Romney's Rambler

1964 AMC Rambler Classic 550 2 door- Romney's Rambler Rambler Classic 550

Technical specifications of AMC Rambler Classic 550 2 door- Romney's Rambler 1964

Price: -
Condition: Used
Item location: Hazel Park, Michigan, United States
Make: AMC
Model: Rambler Classic 550 2 door- Romney's Rambler
Type: 2 door
Trim: Rambler Classic 550
Year: 1964
Mileage: 62,355
VIN: G530xxx
Color: white
Engine size: 6 cylinder
Number of cylinders: 6
Fuel: Gasoline
Transmission: Manual
Drive type: RWD
Interior color: Blue
Drive side: Left-hand drive
Vehicle Title: Clear
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Car description

Romney Rambler- 1964 Rambler Classic 550 2-Door Sedan

This historically significant car is in very good, unrestored condition. It starts easily and runs well. The drivetrain appears to be completely original.The paint appears to be the factory finish, and has been polished thin in several areas. The finish has wonderful patina, but includes several small dings, dents, chips and scrapes. The right quarter panel has a slight horizontal crease in it (see pic), the top center of the grill has some imperfections, and the front center of the hood has some cracking paint. The car also has some very minor surface rust in a few isolated areas, but the entire car is essentially unrestored and rust free. The interior, including the seat upholstery, also appears to be entirely original and in very good condition. This car has clearly received a lot of love over the years! This car was ordered in extreme base- level trim, and it did not even have floor carpets when originally delivered. It had a black rubber floor mat that has become brittle and was removed. The odometer is currently showing approximately 62,355 miles. I have a clean, clear Michigan title in hand. I also have copies of several years of Romney's Michigan registration certificates, a letter from the FCA manager of historical services authenticating the car, and a lot of other documents and memorabilia.

If you are not computer savvy, I have attached blue links to many articles about this car in the text below. Please highlight the blue URL's in the description below by using your left mouse key, and then right mouse click the "go to http..." command.

Please ask me any questions you have before bidding. I am very easy to contact through ebay. I respond to all inquiries quickly.

The car is for sale locally and may be removed from the auction at any time. If you have any negative feedback at all, or feed back less than 10, please contact me prior to bidding. If you are a scammer- forget about this car- you won't be successful. I strongly encourage inspections and can assist in loading during shipping.


Stainless Steel VIN Tag (on RH shock tower): American Motors G530xxx

Aluminum Door Data Plate (on LH door) Decoded:

Body 040989: the 40,989th body built in 1964

Model 6416: two door Classic 550

Trim 453-C: "4" represents model year 1964, "53-C" is blue cloth interior

Paint 72: Frost White

W024393: the 24,393th car built on the WEST assembly line

Background Chronology:

1954-1962 George W. Romney heads American Motors Corporation as President and Chairman.

1963-1969 Romney elected three-term Michigan Governor.

1964 & 1968 Romney runs for US President.

1969-1973 Romney appointed U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

1995 Romney personally donated this Rambler to the Walter P. Chrysler Museum in Auburn Hills, MI, and died a few months later.

2007 Romney Rambler loaned by the Walter P. Chrysler Museum for use in the Mitt Romney Presidential Campaign.

2010 Walter P. Chrysler Museum, in bankruptcy, sells the Romney Rambler to the Academy of Art University, California. Rambler was featured in their "Excellence In Design" exhibit.

2017 Romney Rambler re-commissioned. Repairs consisted of removal and reconditioning of the fuel tank, complete fluid change, brake system repair, carburetor rebuild, horn repair, new front shocks, fuel pump, and battery.

Historical Summary:

George W. Romney's life and career is the embodiment of the American success story, and has been the subject of numerous books, articles, and movies. Romney came from simple origins, born to American parents in Mexico. He attended college, but did not graduate. In 1948 he began working for Nash-Kelvinator, eventually working his way up to become the President and Chairman of American Motors Corporation from 1954 to 1962.

During his reign, Romney transformed AMC from a struggling post-refrigerator manufacturing company to a competitive and award-winning car company, with the Rambler becoming America's third most popular car in 1961.

As AMC's boss, Romney was dubbed the "Dinosaur Hunter" for his energetic and effective efforts to battle Detroit's Big Three, and in his opinion, their oversized and overweight automotive offerings. Romney's top-notch engineers and designers (including the brilliant designer Richard Teague, hired by Romney in 1959) created the all-new Rambler in 1964. It won the Motor Trend Car of the Year Award, among other accolades.

Romney bought this simple, base-trim 1964 Rambler Classic 550. He proudly drove it and cared for it personally, until his death in 1995. Romney's oldest son, G. Scott Romney, recalled that his father normally didn't become attached to cars, but he had a "special bond with this one."

