Toyota Land Cruiser
The Toyota Land Cruiser is a series of four-wheel drive vehicles produced by the Japanese automobile manufacturer Toyota. It is Toyota's longest running series of models; as of 2018, the sales of the Land Cruiser totalled more than 6.5 million units worldwide. Production of the first generation of the Land Cruiser began in 1951 as Toyota's version of a Jeep-like vehicle; the Land Cruiser has been produced in convertible, station wagon and cab chassis bodystyles. The Land Cruiser's reliability and longevity has led to huge popularity in Australia where it is the best-selling body-on-frame, four-wheel drive vehicle. Toyota extensively tests the Land Cruiser in the Australian outback – considered to be one of the toughest operating environments in both temperature and terrain. In Japan, the Land Cruiser is exclusive to Toyota Japanese dealerships called Toyota Store; as of 2018, the Land Cruiser is available in most markets. Exceptions include Canada, Hong Kong, North Korea, South Korea, Syria and large parts of Europe.
In Europe, the only countries that sell the Land Cruiser are: Gibraltar, Moldova and Ukraine. When the Imperial Japanese Army occupied the Philippines in 1941, they found an American Jeep and promptly sent it to Japan; the Japanese military authorities ordered Toyota to produce a similar vehicle but to alter the appearance. The resulting Model AK prototype led to the Yon-Shiki Kogata Kamotsu-Sha. In 1941, the Japanese government instructed Toyota to produce a light truck for Japan's military. In 1942, Toyota developed the AK10 prototype by reverse-engineering a Bantam GP; the half-ton truck features an upright front grille, flat front wheel arches that angled down and back like the FJ40, headlights mounted above the wheel arches on either side of the radiator, a folding windshield. The AK10 is powered by the 2,259 cc, 4-cylinder Type C engine from the Toyota Model AE sedan coupled to a three-speed manual transmission and a two-speed transfer gearbox. Unlike the U. S. Jeep, the AK10 had limited photographs of it in the battlefield are rare.
In June 1954, responding to claims of trademark violation by the Willys Company that produced the original Jeep Director of Technology Hanji Umehara renamed this 4-wheeled vehicle as the Land Cruiser. The postwar Toyota "Jeep" BJ is different from the AK10 and inherits no mechanical parts from it. 1950 – The Korean War created demand for a military light utility vehicle. The war put a Jeep on Japan's doorstep; the United States government ordered 100 vehicles with the new Willys specifications and tasked Toyota to manufacture them. 1951 – The Toyota "Jeep" BJ prototype was developed in January 1951. This came from the demand for military-type utility vehicles, much like the British Land Rover Series 1, developed in 1948; the Jeep BJ was larger than the original U. S. Jeep and more powerful courtesy of its Type B 3.4-litre six-cylinder OHV Four-stroke petrol engine which generated a power output of 63 kW at 3,600 rpm and 215 N⋅m torque at 1,600 rpm. It had a part-time four-wheel drive system like the Jeep.
However unlike the Jeep, the Jeep BJ had no low-range transfer case. 1951 – In July 1951, Toyota's test driver Ichiro Taira drove the next generation of the Jeep BJ prototype up to the sixth stage of Mount Fuji, the first vehicle to climb that height. The test was overseen by the National Police Agency. Impressed by this feat, the NPA placed an order for 289 of these offroad vehicles, making the Jeep BJ their official patrol car. 1953 – Regular production of the "Toyota Jeep BJ" began at the Toyota Honsya Plant. The body assembly and painting was done at Arakawa Bankin Kogyo KK known as ARACO; the "Toyota Jeep BJ" Series was introduced alongside the following: BJ-T, BJ-R, BJ-J. 1954 — The name "Land Cruiser" was coined by the technical director Hanji Umehara. "In England we had another competitor — Land Rover. I had to come up with a name for our car that would not sound less dignified than those of our competitors; that is why I decided to call it'Land Cruiser'," he recalls. The name had been used on the Studebaker Land Cruiser, produced from 1934 to 1954.
