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  • I am glad that Studbaker failed when it did.

    It's hard to argue with your reasoning... One could make the argument that there still were some interesting cars produced during the "dark ages" like the Mercedes 6.9, BMW 3.0CSi, Porsche 911, etc. and we could argue that Studebaker would have had the opportunity to shine against the uniformly dull American offerings by offering something to compete with, say, BMW... but unfortunately they'd already committed to McKinnon power in '65. Can you imagine a Studebaker with a smog-spec Ch*vy 305 under the hood, or worse yet, a 267? eep.

    I may be getting off topic, but I actually remember AMC passing up a similar opportunity... they introduced the Eagle (4WD version of the old Hornet/Concord chassis) at about the same time as the Audi Quattro. The Quattro rocked the rallying world, but for some reason AMC decided to market the Eagle as simply a practical bad-weather car when it really wouldn't have been *all* that difficult to produce a stickshift Kammback version of the Eagle and send a couple guys out to compete... a special edition with a Torsen center diff instead of the transfer case would have been nice... oh well. Such is life; AMC is officially no more with the death of the Jeep 4.0 engine and life goes on.

    nate

    --
    55 Commander Starlight
    http://members.cox.net/njnagel
    --
    55 Commander Starlight
    http://members.cox.net/njnagel

  • #2
    It's hard to argue with your reasoning... One could make the argument that there still were some interesting cars produced during the "dark ages" like the Mercedes 6.9, BMW 3.0CSi, Porsche 911, etc. and we could argue that Studebaker would have had the opportunity to shine against the uniformly dull American offerings by offering something to compete with, say, BMW... but unfortunately they'd already committed to McKinnon power in '65. Can you imagine a Studebaker with a smog-spec Ch*vy 305 under the hood, or worse yet, a 267? eep.

    I may be getting off topic, but I actually remember AMC passing up a similar opportunity... they introduced the Eagle (4WD version of the old Hornet/Concord chassis) at about the same time as the Audi Quattro. The Quattro rocked the rallying world, but for some reason AMC decided to market the Eagle as simply a practical bad-weather car when it really wouldn't have been *all* that difficult to produce a stickshift Kammback version of the Eagle and send a couple guys out to compete... a special edition with a Torsen center diff instead of the transfer case would have been nice... oh well. Such is life; AMC is officially no more with the death of the Jeep 4.0 engine and life goes on.

    nate

    --
    55 Commander Starlight
    http://members.cox.net/njnagel
    --
    55 Commander Starlight
    http://members.cox.net/njnagel

    Comment


    • #3
      I am glad that Studbaker failed when it did.

      Now, before I get a lot of unpleasant responses, or get my post deleted, let me explain. I cannot say that I am glad that Studebaker failed, but I must admit, that since it did fail, I am glad that it did so when it did.

      This is only my second post, so forgive me if I am a little to long winded. This was just something I was thinking about the other day.

      Before I go much further, let me explain that I am no stranger to the post-war American auto industry. I think that the cars that came out from 1947-1972 are some of the best and entertaining cars ever created. Whether they are Pontiac, Dodge, Mercury or my favorite (of course) Studebaker.

      Most of us know the history of Studebaker from 1946 to its demise in 1966, so I will not rehash that. Most of us know why they failed, thus I will not go into that either, instead, lets look at what happened in the American auto industry at that time.

      In 1964 a pivotal car was released, the Pontiac GTO. It was the first time a large muscular engine was placed into a standard sized car. Shortly thereafter, Ford released the Mustang, which we all know went down in history as the first pony car. These two creations started a horsepower war that reached its peak in the early 70's. By then, every make was in on it, Chevy, Pontiac, Dodge, Plymouth, Ford, even AMC. (Studebaker would have had the Daytona and Avanti, if they had survived. Although the Avanti was in on this as well by this time as its own company....but we all know that.)

      All this wonderful horsepower, though, caught the attention of Washington, and we had ourselves, for the first time, real regulations on the auto industry that hurt design, horsepower, and even style.

      First horsepower was dropped due to emissions controls. Then the whole safety issue came into effect causing five-mile-an-hour bumpers and side marker lights. Right when all of these sanctions were starting to be implemented, the gas crisis struck, further causing woe to the auto industry. All of this happened around 1973, give or take. Because of this, in my opinion, most cars released after 1973 are some of the ugliest, sluggish, boring things ever to hit the highway, with the exception of a few (very few) standouts.

      Now to the point of why I am glad that Studebaker failed when it did. They did not have to suffer the embarrassment, indignity and shame of that time period. Now, I am sure that they could have overcome all of that...as far as design goes, but it still would have been a terrible shame. In my opinion, the last of the "real" cars came out in the mid-1970s. Thankfully, Studebaker was done by then, thus making them produce nothing but great cars from their birth to their death. And there is something to be said for that.

      Comment


      • #4
        Yes you are right! I cannot imagine a poor little 170 c.i. OHV Six struggling along with an EGR valve, a catalytic converter, lower compression, and unleaded fuel, in a Station Wagon, loaded, trying to get up a hill!!!

