Saturday, December 9, 2006

Hurst SC/Rambler, the only production car with glasspacks from the factory

Doug Thorley headers followed by Thrush straight through glasspacks. That's sweet, from the factory. 3.54 gears, and a Hurst 4 speed. Nice.

A special Rogue called the Hurst SC/Rambler (Stock Car (SC) or original factory) model was built in 1969, featuring flamboyant red, white and blue graphics, a bizarre hood scoop, the 390 V-8, and a stiffer frame (needed to withstand the engine's massive torque). A dead-stock SC/Rambler could do the quarter mile in the low 14s. To keep weight down AMC offered no options on the SC/Rambler except an AM radio -- no air conditioning, no power steering, no bucket seats, no console. 1,512 were made at a dirt-cheap price of $2998; an example in top condition is worth over $10,000 today (if you can find one).

Needing an entry in the growing compact performance segment, AMC took the lowly Rambler Rouge compact and decided to make a muscle car out of it.

AMC turned to Hurst Performance Research Inc., and created the SC/Rambler (often nicknamed "Scrambler"), which debuted in the middle of the 1969 model year. All SC/Ramblers began life as appliance white Rambler hardtops with two-tone mags, racing mirrors, blackout grille and tail panel, Hurst badging, and a functional ram-air hood scoop with an upthrust snout.

Under the hood, AMC fited its largest V8, the 315 bhp, 390 cid V8.

A Borg-Warner four speed with Hurst shifter and a 3.54:1 limited-slip differential completed the powertrain. The suspension was toughened up with heavy-duty shocks, anti-sway bar, and anti-hop rear links. E70x14 Red Stripped Goodyear Polyglas tires and the AMX's optional heavy duty brakes with Bendix front discs were included. The interior was standard gray vinyl Rouge interior with the addition of reclining bucket seats (with red, white, and blue headrests), full carpeting, and a Sun 8000 rpm tach strapped to the steering column. A $61 AM radio was the only option available.

The exterior was treated to one of the wildest factory paint jobs on any muscle car. Two exterior options were available. The first 500 cars built featured the "A" trim with red center body side panels, and thick blue horizontal racing stripes on the hood, roof, and deck. A blue arrow pointed towards the scoop, which had large letters spelling the words "390 CU.IN" and the word "AIR" appeared on both sides of the air scoop. When these quickly sold, a second batch of were made with the new "B" type trim. These had a mostly white exterior with narrow red and blue stripes. Then a third batch was made, reverting to the "A" style trim, but lacking some of the elements. About 1,200 of the 1,512 made had the "A" treatment.

It may have been a supercar caricature, but it was quite a performer. With 315 bhp and a curb weight of just 3,000 lbs., the hot compact had a power-to-weight ratio of just 10.03 lbs/bhp. This enabled the SC/Rambler to pull off quarter miles in the low 14 seconds at 99 mph. Not bad for a little compact from AMC, even if it lasted only one year.
Production: 1,512
Engines: 390 V8 315 bhp @ 4600 rpm, 425 lb-ft @ 3200 rpm.
Performance: 390/315: 0-60 in 6.3 seconds, 1/4 mile in 14.3 seconds @ 99 mph
Great production info and a factory lists of parts that made this special, like the glasspacks and "headers by Doug" Thorley, a reputed step above Hookers and Hedmans.
B paint scheme photo from

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