1954 – The 93 kW, 3.9 L Type F petrol engine was added to the Land Cruiser range for the fire-engine chassis. Models are renamed as: BJ-T, BJ-R, BJ-J, FJ-J. 1955 – The Second generation of the Land Cruiser called the 20 Series was introduced. It was designed to have a more civilian appeal than the BJ for export reasons, it had more stylish bodywork and a better ride courtesy of longer four-plate leaf springs, adapted from the Toyota Light Truck. It had a more powerful 99 kW 3.9 L six-cylinder Type F petrol engine, but adopted the previous generation's three speed gearbox. The interior of the vehicles were made more comfortable by moving the engine 120 mm forward; the 20 Series still had no low range transfer case, but had synchronism on the third and fourth gears. 1957 – A 4-door Station Wagon was added called the FJ35V, based on a 2,650 mm wheelbase. The Land Cruiser first imported into Australia by B&D Motors as the FJ25/28 cab chassis with Australian made bodies; the Land Cruiser was the first Japanese vehicle to be exported to the country.
A small number of Land Cruisers were used in the Snowy Mountains Hydroelectric Scheme, by sub contra
The Studebaker Commander is the model name of several automobiles produced by the Studebaker Corporation of South Bend and Studebaker of Canada Ltd of Walkerville and Hamilton, Ontario. Studebaker began using the Commander name in 1927 and continued to use it until 1964, with the exception of 1936 and 1959-63; the name was applied to various products in the company's line-up from year to year. Until the appearance of the 8-cylinder President in January 1928, all Studebaker cars of the 1920s were sixes. There were three basic models — the Light, the Special and the Big Six, developing 40 bhp, 50 bhp, 60 bhp at 2000 rpm; the first Commander, in 1927, was a continuation of the mid-range Special Six, with a 226 cu in engine. Their inbuilt durability and toughness gained them great renown under worldwide conditions; the 1928 GB Commander was a descendant of the Big Six, being powered with the proven 354 cu in engine, modified to deliver 75 bhp at 2400 rpm. In October 1928, three Commander sixes lined up at the Atlantic City speedway to challenge the 15,000 mi speed record held by the much higher-priced Auburn straight-eight Speedster.
They not only accomplished that but went on to establish new records up to 25,000 miles. The two sports roadsters averaged better than 65 mph and the sedan, which had flipped on the icy boards during one of the night runs and had been hurriedly repaired, averaged 62 mph. After this, the three cars were scrutinised, part by part, it was established that they were stock automobiles, identical in every respect to those available at any Studebaker showroom. In Australia, a crew of three drivers led by Norman "Wizard" Smith tackled overland records using a Commander roadster. On a 3,000-mile run from Fremantle to Sydney, they smashed the previous record by 12 hours 23 minutes despite traversing 450 miles through blinding rain, having to ford a river when a bridge had been washed away; the team rested for a little over three hours before attempting another record on the 600-mile track to Brisbane. These sixes were the last descendants of rugged cars designed for poor roads in the early 20th century—loaded with torque and strong in construction.
They were less well suited to the higher cruising speeds made possible by better roads in years. In 1929, Studebaker added an 8-cylinder Commander to the range. In 1935, the Commander was dropped from Studebaker’s product line, only to be reinstated in 1937 when the name was applied to Studebaker’s least expensive range known as the Studebaker Dictator. Studebaker introduced the Champion in 1939, the Commander line was again repositioned, now as the mid-range vehicle. Following World War II, Studebaker dropped its President models, the Commander again was elevated in the lineup. Studebaker again rolled out an extended wheelbase model of the Commander, the Land Cruiser. Raymond Loewy's distinctive shape for the 1947 Commander and Champion, spectacular on their Starlight coupe, led if it did not create a boom in America's trunk space; the 1950 Champion differed from the Commander, which had a distinctive bumper, carried over from 1949, longer front fenders and large headlight bezels, as well as a distinctive jet-style hood ornament.
