List of AMC engines

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The American Motors Corporation (AMC) used V8, straight-6, V6, and straight-4 engines in various passenger automobiles and Jeep vehicles from 1964 through 2006. Some engines were of AMC design or inherited from its constituents. Others were bought from, or had their design bought from other manufacturers.

Four Cylinder Engines

American Motors used several four-cylinder engine designs.

Air-Cooled 108

The 108 cu in (1.8 L) an AMC designed air-cooled V4 engine that was used in AMC's lightweight, aluminium-bodied M422 'Mighty Mite' military vehicle, built from January 1960 to January 1963 as an air transportable (mainly helicopters of the time) Jeep for the U.S. Marine Corps.[1]

  • Bore & Stroke: 3 1/4 inch x 3 1/4 inch
  • Compression: 7.5:1
  • Horsepower: 52 hp (39 kW) @ 3,600 rpm
  • Torque: 90 lb·ft (122 N·m) @ 2,500 rpm

Audi/VW 121

The 121 cu in (2 L) was an advanced design overhead camshaft four-cylinder engine bought from Audi/Volkswagen 1977 through 1979. Though a small engine, its advanced design created reasonable power for its size and due to being an OHC engine, it had a high redline. This engine was also used in the Audi 100, Volkswagen LT van, and Porsche 924. The engine was built to AMC specs, which are different from Audi/VW/Porshe specifications. AMC used a carburetor and standard points ignition as well as slightly larger clearances.

The original deal was for AMC to buy the design, eventually moving manufacturing to the United States. American Motors bought a plant specifically to build the engine, but never sold enough to move complete manufacturing. The AMC engines were assembled in the U.S. from major castings supplied by VW, hence the different assembly clearances. As part of the agreement, AMC was not to use the VW or Audi names when referring to the engine. Everyone familiar with the design knew they were virtually identical, and the automotive press commonly referred to them as Audi or VW engines. VW/Audi/Porsche U.S. spec engines produced 110 hp (82 kW) in mid-1977; earlier models produced 95 hp (71 kW).

  • Bore x Stroke 3.41" x 3.32"
  • Compression Ratio 8.1:1
  • Horsepower (net) 80 hp (60 kW) @ 5,000 rpm
  • Torque (net) 105 lb·ft (142 N·m) @ 2,800 rpm

It was used in the AMC Gremlin, AMC Spirit, and AMC Concord, The only Jeep this engine was used in was the 1979 DJ5G (Postal delivery). In the DJ5G it was mated to a 3sp 904 automatic transmission with a VW/Audi pattern bell. In the manual shifted cars it was mated to a BorgWarner HR-1 4-speed transmission.

It shared bellhousing pattern with several German cars including the VW Rabbit diesel.

Pontiac 151

The 151 cu in (2.5 L) is commonly referred to as the "Iron Duke" and is a Pontiac design. Confusion arises because it has a Chevrolet (now corporate) transmission bolt pattern.

  • Bore x Stroke 4.00" x 3.00"
  • Compression Ratio 8.2:1
  • Horsepower (net) 82 hp (61 kW) @ 4,000 rpm
  • Torque (net) 125 lb·ft (169 N·m) @ 2,600 rpm

This GM engine was bought by AMC from 1979 through 1983, as the base option in the RWD Spirit and Concord, the AWD Eagle models, as well as in the economy versions of Jeep CJs.

AMC 150

Main article: AMC Straight-4 engine

Six Cylinder Engines

Main article: AMC Straight-6 engine

American Motors started out using Nash and Hudson straight-6 engines. Those sixes were phased out after 1956 (1957 Nash and Hudson models were all V8s), leaving the Rambler as the only six-cylinder model.

AMC 195.5 cu in (3.2 L)

This motor was originally available as a flathead, then OHV, the flathead again and there were some aluminum block motors which didn't do well due to poor anti-corrosion anti-freezes of the time.

Kaiser 230

Main article: Jeep Tornado engine

While not an AMC design, this SOHC engine was used in civilian Jeep vehicles until 1965. The 230 cu in (3.8 L) is often confused with the AMC/Jeep 232, which Kaiser Jeep purchased to replace it. They do not share bellhousing patterns. Cam trouble on the 230 was common due to oils that weren't yet up to the task back then. Although, with its over-square bore and stroke, it was very much built for low rpm torque. And its a very dependable engine with reports of them going 250,000 mi. with no major problems.

Buick 225

Main article: Buick V6 engine

The "Dauntless" 225 cu in (3.7 L) V6 engine was introduced in the 1966 Kaiser CJ and as an option in the C101 Jeepster Commando. Kaiser bought the tooling from Buick to build the 225 during the short period prior to selling their Jeep subsidiary to AMC.

AMC retained the Buick engine briefly after it bought Jeep. It was retired in 1971, shortly after the 1970 acquisition. The tooling was then sold back to General Motors in 1974, and this engine continues to be used today.

The engine was an odd-fire V6, meaning that TDC for the cylinders was not evenly spaced around the engine but grouped in pairs. The engine was known at the time for its power and reliability. It would idle slowly, but not as smooth as other engines, especially the inline sixes.

This engine was used in the following vehicles:

The Modern Era I-6

American Motors designed an entirely new six cylinder for 1964, and this version was in constant production by AMC and Chrysler through 2006. See AMC Straight-6 engine.

199 cu in (3.3 L)
232 cu in (3.8 L)
258 cu in (4.2 L)
4.0 L

The bell pattern was different for the early motors from the AMC V8s. In '71 AMC raised the block height and increased the stroke on the 199 and early 232 motors. The 199 became 232 cubic inches and the old 232 became 258. In '71 only these two RB or "raised block" engines shared the small bell pattern of the earlier engines. In '72 both 232 and 258 changed bell pattern to match AMC V8s.

General Motors V6

171 cu in (2.8 L) GM 60-Degree LR2 V6 engine

V8 Engines

Main article: AMC V8 engine

AMC went through three generations of its V8 Block, though the most famous are its third generation blocks used in muscle cars. Generally, AMC V8s are considered "Small Block" due to exterior size and their maximum displacement. This usually refers to the later engines.

GEN-1 Nash/Hudson/Rambler V8s (1956-1966)

250 cu in (4.1 L)
287 cu in (4.7 L)
327 cu in (5.4 L)

GEN-2 AMC Short-Deck V-8 (1966–1970)

290 cu in (4.8 L)
343 cu in (5.6 L)
AMX 390 cu in (6.4 L)

GEN-3 AMC Tall-deck (1970-1991)

304 cu in (5 L)
360 cu in (5.9 L)
390 cu in (6.4 L)
401 cu in (6.6 L)

See also

References and notes

  1. 4WD Mighty Mite page. Retrieved November 22, 2006.