I am not sure exactly when the A.C. Minnow came out. Sometime in the mid 90's is my best guess. The Minnow comes in 5,7,9, and 12" sizes and there is quite a bit of variation in body style between sizes. The bait pictured above is a 9" bait and is very fat. The 7" Minnows tend to be a lot skinnier.
Like the original A.C. Plug, the Minnow is a surface or slightly subsurface bait. I've actually caught quite a fish fish on the 7" running it below the surface. It has a very exaggerated head action fished subsurface where the head of the bait really moves back and forth a lot. I'm going to leave the Pro's and Con's the same as for the original A.C. as these are very similar baits, the only difference being the slightly more exaggerated action on the Minnow.
The A.C. is a surface running bait and fishing it on top or just barely subsurface is the way to go with this lure. It has a very strong kick to it which produces a big wake. The A.C. is and easily tunable bait and is a bait that you can catch a whole lot of fish on per bait. Putting 50 or 100 fish on a bait wouldn't be anything too extraordinary. The hookup ratio on this bait is great and with two hanging trebles you typically hook and land a large percentage of the fish that hit the bait.
The paint jobs can wear off pretty easily from my experience with baits bought several years ago. I don't know if the paint has changed since then, but on the ones I had they were pretty chewed after a few trips. The stock hooks are VMC's and they sharpen up well, but for freshwater bass I like the more subtle bronze gammie hooks. If I was going for stripers, I'd leave the stock hooks on and sharpen them. The A.C. is more of an action bait than a realistic bait. Meaning that I believe most bites on this bait are because of how it moves vs. how it looks.