In a 1953 road test done by Popular Mechanics, the Commander got a 0-60 mph of 17.9 seconds and was rated as getting 26.1 mpg at 30 mph. In 1955, Studebaker reintroduced the President name for its premium models and'Commander' was applied to the mid-range products; the Commander line was extended with the introduction of a lower-priced Custom sub-series, being a Champion with a V8 engine. Studebaker placed the name on hiatus at the end of the 1958 model year. In 1963, Studebaker again resurrected the Commander name for the 1964 model year, applying it to the next-to-lowest-priced Lark model, the Challenger being below. 1964 Studebaker Commanders most had a dual headlight arrangement which they shared with the Challenger though quad headlamps were optional. The 1965 Commander shared the quad-headlight system of the Cruiser. Commanders reverted to single headlamps in the final model year of 1966. In March 1966, Studebaker shut down production of all vehicles. In 2005, Jeep introduced its new flagship SUV, the Jeep Commander, produced through 2010.
Maloney, James H.. Studebaker Cars. Crestline Books. ISBN 978-0-87938-884-3. Kimes, Beverly R.. The Standard Catalog of American Cars 1805-1945. Krause Publications. ISBN 0-87341-428-4. Langworth, Richard. Studebaker: the Postwar Years. Motorbooks International. ISBN 978-0-87938-058-8. Gunnell, John, ed.. The Standard Catalog of American Cars 1946-1975. Krause Publications. ISBN 0-87341-096-3
The Starlight coupe was a unique 2-door body style offered by Studebaker Corporation of South Bend, Indiana from 1947 to 1952 in its Champion and Commander model series. It was designed by Virgil Exner of Raymond Loewy Associates; the most striking feature was the long hood-like cover over the luggage compartment of the sedan, exaggerated on the Starlight. Critics of the radically styled models commented by asking the rhetorical question, "Which way is it going?" The viewer's astonishment was compounded by the great expanse of the wrap-around rear window. Cars had tended to shroud back-seat passengers. Wrap-around rear windowUnlike other pillared two-door sedans that use two side windows separated from the rear window by roof supports, Loewy created a roof rounded at the rear with a wraparound window system that provided a panoramic effect, similar to a railroad observation car; the curved window was achieved with four fixed panels of glass. The roof was supported by two wide pillars behind the doors and in front of the wraparound back window.
The body style was named "5-passenger coupe". The car's unique profile provided the Studebaker marque with an recognized body shape copied as soon as possible by the other US manufacturers in their 1949 models. V-8 introduced in 1951. Automatic transmission introduced in 1950. For 1950 and 1951, all Studebakers received a freshening of the 1947 design with the addition of the "bullet nose" front sheet metal design; when combined with the Starlight body style, Studebakers looked comparatively futuristic at the time. This version of the Starlight body style continued until the end of the 1952 model year, when it was sold side by side with a hardtop "Starliner" version of the same model. For 1953 designer Robert E Bourke, head of Raymond Loewy Associates Studebaker design operation, radically redesigned all Studebaker cars. Studebaker sedans rode on an 116 in wheelbase, although emphasis was placed on the sports car-like Raymond Loewy-designed 2-door coupes that rode on Studebaker's longer 120 in wheelbase.
Offered in both Champion and Commander model ranges, the coupes were available as pillared and hardtop body styles. Hardtop coupes were designated Starliners while the Starlight designation was applied to the five window pillared coupes; the styling on both these cars influenced the Hillman Minx of the late 1950s and 1960s, designed by Raymond Loewy. For 1955 the pillared Starlight reverted to "5-passenger coupe", the pillarless "Starliner" became "5-passenger hardtop." For 1956 these 5-passenger 2-door coupes with pillars were modified and reissued as the Studebaker Hawk series. In 1958, Studebaker again applied the Starlight name to a body style, this time on its first full-sized hardtop models since 1952. With lackluster sales and a switch to the compact Lark, the company no longer was in need of the Starlight moniker and it was permanently retired at the end of the model year. Oldsmobile would attempt an effect similar to the Starlight in 1977 with its Toronado XS model. Unlike the Studebaker, advances in auto glass production allowed the Toronado wrap around window to be manufactured in one sheet of glass, bent using "hot wire" technology.
