1961 AMC Metropolitan
This was Metropolitan Pit Stop founder Jimmy Valentine’s first Met, purchased in 1973. This car started the love affair with Metropolitans and is a big part of the reason our company is here today! The car is all original, including upholstery, rubber floor mats and Goodyear tires. It has only been driven 18,000 miles! When dealers placed orders for Mets to be equipped with exterior mirrors, Lucas mirrors were installed on the fenders during final assembly.
This Met was first owned by James Watson, the Metropolitan National Sales Manager. It has original factory installed Hudson horn button and Hudson hubcaps, Flying Lady hood ornament, overdrive and 110 mph speedometer. It’s also loaded with Metropolitan dealer accessories: windshield washer, temperature gauge, back-up lights, wheel trims and exterior mirrors. After our restoration, this Met won numerous judging awards including 1st Place at C.H.V.A. West Coast National Car Show and Le Cercle Invitational Concours d’Elegance.
This station wagon was a prototype, built by Pinin Farina of Italy. We have meticulously restored it to original condition. AMC Marketing Dept. rejected this stylish yet practical station wagon in 1958, preferring to reissue the discontinued 1955 2-door Rambler station wagon. Although the lower body is identical to that of a Metropolitan hardtop, the interior is roomier, as the roof doesn’t slope.
The rear side windows slide open and the tailgate hinges downward, opening to horizontal position.
1955 Metropolitan Astra-Gnome
A landmark in auto design by Richard Arbib, the Astra-Gnome was introduced as a vision of the future. Built on a Metropolitan chassis, the body is all aluminum, fabricated with assistance from engineers at Alcoa Aluminum. The sculptural shape of the car was adapted from space ship designs. There are no doors; the bubble canopy is raised to gain access. The interior seats, floor and luggage compartment are finished in metallic leather. Four headlights in front permit optimum road illumination.
The Plexiglas canopy of the Astra-Gnome was built by Steiner Plastics Company. It is supported by an aluminum arm attached to a screw, driven by a motor. When the outside or interior switch is activated, the top hinges open, appearing like a giant scoop.
The instrument panel resembles that of an airplane. Hi-fi radio utilized the dome as a perfect sound chamber. The interior centerpiece is a celestial clock designed by Hamilton Watch Company; the face is embedded with genuine diamonds. They are in the configuration of some of the stars in our constellation. The face is backlit (to twinkle the diamond stars) and slowly turns counterclockwise, while the hands move clockwise.
A late 1954 Metropolitan was supplied to Richard Arbib as the basic framework. The Metropolitan body panels were cut from the sub-frame. A wooden framework was crafted to be the skeleton for the body, which was formed by hand from Alcoa aluminum. What was not formed by hand was machined or cast in aluminum. The body was painted a brilliant white and the side panels are fluted polished aluminum. The Astra-Gnome’s engine and drive train, shifting, clutch, brakes, wheels and speedometer are all authentic Metropolitan. It does drive!
The Astra-Gnome was first exhibited at the 1956 International Auto Show in New York and was featured on the cover of the September 3, 1956 issue of Newsweek. It was on display in the showroom of Wentworth Motor Company in Exeter, New Hampshire for a time in 1956. Most recently, our Astra-Gnome was on loan to the Petersen Automotive Museum for the exhibit “Driving Through Futures Past” from April 16th – September 11th, 2005.
This hook and ladder fire truck was used as an amusement park ride at the Catskill Game Farm in New York. Children sat on the bench seats as they were transported throughout the farm to view and pet the animals.
It has been fully restored and upgraded with an 1800cc engine from an MGB mated to a Borg Warner T35 automatic transmission.
NKI (Nash Kelvinator International) was the code name for a very few early production cars before Nash ultimately decided on the name Metropolitan. This NKI is 100% original, including all upholstery and paint. Horn button contains Nash emblem and hubcaps have painted Nash script.
This is the sole survivor of 4 special factory Metropolitan regional show cars. The Westerner was painted Palomino Beige Pearlescent, trimmed with California saddle leather upholstery and special hand-tooled leather door panels. Unique emblems on fenders include the Westerner logo, Rodeo Gal on Pony (inspired by Ned Jordan painting “Somewhere West of Laramie”) and a distinctive crest with British and USA insignia symbolizing the joint venture of both countries. Vented full wheel covers contain the 3-color ‘M’ medallion.
The Westerner was displayed at all western USA auto shows during 1961-62.
This Met was built to drive in England, hence the right-hand drive. Notice the dash is reversed, steering wheel, clutch, brake and petrol pedals are on the “wrong side” and gears are shifted with the left hand. This is one of only two known convertible right-hand drive Mets in the United States.
This is a one-of-a-kind miniature replica of a full-size Metropolitan convertible. Note the details: upper doors are recessed with vertical notches, wide whitewall tires with hubcaps containing the ‘M’ and a spare tire. For an added touch, the headlights work!
The dash is silk-screened with all components, including speedometer and radio.