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bams50
05-10-2010, 08:04 PM
I had never seen, or even heard, of these! Matt W. told me some about these on the way home, but I don't remember the story. I understand they were only recently uncovered. Anyone got info?

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a243/bams50/Misc%20SB%202010/SB2010067.jpg

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a243/bams50/Misc%20SB%202010/SB2010068.jpg

Robert (Bob) Andrews- on the IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys)
Parish, central NY 13131
http://www.patrioticon.org/images/flag1-1.gif
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Ephesians 6:10-17

mbstude
05-10-2010, 08:05 PM
Be sure to read your June Turning Wheels. ;)

http://i280.photobucket.com/albums/kk179/1959S2D/south_bend_10009.jpg

Milaca
05-10-2010, 08:24 PM
Dudes, your spoiling the surprise to those that have not visited the museum. It's like giving away the ending to a good movie that somebody hasn't yet seen. [8D]

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2603/4186458840_06e63fc9bc_m.jpg
"South Bend or Burst!"
In the middle of Minnestudea

ST2DE5
05-10-2010, 08:24 PM
Here is a picture of them collecting dust.
http://i220.photobucket.com/albums/dd185/51stude/Factory.jpg

7G-Q1 49 2R12 10G-F5 56B-D4 56B-F2
http://ozarktrails.tripod.com/
Studebaker Diners Club

StudeMichael
05-10-2010, 09:04 PM
The saddest Studebaker story I ever read had to do with the gold one. Egbert was looking out the front door of the Studebaker Club House (he lived there when President of Studebaker) when John Epstein pulled up. Egbert in his bathrobe had a tear in his eye when he saw Epstein and the car. Terminally ill with cancer, he knew it was the end for Studebaker and this car would never see production. John took him for a ride that day. It was also one of Epstein's fondest memories of Egbert.

s1b
05-10-2010, 09:23 PM
Very cool!

Orlando FLA

rockne10
05-10-2010, 09:43 PM
Quite a story on the prototypes.
Here's the nutshell (and a link to about 60 photos)on the KRC web site.

http://www.sdckeystoneregion.com/member_don_jones3.html

None of this would have happened without the intervention of one of the members of this Forum, who extended himself beyond all reasonable expectations. Sufficient appreciation is impossible to extend.

The Keystone Region Chapter has already donated $5000 to this effort and individual members have contributed an additional $4436 with, no doubt, more to follow.



Brad Johnson
Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
http://i57.photobucket.com/albums/g233/rockne10/Rockne/th_Rocknedash.jpg'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

COMMANDERPINK1
05-10-2010, 09:44 PM
Bob these cars were mentioned in the book STUDEBAKER THE COMPLETE HISTORY by Patrick Foster. In chapter seven, also with pictures of them on pages 157 and 158. When I visited the museum and seen the cars I knew I read about them somewhere but couldnt put my finger on it till now.

Tom

http://i759.photobucket.com/albums/xx240/TOMLSEXTON/Iowa036.jpg

woodysrods
05-10-2010, 10:01 PM
Matt
Get your hand off that car![}:)]
Good Roads
Brian

Brian Woods
woodysrods@shaw.ca
1946 M Series (Shop Truck)
http://i980.photobucket.com/albums/ae283/woodysrods/Concunully004.jpg

8E45E
05-10-2010, 10:36 PM
Its nice to see they both finally made it back to South Bend![^] The last time I ever saw the gold one was in 1983 when it was on display in Century Center. When I was in South Bend again, they went to Youngstown; and that was about the last I heard about them up until now.

Craig

Chris Pile
05-10-2010, 10:55 PM
Anyone else besides me that thinks they are ugly?

Chris Pile
http://midwaystudebakers.tripod.com/

Milaca
05-10-2010, 11:05 PM
quote:Originally posted by Chris Pile

Anyone else besides me that thinks they are ugly?

Chris Pile
http://midwaystudebakers.tripod.com/

Who you calling ugly?? ;)

StudeDave57
05-10-2010, 11:08 PM
quote:Originally posted by Milaca

Who you calling ugly?? ;)
It's okay-- he might be talking about the Studebakers...



StudeDave '57 [8D]

rockne10
05-10-2010, 11:25 PM
Even AOAI doesn't think they are the most graceful items to come from the Loewy studios but these are historically significant artifacts of Studebaker history.

Da Tinman
05-10-2010, 11:36 PM
quote:Originally posted by Chris Pile

Anyone else besides me that thinks they are ugly?

Chris Pile
http://midwaystudebakers.tripod.com/


nope, the gold one needs to be lowered a lot, other than that, I dig it!!

http://i239.photobucket.com/albums/ff198/Da_Tinman/shoebox/fcsigpic2.jpg
http://s239.photobucket.com/albums/ff198/Da_Tinman/

http://www.datinmanjay.com

Sonny
05-11-2010, 01:01 AM
quote:Originally posted by Milaca


quote:Originally posted by Chris Pile

Anyone else besides me that thinks they are ugly?

Chris Pile
http://midwaystudebakers.tripod.com/

Who you calling ugly?? ;)


I'll say this, Chris. I'm elated to see that an important part of Studebaker history wasn't destroyed, like so much of it has been. However, I'm certainly happy and relieved that Studebaker didn't pursue this design line for their cars.

The European influence is actually too overwhelming to me. No doubt, Studebaker needed design updates, as evidenced by the '66 models, but these cars are just too much of a break with traditional Studebaker styling. I never did care for the tendency of certain Studebaker designers to try to impart so much of Europe in Studebakers. Granted, they got away with it, mostly, in '53 to '55, but even those cars didn't make the public swoon in great enough numbers to save Studebaker.

Nope, not my cup-o-tea. While many would disagree with me, the best thing that could have happened to Studebaker would have been a merger with American Motors. In fact, Studebaker, AMC, Hudson AND Packard would have been THE dream company. Studebaker, in the waning years, was viewed as was AMC, to be a good, solid, "working man's car".

