Results 1 to 31 of 31

Thread: 1964 Super Lark 132 mph? Really?

  1. #1
    Commander Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Location
    IN
    Posts
    57

    1964 Super Lark 132 mph? Really?

    You've probably all seen this clip:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EoDS2Vot_po

    The 1964 model year brochure states:

    "Super Series Studebakers with R/1 through R/4 engines are the newest of the really hot ones! Built for super performance! Factory equipped with rear axle radius rods, rear stabilizer bar, Twin Traction, disc brakes, HD springs and shocks all around, bucket seats, front seat belts, 4-ply tires, side and grill identification, floor carpeting. Require automatic Power Shift or 4-speed manual transmission."

    Also advertises: "130 m.p.h. / is merely incidental..."

    My question is, is that realistic? Has anyone ever driven that fast in a Super Lark (or Super Hawk for that matter) other than Andy Granatelli and his team? If a customer ordered that package (and we know a small number were so ordered), would their cars, as built, really hit 130 mph? Has it actually been confirmed on a drag strip anywhere?

  2. #2
    Golden Hawk Member DEEPNHOCK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Brooklet, GA, USA. Planet Earth
    Posts
    17,907
    No. Not realistic for a drag strip (1/4 mile) number.
    Land speed maybe...

    Use this calculator and plug in your real numbers. (example: 3,000# takes 515HP for a 1/4 mile trap speed of 130mph)

    http://www.1728.org/mtret.htm

  3. #3
    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    , , Canada.
    Posts
    15,518
    According to the Lamberti papers, it was factual: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...rs-6&styleid=1

    Craig

  4. #4
    Golden Hawk Member jclary's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Greer, sc, USA.
    Posts
    10,218
    YEP...certainly not the drag strip...but best tune performance with optimal weather conditions...flat out land speed run...possible. However, we often hear the expression "Whistling through the graveyard." Back in the day, regarding Studebaker's situation, the expression could have been better expressed as, "Whistling through I.C.U."

    What I'm wondering...did the people that got paid for these endorsement blurbs demand payment in CASH rather than accept any checks from the automotive division of Studebaker?
    John Clary
    Greer, SC
    [IMG][/IMG]
    SDC member since 1975

  5. #5
    Golden Hawk Member DEEPNHOCK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Brooklet, GA, USA. Planet Earth
    Posts
    17,907
    Yes, and the article says those numbers were from Bonneville and were two way average numbers.. Not drag race numbers.


    Quote Originally Posted by 8E45E View Post
    According to the Lamberti papers, it was factual: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...rs-6&styleid=1

    Craig

  6. #6
    President Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Posts
    3,641
    All of those record speeds were done in front of the USAC, at Bonnie, after Speed Week. It cost Studebaker $100,000 to do it. I gave Sonny the paper from the runs. He was going to put it up on the Racing Stude site.

  7. #7
    Commander Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Location
    IN
    Posts
    57
    Okay, I phrased that badly. I wasn't referring to a drag strip so much as someone, somewhere getting one of these cars up to 132 mph besides Andy Granatelli's team and using a car ordered as a "super lark" or "super hawk". I'm sure the Studebaker-sponsored, Andy Granatelli team did what they say they did, probably in specially-tuned cars under ideal conditions at Bonneville Salt Flats. My question is did anyone in a car ordered as a "super X" do that or were even capable of that...not necessarily on a drag strip or in a quarter-mile?

  8. #8
    President Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Right behind you
    Posts
    1,807
    Sure, the numbers were real, no question. And the cars were "stock" right from South Bend with a minor detour through Granatelli's shop.

  9. #9
    President Member mapman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    moscow, id, USA.
    Posts
    878
    All you need to do is take any studebaker to a car show and you will hear all kinds of testimonials about how Studebakers were still pulling at 140...
    How would you confirm this other than in a controlled run?
    Rob

  10. #10
    Silver Hawk Member 53k's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Martinsburg, West Virginia, USA.
    Posts
    5,958
    Quote Originally Posted by StoneDog View Post
    You've probably all seen this clip:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EoDS2Vot_po

    The 1964 model year brochure states:

    "Super Series Studebakers with R/1 through R/4 engines are the newest of the really hot ones! Built for super performance! Factory equipped with rear axle radius rods, rear stabilizer bar, Twin Traction, disc brakes, HD springs and shocks all around, bucket seats, front seat belts, 4-ply tires, side and grill identification, floor carpeting. Require automatic Power Shift or 4-speed manual transmission."

