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Why the 1957 and 1958 Wagons look like they do.

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  • Why the 1957 and 1958 Wagons look like they do.

    A comment from the Post Titled: 1957 Broadmoor
    Originally Posted by deco_droid

    Don't care for the stock wheels, but that wagon is nice looking. I didn't realize the fins came out that far past the rear hatch. Pretty cool...

    Since we have Three of these '57 Wagons in our Family, one of which since 1964, I have been asked numerous times if it had a Continental Kit on it once or what.

    A little Studebaker History.
    Being a smaller Independent Co. there certainly was not Millions of Dollars laying around for re-Engineering, Re-Designing, remaking Wooden Bucks, Tooling, making and stocking new parts etc., etc. every YEAR or two like the Big Three did.

    So since the Wagon Body was just created in '53 for the '54 Model Year run Conestoga's and a lot of money spent, there had to be a way to stay competitive, and they were watching very carefully what the Big 3 were doing and going to do.

    So it would not be much of a stretch to say that to keep up with the newest, longest, lowest looking Cars; the Plymouth, and the rest of the Chrysler Corp. lineup, something had to be done about the stubby looking '56 design.

    It was relatively easy and not too expensive to create new longer rear fenders for the Sedan and leave the Body basically alone. But in the Wagon's case, it needed to match the new longer, lower look '57 Sedans.

    To do that, they simply did the same thing which left a nice little fireman's riding position shelf or a grocery getter's package tray to set stuff on while opening the Tailgate!
    Of course for reasons already mentioned, there was NO WAY to explain to the Board of Directors how a limited market body type would need a completely NEW Body after only THREE years, especially not in 1956 or 1957.

    The other issue is, they were buying a Brand New modified 2 Door Wagon, 4 Door Wagon Body that year as well!

    Studebaker was able to make good use of that design with minor mods up to 1959, and with more major ones to 1961 for the 2 Door we are talking about.

    Click image for larger version

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ID:	1740431 StudeDave57 picking Cherries in Ferndale, WA.
    Last edited by StudeRich; 09-04-2013, 05:20 PM.
    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver,
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner

  • #2
    Neat as they may have looked with that "outside package tray", it sure hurt them when the automotive magazines compared them to other makes for cargo room. Of course when the compact Lark came out that 'tray' disappeared, and it may have been a blessing in disguise in that they didn't tool up for a longer body in 1957, only to have to retool a shorter body for 1959 with their shoestring budget. At least we were VERY fortunate to get the identical taillights the sedan had for the station wagons in both Studebaker, Packard and the Scotsman line, unlike 70's & 80's GM and Fords where the same taillight was shared with all divisions on the station wagons.

    Craig

    Comment


    • #3
      While I'll most likely never own one, the '57 Packard wagon was a highlight of S-P history. It's classy, comfortable and fast. Local Stude hero Harold Glasgow built one for his wife Gypsy to drive and it's still in my Stude all-time top-ten.

      jack vines
      PackardV8

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by PackardV8 View Post
        While I'll most likely never own one, the '57 Packard wagon was a highlight of S-P history. It's classy, comfortable and fast. Local Stude hero Harold Glasgow built one for his wife Gypsy to drive and it's still in my Stude all-time top-ten.

        jack vines
        I agree Jack!
        Chip
        '63 Cruiser
        '57 Packard wagon
        '61 Lark Regal 4 dr wagon
        '50 Commander 4 dr sedan

        Comment


        • #5
          I like the look. It looks like a Nomad (only cooler).
          Jon Stalnaker
          Karel Staple Chapter SDC

          Comment


          • #6
            That "outside package tray" was one of the many reasons I pulled my 57 Packard out of the salvage yard.
            Love the way it nestled in between those beautiful cathedral like tail lamps.
            sigpic1957 Packard Clipper Country Sedan

            "There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer"
            Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle
            "I have a great memory for forgetting things" Number 1 son, Lee Chan

            Comment


            • #7
              57 Packard Wagon

              Some eye candy for those who are fans of the '57 Packard Wagon...
              Click image for larger version

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              Click image for larger version

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              Mark Hayden
              '66 Commander
              Zone Coordinator
              Pacific Can-Am Zone

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by PackardV8 View Post
                While I'll most likely never own one, the '57 Packard wagon was a highlight of S-P history. It's classy, comfortable and fast. Local Stude hero Harold Glasgow built one for his wife Gypsy to drive and it's still in my Stude all-time top-ten.
                Yes, I've seen that car a few times: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...=clipper+wagon

                Craig

                Comment


                • #9
                  A question that bugs me about these however is why Studebaker built their wagons on the 116 in Commander/Champion frame and not the 120 President sedan frame. Being a wagon (regardless of level) it would seem natural to build it on a longer frame. Although I love these cars, a little longer body would have evened out the back doors and made them look a little better. Those back doors are pretty short.
                  Dan White
                  64 R1 GT
                  64 R2 GT
                  58 C Cab
                  57 Broadmoor (Marvin)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mark57 View Post
                    Some eye candy for those who are fans of the '57 Packard Wagon...
                    [ATTACH=CONFIG]27152[/ATTACH]

                    [ATTACH=CONFIG]27151[/ATTACH]
                    I think this car is beautiful,....but does the red paint normally carry to the inside of the headlamps on these cars? I thought the two-tone would 'break' directly under the headlamp.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Normally the paint line is in the middle of the headlamp.
                      Chip
                      '63 Cruiser
                      '57 Packard wagon
                      '61 Lark Regal 4 dr wagon
                      '50 Commander 4 dr sedan

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Dan White View Post
                        A question that bugs me about these however is why Studebaker built their wagons on the 116 in Commander/Champion frame and not the 120 President sedan frame. Being a wagon (regardless of level) it would seem natural to build it on a longer frame. Although I love these cars, a little longer body would have evened out the back doors and made them look a little better. Those back doors are pretty short.
                        I do not remember a 120.5 inch wheelbase (not "frame") for the 1954 model year sedans when these station wagon bodies came out. The 120.5 inch wb was used for the C/K models then.
                        Gary L.
                        Wappinger, NY

                        SDC member since 1968
                        Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by studegary View Post
                          I do not remember a 120.5 inch wheelbase (not "frame") for the 1954 model year sedans when these station wagon bodies came out. The 120.5 inch wb was used for the C/K models then.
                          What was the wheelbase of the Land Cruiser for 1954?

                          Craig

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by 8E45E View Post
                            What was the wheelbase of the Land Cruiser for 1954?

                            Craig
                            Twas 120.5"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by 8E45E View Post
                              What was the wheelbase of the Land Cruiser for 1954?

                              Craig
                              Yes, my memory had a lapse <G>. The LC was 120.5 then. Perhaps I should start to look up some of my responses. No, that would take the fun out of it and use more time than I care to give. I think that my batting average is pretty good on relying on my memory.
                              Gary L.
                              Wappinger, NY

                              SDC member since 1968
                              Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                              Comment

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