Throw in a little performance as AMC did and I think Studebaker MIGHT have survived, albeit, probably not as a "pure" Studebaker. Who knows what the combination would have looked like, but I'm thinkin' that the design would have been infinitely more palatable to the American motoring public than these "Avanti-esque" concepts would have been.

Remember how the public views the Avanti, even to this day... they either love it or hate it, doesn't seem to be any middle ground. "Back in the day", (MY day, actually [^]), people bought Falcons, not necessarily because they thought they looked so gorgeous, but because they could get them cheap, operate them cheaply AND it was generally accepted that Falcons "didn't look too bad".

Just my opinion and worth exactly what ya paid for it. ;) :D

Sonny
http://racingstudebakers.com/avatar_01.jpghttp://RacingStudebakers.com

studeclunker
05-11-2010, 01:19 AM
Actually, I kind of like them. The gold one is definately not my cup o'tea, but the black one definately is. Actually, the styling queues used on the roof structure of these cars is really beautiful. Especially the four-door. The two door reminds me too much of the Chevy Citation (another ugly car that I liked).

What year production were these proposed for? It couldn't be '67 as that was the year for the Scepter, wasn't it? I'm sure glad they were saved though.:D

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/december%2006/HPIM0234.jpg http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/56%20Parkview%20Wagon/56wagonleftfrontclipped-1.jpg
Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
Ron Smith
Where the heck is Lewiston, CA?

bison
05-11-2010, 04:15 AM
Chris I couldn't agree more . but to each his own.;)

Avantidon
05-11-2010, 06:34 AM
I find the comments in this thread extremely interesting. Some facts are near to right and others are just interesting. Now I don't mean to be critical as all are entitled to their own opinion. If you are interested, as Paul Harvey would have said: "Now Here's the rest of the Story."

About nine months ago the benefactor of these cars contacted me asking what I knew about them. I suggested that a few pictures would help to identify these vehicles. Within a few days, pictures arrived in my e-mailbox as well as in Richard Quinn's. We both had the same thought and the same respoonse: " These are the Real Deal."

At that time, i was asked to remain very quiet about this discovery until the Prototypes could be safely secured and placed in the hands of the SNM. That was fine with me as it would give me time to fully research the history of the design and construction of the metal bodied cars in the museum. I have done that. For those that are interested, here are some sites where you can read the copyrighted history of these cars:

1. [u]http://www.sdckeystoneregion.com/member_don_jones3.html</u> This site has a link to a site where there are currently 77 pictures of these cars taken at various times in the last few months by myself and others.

2. The upcomig Spring Edition of the Avanti Magazine as a three page article on these prototypes beginning on page 36. There are pictures that accompany the article some of which are different than those shown at the above sited link.

3. Old Cars Weekly Magazine has agreed to publish another version of the history of these vehicles in an upcoming issue with pictures in the next few weeks.

One would think that information on these very significant Studebaker prototypes would be easy to find, especially since the Studebaker Archives are still pretty much in tack in South Bend. That, however is a myth as little or no information has been found in those records. That does not mean that information is not available as it is available in ample quanity in outside sources. Some of these include, The Loewy Foundation and the Hagley Museum. These two sources alone own almost 100% of Loewy's personal papers and all of the records and materials from the Loewy/Snaith Studios formerly located in NYC. They have proven invaluable in my research and have provided much of the information I have. Of course there are a few other sources also.

Yes, I am aware that Matthew B. has written an article for the upcoming June issue of Turning Wheels, being released by the printer on or about 05/21/10. As Matt will tell you, I have given him permission to use any and all of the material I have prepared and that is in his possession if he so chooses.

Somtime later today I will post a timeline I have developed that tells the story of these last vestiges of the Automobile Division's attempt tp develop an all new car for the 64/65 model years.

BTW, the Black "NOtchback" car was approved for further development by the Board Of Directors at their November or December 1961 Board Meeting. The date is not clear but that approval had a significant and tight timeline tied to it. Simply said, the Metal bodied Prototype had to be in South Bend on 04/12/62, approximately two weeks prior to the introduction of the Avanti at the NYC Auto Show. The car was there by that date. John Ebstein had the car delivered to the Proving Grounds and he drove it up to Sherwood Egbert's home. He thought Egbert would only look from his bedroom window, however Egbert, even though critically ill, jumped out of bed went outside and viewed the

8E45E
05-11-2010, 07:05 AM
quote:Originally posted by Avantidon
BTW, the Black "NOtchback" car was approved for further development by the Board Of Directors at their November or December 1961 Board Meeting. The date is not clear but that approval had a significant and tight timeline tied to it. Simply said, the Metal bodied Prototype had to be in South Bend on 04/12/62, approximately two weeks prior to the introduction of the Avanti at the NYC Auto Show. The car was there by that date. John Ebstein had the car delivered to the Proving Grounds and he drove it up to Sherwood Egbert's home. He thought Egbert would only look from his bedroom window, however Egbert, even though critically ill, jumped out of bed went outside and viewed the car. Once that was accomplished, he authorized the construction of a full sized clay model and began to dictate many memos to the Engineering Department concerning such things as new tooling requirements and the need for an all new suspension system to include the use of torsion rods.


Here is E.T. Reynold's account of these cars which is good as any; since he was 'right there' where the action was. This gives a timeline of the car's conception and arrival in the U.S.

http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1421/4598489942_e3855ec0f3_b.jpg

http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1205/4597874427_6dc93f6348_b.jpg

Craig

8E45E
05-11-2010, 07:22 AM
Photos of them from "Prototype Cars That Never Were":

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4034/4598523800_e05c75c90c_o.jpg

Craig

Avantidon
05-11-2010, 08:53 AM
Craig

Great information that verifies and adds details to what I had already discovered that being the date the Black Nothchback arrived in South Bend being 04/12/62, the Board's directed date. It also substaniates another fact I uncovered that both Prototypes were on Studebaker Chassis with Studebaker power. The engines also match that fact. The Go;d Fastback was scheduled to be delivered no later than October of 1962.

