The 1974 Gremlin X is not a typical sight in 2010 but this one really stood out with its blinding lime green paint job.
‘Tanner Kennedy is the owner of this iconic AMC product and he couldn’t be happier with his 4-wheeled attention getting device.’
Tanner has always liked the Gremlins-as he says,”Ever since I was a kid I’ve wanted to grab one“.
Grab one he did-in this case, a 304 V-8 powered refugee from the post Richard Nixon era of the 1970s.
The search for a Gremlin took six years-truly underscoring Tanner’s commitment to the car.
He’d owned it for two months at the time of the interview and he was still getting used to the attention the sawed off Gremlin gets-including the standard “haven’t seen one in years” comments. Tanner doesn’t mind that but like most true car guys he bristles when an observer gets the car wrong and calls it the “Wayne’s World car”. Most true car people know that the Gremlin is a far cry from the goldfish bowl AMC Pacer movie car.
Tanner is a young guy and typically the handling of a 1974 Gremlin should intimidate somebody who might be more inclined to the sure steering and tracking of newer technology cars. That’s not the case-he’s highly impressed with the car on the highway. As he relates,“it handles great, floats like a big car, it doesn’t think it’s a short car at highway speeds”.
Tanner is an old school car guy with a young guy birth certificate-that’s why he hated tuner cars. He likes the sheer torque of a V-8 and while the 304 is pretty strong in the light Gremlin; he wants to dominate newer high tech cars.
This is where Tanner has reached a crossroads with the original engine-he’s found that engine parts for the AMC 304 are rare and expensive so he’s considering a 406 GM small block with a Turbo 400. He realizes that this strategy is heresy to AMC devotees and he’s taking that into consideration.
‘Either way, the Gremlin is not for sale and Tanner’s immediate plans are to drive it regularly and look for tuner cars to smite mightily.’
Jerry Sutherland @mystarcollectorcar.com