        My one of only 2 NEW cars, and non-Studebaker cars EVER, a '76 Plymouth Volare Premere Wagon (318 V-8) was in the shop at the Dealer, and they loaned me a 225 slant 6 Volare 2dr. quite new, loan car. Well this poor thing would be like the Stude. Six, really SICK! That was a terrible car, bogged down with all the EGR, Cat and only the emission stuff of the day, nothing close to what we have NOW! Those 225 c.i. slant Sixes USED to be peppy little engines, but that 1976 Calif. smog stuff killed the performance completely!

        StudeRich
        Studebakers Northwest
        Ferndale, WA
        StudeRich
        Second Generation Stude Driver,
        Proud '54 Starliner Owner

        Comment


        • #5
          Yes you are right! I cannot imagine a poor little 170 c.i. OHV Six struggling along with an EGR valve, a catalytic converter, lower compression, and unleaded fuel, in a Station Wagon, loaded, trying to get up a hill!!!

          My one of only 2 NEW cars, and non-Studebaker cars EVER, a '76 Plymouth Volare Premere Wagon (318 V-8) was in the shop at the Dealer, and they loaned me a 225 slant 6 Volare 2dr. quite new, loan car. Well this poor thing would be like the Stude. Six, really SICK! That was a terrible car, bogged down with all the EGR, Cat and only the emission stuff of the day, nothing close to what we have NOW! Those 225 c.i. slant Sixes USED to be peppy little engines, but that 1976 Calif. smog stuff killed the performance completely!

          StudeRich
          Studebakers Northwest
          Ferndale, WA
          StudeRich
          Second Generation Stude Driver,
          Proud '54 Starliner Owner

          Comment


          • #6
            quote:Originally posted by N8N

            It's hard to argue with your reasoning... One could make the argument that there still were some interesting cars produced during the "dark ages" like the Mercedes 6.9, BMW 3.0CSi, Porsche 911, etc. and we could argue that Studebaker would have had the opportunity to shine against the uniformly dull American offerings by offering something to compete with, say, BMW... but unfortunately they'd already committed to McKinnon power in '65. Can you imagine a Studebaker with a smog-spec Ch*vy 305 under the hood, or worse yet, a 267? eep.

            I may be getting off topic, but I actually remember AMC passing up a similar opportunity... they introduced the Eagle (4WD version of the old Hornet/Concord chassis) at about the same time as the Audi Quattro. The Quattro rocked the rallying world, but for some reason AMC decided to market the Eagle as simply a practical bad-weather car when it really wouldn't have been *all* that difficult to produce a stickshift Kammback version of the Eagle and send a couple guys out to compete... a special edition with a Torsen center diff instead of the transfer case would have been nice... oh well. Such is life; AMC is officially no more with the death of the Jeep 4.0 engine and life goes on.

            nate

            --
            55 Commander Starlight
            http://members.cox.net/njnagel
            I will have to agree that Studebaker got spared the effects of the automotive 'dark ages' that descended upon North America in the late '70's for the reasons mentioned. You will not get an unpleasent response from me! As we know, the Avanti II suffered from the 'cowcatcher' front bumper to comply with sucky-seventies regulations. (So yes Nate, I can imagine a smog choked Chevy-engined Studebaker.) But if Studebaker followed the likes of International, White, Reo, and became a truck producer only, then we may have something to show from that sh**ty era. Today, there are more people collecting Dodge Warlocks, L'il Red Express Trucks, and Corvette-dash-Peterbilt 359's from those years than passenger cars. They were unencumbered by bumper regulations, and emissions at the time, and most of the big rigs will have the last of the 'classic' look before aerodynamics took over the design of them.

            Craig

            Comment


            • #7
              quote:Originally posted by N8N

              It's hard to argue with your reasoning... One could make the argument that there still were some interesting cars produced during the "dark ages" like the Mercedes 6.9, BMW 3.0CSi, Porsche 911, etc. and we could argue that Studebaker would have had the opportunity to shine against the uniformly dull American offerings by offering something to compete with, say, BMW... but unfortunately they'd already committed to McKinnon power in '65. Can you imagine a Studebaker with a smog-spec Ch*vy 305 under the hood, or worse yet, a 267? eep.

              I may be getting off topic, but I actually remember AMC passing up a similar opportunity... they introduced the Eagle (4WD version of the old Hornet/Concord chassis) at about the same time as the Audi Quattro. The Quattro rocked the rallying world, but for some reason AMC decided to market the Eagle as simply a practical bad-weather car when it really wouldn't have been *all* that difficult to produce a stickshift Kammback version of the Eagle and send a couple guys out to compete... a special edition with a Torsen center diff instead of the transfer case would have been nice... oh well. Such is life; AMC is officially no more with the death of the Jeep 4.0 engine and life goes on.

              nate

              --
              55 Commander Starlight
              http://members.cox.net/njnagel
              I will have to agree that Studebaker got spared the effects of the automotive 'dark ages' that descended upon North America in the late '70's for the reasons mentioned. You will not get an unpleasent response from me! As we know, the Avanti II suffered from the 'cowcatcher' front bumper to comply with sucky-seventies regulations. (So yes Nate, I can imagine a smog choked Chevy-engined Studebaker.) But if Studebaker followed the likes of International, White, Reo, and became a truck producer only, then we may have something to show from that sh**ty era. Today, there are more people collecting Dodge Warlocks, L'il Red Express Trucks, and Corvette-dash-Peterbilt 359's from those years than passenger cars. They were unencumbered by bumper regulations, and emissions at the time, and most of the big rigs will have the last of the 'classic' look before aerodynamics took over the design of them.