Both cars were transferred to Newman and Altman as part of the Avanti assets in 1964 and I personally believe that was an oversite by the Corporation but since they were in a hurry to unload the Avanti and all related to it who knows what the true story is is. The fact is they were in the Newman and Altman assets and travelled through all of the transitions ultimately ending up in Youngstown

Bob Bryant
05-11-2010, 10:56 AM
A very interesting thread. Thank you.

studeclunker
05-11-2010, 11:24 AM
So, that beautiful black car is a two-door on one side and four on the other? LOL,:D now that would be fun to pull up to a car show in.;)

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/december%2006/HPIM0234.jpg http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/56%20Parkview%20Wagon/56wagonleftfrontclipped-1.jpg
Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
Ron Smith
Where the heck is Lewiston, CA?

scott.rodgers
05-11-2010, 11:26 AM
I've known about these prototypes since that issue of Automobile Quarterly came out in the 70's. However, I had no idea that these cars were drivable! I always assumed they were just rolling bodies. Wow!

Scott Rodgers
Los Angeles
SDC Member since 1989
'60 Lark HT
'63 Wagonaire
'66 Frankenbaker

mbstude
05-11-2010, 11:29 AM
quote:Originally posted by scott.rodgers

I've known about these prototypes since that issue of Automobile Quarterly came out in the 70's. However, I had no idea that these cars were drivable! I always assumed they were just rolling bodies. Wow!



Both have a 259 2 barrel with Flight O Matic.

Avantidon
05-11-2010, 11:35 AM
Mr. Studeclunker it was really cool on Friday to sit on a bench, look at the side of the Gold Fastback Prototype Model from the passenger side which was designed to show what a two-door looks like and then look through the car and note about a six to seven inch difference in the placement of the "B" pillar on the drivers side which is depicted in a four-door version.

Not the Gold one but the Notchback from the four-door side

http://i280.photobucket.com/albums/kk161/avantidon/Avaqnti%20Concept%20Cars/100_0801.jpg

You can get the gist of what I am saying from this picture.

Milaca
05-11-2010, 11:39 AM
quote:Originally posted by Avantidon


http://i280.photobucket.com/albums/kk161/avantidon/Avaqnti%20Concept%20Cars/get-attachment-27.jpg

It would look very interesting to have a wax statue of Raymond Loewy in the museum posing with the prototype as shown in this picture. :)

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3400/4597198551_2abd02cdfe_t.jpg
Museum wall grafitti.

In the middle of Minnestudea

studeclunker
05-11-2010, 11:54 AM
OOOO... great idea! I bet the family might even have one of his suits to use on it. Likely cost the earth to have it done, though.[B)]

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/december%2006/HPIM0234.jpg http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/56%20Parkview%20Wagon/56wagonleftfrontclipped-1.jpg
Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
Ron Smith
Where the heck is Lewiston, CA?

Avantidon
05-11-2010, 12:43 PM
Unfortunately all direct relations of Raymond Loewy are dead as his only daughter passed away last year. However her husband might be able to come up with one from the material in the Foundation. That is a great idea and should be passed on to the Museum.

mbstude
05-11-2010, 12:50 PM
quote:Originally posted by Milaca


quote:Originally posted by Avantidon


http://i280.photobucket.com/albums/kk161/avantidon/Avaqnti%20Concept%20Cars/get-attachment-27.jpg

It would look very interesting to have a wax statue of Raymond Loewy in the museum posing with the prototype as shown in this picture. :)


Something about this shot looked familiar. Then I realized that it's a picture I took of a friend's book, and on the far left are my jeans. :D

I agree. It would be neat to have a statue of Loewy beside the cars.

8E45E
05-11-2010, 01:12 PM
quote:Originally posted by Avantidon
The fact is they were in the Newman and Altman assets and travelled through all of the transitions ultimately ending up in Youngstown


That is correct as I inquired why the gold one was no longer in Century Center when I went to South Bend again in 1988. I was informed it went to Youngstown as it was part of the asset sale of Avanti Motor Corp. which included those cars and all Avanti related material (and trucks as well). That would also explain why the black notchback and the all-coil-sprung chassis 4 door that's also in the museum got extricated at that time from where it was in the plant since it closed. Now this raises the question if anything else including any original engineering drawings, renderings, etc. also got transferred to Youngstown in 1987/8. If any did, I certainly hope they can be located and returned to the archives as well.

Craig

Milaca
05-11-2010, 01:16 PM
And what became of the truck tooling that was owned by the Avanti corporation?

As for suggesting the museum add a wax statue, I'm passing it on to Andrew Beckman. :)

8E45E
05-11-2010, 01:29 PM
quote:Originally posted by Milaca

And what became of the truck tooling that was owned by the Avanti corporation?


Even though Newman & Altman also got the rights of the truck division, they never did anything with it. Unfortunately, neither of them are no longer around to ask why they wanted it along with the rights to the Avanti.

Craig

bams50
05-11-2010, 04:18 PM
FANTASTIC information Don and Craig! Fascinating story I had never heard. I think they're both butt-ugly, but extremely significant and important. I wonder what percentage of prototypes from Stude have survived, versus other makes?

Thanks muchly![^]

Robert (Bob) Andrews- on the IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys)
Parish, central NY 13131
http://www.patrioticon.org/images/flag1-1.gif
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Ephesians 6:10-17

bams50
05-11-2010, 04:20 PM
quote:Originally posted by Milaca

It would look very interesting to have a wax statue of Raymond Loewy in the museum posing with the prototype as shown in this picture.

