Postwar Studebakers

1457910143

Comments

  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,979
    That guy has been trying to sell that thing for more than a year at least.

    He wants top Europe 2007 money for it, but we are not in Europe and it's not 2007. To be fair, everything looks correct - sometimes when these cars are "restored", some of the underhood and interior textures are wrong, this one looks right. But I'd like to see documents of his expense claims, a backyard restorer can't bill his labor at the same rate as the MB Classic Center.

    I don't think those black plates are original, I think the "B" prefix predates 1963.

    If he got down to around 20K he'd probably find a buyer.
  • texasestexases Member Posts: 10,635
    edited February 2011
    You'd think they'd more than cover the cost of shipping if they'd send it to Germany, sell it there to get top price (not that it would still be what they want).
  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,979
    edited February 2011
    I could see it bringing maybe 25K tops in Germany - if it was a 220SE or 300SE it would probably get to 30K or even more in that condition, but this is a lowline car, and fancier W111s bring better money in the fatherland. After shipping and expenses, he'd be lucky to be clearing that 20K.
  • bhill2bhill2 Member Posts: 2,458
    I believe that the Dictator model later became the Commander model.

    Actually, the Dictator was the lowest model on the totem pole and would have become the Champion. IIRC the Dictator and Commander sold side-by-side for awhile.

    2009 BMW 335i, 2003 Corvette cnv. (RIP 2001 Jaguar XK8 cnv and 1985 MB 380SE [the best of the lot])

  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    Maybe that Mercedes is the same car once owned by Studebaker president Sherwood Egbert. ;)

    He sometimes got criticized by Studebaker people who thought he should only drive Studebakers when he was the president of Studebaker instead of sometimes driving a Mercedes (which was sold at Studebaker dealerships). There is an old newsreel that shows him fighting with strikers around 1962 with his Mercedes in it.

    Too bad the car does not have an automatic transmission because that transmission was originally known as the "Studebaker automatic drive."

    See how easy it is to get the discussion back to Studebakers?
  • texasestexases Member Posts: 10,635
    Man, only $25k...looks like it got bid up to $18k the last time he tried to sell (last week!).

    How does one rationalize spending $90k (supposedly) on something like this...
  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    edited February 2011
    It is accurate and correct to say that the Studebaker Commander once sold with the Dictator AND that it also replaced the Dictator. Here is how that happened http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Studebaker_Dictator

    "At the time, the only dictator that would have immediately come to an American mind was Benito Mussolini, whose popular image was one of audacity and strength, in spite of well-publicized fascist violence[2]. However the rise of Adolf Hitler in Germany tainted the word dictator. Studebaker abruptly discontinued the name 'Dictator' in 1937, resurrecting the Commander name which had been dropped in 1935. "
    ===================================================

    I note that the Champion first appeared in 1939, so it might be called a replacement for the Dictator since the Commander and Champion continued to be produced until the Lark appeared in 1959 .
  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,979
    For the NA market...that's about it. Maybe it was a Euro looking to ship it home. There is more than one fintail owners club in Germany - they have a following. Just not so much on this continent.

    I don't know if I buy the 90K line either. A W110 is a pretty simple car.

    To address a more topical post...Was the Borg-Warner unit the one called "Studebaker automatic drive"? The later 4 speed unit like in my car was in-house.
  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    edited February 2011
    Automatic Drive was the trade name for Studebaker Corporation’s first automatic transmission, designed in conjunction with Borg-Warner's Detroit Gear division. Studebaker was one of two independent American auto manufacturers to invest in development and tooling for automatic transmissions, the other being Packard with its Ultramatic product.

    Automatic Drive, which combined a three-speed planetary gearset and a lock-up torque converter, debuted in early 1950 as a $201 option on all Studebaker models. Ford, which was without an automatic transmission in 1950, approached Studebaker about buying Automatic Drive units. Studebaker's management refused and thereby lost out on what could have been significant "plus" business.

    By 1955, Studebaker was forced to abandon Automatic Drive because of high production costs, replacing it with a less-expensive Borg Warner unit, ironically based on Ford's Ford-o-Matic, that Studebaker called Flight-O-Matic. Borg-Warner continued to build Studebaker's Automatic Drive and market the unit overseas. It was used on British marques including Jaguar, Daimler, Humber and Ford Zephyr/Zodiac. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automatic_Drive

    I might add that the lock-up torque converter gives very good gas mileage over the road in third gear and I do not believe another automatic had that feature until Ford did in approximately 1975. The transmission fluid is also air cooled by fins on the torque converter and is not dependent upon engine coolant so overheating the motor does not damage the transmission. I can control the shifting with the gas pedal, can start in first gear when in drive and I like it a lot, but not as much as three speed with overdrive. Very nice and accurate review here http://auto.howstuffworks.com/1950-1951-studebaker1.htm
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Member Posts: 15,945
    ...black Avanti photgraphed from the car's best angle I think...carried over from another forum post of mine.

