No announcement yet.

Champ Pickup Body Build

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Champ Pickup Body Build

    We were at our monthly Studebaker gathering tonight admiring a Champ pickup that was being torn down for refurbishing. Its always worth a good laugh to pull the seat back forward and notice the upholstery clips for the lark rear doors. The front body braces that hang out in space where there is no car frame are also part of the tale of the car body turned pickup. The question came up, where in the manufacturing process was the Lark body turned into a pickup? How much of the Lark got built? Was the Lark body assembled without doors and trunk and glass and sent off to be a pickup? Curious minds have to know.

  • #2
    Being I wasn't there to witness the build at the time I can only take a guess. I've wondered why some things like the cowl braces that were used on the Lark & not on the Champ & why they were made that way. I think it may be due to the body assembly jigs that used some portions of the body to secure it while it was being welded up. The inner "B " pillar was left as in a 4 door instead of retooling a new part, plus it already being a boxed section added strength. When you think about it the conversion from 4 door sedan to truck was done very inexpensively with only a very few new panels to stamp. I only wished they had done the same thing later, say in 63 & did the same thing to the body that was in production then. It would have given the Champ a new look, dash , heater, counter balanced hood, windshield and lessened the need to change dies in stamping thus saving some money in the process.
    59 Lark wagon, now V-8, H.D. auto!
    60 Lark convertible V-8 auto
    61 Champ 1/2 ton 4 speed
    62 Champ 3/4 ton 5 speed o/drive
    62 Champ 3/4 ton auto
    62 Daytona convertible V-8 4 speed & 62 Cruiser, auto.
    63 G.T. Hawk R-2,4 speed
    63 Avanti (2) R-1 auto
    64 Zip Van
    66 Daytona Sport Sedan(327)V-8 4 speed
    66 Cruiser V-8 auto


    • #3
      The use of a 2 door sedan would have made more cab space.
      South Lompoc Studebaker


      • #4
        talk was there were thousands of 4 door bodies lined up as far as the .......


        • #5
          Now this is a story (book) that I would buy. An extended, illustrated, narrative of how Studebaker made a truck cab out of a four door sedan, ok, perhaps it might only be a chapter of a larger work on the Champ. But it might be something published by McFarland like Champion of the Lark or even self published by Amazon. A really small market publication but one I would love to see.

          Jeff T.
          \"I\'m getting nowhere as fast as I can\"
          The Replacements.