Update: 1968 AMX Piranha For Sale Again

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Back in March, we featured this AMX Piranha, although we didn’t know much about them then (and still don’t know a whole lot now). However, the great thing is that thanks to this seller, we know a little more about this one now. Thanks to fellow Barn Finds writer David for uncovering this great find! It’s now located in Salina, Kansas and is for sale here on craigslist for $34,900.

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Unlike last time, the pictures are beautiful this time and show us that the body and paint are in excellent condition. And the seller has uncovered some additional history on the car. In their words: “One of only 22 which were built by Thoroughbred Motors in Denver Colorado for select AMC dealerships in the Colorado region. Similar to the Baldwin-Motion and Dickey Harrell Chevelles, Monte Carlos and Camaros which were built as high performance street, strip and road race cars.”

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The seller includes this period picture of a Von Piranha, showing the added scoops and cuts to their finest. Apparently one of these cars was campaigned at Pikes Peak and Continental Divide Raceway. Among the other modifications, the car has an Edelbrock R4B intake that is stamped with the Von Piranha logo. Naturally, it has all the “Go-Pak” items like a 390 V-8, limited slip differential and other performance aspects.

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The interior really looks nice, although a little plain compared to some of the AMX’s competitors. But it’s amazing that it’s in this good condition after this many years, assuming it is original.

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It’s great to see the engine this time! And wow, it looks nice. Either there’s been a lot of cleaning since May or the previous seller didn’t do a good job of marketing! I wonder if the finned valve covers are original? I’m guessing some of the chromed components aren’t, but who really knows for sure?

Let us know if you are interested in this rare special AMC!

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Comments

  1. randy

    A beautiful piece of American history. I wonder if this car will be in Heaven when I get there!!

    • MountainMan

      Yeah but the track is paved with gold and it’s hard to get a good launch

  2. Mike H. Member

    All the scoops and body mods aside, this is a high-option AMX. I see the automatic, A/C (although the compressor is conspicuously absent. . .), tilt column, power steering, power brakes, electric wipers (vacuum was still standard on the 1968 model). The seats don’t appear to be the correct patterned vinyl for the 1968 model, and the seat base pattern isn’t precisely correct for even the 1969, although it’s closer to that. I suspect that the seats have been redone at some point, and since the addition of those scoops required paint work I’d say that the paint is non-original too, and who can say just how non-original?

    I especially like that he has an appraisal for it. Don’t most appraisers use comparable sales in determining the value? As this car is as rare as unicorn blood I’m thinking they added 50% to a well optioned 1968 AMX Go-Pack car’s value? Seems that the 1969 AMX 400 (the one used on the TV show “Banacek”) went unsold at auction a few years ago (both Mecum and eBay tried selling at approximately $55k) showing that the market won’t support the also-rans at that price.

    I’d still have a 1968-1969 AMX if I could find the right one. . . The last one got away and I doubt I’ll find its equal.

    • randy

      As I remember, the ’67-68 are far more desirable than the ’69. I’ll need to do some reading. The AMX gurus did not consider the ’69 to be a true AMX.

      • Mike H. Member

        The AMX came out in 1968, not 1967; 1967 was the first year for the Camaro. The 1968-1969 cars are almost indistinguishable from each other; the 1970 model had different front and rear fascias. The 1971-1974 cars were called Javelin and AMX was an option package for the Javelin. For 1968-1970 the AMX was exclusively a 2-seater with the 1970 model selling very well, but not in numbers like the Mustang/Camaro/Barracuda that it was competing with.

      • randy

        I stand corrupted, 68-69 and the ’70 was less desirable.
        Thanks for the correction. These are on my top 10 list as well as another 30 or 40 cars!!

    • Rocco Member

      I don’t see an evaporator box on the firewall, just a heater fan motor. I don’t know very much about AMC’s, but I thought all modern cars had a giant evaporator box on the firewall. Please enlighten me.

      • Mike H. Member

        1. The AMX wasn’t a modern car, even for its time.
        2. It was mostly the GM cars of the mid-60’s through the mid-80’s that had the huge and intrusive box to contain the evaporator.

        Looking at the dashboard, on the RH side of the HVAC panel there is a round knob. All the AMC’s of this generation (and through the early 70’s) with air conditioning had this knob to control the A/C. Additionally, only the AMX’s with A/C had the round vents in the center of the dash; all others had either a flat panel or the “rare” Rally Pack option which featured (2) gauges there.

  3. Jason Houston

    Never thought I’d live to see a $34,000 Rambler. Wonder what I can get for my grandmother’s washtub 1959 4-door American?

  4. Joe Btfsplk

    I refurbished a ’68 AMX. It was a fine ride that attracted lots of interest everywhere I went. The weak areas were the Borg-Warner auto trans and the plastic timing gears that I replaced with cast metal ones after they stripped and the car quit on the highway. I highly recommend an early Javelin or AMX… great cars for small money.

