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Where are the 9 original Studebaker Avanti R3 cars?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by DieselJim View Post
    There is one in the Crawford Auto and Avation Museum in Columbus Ohio. I have picked it up twice. Once for display at the last International Meet in South Bend, and the second time for display at the Studebaker International Museum.
    That is 5643, the last one (R3 and Avanti) built. It was owned for many years by Joe Erdelac (sp ?), Cleveland Studebaker dealer. I see that his daughter recently joined this Forum.
    Gary L.
    Wappinger, NY

    SDC member since 1968
    Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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    • #17
      Confirming information about the factory R3 Avantis is difficult. Following is the best information I was able to gather several years ago.
      (1) R5089, turquoise, 4-speed Stored in Ill
      (2)R5237, black, 4-speed Owned by AOAI member
      (3) R5394, white, 4-speed Owner in the 1990s understood significanceof the vehicle
      (4) R5532, turquoise, 4-speed Engine may have failed soon after delivery and been replaced
      (5) R5546, gold,4-speed Restored many years ago, then damaged in a storm
      (6) R5593, gray, automatic Owned by AOAI member,engine may be owned by another person
      (7) R5625, black, automatic Stored in Mich
      (8) R5642, white,automatic Sold at public auction several years ago
      (9)R5643, white, automatic Displayed in museum in OH
      Last edited by herbpcpa; 08-10-2014, 09:26 AM.

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      • #18
        Herbpcpa Do you know who the owner was of #3 R5394 in the 90's? That is the only car that looks like it could be the one that I hauled to AZ.

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        • #19
          The R3 Registry page has been updated to include a "Certified R3 Registration" emblem: http://www.theavanti.net/registryr3.html

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          • #20
            The man who restored # 5 R5546 told me that at the time he owned the gold factory R3 Avanti he was in contact with the owner of #3 R5394 and that the owner knew what he had. That has been so many years ago that this owner of #3 could have died by now and the car passed into other hands.
            Bottom line is that at least seven and probably eight of the factory R3 Avantis are in the possession of people who know the significance of the car they own. The big mystery is #4 R5532.

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            • #21
              sw; William J. Mcleod of Grand Island NY was the owner of R5394 back in the late 70's when I last saw it.

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              • #22
                I have recently seen R5546, where it is relaxing in a secure, climate controlled environment.

                This car is interesting as it is the only R3 car to fully duplicate the record breaking #9 Bonneville car that currently sits in the Studebaker museum............Gold exterior, Elk interior and a 4 speed.

                The car has 51,000 original miles and still sports its 100% original and mint condition interior, including the original carpet. Near perfect dash, seats, gauges, etc.

                The car is one of the top three surviving R3's in its originality, receiving only one repaint and 4 owners in 50 years. It also has its original engine which is museum quality. The car was meticulously maintained and protected over the years, the frame looks like it is brand new, including the original troughs.

                It seems that there is some misunderstanding about this car being damaged in a storm. A previous owner had the car in a building that was hit by a tornado along with other vehicles including an Avanti with an R3 transplant. Although the R3 transplant car was severely damaged, miraculously the REAL R3 escaped nearly unscathed. The only damage to the number 5 car was an open hood that was ripped off and blown over the roof, causing only mild paint damage. The only structural damage was a broken hood hinge support, NOTHING more, not even broken glass. The vehicle was then unnecessarily stripped of all its paint and the owner lost interest until it wound up with its current owner.

                Fast forward to today, and that is where she sits.....comfortably sleeping, awaiting a high dollar paint job that she deserves.

                If I remember correctly, this car took FIRST place at the 1997 nationals and needs very little to return to that level.





                Originally posted by herbpcpa View Post
                Confirming information about the factory R3 Avantis is difficult. Following is the best information I was able to gather several years ago.
                (1) R5089, turquoise, 4-speed Stored in Ill
                (2)R5237, black, 4-speed Owned by AOAI member
                (3) R5394, white, 4-speed Owner in the 1990s understood significanceof the vehicle
                (4) R5532, turquoise, 4-speed Engine may have failed soon after delivery and been replaced
                (5) R5546, gold,4-speed Restored many years ago, then damaged in a storm
                (6) R5593, gray, automatic Owned by AOAI member,engine may be owned by another person
                (7) R5625, black, automatic Stored in Mich
                (8) R5642, white,automatic Sold at public auction several years ago
                (9)R5643, white, automatic Displayed in museum in OH
                Last edited by R3studee; 08-10-2014, 07:16 PM.

