$92,000 2010 FORD F150 lariat
VIC | 35,000Kms
JUST Cars 01/02/2010
Eric Adrien believes that to summarise the Rambler Rebel as a rarity is an absolute understatement. This is his story on his own rarity - a 1970 Rambler Rebel.
Even seasoned campaigners, like the fellas at my local tyre mart hadn't even heard of a Rambler Rebel, let alone seen one! Compared to other models from the AMC stable, this classic model is either long forgotten or largely unknown. Even JUST CARS doesn't have the Rebel listed in its World Price Guide.
My beautiful old 'land barge' is a 1970 model. I am told this model ceased production in 1969 and if so, it makes this car even more unique.
Imported in CKD form and assembled in RHD configuration by AMI in Victoria, it is powered by a 360ci V8 with a 3 spd auto FMX column shift and LSD. It's a 6 seater, with a foot-operated parking brake. The Rebel is approximately 5mt long and 2mt wide and has a galvanized body, which has resulted in a virtually rust-free car.
I purchased my Rebel from an "old local bloke" for the princely sum of $1,000 in August, 2005. It took a further $4,000 or so to get it roadworthy (including $1,000 alone to completely overhaul the four piston front brake calipers), running and registered in October, 2005.
Apparently, the Rebel had been sitting idle for many years and had last been registered in 1997. Despite this, a splash of fuel down the four barrel Holley (originally fitted with a two barrel, I'm told) and a fresh battery saw her fire up first go! After getting it up and running, I haven't had to put a spanner to it since. The car is almost 100% original, includign the beige vinyl interior, which is still in good condition considering it's 40 years old. The only non-original aspects are the blue metallic paintjob, resprayed some years ago in acrylic lacquer and the "hoon" items I have added to eradicate the ‘Grandpa’ look of the standard car. These include $300 for the second hand mags and tyres, twin aerials, bonnet scoops (which are actually XB-XC Falcon coupe rear quarter vents), exterior rear view mirrors and halogen headlights. I also chopped 40mm out of the front springs to reduce the ship-like stance these cars seem to possess.
It also seems as if the front guards and doors have been changed and fitted with the stainless strips which are not evident on the rest of the car. Rear doors and quarter panels show no signs of ever having strips, ie: patched up holes, etc. (these ‘half length’ chrome strips were a factory-spec feature of 1970 Rebels - Ed.)
Now, for reality – the door rubbers are non-existent, she creaks and moans in transit, the fuel gauge is erratic, she’s a bitch when cold and she loves a drink! But what a girl. I love her! I use her as a daily driver as often as I can, regardless of the fuel costs, and only when it’s raining or I need to carry work gear do I take the Toyota ‘Lo-Lux’ instead. She has so much potential and, in due course, will be completely overhauled and prettied up to continue turning heads and giving me cruising pleasure. The sad part is I’ll need to pull her off the road to do it. Hopefully, this feature will reveal more info on these tough, powerful machines and increase interest in the AMC models.
In closing, I have also been told by a couple of old fellas that this model Rebel was used by the NSW Highway Patrol at some stage. Can anyone please clarify this?
So, how about it, readers? Our research suggests Ramblers like this weren’t used by the NSW Police, but we’re happy to be proven wrong! Do any JUST CARS readers in the Premier State remember seeing – or being pulled over - by one of these machines in Police livery in the 1970s? If you can answer the question, please email us at: email@example.com or write to: JUST CARS, Locked Bag 34, Geelong, VIC, 3220. If you have any photos that confirm these machines saw Police use, please send them in, too.
Our thanks to Eric for his contribution.
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