The American Motors (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 EnginesEdit

American Motors used several four-cylinder engine designs.

Air-Cooled 108Edit

The 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.

  • Bore & Stroke: 3 1/4 inch x 3 1/4 inch
  • Compression: 7.5:1
  • Horsepower: @ 3,600 rpm
  • Torque: @ 2,500 rpm

Audi/VW 121Edit

The 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 in mid-1977; earlier models produced .

  • Bore x Stroke 3.41" x 3.32"
  • Compression Ratio 8.1:1
  • Horsepower (net) @ 5,000 rpm
  • Torque (net) @ 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 automatic transmisison. In manual shifted cars it was mated to a BorgWarner HR-1 4-speed transmission.

Pontiac 151 Edit

The 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) @ 4,000 rpm
  • Torque (net) @ 2,600 rpm

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

AMC 150Edit

Six Cylinder EnginesEdit

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.


Kaiser 230Edit

While not an AMC design, this engine was used in civilian Jeep vehicles until 1965. The is often confused with the AMC/Jeep 232, which Kaiser Jeep purchased to replace it.

Buick 225Edit

The "Dauntless" V6 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:

  • Jeep Jeep
  • Jeep Jeep
  • Jeep
  • (Please expand)

The Modern Era I-6Edit

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.

4.0 L

General Motors V6Edit

GM 60-Degree LR2 V6 engine
  • Used in the 1984-1986 Jeep

V8 EnginesEdit

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) Edit

GEN-2 AMC Short-Deck V-8 (1966–1970) Edit


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

See alsoEdit

  • AMC Straight-4 engine
  • AMC Straight-6 engine
  • AMC V8 engine
  • AMC/Jeep Transmissions
  • List of Chrysler engines
  • AMC Rambler Car Club

References and notesEdit

Smallwikipedialogo.png This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at List of AMC engines. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Jeep Wrangler Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.