  5. piper62j

    Real sharp but too rich for my blood.. 🙁

  6. Rocco Member

    If this car was for racing, anywhere, it should’ve had the desirable 4-speed that AMC had at the time, imo. It could have been a cruiser version for street use.

    Joe Btfsplk was right about the BW trans being a weak point of the car.

    • Rocco Member

      It also looks like to me that it has 14′ wheels in the front, and 15′ in the rear. Anyone else think so?

      • Alan (Michigan)

        An optical illusion, I think. Looking at the photo from the RF corner, the rear wheel looks smaller.

        What strikes me is that the raised sections in the hood appear to have been opened up, and a section of the metal is actually missing. That would allow them to be functional features, for either letting hot air out, or cooler air in.
        How effective they could be, particularly at speed, is questionable to me.

    • Rocco Member

      I see your point about the wheels.

  7. Mark S Member

    I alway liked the look of the Javlin body styling, not sure I’d want one though as for this AMX I my opinion the four forward facing scoop are just about the ugliest thing I’ve ever seen. they have pretty much wrecked this car. Pass.

    • randy

      Hmmm, calling the AMX a Javelin makes me cringe. I did not remember the AMX being a Javelin until the body style change. I learned something I did not want to know.

      • Mark S Member

        I was talking about two different car Javlins I like. AMX with air scoops not so much. I guess some how that got missed.

      • randy

        Well, Wiki says Javelin 68-7X. They even listed a “68” Javelin with a little engine.

      • Mark S Member

        When I think of Javlins at least the style I like this car is not it, perhaps I’m thinking of a early 70’s version.

      • randy

        I’m pretty sure we are one the same page, the cars I called Javelin had big humped up front fenders and seemed quite a bit longer than the AMX.

      • Mark S Member

        Correct that’s the one. I’m talking about. I’m not an AMC guy more into early fifty’s Chrysler Corp, dodge mostly.

      • Mike H. Member

        The AMX and the Javelin from 1968-1970 were essentially the same car. The AMX had a shorter wheelbase and the Javelin had a back seat. The Javelin came base with an inline six but could be had with all (3) of the available V8 choices that were available in the AMX (for all three years that was the 290, 343, and 390, and in 1970 the 360 was available mid-year)

        Other differences between the two included the Javelin having a column mounted shifter for the automatic and the base 3-speed manual transmission was also column mounted (not very commonly found). The upholstery on the Javelin seats differed from the AMX and – in general – the car had somewhat fewer “sporty” options, but for the most part most parts were interchangeable between the two cars.

        Beginning in 1971 it was ONLY the Javelin model, and the “Javelin/AMX” became the sporty model. These were the cars with the large bulbous fenders and quarters and the motor sizes for these cars were the 258 inline six, and the 304, 360, and 401 GEN3 V8’s. An interesting tidbit about the later cars is that the earlier cars’ front sheet metal could be adapted to them to create a much better looking car; I’ve seen a few of these and it’s a serious improvement.

  8. Glen

    Do those scoops actually do anything?

  9. 64 bonneville

    asking price is in line with value for the car. #1 condition, not a trailer queen, is around $28,500 and add another 15% ($4275) for the 390 motor, puts it around $32,750.00. The $34K listing price gives seller some wiggle room.

  10. AMCFAN

    Understand this. This statement has been made a million times. Rare does NOT always equate value. Breaking down the production numbers and comparing them to any of the big 3 ALL AMC’s are rare. This car is unique. Yes.To say it was built by a dealer with the intent of a High Performance Motion/Baldwin Camaro is pure fantasy. The reason those dealers were in business was Chevrolet couldn’t build those cars from the factory. They would embarrass the Corvette. The GM Brass wouldn’t have it. BUT. Nothing to say their dealers couldn’t buy the parts (wink) and build them for retail. The truth is AMC would do about anything to sell you a car. They wouldn’t rely on a dealer to build your car. They would have Hurst do it and did. with the SS/AMX. A famous dealer in Az. Randall American was playing around with performance. They would put a 401 in a Gremlin…because the factory wouldn’t.
    This car is a stock AMX. It is well optioned as earlier stated. You wouldn’t have tilt/heat/A/C on a world class performance car. Certainly not the M12 automatic trans either. This is a regional dealer created package on this AMX much like the Carl Green wide body kits for the Pacer that were installed and sold. Only I can see why this was not a big seller for the AMX. The hood is the best part. But no reason for scoops all over the rest of the body.
    The seats have been recovered. The OEM Chrome valve covers are MIA along with the 390/engine date code tag. Original air cleaner missing. A/C inop. Engine painted a very incorrect color. Pontiac Blue. Nice red heater hose. Vintage 1970’s bias ply tires all for $34K what a dealio I think the seller needs to be realistic here.

  11. alfred

    first one I’ve ever seen. pretty cool

  12. Joe Nose

    Had a sleeper of a ’68 Javelin SST back in the early ’80’s. 343 4 bb with plenty of ‘patina’. Cost me all of $150 and would blow away many more modern cars.
    But boy was that chassis dated. Great in straight lines but God forbid if you hit a bump in a corner.

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