              Craig

              Comment


              • #8
                But 'failed' is not the correct word.
                The board of directors 'chose' not to participate in the automobile production and sales business.
                They 'chose' not to update production lines, body styles, drivetrain components.
                The comatose organization was left to wither to the point that shutting it all down was preferrable to other alternatives.
                By this point the efforts and funding had all gone elsewhere.
                Little hope for a suitable organ donor was found, so the 'body Studebaker' was unplugged from life support and the close relatives were left to carry on.
                Just an opinion.
                Jeff[8D]




                quote:Originally posted by tutone63

                Now, before I get a lot of unpleasant responses, or get my post deleted, let me explain. I cannot say that I am glad that Studebaker failed, but I must admit, that since it did fail, I am glad that it did so when it did.
                <snip>
                HTIH (Hope The Info Helps)

                Jeff


                Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. Mark Twain



                Note: SDC# 070190 (and earlier...)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Greetings, tutone63,

                  quote:In 1964 a pivotal car was released, the Pontiac GTO. It was the first time a large muscular engine was placed into a standard sized car.
                  You may get considerable disagreement with the above statement from the '56J Group. The 352" Packard V8 in the Lowey/Bourke hardtop K-body was the quickest/fastest car of its day. Contemporary roadtests show it outrunning Corvettes, something the GTO could never claim.

                  PackardV8
                  PackardV8

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Greetings, tutone63,

                    quote:In 1964 a pivotal car was released, the Pontiac GTO. It was the first time a large muscular engine was placed into a standard sized car.
                    You may get considerable disagreement with the above statement from the '56J Group. The 352" Packard V8 in the Lowey/Bourke hardtop K-body was the quickest/fastest car of its day. Contemporary roadtests show it outrunning Corvettes, something the GTO could never claim.

                    PackardV8
                    PackardV8

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      No argument on the "fortuitous" timing of Studebaker's demise. But I must disagree with the statement that the GTO and Mustang started the hosepower war. That war was well under way by the mid-50's when all major players were trying to outhorsepower each other annually. Some of the monster engines built before 1960 had to be seen and driven to be believed.

                      Tim-53 Studebird in Yuma, AZ
                      Tim-'53 Starlight Commander Custom and '63 Avanti in Yuma, AZ
                      https://www.jimsrodshop.com/project/53-resurrection https://www.jimsrodshop.com/project/always-ahead

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        No argument on the "fortuitous" timing of Studebaker's demise. But I must disagree with the statement that the GTO and Mustang started the hosepower war. That war was well under way by the mid-50's when all major players were trying to outhorsepower each other annually. Some of the monster engines built before 1960 had to be seen and driven to be believed.

                        Tim-53 Studebird in Yuma, AZ
                        Tim-'53 Starlight Commander Custom and '63 Avanti in Yuma, AZ
                        https://www.jimsrodshop.com/project/53-resurrection https://www.jimsrodshop.com/project/always-ahead

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          From our standpoint the best thing about Studebaker going out when it did was that it came before the day of lean manufacturing. This left a good stock of parts to keep some of the cars going until the club got established. Many later cars have a shortage of older parts due to the dealers not keeping much inventory. Many of us would not have been able to afford to get started with our Studes if we had to pay what many other hobbists pay for their parts. Of course, as our supply dries up we are seeing higher prices for some items.

                          1952 Champion Starlight, 1962 Daytona, 1947 M5. Searcy,Arkansas
                          "In the heart of Arkansas."
                          Searcy, Arkansas
                          1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
                          1952 2R pickup

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            From our standpoint the best thing about Studebaker going out when it did was that it came before the day of lean manufacturing. This left a good stock of parts to keep some of the cars going until the club got established. Many later cars have a shortage of older parts due to the dealers not keeping much inventory. Many of us would not have been able to afford to get started with our Studes if we had to pay what many other hobbists pay for their parts. Of course, as our supply dries up we are seeing higher prices for some items.

                            1952 Champion Starlight, 1962 Daytona, 1947 M5. Searcy,Arkansas
                            "In the heart of Arkansas."
                            Searcy, Arkansas
                            1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
                            1952 2R pickup

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              quote:Originally posted by PackardV8

                              Greetings, tutone63,

                              quote:In 1964 a pivotal car was released, the Pontiac GTO. It was the first time a large muscular engine was placed into a standard sized car.
                              You may get considerable disagreement with the above statement from the '56J Group. The 352" Packard V8 in the Lowey/Bourke hardtop K-body was the quickest/fastest car of its day. Contemporary roadtests show it outrunning Corvettes, something the GTO could never claim.

                              PackardV8
                              Thank you for mentioning that. I had no idea. I will have to look into that one.

                              Comment

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