Spotlight Hobbies

1980 AMX Build details for Dave Van and anybody else interested *9 PICS* *LINK*

I started with an old built up Gremlin kit I had, with plans to change it to the shape of a Spirit body, not unlike how AMC did it back in the day. Here is an early planning stage pic. The angle of the cut on the C pillar was measured with a protractor (remember those?) from a pic I printed from the internet.

The hatch opening is starting to take shape. Note how the rear quarter panel had to be extended and how the new rear panel was starting to be framed. Here we can see how the upper body line has been modified to follow the new quarter window shape.

I laid in a sheet of styrene to the hatch area. I glued the inner structure of the hatch in such a way as to give it a slight curvature and then added outside framework where the back window would be. The area within the framing was later removed for the hatch glass.

The Spirit bodied AMX (and AMC Concord - they shared front fenders) had sloping front fenders and were reshaped to use a new rectangle headlight setup. The Gremlin fenders had to be pie cut, reattached and then molded to get the correct look.

In this mockup, we see the roughed in hatch and taillight area, the fender flares from a Dodge D50 pickup and the modified front fender tops with their gentle slope. Look closely and you can see the scratchbuilt taillight housings in place. These would be filled with cut down taillight lenses from the '37 Chevy custom taillight unit(?). Wheels were sourced from the parts box of a model club member.

It's really taking shape now! The B pillar modifications are done, the fender flairs have been attached, molded and reshaped as needed, the front and rear spoilers scratchbuilt with Evergreen strips, the modified Gremlin front and rear bumpers, the reshaped front fenders and the 10+ piece front grill. I don't have a picture of the modifications needed to the front valence hidden by the bumper. The headlights are Monte Carlo units flipped upside down. The hood reveal has been lengthened to change the Gremlin shape to that of the Spirit's.

Here is the interior. The seats are from an MPC Pacer kit (those Gremlin kit seats are WAY too narrow). 24 individual pleats were added to each seat to match the AMX pattern. I glued the passenger seat forward a bit and glued the one back seat back down to add some interest to the interior. Flocking was added for carpetting. The console was also scratchbuilt.

The 6 cylinder engine was from the same MPC Pacer kit (the V8 was no longer available in the AMX after 1979). The firewall, inner fenders and radiator support were cut from a SC/Rambler kit and the shock mounts on top of the shock towers were modified to a more correct look than the SC/Rambler setup. The engine was wired and plumbed.

Rear/side view of the completed model. The stripes on the rear spoiler were printed on decal paper and cut to fit, as were the door decals. The striping on the flares are cut down from vinyl 1:1 car striping tape. The side marker lenses were photo reduced from a picture and glued to their respective positions. The door handles were cut from a junk AMX body I had.

Finished project.

Thank you for your interest. Additional build pics available at the link.

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