Maloney, James H.. Studebaker Cars. Crestline Books. ISBN 0-87938-884-6. Langworth, Richard. Studebaker, the Postwar Years. Motorbooks International. ISBN 0-87938-058-6. Gunnell, John, ed.. The Standard Catalog of American Cars 1946-1975. Kraus Publications. ISBN 0-87341-096-3
The Studebaker Champ was a light-duty pickup truck produced by the Studebaker Corporation from 1960-1964. Designed at a time when Studebaker's truck line had not seen major upgrading in over 10 years, the company, which had endured years of declining sales, was forced to use a number of existing components; the chassis and cargo box of the Champ were the same as what had been used for Studebaker's ½ and ¾-ton trucks since 1949, but the cab section was different. An new cab was out of the question because of cost considerations, but the new Lark compact car's body proved to be just the right size and shape to suit the purpose; the engineering staff took a four-door sedan, cut it in half behind the front doors and modified the front half to fit the truck chassis. The only new sheetmetal stamping, required was the back wall of the new cab. Minor modifications for mounting of the cab to the 1949-vintage truck frame were made; the Lark's front end sheetmetal was retained as well, but funds were allocated to give the Champ a new horizontal-bar grille that delivered a "tougher" look.
Studebaker equipped the Champ with engines. Buyers in 1960 could choose the last of the company's flathead sixes, either the Lark's 170 in³ or the time-honored 245 in³ "Big Six" which dated to the early 1930s; the 170 engine was upgraded to overhead valves for 1961, gaining 22 hp in the process, enough of an improvement that Studebaker saw fit to discontinue the Big Six. The new OHV six was a novel design, retaining as many existing components as possible while modernizing an engine, introduced in 1939; the little engine's quality came into question early on, with a number of engines developing cracks in the cylinder head. The problem, which occurred most in engines that had improperly-adjusted valves, was never solved, but with proper care, the 170 remains a serviceable engine for many owners more than 40 years after it went out of production. From the start of production, those desiring V8 power could choose between Studebaker's 259- and 289 in³ engines with either a two- or four-barrel carburetor.
Both engines remained unchanged during the truck's production run. A wide variety of transmissions, both manual and automatic, were available in Champs. Base models came with a three-speed column shifted manual, with four- and five-speeds optional, as well as overdrive. Studebaker's Flight-O-Matic was the automatic option; this same transmission was used including Ford. Given the cobbled-up nature of the truck, sales were good for the 1960 model year "5E" series, it was all downhill from there. 1961's 6E series saw the addition of a full-width cargo box, the Spaceside, for which Studebaker had purchased the tooling from Dodge. It didn't help sales, nor did the problems which developed early on with the redesigned six-cylinder engine. Few changes were made to the Champ in 1962 or 1963, the few 1964 models built continued the 8E series started for the'63 models; the only new feature introduced for the 8E trucks was air conditioning. By December 1963, Studebaker's board of directors announced the closure of its South Bend, Indiana factory, the trucks were among the casualties of the company's consolidation around an abbreviated family-car lineup in its Hamilton, Canada assembly plant.
When they purchased the rights and tooling to the Studebaker Avanti in 1964, Nate Altman and Leo Newman acquired the rights and tooling to Studebaker's trucks. However and Newman, for reasons which are lost to history, never built as much as a single truck, the AM General truck and Hummer plant took over Studebaker's former Chippewa Avenue truck plant in South Bend for military production in late 1964; this plant is now used to store every stock Studebaker part, left after the company's closing. A section of this plant is used as a store that sells parts to collectors and people taking on restorations; the Champ is given credit for introducing a feature, nearly universal among today's pickup trucks: the sliding rear window, available from the start, proved to be quite popular among Champ buyers. It was one of Studebaker's better ideas, caught on among the major truck makers. With a cab based on a sedan body, the Champ was among the first pickups to offer true "car-like" comfort, with a wide, comfortable bench seat and a handsomely-styled interior.