    http://02a1392.netsolhost.com/mcvcg/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/Avanti-34-4.jpg
  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    I favor the classic three-quarter front view. A black Avanti looks like a custom paint job to me and I like the front of the car, although it looks flat in head-on images.

    image
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Member Posts: 15,945
    Notice the "Avanti" nameplate is airbrushed on that photo, and it's not really even close to what ended up on the car.
  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    edited February 2011
    The Avanti script was Raymond Lowey's interpretation, but was not easy to produce in mteal. The arrow through the script made it stronger and some say it was a reference to Pirece-Arrow. The actual car was probably the first running one that was given to Roger Ward for winning the Indianaoplis 500 in 1962, when the Avanti was the honorary pace car. (A Lark convertible was the official pace car.)The image I posed was one of the earliest Studebaker production photos released.
  • texasestexases Member Posts: 10,635
    :surprise: :confuse:

    And here's a review of it
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    thing handles like a hippo on ice skates, but you know, for 1969, that isn't a valid criticism on my part.
  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    edited February 2011
    That was a great review. It seems more like an advertisement than a road and track test ". . .takes the pylon course like it is on a rail. . . side roll at a minimum. . . trophy taker in the brakes department. . .car telegraphs beautifully in the turns."
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Member Posts: 15,945
    Fintail, did you step into the dark side? :)
  • fintailfintail Member Posts: 56,979
    The guy who uses the other half of the garage has that Avanti (year unknown) and a 67 Continental convertible, both roughly the same color. They are rarely driven.

    I actually don't mind Avantis, but I would want a high spec early car.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Here's an interesting market analysis on the Hawks and why they have trouble gaining value:

    http://www.carsthatmatter.com/blog/2010/23/1956-1961-studebaker-hawk-market-focu- s/
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Makes sense.

    At a recent local car show, there was a beautiful Golden Hawk displayed between some 55-57 Chevys. For the most part, the Hawk got ignored.

    People just walked by it as they headed to the Chevys.

    I felt bad for the owner who was sitting by his car. Of course, I spent a lot of time admiring it and talking to him.

    I liked it a lot better than most of those over restored Trailer Queens that dominated that show!
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Member Posts: 15,945
    Most people are "followers", but I found quite the opposite when I show my Studes. I've had numerous people tell me how neat it was to see something besides a red Chevy or Mustang.
  • lemkolemko Member Posts: 15,261
    Shoot, I normally walk by any 1955-57 Chevies, 1955-57 Thunderbirds, or 1965-66 Mustangs as everybody seems to have one and every one seems to have survived. Come to any Cadillac meet and you'd swear every 1976 Cadillac Eldorado convertible survived. I like oddballs like Studebakers, Nashes, Hudsons, etc. just because they are that much more uncommon.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I like the "survivor" cars that haven't been restored or modified.

    Some guy around here has a 57 Chevy Station Wagon that looks as it would have when I was a kid. It's two tone green and it is SO much in need of a good compounding and wax job! The paint doesn't look thin at all so I think it would do the car wonders.

    But, I know, there is that "patina" thing. I guess I don't understand that either.
  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    edited February 2011
    How can this post be titled, "Hawk Values Flat" when the article says this as of March 2010:

    Interestingly enough, and somewhat more encouraging for Hawk owners, is a look at activity in values over the past 12 months. During this time, Hawk values have increased by nearly 9% according to our index.

    If a 9% increase in value is "flat" during an ecomonic downturn and low inflation, how much of an increase in value would it take to have the subject line, "Hawk Values Increasing" ???
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    edited February 2011
    It's in comparison to really "hot collectibles".

    In other words, it's "flat" because it is underperforming many other collectible cars of its age/type. If you subtract 3 years of inflation + storage and maintenance fees, the cars are actually losing money at 9% over three years.

    the "market" isn't about how much passersby like your car. The market is about how much passersby would *pay* for your car.
  • texasestexases Member Posts: 10,635
    Hawk values were flat over the several year study period discussed in the article. A short term run-up in values (from depressed levels) is not a trend.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    it's typical of most "orphan" cars---they tend to stagnate, or 'flutter' up and down a bit. The reason is mostly that the number of sales are small, and generally for the lower end, low-content models in poorer condition.

    So when, on occasion, a highly-restored, high-content "orphan" brings a home run price, it's not enough to affect the entire database of sales.
  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    edited February 2011
    I have benefitted greatly from the increased value of Studebakers. During the twenty- nine years between July, 1968 and January, 1997 they were the only cars I owned, and I actually made a profit over the years!

