest of the car having more mud, other than what’s shown on the front fender.

    Like 1
  8. Wayne

    Bultaco, Yes, use the 4.0 block, bore it .060 over and install the 258 crank and rods and you have a 4.9 straight six. Add some goodies from Clifford (headers, intake, cam) and you would have a nice package.

    Like 2
  9. JOHN Member

    I dig it,401 transplant or… if you dare to be different, LS and wail on it!

  10. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry

    The 258 was a good motor (engine). I owned two a few decades back. First was a 74 Gemlin X the other a 77 Hornet wagon. Both were great cars. Make it a Factory correct car.
    God bless America

    Like 2
  11. TimM

    I worked on one of these pretty extensive after high school!! One of my best friends had it as a daily driver!!! Great little car!! We put three automatic transmissions in it in five years

  12. Bob

    In 1972 I bought my wife a brand new Hornet SST and ordered the 304. We drove that car until the mid eighties! Wish I kept it.

    • Rod

      Wasn’t it a fun car to drive with a 304 the one I had in HS had a 304 I love the way it drives

  13. Rod

    As the new owner if this fine hornet the bones are perfect for restoring this has less then 21k on it who ever had it before loved on it one of the hinges in the hatchback has the original shock because it’s stamped American Motors on the shock. I had one of these in HS but had to give it up so I am happy to have another one! Let the restoration begin!!

    Like 1

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