Other manufacturers took until early 1970s to follow the Champ's lead. The last Champs of 1963-64 were among the first American trucks — if not the first — to offer service bodies constructed of fiberglass. Today, such bodies made of fiberglass and composites are still gaining acceptance, with the steel service body remaining the norm. While it didn't prove to be the savior of the Studebaker truck line, the Champ pointed the way to a smaller yet still rugged pickup, something Dodge claimed as a "first" with their mid-sized Dakota, introduced as a 1987 model, nearly 27 years after the Champ. Today, the Champs that still exist are prized for their interesting combination of passenger-car comfort and style and their rugged mechanical durability. About the only major failing of the Champ is shared with many Studebaker models: rust. Champs tend to rust most in the cab floor and front fenders. If left unchecked, it can be extensive and costly to repair, if it is repairable at all; the Champ, unlike most American pickups of the 1960
The Studebaker Lark is a compact car, produced by Studebaker from 1959 to 1966. From its introduction in early 1959 until 1962, the Lark was a product of the Studebaker-Packard Corporation. In mid-1962, the company dropped "Packard" from its name and reverted to its pre-1954 name, the Studebaker Corporation. In addition to being built in Studebaker's South Bend, home plant, the Lark and its descendants were built in Hamilton, Canada, from 1959 to 1966 by Studebaker of Canada Limited; the cars were exported to a number of countries around the world as completed units and knocked down kits which were assembled at a local factory. Lark-based variants represented the bulk of the range produced by Studebaker after 1958 and sold in far greater volume than the contemporary Hawk and Avanti models. Beginning with the 1963 Cruiser, the Lark name was phased out of the company catalog and by early 1964, Lark-based models were being marketed under Commander and Cruiser nameplates only; the Studebaker company, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 1952, ceased automobile production in 1966.
At the time the Lark was conceived, Studebaker-Packard Corporation was under a management contract with Curtiss-Wright Aircraft Company. Studebaker-Packard had been losing money for a few years when company president Harold E. Churchill came up with the idea of abandoning the full-size car market in favor of building a new compact car that he hoped would save the company; the Lark was ingeniously designed around the core bodyshell of the full-sized 1953–1958 Studebakers. By reducing the front and rear overhangs and shortening the wheelbase ahead of the firewall, the car could still seat six people comfortably and hold a surprising amount of luggage, it was hoped that the new model would save America's oldest vehicle manufacturer when it was launched in the fall of 1958 as a 1959 model, much like the 1939 Studebaker Champion had saved the company in the years prior to World War II. In fact, it was the Champion which Churchill took as his inspiration for the Lark. Two series of Larks were available, the Lark VI and the Lark VIII, both designations indicated engine type of the cars.
Both series were available in "Deluxe" and "Regal" trim levels. With its simple grille and tasteful use of chrome and clean lines, the Lark "flew" in the face of most of the established "longer and wider" styling norms fostered by Detroit's "Big Three" automakers. Studebaker's 1957-58 Scotsman had proved the existence of a demand for a less-flashy automobile, while the Lark was not nearly so undecorated as the Scotsman, it was unmistakably purer of line than anything Detroit would offer for 1959, save the Rambler American. Sales of the Lark were good for the 1959 and 1960 model year, thanks to the fact that Studebaker had obtained "dual" dealerships with dealers of the Big Three manufacturers that did not as yet have their own compacts to sell. Initial models included two- and four-door sedans, a two-door hardtop coupe and a two-door station wagon, with two levels of trim offered on most. Aside from American Motors Corporation's Rambler line, the Lark offered the broadest line of compacts on the U.
S. market. Indeed, the Lark was the first car of its size to offer a V8 engine — the smaller Rambler American offered only an inline six, though the larger Rambler Rebel did offer a V8 close to the same size as Studebaker's, had since 1957; the lineup grew for 1960, when the company introduced a four-door station wagon. Two-door wagons were fast falling from favor throughout the industry, despite a minor redesign which made the two-door Lark wagon's tailgate and rear side windows more user-friendly, indeed the four-door proved the more popular of the two available wagons from Studebaker. A taxicab version of the Lark called the "Econ-O-Miler," was built on the station wagon's longer 113 in wheelbase; the extra 4.5 in of wheelbase translated into extra rear seat legroom, important in the taxi trade. For 1959 and 1960, Larks were available with either an L-head 170 cu in six-cylinder engine or the company's 259 cu in V8. Testers at the time gave high marks to the V8's performance. A V8 Lark could turn out a 0 to 60 mph time of around 10 seconds, on par with much larger cars.