Yeek! Have to disagree with you there, buddy! I've yet to see a wax figure that didn't totally creep me outhttp://serve.mysmiley.net/scared/scared0008.gif

Robert (Bob) Andrews- on the IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys)
Parish, central NY 13131
http://www.patrioticon.org/images/flag1-1.gif
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Ephesians 6:10-17

Milaca
05-11-2010, 04:36 PM
quote:Originally posted by bams50


quote:Originally posted by Milaca

It would look very interesting to have a wax statue of Raymond Loewy in the museum posing with the prototype as shown in this picture.
Yeek! Have to disagree with you there, buddy! I've yet to see a wax figure that didn't totally creep me outhttp://serve.mysmiley.net/scared/scared0008.gif
Robert (Bob) Andrews
What's the matter Bob, do the eyes follow you as you walk by? Or are you confusing a wax figure with a circus clown? Nothing is creepier than a circus clown! [:o)] [:0]

It's interesting that both of Loewy's prototypes and all three of Steven's prototypes mentioned in the above article are now in the museum (Steven's being in the basement). It's also interesting that Ed Reynolds donated funds for the Loewy cars to put them in the museum as he was also the "junior in high school" that was in New York with his parents when one of the Steven's cars arrived for delivery from Italy in 1962 (or does Ed have an older brother?). I must say that the museum is a 'must see'! I think I could visit there several times and see things that I previously missed.
http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1393/4599166471_4cb420ebc0.jpg
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3273/4599781178_296b9bea7a.jpg

bams50
05-11-2010, 04:51 PM
No, it's the statues! I submit as evidence the wax figure of one of America's most beloved figures, and a personal hero of mine, Walter Elias Disney:
http://imagehost.vendio.com/bin/imageserver.x/00000000/radthemovie/Walt11.JPG

If they can make Uncle Walt that creepy, nobody's safe![:0]

Robert (Bob) Andrews- on the IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys)
Parish, central NY 13131
http://www.patrioticon.org/images/flag1-1.gif
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Ephesians 6:10-17

Milaca
05-11-2010, 04:54 PM
Hmmm, point taken. How about a life-size bobble-head of Raymond Loewy? Certainly you don't find bobble-heads creepy? :D

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3400/4597198551_2abd02cdfe_t.jpg
Museum wall grafitti.

In the middle of Minnestudea

63t-cab
05-11-2010, 04:55 PM
I wo'nt say ugly,but would not bother with a second look!

Joseph R. Zeiger

bams50
05-11-2010, 07:55 PM
quote:Originally posted by Milaca

How about a life-size bobble-head of Raymond Loewy? Certainly you don't find bobble-heads creepy? :D



Sure, bobble-heads are fine. I'll donate a spare Lark front spring to get the project started:)

Robert (Bob) Andrews- on the IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys)
Parish, central NY 13131
http://www.patrioticon.org/images/flag1-1.gif
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Ephesians 6:10-17

Welcome
05-11-2010, 09:01 PM
quote:Originally posted by 8E45E

Even though Newman & Altman also got the rights of the truck division, they never did anything with it. Unfortunately, neither of them are no longer around to ask why they wanted it along with the rights to the Avanti.

Craig


It was my understanding Kaiser (Jeep) Industries bought the TRUCK DIVISION, at least they bought the Chippewa Ave. Plant & Plant #8 from Studebakers, all the truck conveyor lines, assembly tooling and about 600 former Studebaker employees to go with it:D ...including the Studebaker's Plant #2 Manager and most of his staff. Could it be Newman & Altman only got the rights to "commercial trucks"[?]

8E45E
05-11-2010, 11:03 PM
quote:Originally posted by Welcome
It was my understanding Kaiser (Jeep) Industries bought the TRUCK DIVISION, at least they bought the Chippewa Ave. Plant & Plant #8 from Studebakers, all the truck conveyor lines, assembly tooling and about 600 former Studebaker employees to go with it:D ...including the Studebaker's Plant #2 Manager and most of his staff. Could it be Newman & Altman only got the rights to "commercial trucks"[?]


Kaiser Jeep only bought the DEFENCE DIVISION and all the existing government contracts to produce trucks. Newman & Altman bought the rights to the commercial and civilian trucks.

Craig

jlmccuan
05-11-2010, 11:12 PM
Somewhere I recall Newman Altman planned to use the truck parts business for cash flow until the Avanti II production was enough to service the debt and make a profit. Not sure it was ever planned to actually produce trucks in addition to the Avanti II, though.

Jim
Often in error, never in doubt
http://i186.photobucket.com/albums/x98/jlmccuan/Avanti/AvantiSignature.jpghttp://i186.photobucket.com/albums/x98/jlmccuan/Avanti/DSCF4389.jpghttp://i186.photobucket.com/albums/x98/jlmccuan/Avanti/Logo/RabidSnailSignature.jpg
____1966 Avanti II RQA 0088_______________1963 Avanti R2 63R3152____________Rabid Snail Racing

8E45E
05-12-2010, 12:00 AM
quote:Originally posted by 63t-cab

I wo'nt say ugly,but would not bother with a second look!


Its too bad the end result didn't turn out as good as it does in this color rendering at the bottom:
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3115/2442200615_f110cf0413_b.jpg

Don might know if the Hagley Museum in Wilmington, DE got the original and the clay model that is pictured.

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?12556-More-E-bay-insanity!&highlight=hagley

Craig

barnlark
05-12-2010, 12:25 AM
Originally posted by Avantidon

BTW, the Black "Notchback" car was approved for further development by the Board Of Directors at their November or December 1961 Board Meeting. The date is not clear but that approval had a significant and tight timeline tied to it. Simply said, the Metal bodied Prototype had to be in South Bend on 04/12/62, approximately two weeks prior to the introduction of the Avanti at the NYC Auto Show. The car was there by that date. John Ebstein had the car delivered to the Proving Grounds and he drove it up to Sherwood Egbert's home. He thought Egbert would only look from his bedroom window, however Egbert, even though critically ill, jumped out of bed went outside and viewed the car. Once that was accomplished, he authorized the construction of a full sized clay model and began to dictate many memos to the Engineering Department concerning such things as new tooling requirements and the need for an all new suspension system to include the use of torsion rods.
Originally posted by 8E45E

Here is E.T. Reynold's account of these cars which is good as any; since he was 'right there' where the action was. This gives a timeline of the car's conception and arrival in the U.S.
Craig

Not intending to argue, but I think we should note that the above article quoting E.T. is by a reporter 12 years later and there may be some memory/facts issues there in 1974. It states the gold Fastback came first, followed by the black Notchback. It also states that the later production Avanti was always referred to as the Model X. I think we can agree that the Lark was the model X, not the Avanti project. Unless every new model was called the Model X after 1958, I think perhaps there were some errors made from notes by the Car Classics' correspondent as it went to print.

I don't doubt E.T. Reynolds saw one come off the boat with Raymond Loewy at some point, but unless the serial numbers went backward as they were built, it seems it may be questionable that the Fastback came first.

Here are the prototypes' sequential serial numbers with the corresponding prototype's colors behind them. I think Avantidon may have the correct timeline. He's done extensive research on these and deserves a ton of credit for sorting out much of the misinformation. One could tell he really loves these cars while viewing them in South Bend.

http://i253.photobucket.com/albums/hh48/newshooter44/DSC_0121_1-1-1.jpg

http://i253.photobucket.com/albums/hh48/newshooter44/DSC_0116_1-1.jpg




http://i253.photobucket.com/albums/hh48/newshooter44/BlossomParade2009027-1.jpg

8E45E
05-12-2010, 12:35 AM
quote:Originally posted by barnlark
[b]Not intending to argue, but I think we should note that the above article quoting E.T. is by a reporter 12 years later and there may be some memory/facts issues there in 1974. It states the gold Fastback came first, followed by the black Notchback. It also states that the later production Avanti was always referred to as the Model X. I think we can agree that the Lark was the model X, not the Avanti project. Unless every new model was called the Model X after 1958, I think perhaps there were some errors made from notes by the Car Classics' correspondent as it went to print.


WRONG!

These articles are a six-part series that was in Car Classics from 1973/74. All were prefaced by this about E.T. stating HE is the author:

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4031/4600760290_d7ff23006e_b.jpg

I have personally thanked him for these fantastic series of well written articles in 1983, and further, Richard Quinn has acknowledged this autobiography in TW.

Craig

barnlark
05-12-2010, 12:40 AM
Okay, he wrote it. How many cars were called Model X and why are the numbers off?

8E45E
05-12-2010, 12:48 AM
quote:Originally posted by barnlark

Okay, he wrote it. How many cars were called Model X and why are the numbers off?


You answered your own question by stating BOTH the soon-to-be '59 Lark and the soon-to-be '63 Avanti. Perhaps Ed Reynolds Jr. can enlighten us with more information, and maybe Richard Quinn has some real early Avanti photos referenced as 'X'.

Craig

barnlark
05-12-2010, 01:01 AM
Sounds like a good idea. As an understatement, he seemed like an incredibly sharp guy. My feeble memory of things 12 years ago aren't always that great, so that's why I find it questionable since the serial numbers point otherwise and confirm Don's info. Things can happen during the printing and editing process.

I've never heard of the early Avanti prototype project referred as the Model X until you posted that article. The early Lark was always what was well documented as that. Interesting stuff, indeed. We may never know for sure. [^]

8E45E
05-12-2010, 01:14 AM
quote:Originally posted by barnlark
I've never heard of the early Avanti prototype project referred as the Model X until you posted that article.


It is also referenced as 'Model X' in the Bonsall book called 'Avanti':

http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1028/4600204709_f4864d5c1b_o.jpg

Craig

wcarroll@outrageous.net
05-12-2010, 04:12 AM
I've had the back windshield out of my Avanti for several years now and have really grown to love the notchback look, so much so that I've thought about what it would take to accomplish this. To me, the back windshield has always made the rear of Avanti's look too heavy and bloated. This effect is even more prevolant on Jensens IMO.

It's neat to see what else they were doing design-wise.

And I think the wagon that someone posted a pic of on the forum a while back looked very promising.

Cool stuff :)

http://community.webshots.com/user/s2dbaker?vhost=community

8E45E
05-12-2010, 07:01 AM
quote:Originally posted by wcarroll@outrageous.net
And I think the wagon that someone posted a pic of on the forum a while back looked very promising.


This one in the top left?

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4006/4600636539_fd159a6ef9_b.jpg

Craig

Avantidon
05-12-2010, 07:15 AM
Craig, you are correct and the article that you show above is correct. From the beginning of the original Avanti Project and after the 1/8 clay model was taken to South Bend by Loewy, this project became known as the X-SHE project and remained that way until officially approved by the Board and the styling was moved into South Bend. At that point and after the first prototype was built they became numbered cars such as the two prototypes now in the museum. As a side note, if one would check the X-VIN# on the Stevens prototypes and compare them to the Loewy/Snaith prototypes they would find they are pretty much consecutive. IMHO this means they were all built at the same time. All of my material indicates that plus that a very competitive atmosphere existed between the Stevens team and the Loewy team for the right to design the next generation of Studebaker automobiles.

Unfortunately for this debate most if not all of the Engineering Department's documents are non-existent so there is no true record of what happened within the company and we must depend on information from other sources like Loewy's and Steven's records and those of their firms. Fortunately most of Loewy's materials have survived either in the Loewy Foundation archives or at the Hagley Museum. I assume much of Brooks Stevens material also survived and is in MI.

Avantidon
05-12-2010, 07:26 AM
John the sign had a mistake on it and has now been corrected to reflect that one side was designed as a Two-door and the other side as a Four-door.

8E45E
05-12-2010, 07:45 AM
quote:Originally posted by Avantidon
Unfortunately for this debate most if not all of the Engineering Department's documents are non-existent so there is no true record of what happened within the company and we must depend on information from other sources like Loewy's and Steven's records and those of their firms. Fortunately most of Loewy's materials have survived either in the Loewy Foundation archives or at the Hagley Museum. I assume much of Brooks Stevens material also survived and is in MI.


Thank you[^]. To be honest, I do take the E.T. Reynolds article as a sort of 'Stude gospel'. Because of his corporate position within the company, it gave him the privelege of a totally omnicient view of what was going on in the 'back rooms' at the time, most out of public eye. We should be grateful that he put it to paper for us all to read. True there are some slight errors; and is to be expected. As far as which of the two came to the U.S. first, I have not, and will not state an opinion as I was not present to see either vehicle unloaded. It would be interesting to see if Pichon et Paret, or the family members of that coachbuilding concern is still around along with the records and it might be worth a trip to France if they are. We have already seen with the Frua Larks the coachbuilder family in Italy appears to have far more information than what Studebaker had on file. Obviously barnlark has never read these excellent articles and erroneously concluded it was not written by E.T. Reynolds.

Craig

BobGlasscock
05-12-2010, 07:48 AM
John, I also noticed that wording, but it took me half an hour to read the thread, so I am late. I am amazed at the lack of proof-reading and ability to use the English language correctly. NOT a Studebaker comment, but one directed at the whole of the population.

That sign clearly indicated that the car had six doors. duh. Glad to hear from Avantidon that it has been corrected.

'50 Champion, 1 family owner
http://i251.photobucket.com/albums/gg316/studebakerbob/SDC%20avatar/Studebakerstuff019.jpghttp://i251.photobucket.com/albums/gg316/studebakerbob/SDC%20avatar/Studebakerstuff018.jpg

stude62
05-12-2010, 08:18 AM
I get to visit the museum next week!

Stu K

http://i883.photobucket.com/albums/ac35/stude62/thumb-2.jpg
'63 Lark Regal, "Miss Rose"

Welcome
05-12-2010, 08:30 AM
quote:Originally posted by 8E45E
[br
Kaiser Jeep only bought the DEFENCE DIVISION and all the existing government contracts to produce trucks. Newman & Altman bought the rights to the commercial and civilian trucks.

Craig


We’re probably splitting hairs here but;

Appears Studebaker did not have a "DEFENSE DIVISION" per se at that time. It was Studebaker's "General Products Division" they sold off to Kaiser (Jeep) Industries ...or at least that is what Kaiser Industries indicated they bought from the Studebaker Corporation.

Also, would the U.S. Government have taken kindly to one Corporation (Studebaker) "selling" Government Contracts to another (Kaiser Industries)???

In any case, all the posts to this topic have been very educational.

8E45E
05-12-2010, 08:42 AM
quote:Originally posted by Welcome
Also, would the U.S. Government have taken kindly to one Corporation (Studebaker) "selling" Government Contracts to another (Kaiser Industries)???


Did they have a choice with Studebaker shutting down their automotive operations?

Craig

COMMANDERPINK1
05-12-2010, 09:22 AM
Now was it true that Studebaker contracted the same people who cast the shells of Chevy corvettes to do the Avanti?

Tom

http://i759.photobucket.com/albums/xx240/TOMLSEXTON/Iowa036.jpg

Avantidon
05-12-2010, 09:25 AM
Bob, the signs placed in front of the cars were placed there in haste, I believe. by the Museum Curator as Keystone Region Inc was there to present a significant amount of money to the Museum for this project. When we first approached the cars the signs were missing but within 20 minutes or so they were there. At that time I did not spot the mistake. I found it Friday night and pointed it out to the proper individuals. It was corrected almost immediately Saturday morning. like others, I make mistakes too and considered the one on the sign just that. I give them credit for correcting it as quickly as they did.

Being a small design studio, Pichon-Parat probably kept few records. I can find many references to them on the internet but no direct source to a website. They were active within many circles including building race cars and doing coachwork for many individuals including Raymond Loewy himself who had them build his Cadillac that was auctioned at Barrett-Jackson this past Jan.

Skip Lackie
05-12-2010, 09:29 AM
quote:Originally posted by Welcome


quote:Originally posted by 8E45E
[br
Kaiser Jeep only bought the DEFENCE DIVISION and all the existing government contracts to produce trucks. Newman & Altman bought the rights to the commercial and civilian trucks.

Craig


We’re probably splitting hairs here but;

Appears Studebaker did not have a "DEFENSE DIVISION" per se at that time. It was Studebaker's "General Products Division" they sold off to Kaiser (Jeep) Industries ...or at least that is what Kaiser Industries indicated they bought from the Studebaker Corporation.

Also, would the U.S. Government have taken kindly to one Corporation (Studebaker) "selling" Government Contracts to another (Kaiser Industries)???

In any case, all the posts to this topic have been very educational.





Coupla comments:
The 1962 Studebaker Annual Report shows a Defense Products Division as the builder of the military trucks. That division is not mentioned at all in the 1963 annual report, even though the military truck contract and facilities had not yet been sold to Kaiser. The 1963 annual report doesn't go into great detail about what was going to be done with the now-unneeded assets. The 1964 annual report just says that: "In more than twenty major transactions, a foundry, machine shop and engine plant, stamping plant, final assembly plant, body plant, power house, engineering building, truck plant, Chippewa defense plant, and numerous storage buildngs were sold -- in some cases to national concerns which have re-employed many of the Studebaker workers laid off when auto production ceased in December, 1963."

As to selling gov't contracts: it happens pretty frequently. The Justice Dept has to approve such sales on anti-trust grounds, and the agency issuing the contract (in this case, the US Army) would have to agree that the new company was capable of fulfilling the contract provisions (which would remain unchanged). Sales to foreign-owned companies are more complicated.

Skip Lackie
Washington DC

8E45E
05-12-2010, 01:09 PM
quote:Originally posted by Welcome
Appears Studebaker did not have a "DEFENSE DIVISION" per se at that time.


Ya think?

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4046/4522287535_eefa73926b_b.jpg

Craig

8E45E
05-12-2010, 01:25 PM
quote:Originally posted by avantilover

Looking at the sign by the fastback car it says it's a three door car with 2 doors on one side and four??? on the other. Seems surprising that nobody noticed, or am I wrong?


http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1393/4599166471_4cb420ebc0.jpg



To be honest, I probably would not have noticed the missing word 'assimilate' twice in that sentence either. It perhaps could read "This car is a 'three-door', to assimilate a two door on one side, and assimilate a four door on the other."

Craig

bams50
05-12-2010, 01:35 PM
More interesting stuff! But I'm not understanding what 'assimulate' is?

Robert (Bob) Andrews- on the IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys)
Parish, central NY 13131
http://www.patrioticon.org/images/flag1-1.gif
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Ephesians 6:10-17

8E45E
05-12-2010, 01:38 PM
quote:Originally posted by bams50

More interesting stuff! But I'm not understanding what 'assimulate' is?


assimulate: To bear a resemblance to.....