    Also advertises: "130 m.p.h. / is merely incidental..."

    My question is, is that realistic? Has anyone ever driven that fast in a Super Lark (or Super Hawk for that matter) other than Andy Granatelli and his team? If a customer ordered that package (and we know a small number were so ordered), would their cars, as built, really hit 130 mph? Has it actually been confirmed on a drag strip anywhere?
    My uncle bought vehicles for the State of Kansas. In 1963 he arranged for the State Police to test a supercharged Lark (R2) for possible use as a police car. The State Police clocked it at 132 mph on the Kansas Turnpike. They decided against it because it was too light to run those speeds in high wind conditions.

    Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia.
    '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Avanti R-1, Museum R-4 engine, '72 Gravely Model 430 with Onan engine

  11. #11
    Golden Hawk Member jclary's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Greer, sc, USA.
    Posts
    10,218
    Quote Originally Posted by mapman View Post
    All you need to do is take any studebaker to a car show and you will hear all kinds of testimonials about how Studebakers were still pulling at 140...

    Rob
    Yeah...I've heard those stories often through the years. Seems they usually occur in the shade, with a group occupying lawn chairs. I suspect that these are alcohol-fueled (the stories, not the cars), and when listening, if you allow the teller to notice you might be skeptical...the story is immediately retold...only louder! Sometimes it includes claims of doing unbelievable speeds in "2nd gear-overdrive"...and if you're still skeptical...a word or two about some fantastic gas mileage gets thrown in.
    John Clary
    Greer, SC
    [IMG][/IMG]
    SDC member since 1975

  12. #12
    President Member j.byrd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Kailua-Kona, Hawaii
    Posts
    1,500
    Dang, jclary....you had to say that just as I was going to mention Daddy's 55 Champion running a little over 90 indicated in 2nd gear and slowing down when he shifted to high... Now I'm afraid to mention it, ha !

  13. #13
    Commander Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Location
    IN
    Posts
    57
    Quote Originally Posted by 53k View Post
    My uncle bought vehicles for the State of Kansas. In 1963 he arranged for the State Police to test a supercharged Lark (R2) for possible use as a police car. The State Police clocked it at 132 mph on the Kansas Turnpike. They decided against it because it was too light to run those speeds in high wind conditions.
    Thanks, 53k, that's what I was looking for. I also find it interesting that they thought it too light to achieve that speed under non-optimal conditions. There wasn't much in the way of modern aerodynamic testing of cars in that era I suppose and the '64 Lark looked to have all the aerodynamic characteristics of a brick. Thanks for relating your information.

  14. #14
    President Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Tucson AZ
    Posts
    1,453
    Quote Originally Posted by StoneDog View Post
    Thanks, 53k, that's what I was looking for. I also find it interesting that they thought it too light to achieve that speed under non-optimal conditions. There wasn't much in the way of modern aerodynamic testing of cars in that era I suppose and the '64 Lark looked to have all the aerodynamic characteristics of a brick. Thanks for relating your information.
    Many years ago on MythBusters TV show, they were trying to attach a rocket to a car (old Plymouth Fury?) and were concerned with the car lifting off the ground at high speed. There was a clip on that show with them talking to Andy Granatelli talking about the Bonneville runs and the Avanti at a high speed becoming light but not airborne. I wish I could find that clip as it was brief but it did show some speed runs with the Avanti.

    Bob Miles

  15. #15
    Silver Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Spokane, WA, USA.
    Posts
    8,082
    IIRC, the R2 Lark was a convertible and the top balooned substantially at 132 MPH; maybe an aero benefit.

    What I remember really difficult to believe was they ran an OHV6 up to 105 MPH.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

  16. #16
    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    , , Canada.
    Posts
    15,518
    Quote Originally Posted by 6hk71400 View Post
    I wish I could find that clip as it was brief but it did show some speed runs with the Avanti.
    http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...Bonneville-Run

    Craig

  17. #17
    Silver Hawk Member Milaca's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Milaca, Minnesota, USA.
    Posts
    6,187
    Any chance the car would have had a higher top speed with an overdrive transmission?
    I wonder how a 1963 Daytona would compare to a 1964 Daytona with same running gear. My thought is that a 1963 Daytona may be slightly more aerodynamic.

    In the middle of MinneSTUDEa.

