In 1965, AMF (American Machine & Foundry) entered the slot car racing business by purchasing a license from the AMRC (American Model Racing Congress) company that was based on Wilshire Blvd in Los Angeles. This license allowed AMF to manufacture and distribute the AMRC racing tracks and cars in the world except for the United States. AMRC contracted with MPC or Mount Clements, Michigan, to produce ready to race models with extremely strong features such as 3/16″ diameter axles and a stout stamped aluminum chassis. The early examples were powered by a Pittman 701 modified model-train motor. Later and more common issues were powered by the MPC Dyn-O-Can motor with AMF-specific blue end bell. The bodies were the world’s first slot car bodies made of Lexan, a polycarbonate from General Electric, a stronger material than the industry-standard polystyrene butyrate.
The resulting Mako Shark, produced in many colors that generally matched the lane colors on the tracks, had a huge frontal guide featuring a T-slot and a second guide at the back. The cars were inserted in the special tracks in specific areas and could not be removed from the slot in most areas of the track.
The LASCM has several boxed examples of this interesting slot car designed primarily as a “rental” and driven by a steering wheel and an accelerator pedal on some of the AMCR/AMF tracks so equipped. The AMRC cars are rare and are called “AMericana”, while the AMF cars produced in the UK bear no specific name.