    I bought my first 1960 Lark in 1968 for $100 and gave it away to a friend in 1974. I bought my 1963 Avanti for $1,600 in 1971 and sold it in 1982 for $4,500. I bought a second 1960 Lark in 1982 for $300, and gave it away after it blew the reverse gear in its transmission in 1990 during a Mojave Desert trip. I bought the Commander for $700 in 1979 and still own it, although I was repeatedly offered $12,000 to sell it about ten years ago.

    In summary, over twenty-nine years I paid a total of $2,700 for four Studebakers. Although I gave two away, I sold one for $4,500 and still have one worth $12,000. My total accrued gain is $16,500, assuming that my Commander has not appreciated in value. During that time I used
    these cars as my transportation, and only got towed to my destination once.

    Therefore, when I see an article that says that 1956-61 Hawks are selling for an average of more than $30,000, I do not take that as bad news. My car is not a Hawk, but it is a Lowey hardtop that is optioned like a President Speedster, because it came from the factory with the V-8 motor, four barrel carburetor, dual exhausts, power steering, brakes, windows and seat. It makes me feel lucky today.

    image
  • berriberri Member Posts: 10,165
    I think that makes sense since collector's are often people looking back on their good old days. Uplander had a thing for Studebakers. By the way, I saw his car in Hemmings and thought it looked sharp. Like lemko, I like the unusual cars at the shows.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Well some cars are better investments than other cars, but very few cars, if any, are good investments compared to actual investments.

    Besides, if I calculated repairs, insurance, storage, etc on my old cars, I doubt I'd do more than break even.

    I also enjoy weird or unusual cars at shows. If I see one more '69 Chevelle, I'm gonna start screaming. :cry:
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Member Posts: 27,103
    I see only a few Studebakers at cruise ins. They are always stock. They haven't had doctored wheels added. They haven't had different paint job so they are RED. They haven't had a continental kit added or options that were seldom on cars here in the midwest. They don't have holes cut in their hood for a supercharger to stick up.

    For me the unusual is a truly stock car that makes me say to myself, "I remember those just that way."

    2014 Malibu 2LT, 2015 Cruze 2LT,

  • berriberri Member Posts: 10,165
    Besides, if I calculated repairs, insurance, storage, etc on my old cars, I doubt I'd do more than break even.

    Funny, people recently found out this is often true with home buying too except in bubbles which eventually burst.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I bought one house in my whole life, and soon after I bought it, I remember thinking: "Hey, this reminds me of owning an old car". :P

    Here's a Studie wagon I wouldn't mind owning. I bet this is very rare:
    image
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Member Posts: 15,945
    This pillared-coupe Hawk just sold for $18,100, in no doubt aided by its 4-speed trans.

    Looks original, but the original color was Flamingo and repainted white.

    This is good money for such a Hawk. I prefer the later Gran Turismo Hawks myself, or the '56 Sky Hawk, a hardtop without fins and with the Studebaker 289 V8.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1961-STUDEBAKER-HAWK-STICK-ONE-OWNER-BLCK-PLATES-- /130482031126?pt=US_Cars_Trucks&hash=item1e6155ca16
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    edited February 2011
    Yes the 4-speed is worth probably 15-20% premium and the California history + low mileage another 10%. Factoring in those somewhat exceptional circumstances, the price is market correct. An East Coast automatic car would not bring this money in this condition, more like $10K-$12K.

    I'd say the bidder is ahead of the market a bit here, but no harm done.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Member Posts: 27,103
    edited February 2011
    I was trying to figure out what a Sky Hawk is. For anyone not in the 'know' on the various Hawks, here's a good page and chart--with pictures that really helps.

    http://www.1956goldenhawk.com/diffhawk.htm

    2014 Malibu 2LT, 2015 Cruze 2LT,

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I remember the Sky Hawk as the "cheap Hawk" when we were kids.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    edited February 2011
    I once saw a "Scotsman" at a local car show. I had forgotten all about those.

    They just screamed CHEAP! They even had painted hubcaps and grills.

    The one I saw at that show didn't have one piece of optional equipment as I recall.

    I suppose we shouldn't call them that now?

    EDIT:

    I just did a little searching and I was SHOCKED to learn that the Scotsmans actually outsold the Champions, Commanders and Presidents COMBINED in 1957-1958! That's according to Wilkipedia and I'm not sure I believe that.

    Maybe I'll go dig a little deeper.

    I also learned that they sold Scotsman pickups that were REALLY strippers that were under 1500.00!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    I *think* part of that success was that it was in '58 the Scotsman came in 2D, 4D and wagon, but I'm not sure WikiPedia is correct about those numbers.