  18. #18
    President Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Tucson AZ
    Posts
    1,453
    Found the MythBusters Episode. 1967 Impala with a JATO strapped to the car. Andy Granatelli is in it with a few seconds of Bonneville test. Andy talked about the cars at high speed lifting up. Cost $1.99 to watch.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FYPh...=EL7YBnIY0-u1Y

    Bob Miles

  19. #19
    Golden Hawk Member StudeRich's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Ferndale, WA, USA.
    Posts
    28,278
    Quote Originally Posted by PackardV8 View Post
    IIRC, the R2 Lark was a convertible and the top balooned substantially at 132 MPH; maybe an aero benefit.

    What I remember really difficult to believe was they ran an OHV 6 up to 105 MPH.
    jack vines
    That's RIGHT, and you can bet that one DID have Overdrive, but not with a 2.87 rear Axle like the R3's had, because we know how little torque they have, maybe a 3.54 or 3.73 TT could do that for a VERY short time!

    If I remember right, Paula Murphy drove that Commander 2 Dr. 6 Cyl.
    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver,
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner




  20. #20
    President Member
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Olathe, KS, USA
    Posts
    628
    I have had my 59 Lark at 100 MPH per the GPS. It is a 1963 259 V8 with the Carter WCFB on it (wore out but rebuilt), automatic trans with 3.31:1 rear axle. This was in 2017 on the HRPT. I could have squeezed a few more (not much more) MPH out of it, but we ran out of road. I did not have my tach hooked up, but through calculation, it would have been about 4300 RPM if I recall correctly. (Tires are 205/65-15)

    Based on my little car, I don't see why 132+ wouldn't be easily achievable with one of the more aerodynamic bodies and a good tune-up, and a 289, let alone a S/C.
    Dis-Use on a Car is Worse Than Mis-Use...
    1959 Studebaker Lark VIII 2DHTP

  21. #21
    Golden Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Wappingers Falls, New York, USA.
    Posts
    20,872
    Quote Originally Posted by BILT4ME View Post
    I have had my 59 Lark at 100 MPH per the GPS. It is a 1963 259 V8 with the Carter WCFB on it (wore out but rebuilt), automatic trans with 3.31:1 rear axle. This was in 2017 on the HRPT. I could have squeezed a few more (not much more) MPH out of it, but we ran out of road. I did not have my tach hooked up, but through calculation, it would have been about 4300 RPM if I recall correctly. (Tires are 205/65-15)

    Based on my little car, I don't see why 132+ wouldn't be easily achievable with one of the more aerodynamic bodies and a good tune-up, and a 289, let alone a S/C.
    There is a BIG difference in power required to go 132 vs. 100 in the same car/body.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

  22. #22
    Silver Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Spokane, WA, USA.
    Posts
    8,082
    Quote Originally Posted by studegary View Post
    There is a BIG difference in power required to go 132 vs. 100 in the same car/body.
    Power required increases at the cube of speed.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

  23. #23
    Commander Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    96
    Bonneville is at 4200' elevation and the surface of the salt is nowhere near as smooth as I-80 right adjacent to it. While I can't put a number to the effects that the salt has on the rolling resistance, the air density on the typical 59 degree day reduces power on NA engines to less than 86% of that at sea level. The 240hp R1, only had 206 at Bonneville on a good day and that was at the crank.

  24. #24
    President Member t walgamuth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    lafayette in
    Posts
    4,351
    Quote Originally Posted by HOXXOH View Post
    Bonneville is at 4200' elevation and the surface of the salt is nowhere near as smooth as I-80 right adjacent to it. While I can't put a number to the effects that the salt has on the rolling resistance, the air density on the typical 59 degree day reduces power on NA engines to less than 86% of that at sea level. The 240hp R1, only had 206 at Bonneville on a good day and that was at the crank.
    Plus the salt is very slippery.
    Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

  25. #25
    Golden Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Wappingers Falls, New York, USA.
    Posts
    20,872
    Quote Originally Posted by PackardV8 View Post
    Power required increases at the cube of speed.

    jack vines
    That would mean that it would take 2.3 times the HP to go 132 vs. 100.
    Are you sure that the factor should not be squared, rather than cubed? That would ONLY require 1.7 times the HP.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

  26. #26
    Silver Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Spokane, WA, USA.
    Posts
    8,082
    Hi, Gary,

    I'm no longer sure of anything, but here's a formula horsepower just to overcome aero drag for a low drag sports car and one can see a MPH cubed in there somewhere. The cube root dependence has a firm basis in physics. The air resistance force is proportional to speed squared, and power needed is force times speed, so it’s speed cubed.



