One Owner Barn Find: 1970 AMC Rebel SST

Coming after the innovative, popular, and solid Rambler Classic, the company’s new Rebel was quite a change. It added some sportiness that was missing in the Rambler Classic and was needed to energize AMC’s market share for the coming decade. This 1970 AMC Rebel SST two-door hardtop is a rare car today. This one can be found in Princeton, Minnesota, and is listed here on craigslist. The seller is asking $3,500 for this project Rebel.

It’s always unfortunate to see a car sunken into the ground, especially in an area where they get lots of rain and lots of snow like there is in Minnesota. I can only imagine what the underside looks like on this Rebel, but maybe it isn’t as bad as it seems like it might be. They say that it has very little rust. This car is originally from Fayetteville, Arkansas which has gotten 200-feet of rain since 1970 (yes, I added up all of the annual totals) which is an average of around 47 inches of rainfall a year since 1970 – not exactly the desert.

For the record, Princeton, Minnesota gets an average of 31-inches of rain a year. They also get 43 inches of snow on average per year which is equal to around 4.3-inches of rainfall at a 10:1 ratio, so an annual total of around 35-inches. Wow, talk about getting off on a tangent – back to this Rebel!

We don’t know how long this car has been in Minnesota, though, and seeing it sinking into the ground, I’m assuming that it’s been sitting in that spot for more than a few months. The seller does refer to it as a barn find and it really does appear to be solid other than rust being visible in the cracks and crevices and we don’t see a close-up photo of the right quarter panel but some obvious work has been done there, as well as on the right front fender. This car has one of my favorite styles of bumper, the loop bumper.

The interior is dusty and there are a few cracks on the padded dash which is always a shame, and it has a red steering column? Would that have been original in a black interior? The seats are covered but the door panels look good. For the Rebel’s first year on the market in 1967, it was known as a Rambler Rebel but after that and until the AMC Matador took over in 1971, it was an AMC Rebel. 1970 was the last year for the Rebel.

The engine is AMC’s 304 cubic-inch V8 which should have had 210 hp. The seller says that it’ll need to have the carburetor rebuilt. This one has the optional power steering and I would have expected to see power brakes but they were, in fact, optional on the base Rebel and Rebel SST, but standard on the Rebel Machine, the high-performance model. What are your thoughts on this Rebel? Can it be brought back to life?


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  1. leiniedude leiniedude Member

    Great job on the weather report Scotty! Gotta be in very rough shape sitting in the soil. Black painted roof? Cool looking rig though. I am hoping our buddy Howard will comment on this. Being from the beer city he knows a lot on these Ramblers. It would not surprise me if he had one! Another nice write up, take care, Mike.

    Like 6
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      It’s good to hear from you, Mike! Between you and Howard and a couple of other AMC folks, it’ll be nice to hear some insider info on the Rebel.

      Like 6
  2. That AMC Guy

    Hmmm, sunk into the ground, no chassis photos… What could possibly go wrong?

    Like 8
  3. Rex Kahrs Member

    …and now here’s Kip Harrington with today’s sports news….

    Like 2
  4. Rick

    Been on CL a few times. Looks like a great Machine parts car.

    Like 3
  5. jerry z

    I’ll take it! No not really. Seeing a car sunk that deep in the earth doesn’t bode well for the chassis. Too bad, nice looking car otherwise.

    Like 2
  6. ken tilly UK Member

    One question. How come AMC and Chrysler used the name REBEL for their cars, but when Daimler UK came out with the Daimler DART they complained that they already had the name, so Daimler had to change it to the SP 250?

    Like 1
    • That AMC Guy

      Chrysler got the rights to all the old AMC names when they bought out the company in 1987. So far “Rebel” is the only one they have brought back.

      • bone

        Don’t forget “Eagle” and maybe “Concord ” Chrysler had “Concorde”

  7. Arby

    Looks like it quit “Rebelling” quite some time ago..

    Like 3
  8. bone

    A lady next door to my parents had a yellow coupe like this .It was always garaged and likely had low miles until her two sons got to be of driving age and beat the crap out of it. I always liked the look of these ; the only thing I didnt like was the massive looking instrument cluster – it just looked out of place on a md size car

    Like 1
  9. Big Mike

    If Barn Finds ever goes bust, you can do s weather website.

    Like 2
  10. Major Thom

    Actually, the Rebel’s first year on the market was 10 years earlier, a 4 door hardtop powered by AMC’s new 327 V8.
    The model name continued through 1960 before reappearing as a version of the 1966 Classic 2 door hardtop.

    The interior on this one looks like the definition of “austere”.

  11. TimM

    For $3500 I hope someone picks this up and does it some justice!!! Sitting in the dirt all these years however might just be good for parts!!!

  12. Howard A Member

    Machine clone, too rough as is. While at the last AMC reunion ( new one this year, if it isn’t cancelled) there were a bunch of these, and not all were original. Fact is, one guy told me, he thought there were more clones than original ones. BTW, AMC never was clear on what “SST” meant. In a changing world, some thought it meant “Super Sonic Transport”, but more likely meant, ” Super Sport Touring”. They were nice cars.

  13. Harriston Richardson

    lift it up and check out the underside , may have survived a miracle ,but dont bet the farm just yet,

  14. chrlsful

    odd local fella (5, 8 yrs older than us) useta give some of the kids rides around (school to home, hang out at the soda shop w/us) w/a ’66 Cuda. He looked pretty “normal”. The nxt yr he bought a ’67 like above (may B a vert?) but changed his style. He grew his hair longer and the open shirt now had the gold chains showin, a pisces madalyan dangelin, bell bottoms on his pants, etc.

    Like 1
  15. chrlsful

    no more edit function…plumouth v amc

    Like 1
  16. Mike Brown

    Though I’ve never owned one, I’ve always found AMC vehicles interesting. My cousin had a 1974 (I believe) Javelin back in the 1980s so maybe that’s where my interest comes from? The SC-Rambler, Rebel SST and The Machine are definitely interesting vehicles. However, since I’m not up to date on AMC products, I wonder how much support they have from restoration parts suppliers. I’m actually a GM square body truck guy and I prefer them stock but, I actually like ALL American classics, stock or modified.

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