Rambler (automobile)

Rambler (English for hikers ) was an automobile brand that was used by the Thomas B. Jeffery Company from 1897 to 1914. The successor, Nash Motors, they took off in 1950, and its successor, American Motors Corporation from 1954 to 1969.



For the first time the name was used Rambler for an American automobile in 1897, when the Thomas B. Jeffery Company in Chicago, Illinois, maker of the Rambler bicycle, the first prototype of an automobile built. After positive reactions at the Chicago International Exhibition & Tournament in 1899 and the first National Automobile Show in New York City to Jeffery decided in 1900, to go into the automotive business. In the same year he bought the old Sterling Bicycle Co. in Kenosha, Wisconsin, where he established his factory on.

Jeffery started the mass production of automobiles in 1902, and at the end he had already produced 1500 cars, 1/ 6 of all then existing in the United States automobiles. The Thomas B. Jeffery Company was then the second largest automobile manufacturer ( by Oldsmobile ).

Rambler experimented with such an early technical innovations as a steering wheel ( common at that time were steering sticks), but it was decided that this was too advanced for the former audience, and thus the first Rambler came with the steering column. Rambler had a lot of new equipment details and was also the first car that was brought out with a spare wheel ( rim tire ). This meant that the driver of a Rambler at one of the then -too-frequent punctures could simply replace the wheel with the flat tire with the spare tire. Earlier it was in such a case necessary to dismount the wheel of the car, pull the defective tire to repair the tube, the tire raise again, inflate it and screw the wheel back on the car. Replaceable wheels and spare wheels made ​​traveling on the primitive roads that were littered with horseshoe nails, much easier. The punctured tire could be repaired after completion of the journey in peace at home.

1914 replaced Charles Jeffery, the son of company founder Thomas B. Jeffery, the Rambler brand name in honor of his deceased father by the name of Jeffery. In 1916 the Thomas B. Jeffery Company of Charles W. Nash bought up and was 1917 Nash Motors. The Jeffery brand name was dropped in the purchase and the production of automobiles under the brand name Nash began. 1937, the group was through the purchase of the Kelvinator Corporation to Nash - Kelvinator Corporation.


Under the direction of Charles Nash's successor, George Mason Nash - Kelvinator Corporation which began with the development of a small car that could be produced cheaply for the postwar market.

However, the shortage of steel limited the amount of raw materials that could get Nash. So Mason changed the compact car - now called Rambler - in a two-door convertible sedan, which was equipped with many details that were typically ordered as an option. He maximized the profit of the company. With the introduction of this model the Rambler was an immediate sales success for Nash. As the shortage of steel, which was caused by the Korean War subsided, advanced to the Rambler series to a 4-door sedan and a station wagon, both as successful as the 2-door convertible sedans were.

The first generation of the Nash Rambler wore the modified styling of the Nash Airflyte, who had, among other things covered front wheels. Although this design feature reduced air resistance of the car, but limited the steering angle of the front wheels, resulting in a larger turning circle. Until 1955, the Rambler were built, then was abandoned as part of a facelift on the covers of the front wheels.

In 1954, the American Motors Corporation ( AMC) was established through a merger of Nash - Kelvinator with the Hudson Motor Car Co. Subsequently, the Rambler branded Nash and Hudson brand have been sold, but did not differ externally. The brand names Nash and Hudson were maintained until 1957, then were all AMC cars to Ramblers, with the exception of imported Metropolitan 1958-1962.


At the beginning of the 1960s, George W. Romney decided (successor of Mason), the Rambler series further differentiate: 1962 the Ambassador was as well as fully equipped model officially added ( Previously, he was described as " Ambassador by Rambler " markets ) and the previous Rambler Six and Rambler Rebel V8 were the Rambler Classic.

Romney also brought his plan into play to reduce the cost of production, which required more equal parts for the Ambassador and Classic models. Starting in 1962, all the big Rambler They shared the same chassis and the same body; only equipment details distinguish the Classic and the Ambassador. Even many deep-drawn parts had in common the 1963er-Ambassador/Classic-Modelle and 1964 - American models.

1963 got the Rambler model the price " Motor Trend of the Year" awarded ( automotive trend of the year ). Romney's farewell ( he was Governor of Michigan) opened the door for his successor, Roy Abernethy, who brought the company back into the competition with the "Big Three" ( General Motors, Ford and Chrysler ) with many chassis and bodies.

One of his first measures was to design the 1965 - Rambler series, in which the Classic differed significantly from the Ambassador, although they still had many parts in common. In addition, AMC Marlin Introductions were made, a hardtop coupe, the AMC told them to put a foot in the door of the market for sporty fastback.

Supported by marketing reports presented Abernethy as a next step, the argument of the AMC owners meeting that the Rambler had acquired over the years not only an indigestible image, which proved to be a hindrance to sale, especially that consumers still equate the name with compact cars. American Motors began then from 1966 to let die the names Rambler in favor of the designation AMC, as the company wanted to be a producer of cars of different sizes. This turned out to be a mistake later. The return to the Rambler brand name, and the association of the customers with economical compact car could benefit AMC in the 1970s.

1968 was the only car that bore the name Rambler, AMC, the compact Rambler American, and during the last production year 1969, he was wearing only the name of Rambler.


The Rambler brand was continued in various international markets: for example, were the assembled by the Australian Motor Industries (AMI ) from CKD kits AMC Hornet and AMC Matador sold to 1978 Rambler. Most recently, this brand name of Traffic & Automotores Mexicanos SA (VAM ) is used in Mexico.

In Argentina, from the Rambler American 1967 IKA Torino. It later became the Renault Torino, which was offered until 1980.

Pop culture

The Rambler was also mentioned in music, television and movies. Here are a few examples:

  • A black and red Rambler 38hp Four, model 73 - 4CC Cross Country Touring from 1912 played in the movie Titanic (1997) with; He is seen prior to the departure of the ship on the pier.
  • Lois Lane drove a Rambler Custom Landau (Convertible) 1951 in the television series Superman 1953.
  • The little car is the subject of the song " Beep, Beep ( The Little Nash Rambler ) " by The Playmates.
  • A Rambler appeared on the second series of Prison Break in Episode 9.
  • Fred from the movie Cars appears in a Rambler.
  • A Rambler hardtop coupe from 1958 appears in the music video " She Bop " by Cyndi Lauper.
  • A Rambler Super 1959 will appear in episode 7 of the second series of The Sopranos.
  • In'' 3rd Rock from the Sun '' belongs to the Solomons a Rambler convertible by 1962.