Romney served three terms as 43rd Michigan Governor from 1963 to 1969, and was a front-runner candidate in the 1968 US Presidential election. Nixon eventually won the Republican nomination and the Presidency, but Nixon was so impressed by Romney that he nominated Romney to be the 3rd United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. Romney served as HUD Secretary from 1969 to 1973.

Shortly before his death in 1995 in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, Romney personally donated his beloved Rambler to the Walter P. Chrysler Museum in Auburn Hills, Michigan.

George Romney's son Mitt followed closely in his father's political footsteps, becoming the 70th Governor of Massachusetts from 2003-2007. Mitt also followed his father's lead in running for US President in 2007, but was beaten by John McCain as the Republican nominee. The Romney Rambler was loaned by the Walter P. Chrysler Museum to the Mitt Romney campaign for use as a speech backdrop. It was emblematic of simple, hard-working values and conservative ethics.

This car would have likely remained in museum hands and off the road in perpetuity had it not been for the disastrous 2008 recession. The Chrysler Corporation, and by default, the Walter P. Chrysler Museum, declared bankruptcy. Consequently, this car was sold by the Walter P. Chrysler Museum in April of 2010.

Mitt again ran for President in 2012, that time winning the Republican nomination for President, with Paul Ryan as his VP running mate. Unfortunately, his father's Rambler was in private hands by then, and it was unavailable for use in his 2012 campaign.

Recent Articles- Romney Rambler Specific:

Feb 15 2013- NY Times article w/15 photos by writer Benjamin Preston titled George Romney's Revolutionary Rambler Is For Sale stated that Mitt Romney recalled his family using the plain-jane Rambler.

Feb 17 2013- Jalopnik article w/3 photos by writer Zac Estrada titled George Romney's Personal Rambler Classic Is For Sale stated that George Romney's oldest son G. Scott Romney remembered that his father normally didn't become attached to cars, but he had a "special bond" with this one.

Feb 19 2013- AutoWeek article w/8 photos by writer Graham Kozak titled Found On eBay: Pristine 1964 AMC Rambler With Romney Provenancedescribes the Romney Rambler, and in an article update indicates it had sold on ebay for $13,400.

Feb 20 2013- Automotive News article w/7 photos by writer Graham Kozak titled George Romney-owned 1964 AMC Rambler on Ebay stated "the Rambler may have been an odd choice for a wealthy man like George Romney, but as a former AMC president, he felt a particular affinity for the car."

Feb 4 2014- A lengthy Motor Trend article w/29 photos by writer Richard Truesdell titled Driving George Romney's 1964 Rambler Classic 550 Two-Door Sedan- Michigan Governor George Romney Stayed Humble In His 1964 Rambler stated that "while Mrs. Romney always drove one of AMC's high-line models, her practical and frugal husband George was content to drive base model editions." Truesdell added "George W. Romney was a remarkable man, rising from humble roots to become a corporate executive of a Fortune 500 company, the governor of Michigan, a presidential candidate in 1964 and 1968, and the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development in the Nixon administration. But in spite of being a millionaire, he bought and drove a car that reflected his personal values of thrift, public service, and integrity, a plain-Jane, three-on-the-tree, $2230 1964 Rambler Classic 550 two-door sedan. That says a lot about the man and his truly American success story." Truesdell also wrote the following sidebar titledRockefeller's Ferrari:

'While both moderate GOP presidential contenders in 1964 were wealthy, they drove very different cars. While Romney could easily purchase any AMC or any car any automaker offered, he drove a base-model Rambler intermediate when he served as Michigan's governor. His competitor, New York Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller, drove something just a bit more upscale: a 1963Ferrari400 Superamerica, chassis number 5115. It is currently owned by Don and Carol Murray of Orange County, California.

Where Romney's Rambler was spartan, Rockefeller's Superamerica was luxurious in the extreme. The America series wasFerrari's most bespoke model, dating back to the 340 model in 1950.

The America series Ferraris were owned by rich and powerful people like Rockefeller, politicians and potentates, and celebrities. Film director Roberto Rossellini had a 375 MM model commissioned for his wife, actress Ingrid Bergman,.

The Murrays' car is a 1963 model is well-documented history dating back to its purchase by Rockefeller in 1963. Its engine is a sophisticated 60-degree V-12 designed by Gioacchino Colombo, displacing 3967cc and producing 340 horsepower with a specific output of 85 horsepower per liter. (By comparison, the 3.2-liter, 196-cubic inch OHV pushrod straight-six under the hood of Romney's Classic 550 produced just 127 horsepower, giving it a specific output of just 40 horsepower per liter.)

The Murrays' 400 Superamerica is one of the couple's favorite cars in a 30-plus car collection that includes numerous Ferraris and Porsches. They exhibit the car extensively and it almost always is a Best in Class, Best in Marque, or Best in Show winner whenever it is shown. It's a magnificent car and an interesting counterpoint to the car owned and driven by Romney."

2014- Richard Truesdell highlighted the car on the website "Automotive Traveler"

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