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Where are the 9 original Studebaker Avanti R3 cars?

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  • #46
    Love to have someone with more familiarity than I talk to the post closure production. It was many years ago, I believe in an article concerning Newman/Altman's reflection on their assumption of production. I had already been to Nebraska and seen the white Avanti and heard the dealers story when I red the article. The article discussed the last production Avanti, and the line of nearly completed cars. A small team came in and finished a few of them and some/all of the serial numbers noted. There was a gap between those produced and what Newman/Altman took possession of and that gap provided me an explanation with regards to the Nebraska Avanti. I have no idea if that is/could-be true, however I have kept an open mind about the potential of a barn find some day providing substance to the theory.

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    • #47
      From what I have read, Avanti production ceased in early November, 1963; a good month-and-a-half before the rest of the line shut down, (aside from Zip Vans) in South Bend. This would have allowed more than ample time for any Avantis to be completed. In fact, I don't believe there were any "half-finished" Studebakers, cars or trucks, when the plant closed.

      It is true there were some 'half finished' Avantis in the 1990's. Perhaps one of the more famous latter-day plant closures with uncompleted cars on the assembly line was MG/Rover in England which suddenly stopped dead in its tracks in 2005 when they declared 'insolvency'.

      Craig

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      • #48
        Too bad the '64 Daytona factory 'R4' hardtop hasn't been restored and displayed by its owner yet.

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        • #49
          There was an Avanti at the MOTAA car show at Petit Jean State Park in the early 70s. It was a 4 speed car with dark brownish gold paint and an orange interior. This was the first R3 I had seen. It was supposed to be one of nine.
          I had hoped to post pictures, but so far the site keeps telling me they are too big. If I can get them resized, I'll add pictures.
          "In the heart of Arkansas."
          Searcy, Arkansas
          1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
          1952 2R pickup

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          • #50
            Originally posted by 8E45E View Post
            From what I have read, Avanti production ceased in early November, 1963; a good month-and-a-half before the rest of the line shut down, (aside from Zip Vans) in South Bend. This would have allowed more than ample time for any Avantis to be completed. In fact, I don't believe there were any "half-finished" Studebakers, cars or trucks, when the plant closed.

            It is true there were some 'half finished' Avantis in the 1990's. Perhaps one of the more famous latter-day plant closures with uncompleted cars on the assembly line was MG/Rover in England which suddenly stopped dead in its tracks in 2005 when they declared 'insolvency'.

            Craig
            I believe that all of the last production Studebaker Avantis were listed as 12/26/63.

            The only Avantis from "...the 1990's..." would be 1990 and 1991 models. There were a lot of left over 1990 model bodies. For 1991, I believe that there were two finished cars left. I think this accounts for a difference in production numbers of 15 or 17 (depending on source).
            Gary L.
            Wappinger, NY

            SDC member since 1968
            Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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            • #51
              Originally posted by 52-fan View Post
              There was an Avanti at the MOTAA car show at Petit Jean State Park in the early 70s. It was a 4 speed car with dark brownish gold paint and an orange interior. This was the first R3 I had seen. It was supposed to be one of nine.
              I had hoped to post pictures, but so far the site keeps telling me they are too big. If I can get them resized, I'll add pictures.
              Four of the nine R3s were four speed. If that car was one of the nine (four), it had a color change.
              Gary L.
              Wappinger, NY

              SDC member since 1968
              Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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              • #52
                I decided to fall back to Photobucket for the pictures. This is the Avanti I mentioned before. Sorry about the poor quality of the pictures.



                "In the heart of Arkansas."
                Searcy, Arkansas
                1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
                1952 2R pickup

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                • #53
                  This is a 1963 car so definitely not one of the 9.

                  Denny L

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                  • #54
                    Originally posted by studegary View Post
                    I believe that all of the last production Studebaker Avantis were listed as 12/26/63.
                    I was going by a Fred Fox article where he stated 'November, 1963'.

                    In the case of R5643, which shows every indication of being completed 12/26/63 was reportedly ordered the previous October. I am not entirely sure why it would have taken two months to build it.

                    Craig

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                    • #55
                      Originally posted by 52-fan View Post
                      I decided to fall back to Photobucket for the pictures. This is the Avanti I mentioned before. Sorry about the poor quality of the pictures.



                      Not a factory R3....but I sure would like to own it!

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                      • #56
                        Andy Granatelli purchased (or was given?) two or three R3's for his November Bonneville record attempts. AIR they had round headlights, so though late in the year, they were likely '63s. It gets complicated because he sold Paxton to Studebaker and became a corporation executive. I remember seeing STP ads and displays in Studebaker dealer service and parts departments, not sure if that was part of Studebaker or already one of Andy's projects.

                        Would think the Granatelli Avantis would have VINs as R3s, maybe one R4.

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                        • #57
                          Those cars were designated as EX-

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                          • #58
                            My Dad's R 5636 R-1 was supposedly finished AFTER Christmas and didn't leave South Bend until Jan. of '64.
                            Rob in PA.

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                            • #59
                              Thanks, Alan! Now I remember the EX thing. Could they be licensed for the street? Are any EXs still around or did Studebaker take 'em back and maybe crush 'em?

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                              • #60
                                The EX cars were updated to '64 specs (maybe not the round headlights), given production serial numbers (above R5643) and sold at retail. Most, if not all, still exist and accounted for.
                                Poet...Mystic...Soldier of Fortune. As always...self-absorbed, adversarial, cocky and in general a malcontent.

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