View Full Version : "54 Champion Value idea

09-17-2012, 02:29 AM
My son & I went and looked at a "barn find" 1954 Champion hardtop.
It was offered to me for sale. I'm trying to determine what a fair offer would be.
The tag on the firewall reads: 5H-K5 /2893
The hood and deck lid have the "tri star" emblems on them.
The vin is: 8839275
Now about the car, V/8 engine (232?) not stuck, non -running. Has three speed overdrive transmission.
Glass is mostly there. It needs a windshield, and a vent wing glass.
Has rust, in rocker panels, both front fenders at the rear from top to bottom.
Both front floors need to be replaced. Trunk is in decent shape.
Needs paint, complete interior. Chrome needs to be replated. One grill shell is busted but the car comes with a
extra pair.
Condition of drivetrain is unknown
I have pictures not able to load them at the time of this post.
I'm not looking to be exact, just a ballpark idea on the worth of the car. It's a project and I may be interested if the price is right.
With this information, any ideas?

09-17-2012, 05:37 AM
If it is a Champion and has a V-8 engine there has a been an engine change as Champions came with the flat head six. Make sure whatever changes that need to be made with such a switch have been done and done correctly.

09-17-2012, 07:59 AM
Serial number and body number are consistant with it being a commander in addition to there being a V8. A champion would have a s/n starting with G and the body would be 15G-K5.

A '54 should not have tri-star emblems on it. Those were phased out summer of '53. Should have the large V's with a long 8 on them instead.

From the described condition, the hog troughs under the floors are probably rusted and maybe gone altogether. Also check for thin metal in front of the rear wheels. Rear fenders will rust out there.

Be careful opening hood and trunk. Rusty/sticky hinges may cause the bracing in both to kink. Hood usually while opening and trunk when closing.

09-17-2012, 08:47 AM
Sounds like a parts car.

09-17-2012, 09:03 AM
Agreed. Parts car. Find one all ready put back together right and save yourself a lot of money. Don't let the beautiful styling blind you. You'll find some very fine examples for sale through SDC.

09-17-2012, 10:17 AM
Geo. PM me or call me at 510-266-2522 I can tell you more and advise you better, remember I have bought and sold many...Bob

09-17-2012, 11:42 AM
A bit more on this car. The car is red with a white top. But I noticed that when I had the hood open, looking at the engine compartment that the inner fenders were blue at one time and someone had painted over them with black paint (poorly done).
It does say Champion so at one time it sounds like the car had been in a wreck and the front sheetmetal had been replaced.

09-17-2012, 01:02 PM
The Serial Number indicates a Vernon (LA), CA built 1954 Commander.
From what I have to go on, I would guesstimate $2500. Unless you want to part it out, I would make sure that I had a line on good front fenders before purchasing the car.

09-17-2012, 01:04 PM
Geo. PM me or call me at 510-266-2522 I can tell you more and advise you better, remember I have bought and sold many...Bob

It would help more than George if you posted your insight and value assessment here, as I have done, rather than keeping it private. You can provide more information in a follow-up telephone call.

09-17-2012, 01:50 PM
I paid $2000 for a car that the vendor TOLD me needed everything. Take it from a guy that did a total on a 55 HT. As Jeff H stated, the hog troughs on a HT will be gone (and they ain't repopping them - you'll have to fabricate), the frame to floor supports, door pillar supports, over the door flippers, wiring harness, new fenders, front and back, glass, seals, starter, generator, springs, brakes, steering box (you'll have to rebuild a Ross box from scratch)... I have $50,000 in receipts for a driver car that appraised in at $30,000. You can buy a nice driver for $15,000. Take a picture, find a better candidate, and use this obe for parts.

09-17-2012, 02:03 PM
Thanks guys. I was mainly looking at it to see if it was worth it to buy it, get it running and resell it to make a little $$ to help with
my other Studebaker projects.
As it stands now, I'm going to pass. I have way more projects to keep me busy for some time yet!
Thanks again for the insight..