    But for typically-sized cars, here’s a ±10% formula:

    Top speed (mph) = 20 times cube root of horsepower

    Example: 300hp; cube root is 6.694; times 20 is 134 mph, so the R2 Lark at Bonneville was making approximately 300 hp at 4200' ; so that trip through the Paxton shop may have added a bit to the stock 280 hp at sea level, or it could just fall within the ±10% of this formula.

    jack vines
    Last edited by PackardV8; 09-18-2018 at 09:16 PM.
    PackardV8

  27. #27
    Golden Hawk Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Wappingers Falls, New York, USA.
    Posts
    20,872
    Quote Originally Posted by PackardV8 View Post
    Hi, Gary,

    I'm no longer sure of anything, but here's a formula horsepower just to overcome aero drag for a low drag sports car and one can see a MPH cubed in there somewhere.



    v (mph) 30 55 65 90 120 150 200
    F (pounds) 14.5 48.7 68.0 130 232 362 644
    horsepower 1.16 7.14 11.8 31.3 74.2 145 344

    The chart isn't pasting vertically, but for example, it takes 11 horsepower to go through air at 60 MPH and 74 to go 120. Then, there's rolling resistance and internal friction.

    But for typically-sized cars, here’s a ±10% formula:

    top speed (mph) = 20 times cube root of horsepower

    Example: 400hp; cube root is 7.36; times 20 is 147mph.

    The cube root dependence has a firm basis in physics. The air resistance force is proportional to speed squared, and power needed is force times speed, so it’s speed cubed.

    jack vines
    I now believe that you are correct. Thanks for clarifying this.
    Using the closest examples from your chart, 90 mph/31.3 HP and 120 mph/74.2 HP, comes up with 2.4 times, which is similar to the 2.3 times that I showed for 132 vs. 100.
    It supports what I stated in post no. 21.

    EDIT: This means if the guy went 100 mph with 225 HP, it would take 518 HP to go 132 mph.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

  28. #28
    Champion Member
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Grimsby, Ontario
    Posts
    7
    As a reference point, I can give you a real world experience example at the OHIO MILE in 2016. I entered my Pro-touring style 1966 Commander with a 421 SBC of about 500+ HP and 500 Pounds of Torque. Because we did not have an on board fire suppression system, we were limited to 150 MPH (with a 5 MPH tolerance); which we calculated to be 5600 RPM.
    After completing slower qualifying runs, my son, Scott went over 6000 RPM (161 MPH calculated), before hitting the brakes, and going through the traps at just under 150 MPH. I was more careful, hit 5600 RPM at the 3/4 mile marker, and feathered out of the throttle, and then back on in the traps, with an official speed of 154.8 MPH. I have never done a 1/4 mile, but did a rolling start 1/2 mile at 140 MPH, and lap after lap, lift at about 145 MPH on the 1/2 mile back uphill straight at the Mosport road race track.
    At the same event Jack Heidel ran close to 140 MPH in an Avanti with a 259+ Studebaker engine, which I would think would not be more than 300 HP.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  29. #29
    President Member
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    North Pittsburgh, ,PA .
    Posts
    1,354
    Don't know about '64, but in 1963 Popular Science magazine tested a Super Lark along with some other similar size cars. I believe the article was called "Testing the Hot Compacts", or something to that effect, and the title of the article and the cars tested were shown on the cover. Anyway, they had a table of the performance results and the Lark they tested did go over 130, as I recall. I have this magazine in my archive somewhere. I'll have to dig it out and see where they ran these cars for the test results.

  30. #30
    Golden Hawk Member 8E45E's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    , , Canada.
    Posts
    15,518
    Quote Originally Posted by Blue 15G View Post
    Don't know about '64, but in 1963 Popular Science magazine tested a Super Lark along with some other similar size cars. I believe the article was called "Testing the Hot Compacts", or something to that effect, and the title of the article and the cars tested were shown on the cover. Anyway, they had a table of the performance results and the Lark they tested did go over 130, as I recall. I have this magazine in my archive somewhere. I'll have to dig it out and see where they ran these cars for the test results.
    http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...n-lots-of-pics

    Craig

  31. #31
    President Member
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    North Pittsburgh, ,PA .
    Posts
    1,354
    Thanks for posting that Craig!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •