Model year 1972 saw little styling change in the Gremlin, though the small chrome Gremlin character found on the front fenders of the 1970-’71 models was eliminated. The big news for ’72 was under the sheet metal. While the 232 and 258 CID sixes were continued from 1971 (now rated at 100 and 110 net horsepower respectively), the 150 (net) horsepower, 304 cubic inch V8 could now be found on the Gremlin’s option sheet.

As might be expected, the V8 engine gave the relatively lightweight Gremlin very lively performance. Road tests showed that a stock V8 Gremlin could get from 0-60 MPH in 8.5 seconds, while the quarter mile could be covered in 16.8 seconds with a terminal speed of over 80 MPH. This is respectable acceleration, considering that the 304 was inhaling through a smallish 2-barrel carburetor and a exhaling via a restrictive single exhaust. The 304 was identified by a “5-litre V8” badge on the rear inset panel of cars equipped with the “X” package.

AMC switched to a Chrysler-supplied, “Torque-Command’ automatic transmission for 1972, replacing the Borg-Warner unit used previously. This transmission, already well proven in Chrysler vehicles for many years, was generally smoother shifting and more reliable than the old Borg-Warners. Other revisions for 1972 included redesigned front seats, fully synchronized manual transmission, and improvements in both the suspension and brakes.

1972 Production Totals

YEAR TOTAL 4 CYL 6 CYL 8 CYL 2 SEAT 4 SEAT
1970 28,560 0 28,560 10,949 0 94,808
New and Notable for 1972
  • AM/FM non stereo radio
  • Tilt Steering
  • Disc brakes
  • Rear Quarter Windows that open
  • Variable speed electric wipers
  • 304ci V8 2 barrel rated at 150hp
  • Torque Link traction system (offered in ’72 and ’73 only)