The two-door hard-top Javelin, redesigned for 1971, was the beginning of the G2. That new version was lower and wider and sits on a one-inch longer, 110-inch (2,794 mm) wheelbase for a slightly heavier, 3,244-pound(1,471 kg) curb weight. The body sported an intricately designed, injection-molded grille and has an integral roof spoiler with fenders that flare up and out to accommodate fat tires, a reversal from the tucked-in look of the first generation. This was a very radical and futuristic look for the time. The dashboard is asymmetrical with well-organized gauges wrapping around it in front of the driver’s seat.
The Trans-Am race series’ first prize went to the Javelin in ’71, ’72 as well as 1976, and this is the first of the “pony class” compacts chosen for police work. With a full range of trim levels, the Javelin could be a plush luxury car, but it could also be a stylish economy car for the budget-minded family. The AMX now had a power option for the Javelin and was no longer a two-seated sports car. The Kenosha, Wisconsin, plant manufactured parts that were assembled in Australia, Germany, Mexico, and Venezuela, giving the model a global reach with the advertising brochures and slogans offering the G2 Javelin as an ’80’s vehicle you can drive today.
There was a full range of engines available from an entry level six, three intermediate V8s, a little quicker 360 with a two-barrel, and the high-performance 360 with a four-barrel, or the ultimate power was a 401-cubic-inch V8. The 401 is a high-compression engine featuring a forged steel crank with connecting rod and pistons designed to withstand 8000rpm. The 360 with a four-barrel carburetor or the 401 options were the only engines that could have the AMC Go Package. Checking this box on the order sheet added better handling with a finer-tuned suspension, limited-slip Twin Grip differential, power assist disc brakes, Polyglas E60x15 tires by Goodyear mounted on the 15×7 slotted steel wheels.
The dashboard got the uptown Rally-Pac instruments for accurate readouts, and this package also included a blacked-out taillight panel; all of this topped off with a “T” stripe hood decal. The transmissions range from the basic three-speed standard or three-speed automatic available for any engine. The best performance came from the console-mounted Torque-Command three-speed automatic or the BorgWarner T-10 four-speed manual with the floor-mounted Hurst shift kit.
The horsepower rating system of the engines changed from a “gross” rating in ’71 to the more accurate Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) net hp rating system in ’72, although the actual engine output stays the same. The gross rating is taken with an engine on a bench without any encumbrances such as a fan belt for a charging system or power steering that reduce horsepower output, but the net figure is what’s actually delivered to the wheels under actual driving conditions with all the needed components required to make it run properly. A 1971 Javelin AMX equipped with a 401-cubic-inch (6.6L) V8 engine, running low octane, low lead regular gasoline, could do the quarter-mile in 14 seconds plus and reach a speed of 93 mph (150km/h) within that time.
Javelin for 1972 had cosmetic revisions, and you could order a Pierre Cardin designer interior if you liked, but the big news is the AMC Buyer Protection Plan giving all new car owners a full one-year or 12,000-mile (19,000 km/h) guarantee as a testament to the quality built into every unit. Chrysler was the source for the three-speed automatic Torque-Command transmission. EPA regulations were beginning to have a major effect on the performance of a muscle car in 1973, but the 401 engine with a four-barrel on the intake, produced 255hp (190 kW) with the SAE system. In spite of its weight, a Javelin so-equipped could do 0-60 mph (100km/h) in 7.7 seconds, a standing quarter-mile in in 15.1 seconds at 91 mph (146.45 km/h) with a top speed of 115 mph (185.93 km/h). The Javelin in ’74 with the highest-performance 401 now would only deliver 235hp (175.3 kW), and only 4,980 Javelin AMX models rolled off the assembly line. There were a total of 27,696 units in all for ’74, making it the highest volume year of the G2 for the Javlin.