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Very cold A.C

Anyone remember an AMC Hornet ?

If I get a response, I will post another question.

Yes, I remember the Hornet name. Can’t recall what it looked like. I remember what the AMC Gremlin looked like, b/c my one of the college co-eds I had the hots for at the time owned one. I had a plan. With a Gremlim it was 100% certain she’d need help getting it started one morning, and would phone me up for help, and romance would ensue. Didn’t happen. It started fine every single time. Good thing, I don’t like getting up early.

Yes,I even did minor repairs on a few of them many, many years ago.

Why doesn’t the title have anything to do with the post?

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Here is one picture.

I met someone who had one.

She bet me that I could not handle a setting on the A.C. that said “Desert Only.”

She turned it to that setting.

I froze my a@* off when she did.


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That’s because–for some bizarre reason–AMC chose to use that curious “Desert Use Only” caption for the control that every other car maker labeled as “Recirculate” or “Max Cool”.

I had a friend who bought a 2 door Hornet, simply because it was the cheapest car that he could find at the time. It had a lot of mechanical issues, and after a few years the door hinges proved to be too weak to support the long, heavy doors, and the doors sagged so much that it was almost impossible to close them. This was the only car I ever saw that had to have its door hinges replaced after a few years of normal usage.

American cars of that era, IF they had AC, usually had really good AC. I remember my dad’s 70 Pontiac Catalina with the big A6 compressor. You could make ice cubes in that car on max cool.


My recollection is that GM cars had the best/coldest AC.
When Honda came to the US marketplace, as good as their cars were, almost everyone remarked about how weak their AC was. In fact, I can recall that Accords–at least up through the '90s–still had really anemic AC.

Lots of German cars had weak AC, too. Probably since it wasn’t commonplace in their cars or homes.

The AMC Hornet IMHO was far superior to the Ford Maverick in many ways. I owned a 1971 Ford Maverick Grabber with the 250 ci six cylinder engine, automatic transmission, air conditioning, power steering, etc. I road tested a 1972 AMC Hornet SST. It had much better air conditioning, the transmission, which AMC bought from Chrysler and was called Torque Command, shifted much more positively than the C4 Fordomatic in the Maverick. When I bought the Maverick as a used car, the engine consumed a quart of oil every 300 miles. I had the valve stem seals replaced, and was able to reduce the consumption to one quart every 1200 miles. I found out that this was a chronic problem with the Maverick engine. I had a 1965 Rambler Classic 550 with the 199 ci six, a 1968 Javelin with the 232 ci 6 and a 1975 Pacer with the 258 ci 6. I had no oil consumption problems with these engines, which were different versions of the same block. I woud have purchased the 1972 Hornet (this was in 1975), but the dealer and I couldn’t agree on the price.

Interesting. Ford Pinto had several such repair issues. :slight_smile:

The two door version or four door version or both?


and the pic is a hornet wagon. ever more odd car. there was the matador and hornet. gotta admit those are 2 interesting names. they even made a pacer sedan and a pacer wagon. the 70’s had practical cars vs attractive cars.

If it had some black stripes going around, it would even look like an actual hornet.

In 71 my choices were a hornet and a nova, and a nova with a ventura badged dashboard, picked the nova, got totaled 2 years later in a not my fault accident.

The York V-2 compressor that was common on Chrysler products for many years seemed to be the highest capacity model that I ever dealt with. When operating correctly the owners said you could"hang hams" in the car. And in this part of the country that meant it was as cold as a refrigerator. The GM A6 was much quieter and smoother. And a more trouble free system when the poa valve wasn’t used…

Back in the very early 70s there was a little old man here who owned a late 60s Cadillac Deville. We would see him running around town on a 100 degree day with ice formed on the lower front corners of the windshield and both front side windows.
Not fog or haze; ice a 1/4" thick.

The running gag around here was that the car was not a Deville; it was a Thermo King.