    They did sell well, though. Studebaker was trying to compete with Rambler, who was having good success building cheap cars. The Scotsman's success probably encouraged Studebaker to build the Lark, which also kept the company solvent for another few years.

    But again, the D3 just kept undercutting their prices until Studebaker couldn't stand the pain anymore.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    This one is in the town where we live and I'm tempted!

    Anyone know anything at all about these?

    http://seattle.craigslist.org/est/cto/2210612431.html
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    edited February 2011
    You should probably post that in PROJECT CARS

    I'm sure some of the boys from the UK know something about that car.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I can barely remember seeing an Anglia once in awhile but never a "Prefect".

    I'll bet parts would be a [non-permissible content removed] to find and I'm thinking it's probably not even metric. I'll bet the fasteners are either British Standard or Wentworth.

    You, Shifty are probably the only person around these forums who knows what I'm talking about.

    It would look cool fixed up!
  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    &I just did a little searching and I was SHOCKED to learn that the Scotsmans actually outsold the Champions, Commanders and Presidents COMBINED in 1957-1958! That's according to Wilkipedia and I'm not sure I believe that.


    When I saw this post, I thought that Wikipedia must have made a mistake, but I found out that the Scotsman DID outsell the Commander and Champion combined in 1958 (in was introduced mid-year in 1957) http://www.automotivehistoryonline.com/Studebaker1958B.htm

    (This site is worth seeing. Good images of Stude trucks on the 1958 page and the Scotsman in the 1957 page)

    This happened because Studebaker had such a bad year in 1958. In fact, most cars sold poorly in that year of the Edsel. GM’s ‘58 body shells were used that year only. I believe 1958 was a good year only for the Ford Thunderbird and Rambler, but do not know any other make or model that did well that year.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Wow, I would have never thought that was possible.

    I do know that 1958 was a very bad year for the economy and that things in general were tough

    At that time, there were a lot of people left who had been through the Great Depression and buying ultra stripper cars may have been their way of preparing for what may have been another very hard period of time.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    also most '58 american cars were hideous in their styling. That couldn't have helped matters.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    Oh, I agree. Probably the worst year ever. Even the GM cars were ugly with the exception of the Impalas.
  • jljacjljac Member Posts: 649
    I just found this excellent Hemmings Motor News article on the 1951 Studebaker http://www.hemmings.com/hmn/stories/2007/04/01/hmn_buyers_guide1.html

    The article is titled “1951 Studebaker Champion Starlight Coupe” and opens with the line, “Once the butt of jokes, today the Pride of South Bend stands out as strikingly modern.” Although the title indicates "Champion," it has good information about the first Studebaker V-8 as well.

    The 1951 Studebaker V-8 started out with only 120 horsepower, (which seems lame today), but the 1949 Oldsmobile V-8 only started out with 135 horsepower and the Ford flathead V-8 only had 100 horsepower at that time.

    Studebaker did not get around to increasing the power of its V-8 until the 1955 model year, so if one compares a 1955 car or engine to a 1953 Stude with its 120 hp motor (unchanged from 1951) one gets an unfair comparison because a lot of changes took place during the first four years in the 1950s.

    Here is something the Studebaker V- 8 did that I do not believe any other production car engine ever did: The final version of the Stude V-8 was THREE TIMES AS POWERFUL as the original version. The power was doubled from 120 hp to 240 hp with the R-1 “Avanti” engine. Then the R-3 “Avanti engine put out somewhere between 350-400 hp and you could order one from the factory where each R-3 engine was broken in and tested at 335 hp at 5,280 rpm (below redline) before it was put in the car.

    Did any other production car engine triple its horsepower from original version to the final version?
  • bhill2bhill2 Member Posts: 2,458
    Did any other production car engine triple it's horsepower from original version to the final version?

    Doesn't the small block Chevy V-8 qualify? It debuted in 1955 with 162 hp and I think that the Z06, with 505 hp still uses the same block. I am less certain about the ZR-1, but if that is still the same block that would represent almost a quadrupling.

    2009 BMW 335i, 2003 Corvette cnv. (RIP 2001 Jaguar XK8 cnv and 1985 MB 380SE [the best of the lot])

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    The R3 really is a hand-built engine, so a custom build really. I think they only made 9 of them. By that standard, any Chevy block, or even a Toyota Supra turbo, could be built for enormous HP over the stock engine, close to 800 HP if you wanted it.

    Wasn't the first Studebaker V-8 called a "Bear Cub"?

    I personally wouldn't call *any* 50s American car "modern", because they are generally very nice styled bodies with strong pushrod blocks pulling around very antiquated chassis, suspension, fuel delivery and brakes. There is hardly any significant difference underneath the body between a 1931 and a 1951 Buick.
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