Craig

Milaca
05-12-2010, 01:45 PM
Yeah, but you know what happens when you assimulate....;)

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3400/4597198551_2abd02cdfe_t.jpg
Museum wall grafitti.

In the middle of Minnestudea

8E45E
05-12-2010, 01:48 PM
quote:Originally posted by Milaca

Yeah, but you know what happens when you assimulate....;)


I thought that was 'ASSuME'!:D

Craig

Avantidon
05-12-2010, 03:20 PM
The proper word is simulate [:0][:0][:0]

Welcome
05-12-2010, 04:41 PM
quote:Originally posted by 8E45E


quote:Originally posted by Welcome
Appears Studebaker did not have a "DEFENSE DIVISION" per se at that time.


Ya think?
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4046/4522287535_eefa73926b_b.jpg
Craig


Well, that's certainly not what the Kaiser (Jeep) Industries I began working for in 1965 bought from Studebakers ...if it were, I might have had one of those "whirly-cars" as my company vehicle.:D[:o)]

8E45E
05-12-2010, 05:08 PM
quote:Originally posted by Avantidon

The proper word is simulate [:0][:0][:0]


Either word will work. The point I was trying to get across is the simple insertion of 'simulate' or 'assimulate' once or twice in the sentence will correct the error.

Craig

bams50
05-12-2010, 05:20 PM
quote:Originally posted by 8E45E


quote:Originally posted by Avantidon

The proper word is simulate [:0][:0][:0]


Either word will work. The point I was trying to get across is the simple insertion of 'simulate' or 'assimulate' once or twice in the sentence will correct the error.

Craig


Got it Craig, thanks. I still can't find that word. Best I could come up with is 'assimilate', which means 'blend in', and simulate.

No biggie mind you, it just threw me for a loop is all:)

Robert (Bob) Andrews- on the IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys)
Parish, central NY 13131
http://www.patrioticon.org/images/flag1-1.gif
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Ephesians 6:10-17

wcarroll@outrageous.net
05-12-2010, 06:02 PM
So now can someone refresh my memory, where does the shortened Avanti (2 seater) fit into all this?

Was that a prototype or a custom that someone built after the doors closed?

I believe it had a supercharged motor and was owned by a Studebaker executive/designer/or affiliate of some sorts?

Forgive me if I am mistaken on this....I haven't laid a hand on my Studebaker projects in six months, and sadly I have lost all of the Studebaker Knowledge Super Powers I had acquired over the years through the absorption of old Studebaker crud and grease :D

http://community.webshots.com/user/s2dbaker?vhost=community

Avantidon
05-12-2010, 07:15 PM
Will the car you are referring to was built by Jim Bunting of AVX fame with the help of his friend Tom Kellogg. They talked about the project Loewy had in his mind but could not get Studebaker to bite on and that was a car to compete with the Corvette and Thurnderbird.

Jim took an 63 R-2 cut out agood portion of the back seat, shortened the drive shaft by 8' and made a true two seat Avanti. He used the drawings made by Tom Kellogg for the project. I have some photos of the car and photos of Tom's drawings. Had the opportunity to ride in the car and it was a fantastic piece of work/

I guess you'd say it is a custom car. It nade its public debut with the owner in Cedar Rapids in 2007.

Jim sold the car several years ago and it now resides in Arkansas.

bams50
05-12-2010, 07:48 PM
Wow Don, I'd like to see a picture of that!

Robert (Bob) Andrews- on the IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys)
Parish, central NY 13131
http://www.patrioticon.org/images/flag1-1.gif
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Ephesians 6:10-17

Bob Langer
05-12-2010, 08:46 PM
quote:Originally posted by bams50

Wow Don, I'd like to see a picture of that!


From Bob Johnstone's website.

http://www.studebaker-info.org/avdb/R1000/63R0023/63R0023.html

Bob Langer
Glenshaw,PA

http://i242.photobucket.com/albums/ff143/regnalbob/cropped-1.jpg

wcarroll@outrageous.net
05-12-2010, 09:23 PM
Thanks for the additional info guys. I remembered seeing the Ebay auction for the car a few years back and that there was some connection/history there.

Boy, Tourquoise, R2 and a 4-speed to boot!!!

Love it, want it, gotta have it...

Hmmm...now where did I put that Sawsall.... [}:)]

http://community.webshots.com/user/s2dbaker?vhost=community

R2Andrea
05-12-2010, 10:25 PM
Early on,the Avanti was also refered to as the "Model X" in inhouse Engineering paperwork. I have notes that I took while reading through material which is now in the SNM Archives. IIRC there are also mentions of the Model X in Board of Directors Meeting minutes during early stages of the Avanti program.

R2Andy

8E45E
05-12-2010, 11:01 PM
quote:Originally posted by COMMANDERPINK1

Now was it true that Studebaker contracted the same people who cast the shells of Chevy corvettes to do the Avanti?


Yes:

http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=36607&SearchTerms=mfg

Craig

Avantidon
05-13-2010, 06:25 AM
Bob I have a whole series of pictures of the car taken at Jim's house several years ago. I'll find them and post on my photobucket account ASAP. I'll let you know when they are there.

Andy, from the very beginning when the BoD first saw the Avanti it became known as the X-SHE project. For those who wonder what SHE stands for it is Sherwood H. Egbert. it was called that because it was his project. Prototype eventually x-VIN#'s as the project moved forward

See you in the future as I write about our past

Avantidon
05-13-2010, 07:12 AM
Here's the only picture I have on my MAC at the present. The rest of the pictures of this 63 Avanti Coupe Concept are at home. Car designed by Tom Kellogg and built by my friend and AVX guru Jim Bunting who sold it to the current owner shown in this picture

http://i280.photobucket.com/albums/kk161/avantidon/Scan20001-5.jpg

Sorry for the quality but this one came from the winners photos in Turning Wheels from the 2007 International Meet.