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                • #23
                  Can anyone share any information about R5532? It is the turquoise four speed that was shipped to New Jersey.

                  The current location of R5384 is in doubt but it seems reasonable that who ever owns it understands the significance of the vehicle.

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                  • #24
                    Adding to R3studee's comments....This is the car my brother Nimesh Solanki used to own. It is the only gold R3 produced. I do agree that the car was unnecessarily stripped by the previous owner (not my brother) and could have just been fixed without stripping all the paint. The interior is in very good shape but I wouldn't categorize it as perfect. Same thing with the engine being museum quality. Cosmetically it needs a lot of detailing and possibly a re-build (I would if it was my car) as it has been sitting up for years. Perfect and museum quality are relative words. Just like a fast car, what might be fast to someone maybe slow to another person. Still, this is a very nice specimen that has a lot of potential. My brother got rid of the car because he was building an over the top Avanti and couldn't see doing another car that wouldn't be as "perfect."

                    Deepesh

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                    • #25
                      One of the best I know of is in a garage just sitting. Hopefully he drives it once in a while. kind of a waste to not be enjoyed. Not built as an R3 but later converted. However everything is now correct R3. including rear end, air cleaner, and control arms, and 8000, tach. Serial # 5590, engine B61.
                      Bez Auto Alchemy
                      573-318-8948
                      http://bezautoalchemy.com


                      "Don't believe every internet quote" Abe Lincoln

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                      • #26
                        Brad,

                        I know that car because I saw it when you stripped it down. It is indeed a very beautiful car.

                        Deepesh

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                        • #27
                          Owner Registry For the R3 Avanti

                          Register now: www.theavanti.net/registryr3.html

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by herbpcpa View Post
                            Confirming information about the factory R3 Avantis is difficult. Following is the best information I was able to gather several years ago.
                            (1) R5089, turquoise, 4-speed Stored in Ill
                            (2)R5237, black, 4-speed Owned by AOAI member
                            (3) R5394, white, 4-speed Owner in the 1990s understood significanceof the vehicle
                            (4) R5532, turquoise, 4-speed Engine may have failed soon after delivery and been replaced
                            (5) R5546, gold,4-speed Restored many years ago, then damaged in a storm
                            (6) R5593, gray, automatic Owned by AOAI member,engine may be owned by another person
                            (7) R5625, black, automatic Stored in Mich
                            (8) R5642, white,automatic Sold at public auction several years ago
                            (9)R5643, white, automatic Displayed in museum in OH
                            Where is R3 AvantiR-5643, presently? Is it on loan by chance?
                            "Growing old is mandatory, but growing up is optional." author unknown

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                            • #29
                              I realize that this might not add much to the topic,but I remember seeing a gold Avanti with R3 engine, racing at the Winternationals in Phoenix in 1969.Unfortunately, I didn't take any pictures.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Bob Bryant View Post
                                Where is R3 AvantiR-5643, presently? Is it on loan by chance?
                                The last of 9 R3 Avantis, R5643 is on permanent display in the Crawford Auto Aviation Museum in Cleveland, Ohio. It was on loan to the AOAI during their 2012 Avanti 50th anniversary meet in South Bend; returned to the Cleveland museum for a while; and on display last year and early this year at the Studebaker National Museum before it went to the National Mall exhibit this past spring in Washington DC. It is now resting back at the Crawford Auto and Air Museum in Cleveland.
                                One note: The original owner, Joe Erdelac, was a Cleveland, Ohio American Motors dealer, not a Studebaker dealer.

                                Read more about this historic Avanti in the NY Times auto section of Friday, Dec. 19, 2014:
                                http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/20/au...er-avanti.html
                                Lew Schucart
                                Editor, Avanti Magazine

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