Find a Flatbed: 1980 AMC Eagle Wagon Project – SOLD!

by | May 2021 | Craigslist ClassiFINDS, Wagon Wednesday

May 18, 2021 Update – we confirmed the seller of this “Classifind” deleted their listing, so we’re now able to call this one “SOLD!” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call Rudy directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.

If you look back in our archives, all of the AMC Eagle wagons we’ve featured to date came equipped with faux wood panel trim. This red and black 1980 project we first spotted in May 2021 on Craigslist in Baltimore City, Maryland for $3,500 is arguably the sportiest example we’ve featured to date. The downside is the seller clearly manages expectations you will need to have this car hauled back to your garage for a thorough sorting before being road-ready again. The Collector Car Market Review indicates the current asking price falls between this guide’s #4 “Fair” estimate of $1,900 and its #3 “Good” appraisal of $4,000.

American Motors Corporation (“AMC”) produced its compact-sized four-wheel-drive passenger vehicles from 1979 through 1987 when Chrysler bought the company.  By the late 1970s, the last independent American car manufacturer AMC struggled to compete against the onslaught of Japanese imports with its Pacer and other aging compacts.  In a moment of brilliance thirty years ahead of its time, AMC predicted consumers would embrace a vehicle with the comfort of an automobile, but the ride height and foul-weather capabilities of a four-wheel-drive utility vehicle.  While the company had no money to develop a new car, AMC was able to leverage their knowledge from the Jeep’s Quadra-Trac four-wheel-drive system to develop a powertrain they could fit underneath their already decade-old Hornet (by that point rebadged as the Concord) and Gremlin platforms.  Launched in August 1979 as 1980 models, AMC Eagles were the only four-wheel-drive passenger cars produced in the U.S. at the time. Consumers saw they were affordable cars offering a comfortable ride and handling on the pavement together with superior traction in light off-road use.  Ironically, while the rear-wheel-drive Concord and Gremlin were not seen as fuel-efficient, the four-wheel-drive Eagle versions fared well against traditional truck-based SUVs of the day.

The My Old Car YouTube Channel provides a great overview of how AMC Eagle was way ahead of its time as the first Crossover ever offered:

We’re not up on our AMC/Jeep Hot Rod techniques to know why this Eagle has a 4.0L conversion the seller talks about as we thought all of these cars came with that engine to start with.  If you have the mechanical aptitude to tackle sorting what needs to be completed on this Eagle, you’ll soon own a very capable do-it-all kind of wagon with way more style than today’s bland CUV’s.

Here’s the seller’s description:

RARE hard to find a red 1980 AMC Eagle Wagon 4×4.

This wagon has a 4.0 engine conversion bottom end with 4.2 top end. Electronic fuel pump, dual-fan radiator, new carburetor, alternator, and voltage regulator conversion.

Several mechanical items will need to be addressed prior to being road-worthy.

You should be a person with basic mechanical skills. i.e. brake pads and brake lines, fuel line, etc….

The car will crank and drive but you will need to have a trailer to remove.

This car is not ready for the road.

Clear title in hand. Feel free to contact me with questions.

Do you have an AMC Eagle story to share?  Comment below and let us know!

1 Comment
  1. Find a Flatbed: 1980 AMC Eagle Wagon Project – SOLD!

    We had 2 of these – both went over 225000 miles!
    But you should know they constantly had something wrong with them!
    Need to be owned by a mechanic!
    Thanks Bob


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