8E45E
05-13-2010, 07:39 AM
quote:Originally posted by Avantidon
Somtime later today I will post a timeline I have developed that tells the story of these last vestiges of the Automobile Division's attempt tp develop an all new car for the 64/65 model years.

In no way was it to be an Avanti or a sports car. It was to be a family sedan and moderately priced for the average buyer.


That is correct and was for a new intermediate-sized line of Studebakers. That also explains why a station wagon was part of the plans. Again, E.T. Reynolds makes references to these cars in his commentary on the all-new car. This basically gives an idea as to their role in Sherwood Egbert's future product planning:

http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1285/4603287617_ab35d16837_o.jpg
http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1076/4603902468_cc3cc61fe0_o.jpg

Craig

Welcome
05-13-2010, 07:41 AM
quote:Originally posted by Avantidon

&gt;&gt;&gt;Prototype eventually x-VIN#'s as the project moved forward&lt;&lt;&lt;


Generally, in the U.S. automotive industry the prefix designator "EX" = Experimental would be used. Also, back in those days it most likely was a "Serial Number" (not a VIN) the "EX" designator would have prefixed.

Welcome
05-13-2010, 08:09 AM
Thanks to all ...a lot of very interesting information and speculations have come forth in this topic.

So here is my question to all:

Who is still with us that was "involved" back in the time frame all this transpired that we can talk to today???

Avantidon
05-13-2010, 08:40 AM
To my knowledge all of the key players in the drama are no longer here on this earth. Ebstein was the last of the design team to pass away. Before he did the AOAI Florida Chapter had him as a speaker for one of their meetings and I do have a video copy of that presentation. These prototypes were mentioned but by that time John was in his late 80's and not as sharp has he was before so some memory lapse was involved.

Here is a picture of the Notchback's VIN plate note the "EX" designation


http://i280.photobucket.com/albums/kk161/avantidon/Avaqnti%20Concept%20Cars/DataPltExpAvnt.jpg


An interesting note here is that both the EX-VIN# and the engine block number on this car precede that of the Gold Fastback model. The VIN for that car is EX-2933. So which one came first? All my material indicates and refers to the Notchback (Black one) coming first, arriving in South Bend on or about 04/12/62 as it was the choice of the majority of the BoD that authorized its building by Pinchon-Parat Coachbuilders of France under the direction of the Loewy/Snaith Studio at their Nov/Dec 1961 Board Meeting. Who oversaw the building of the car? Simply stated none other than John Ebstein a VP at Loewy's Studio and the principle lead on this entire project.

Welcome
05-13-2010, 03:53 PM
quote:Originally posted by Avantidon

To my knowledge all of the key players in the drama are no longer here on this earth.


That's unfortunate, but it appears there are a substantial number of the "Supporting Cast" still around! At a luncheon meeting today in South Bend, I ran into a former Studebaker Transportation Dept. salaried employee I’ve know for 45 years. In the short time we had before the meeting began, I popped off a few questions about transporting a gold and a black Avanti from France to South Bend. Charley did not recall being involved, but he gave me several names known to both of us still around South Bend that possibly could have been involved. FWIW; Charley was the guy responsible for bringing the Studebaker serial number stamping machine with him from Studebakers to Kaiser-Jeep.

And then there is a long-time engineering friend down the road who Studebaker hired specifically for the Independent Rear Suspension project. Unfortunately ...or fortunately however one looks at it, he was pulled off the IRS project all too often to address Avanti engineering problems that plagued the assembly line. He's just one more "untapped" insider source for Avanti/Studebaker information.

Gary1953
05-13-2010, 08:30 PM
Here is another picture of the custom Avanti.

http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l269/gsandes50/1002612.jpg

http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l269/gsandes50/1002613.jpg

http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l269/gsandes50/116-1-1-1.jpg
Gary Sanders
Nixa, MO
President Toy Studebaker Collectors Club. Have an interest in Toy Studebakers? Contact me for details.

wcarroll@outrageous.net
05-13-2010, 09:21 PM
Love the rear of door treatment [:p]

http://community.webshots.com/user/s2dbaker?vhost=community

lschuc
05-13-2010, 09:27 PM
this car was featured in an Avanti Magazine story a few years ago too. I don't have the issue number here with me at this time, but Don can probably find it too.
Lew



quote:Originally posted by Avantidon

Will the car you are referring to was built by Jim Bunting of AVX fame with the help of his friend Tom Kellogg. They talked about the project Loewy had in his mind but could not get Studebaker to bite on and that was a car to compete with the Corvette and Thurnderbird.

Jim took an 63 R-2 cut out agood portion of the back seat, shortened the drive shaft by 8' and made a true two seat Avanti. He used the drawings made by Tom Kellogg for the project. I have some photos of the car and photos of Tom's drawings. Had the opportunity to ride in the car and it was a fantastic piece of work/

I guess you'd say it is a custom car. It nade its public debut with the owner in Cedar Rapids in 2007.

Jim sold the car several years ago and it now resides in Arkansas.


Lew Schucart
Editor, Avanti Magazine

8E45E
05-13-2010, 11:42 PM
quote:Originally posted by wcarroll@outrageous.net

Love the rear of door treatment [:p]


I wonder if Bertone saw the original sketch. If that is the case, he liked it enough to use that same door post treatment on the Lamborghini Miura and the Alfa Romeo Montreal.[^]

Craig

wcarroll@outrageous.net
05-14-2010, 01:39 AM
Good eye Craig, that might explain the attraction as the Miura has long been one of my favorites.

They say the doors are supposed to look like bull horns when looking straight on at a Miura with open doors. I guess on an Avanti, we could get away with saying they're supposed to look like the wing tips of a Leer Jet??[:o)]

There was a collector/enthusiast by the name of David Walters here on the island of Kauai that had an amazing collection and I would see him driving his Miura up and down my street. One time he passed me in a Ferrari Daytona while I was on my motorcycle and the smell of high octane gas and sound of that car was so entoxicating, I think technically I may have been operating a motorized vehicle while under the influence [:0]

http://community.webshots.com/user/s2dbaker?vhost=community