American Motors Company (AMC)
American Motors Corporation (AMC) was an American automobile company formed by the 1954 merger of Nash-Kelvinator Corporation and Hudson Motor Car Company. At the time, it was the largest corporate merger in U.S. history.
AMC went on to compete with the US Big Three, Ford, GM and Chrysler — with its small cars including the Rambler American, Hornet, Gremlin and Pacer; muscle cars including the Marlin, AMX and Javelin, and early 4-wheel-drive variants of the Eagle, America's first true crossover.
The company was known as "a small company deft enough to exploit special market segments left untended by the giants," and was widely known for the design work of chief stylist, Dick Teague, who "had to make do with a much tighter budget than his counterparts at Detroit's Big Three" but "had a knack for making the most of his employer's investment."
While the "Big Three" introduced ever-larger cars, AMC followed a "dinosaur-fighter" strategy. George W. Romney's leadership focused the company on the compact car, a fuel-efficient vehicle 20 years before there was a real need for them. This gave Romney a high profile in the media.
Two core strategic factors came into play: (1) the use of shared components in AMC products and (2) a refusal to participate in the Big Three's restyling race. This cost-control policy helped Rambler develop a reputation as solid economy cars.