American Motors Corporation (Hardcover)

The Rise and Fall of America's Last Independent Automaker

By Patrick R. Foster

Motorbooks, 9780760344255, 208pp.

Publication Date: November 25, 2013

List Price: 45.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.


In American Motors Corporation: The Rise and Fall of America's Last Independent Automaker, author Patrick Foster provides the ultimate inside look into an American corporation that rose from the death throes of a once-thriving independent auto industry, putting up a valiant fight for nearly half a century before succumbing to the inexorable will of the corporate machine. Born from the ashes of Hudson and Nash, AMC represented a last, desperate attempt at survival for an independent automobile company. Thanks to the steady, capable leadership of George Romney, the company not only survived, but thrived, riding on the success of the firm's small, economical cars like the Rambler. When competition arose from Ford, Plymouth, and Chevrolet and the market began to shift toward performance and luxury cars, AMC found itself poorly prepared to compete with its bigger rivals. With the fuel crisis of the 1970s, the small cars from AMC once again refilled corporate coffers, and the firm's purchase of the Jeep brand also generated profits--but ultimately, it was too little, too late. Even a partnership with French automaker Renault and the introduction of all-wheel-drive cars couldn't save AMC. In 1987, Chrysler Corporation purchased AMC and the story of the last independent automaker came to an end. This engaging book, from one of America's best-known automotive writers, tells the entire AMC story from its inception to its ultimate demise.

About the Author

One of America’s best-known automotive writers, Patrick R Foster has spent 30 years studying the automotive industry. The leading authority on AMC and its predecessors, Pat has written several books on that subject along with many others including Jeep, Studebaker, Hudson, Kaiser-Frazer, and Metropolitan. His popular columns appear in Hemmings Classic Car, and Old Cars Weekly, and he has won awards for his books and articles from the AACA (Antique Automobile Club of America) and SAH (Society of Automotive Historians). Official Website:

Praise For American Motors Corporation: The Rise and Fall of America's Last Independent Automaker

"American Motors Corporation makes good use of its coffee-table format, relating AMC's high and low points with a good balance of photos and text�¿ this casually enjoyable book should satisfy all..."- AutoWeek

"Foster may well be the world's premier raconteur when it comes to telling and retelling the ultimately sad story of AMC. The bigger-than-life treatment of that saga as presented here is an impressive piece of publishing." – Hemmings Muscle Machines (137,000 circulation)

"Here's a book that all admirers of AMC and independent automakers alike will want to read and then display in a visible spot in their library. Penned by Hemmings Classic Car's Pat Foster, it details the entire existence of AMC, from its formation back in 1954 to its demise in 1987. Within the 208 pages of this hardcover tome resides all the insightful information about AMC that you will want to know. Starting with the merger of Hudson and Nash, then the huge success of the Rambler, all the men responsible for the company's cars, their designs, and AMC's successes and failures are outlined in a clear, concise, easy-to-read manner that will prevent you from putting the book down until you finish reading it. Yes, it's that informative, and entertaining. The book's pleasing layout and design make it a treat for the eyes. We especially appreciate the inclusion of many proposed styling and design illustrations that show what could have been, underlining AMC's major role in the American auto industry. It's a must-read." - Hemming's Classic Car