Surfboard Ready: 1973 AMC Ambassador Wagon

Bright yellow like the California sun, this ’73 Ambassador wagon has a cool look and its ready for a day for surfing at the beach. Having covered only 67,000 miles in its lifetime, this wagon is described as rock solid, and ready to drive. All of this applique wood paneling, and low miles is offered for $5,200. Take a look at it here on craigslist out of Cardiff, California.

Inside you are greeted by several shades of brown that for me is a bit sickening, but really doesn’t take away from the cool factor of the car. Beyond the many shades of brown is a nice condition interior that is still as plush and lux as it was when new. The driver seat has a rip in the seat bottom, and a rip along the upper part of the seat back.  Beyond the front seat issues the rest of the interior is quite nice. The wood look was heavily used within the interior of the station wagon, so much so that even the gauge cluster has a wood back ground. There are no engine photos, but this wagon is powered by a 360 cubic inch V8 and is ready to go wherever you please.

The wood applique is worn, but still gets the 1970’s wood look across. Still quite shiny after 44 years, the yellow paint still covers all of the body as it should with only minor blemishes from the test of time. Described as rust free, the only rust concern is mentioned as being a tiny spot on the hood. Some “Baby Moon” style wheel have been fitted and offer some style and flair on this family hauler. The only other thing that sticks out is an aftermarket tow hitch. Maybe one could stack their surfboards on the roof, and tow behind a small camper to really live an “Endless Summer” style of vacation. Do you think this low mileage wagon is a deal for the $5,200 asking price?

Fast Finds


  1. Scot Douglas

    I’m going to tempt ridicule and say that is worth every penny. :)

    Like 1
    • Dan

      No ridicule here. My mom had a new one in 1973. Grasshopper green. A very comfy car. And ambassador vinyl interiors from that era wear like iron. Nice car!

      Like 2

    This one is known as a “Coffin nose” in the AMC community. I think they are ugly personally but this one is cool. I don’t like wagons and think they are for families or dorks who drive their families wagon but hey I would never buy one, unless I have grandkids soon.

    Like 1
    • Jaygryph

      I bet you’re fun at parties.

      Like 2
    • DweezilAZ

      The “coffin nose” was the 74 and up AMC Matador sedan.

      Like 2
    • DweezilAZ

      My folks had a 72 Cordova Brown metallic with brown vinyl top Ambassador Brougham. Same color interior, same seat style as the wagon featured, but in a brocade cloth.

      Perfect size compared to the Big Three full sizers.Build quality was crap, but the balance of size, weight, 304 V8 and fuel economy was excellent.

      GM got into the game again in 77 with it’s downsized big cars, but AMC had been there all along.

      Like 1
  3. Superdessucke

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen woodgrain on an instrument face before, LOL! This thing is awesome though. If I was in the market for a big station wagon I think I would snap this up.

    Like 1
  4. That AMC guy

    These are nice wagons, I have a 1971 model.

    Believe it or not these were smaller and more fuel efficient than their Big 3 competitors of the time. Being a 1973 model this will have a Chrysler Torqueflite transmission, standard electric wipers, and simple controls for heat and AC. (A couple of years earlier these came with Borg-Warner trans, vacuum wipers, and the most confusing multi-lever HVAC controls I’ve ever seen.) Not sure if front disc brakes were standard yet. (Mine has ’em.)

    I’m pretty sure the “coffin-nose” model came in 1974, which was the last year for the Ambassador. These just have a jutting lower lip (battering ram bumper) which the earlier models lack.

    The coffin nose didn’t look too bad on the Ambassador with its quad headlights (photo above) but was godawful on the Matador.

    Like 1

      oops my eyes are failing me

  5. Creekerdad

    This is the same model of car that we had for Drivers Education at Deer Park High School in Cincinnati…. 4 students and a football coach rode in that beast daily for weeks! I would buy it just for fun. You know there wouldn’t be 5 others anywhere you went!

    Like 1
  6. Rustytech Member

    Nice wagon. I’d hook my camper up to the back, put my canoe on the roof, and head for the lake. This would fit right in “in the woods”.

    Like 1
  7. DrinkinGasoline

    Just for kicks I would lay over the woodgrain with Faux adhesive backed genuine imitation simulated stainless sheeting….lol

  8. JimmyJ

    AMC cars are so ugly I never thought anything of them when they were new but being on this site I’ve learned there solid reliable vehicles but I’m only interested in AMX and javelins ….
    Please don’t hate me but there just so ugly

  9. Steven I Bennett

    Too much asking price.If the owners plan to sell they Will have to drop the pricr.

  10. Bob C.

    I had one of these in my senior year of high school. A hand me down from Dad, God rest his soul. The 360 was quite torquey. Check out the vertical mounted AM radio, I remember that well.

    Like 1
  11. Dave S

    If I lived closer I’d be tempted to buy this one.

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