This is an original 1970 AMC Javelin SST Trans Am Edition, it’s one of just 100 that were made, and as a 1970 car it has the one-year-only “Twin Venturi” design. This limited edition vehicle was developed to pay homage to Peter Revson’s Trans Am racer
In some respects the AMC Javelin SST Trans Am was an answer to the popular homologation specials of the time, cars like the Camaro Z/28 and the Boss 302 Mustang. AMC was fighting tool and nail in the Trans Am championship and despite their underdog status they would win the 1971 Championship with 82 points, well ahead of Ford on 61, Chevrolet on 17, and Pontiac with just 7.
Fast Facts – The AMC Javelin SST Trans Am Edition
- The Javelin SST Trans Am Edition was a limited production model that was produced to commemorate AMC’s involvement in the Trans Am racing series. Just 100 units were produced, each with a unique tricolor paint scheme and a slew of performance upgrades.
- The SST Trans Am Edition came with a 390 cubic inch (6.4 liter) V8 which was good for 325 bhp and 425 lb ft of torque. It was equipped with a four-barrel carburetor, a Borg-Warner T-10 wide-ratio four-speed manual transmission with a Hurst shifter, heavy-duty suspension, and a high-performance cam.
- The car was given a distinctive red, white, and blue color scheme that matched the livery of AMC’s Trans Am race cars. Although they weren’t homologation cars per se, they certainly looked like it.
- With a sticker price of $4,000 USD in 1970s dollars, the SST Trans Am Edition was an expensive car by the standards of the time. Today the surviving examples are highly collectible, though they only seem to come up for public sale infrequently.
AMC And The Trans Am Miracle
When AMC, American Motors Corporation, decided to go Trans Am racing in the 1968 season there were more than a few raised eyebrows. The company had little in the way of racing pedigree, and it would be competing head-to-head with some of America’s largest automakers.
The one secret weapon AMC had was that they had hired Ronnie Kaplan to oversee the project from its inception to 1969. Kaplan would develop the cars and put together a team that would take a sizable chunk out of their competition, before going on to shock the racing world by winning the Trans Am Championship outright in 1971.
Given the foundation that Kaplan had laid down, it was now time for the Penske team, who AMC had hired for the 1970 season, to take over. With drivers Mark Donohue and Peter Revson at the wheels of their respective cars, AMC began taking race wins despite some early reliability problems.
With wins at the Bridgehampton Race Circuit, Road America, and Circuit Mont-Tremblant under their belt AMC would finish second in the 1970 Trans Am Championship with 59 points vs the 72 of winners Ford, and the 40 points of Chevrolet. Dodge managed just 18 and Plymouth brought up the rear with 15.
The gauntlet now thrown down, AMC and their top driver Mark Donohue would utterly dominate the 1971 season. Donohue took seven wins in his 1971 Javelin AMX to take the 1971 SCCA Trans-Am Championship in no uncertain fashion.
Above Video: This vintage clip showcases the AMC Javelin’s exploits in the world of Trans Am racing. If you want to see the original cars on track, and hear them racing, this clip is for you.
It was a David vs Goliath story told on the unforgiving blacktop of North America’s most storied circuits, and it would be AMC’s finest hour as they finished well ahead of Ford, Chevrolet, and Pontiac.
The 1970 AMC Javelin SST Trans Am Edition
Though the AMC wasn’t technically a homologation car it certainly looked the part, carrying all the performance tricks in the AMC parts catalogue as well as that memorable Matador Red, Frost White, and Commodore Blue paint scheme that replicated the famous AMC Trans Am race cars.
Each SST Trans Am Edition was fitted with the AMC 390 cubic inch (6.4 liter) V8 that was fitted with a heavy-duty cooling system, a Motorcraft 4300 four-barrel carburetor, a full dual-exhaust system, and AMC’s “Ram Induction System” – it sealed a chamber around the air filter so that cool air from the functional hood scoop would be funneled into the intake. That hood scoop was included as part of the Go Package.
This engine produced 325 bhp at 5,000 rpm, and 420 lb ft of torque at 3,200 rpm, hefty figures by the standards of the time and still highly respectable today over 50 years later.
Power was sent back through a Borg-Warner T-10 wide-ratio four-speed manual transmission which was topped with a Hurst Competition shifter. From there it would pass back through the AMC’s Model 20 differential, with the Twin-Grip positive traction system, and a 3.91:1 final-drive ratio to the rear wheels.
Front power disc brakes with four-piston calipers were fitted to help the driver keep everything under control they were paired with rear drums, and the car rode on 14 x 6 inch AMC Magnum 500 5-spoke wheels which were originally shod with Goodyear Polyglas F70-14 tires from the factory.
It’s not known exactly how many of the original 1970 AMC Javelin SST Trans Am Edition cars remain, they only seem to come up for public sale rarely, though this may be because many owners feel they’re primed for a significant climb in value and don’t want to sell their car and miss out.
If you’d like to read more about this unusual AMC or register to bid you can visit the listing here on Mecum. It’s due to roll across the auction block with them in late September and at the time of writing there is no price guide set.
Images courtesy of Mecum
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