By comparison, among the early Big Three compacts that arrived on the scene in 1960, only the Valiant could break the 20-second mark from 0-60 mph. None of the Big Three compacts offered a V8 until the second wave of such cars — the so-called "senior compacts" — arrived for 1961. To meet the challenge of those new cars head-on, for 1961 Studebaker created a new four-door sedan, the Cruiser, using the Econ-O-Miler taxicab body with an upgraded, more luxurious interior; the resulting car harked back to the long-wheelbase Studebaker Land Cruiser sedans of the late Forties and early Fifties. These cars can be distinguished from their lesser four-door counterparts by the 1959-60-style roofline and operational vent windows in the rear doors, while other sedans used one-piece glass in the rear doors. A new option, a canvas-covered folding sunroof dubbed the "Skytop" was introduced as an extra-cost feature for sedans and the two-door hardtop. A mild restyling, was carried out. Non-Cruiser sedans and the two-door hardtop received a squared-off roofline, a new front end design gave the Lark a broader grille and the availability of quad headlamps.
Although the styling was modified, engineering enhancements were t
Studebaker Silver Hawk
The Studebaker Silver Hawk was an automobile produced between 1957 and 1959 by the Studebaker Corporation of South Bend, Indiana. The Hawk was produced in 1956. There were four versions, pillared Flight Hawk and Power Hawk, hardtop Sky Hawk and Golden Hawk; the Silver Hawk model was not produced in the first year of the Hawks. The same basic car was produced for two more years as the Studebaker Hawk, since from 1959 onward no other Hawk models were being sold; the Silver Hawk was the replacement for the two lower models in the four-model Hawk range in 1956, the Flight Hawk which carried the Champion 185 in³ six-cylinder 101 hp powerplant and the Power Hawk with the Commander's 259 in³ V8. Both of these models were two-door pillared coupes in the US market, therefore, so was the Silver Hawk, which came in two differently-engined models with either the aforementioned Champion six or the 289 cu. in. President V8 engine; the Commander V8 was not offered in U. S. models. In appearance, the Silver Hawk was somewhat plainer in appearance than the Golden Hawk, the senior of the two Hawk models in 1957–1958.
There was a little bit less chrome, no supercharger or bulge in the hood, a simpler two-tone paint scheme was adopted — one color below the chrome belt line and another above, but unlike the Golden Hawk, the lower color included the fin. Some dealers painted the fin only, sometimes the deck lid recess and or the left and right "side grills" were painted in a contrasting Studebaker color; these matched the interior, some were Blue, Red or Black and were better looking according to many owners than the factory two-tone paint scheme. In the midst of a financial crisis at Studebaker after a disastrous recession-year performance in 1958, the Golden Hawk was dropped. For 1959, the Silver Hawk became the only Hawk model in production because Studebaker dealers wanted a glamorous flagship model as a dealership draw; those customers would more than walk out with Studebaker's last-ditch hope, the new Lark compact. In fact, the Silver Hawk was the only non-Lark model kept. Studebakers were exported and rebuilt as CKD's to Belgium.
Prospects could order. Cars were built by D'Ieteren Freres - Belgium for European markets sutch as the Netherlands where Studebaker was quite popular, Changes for 1959 included new tailfins, with the "Silver Hawk" script moved to the fins instead of on the trunk lid, with a new Hawk badge in between the two words; the parking lights moved to the side grilles from the front fenders, chrome moldings around the windows similar to the Golden Hawk were added, the interior was somewhere in between the two former models' levels of luxury. Two-tone paint was discontinued for all U. S. orders, though it was still available for export. Under the hood, buyers could choose the newly-shrunken 90 HP 169.6 cu. in. Six or the 259 cu. in. V8 of 180 or 195 HP; the 289 was no longer available. The 1959 model year was Studebaker's first profitable year in six years, thanks to the Lark, the rising tide of sales lifted the Silver Hawk, which sold 7,788 examples. For 1960, Studebaker dropped the Silver part of the name.
Unchanged externally from the 1959, the major change was the return of the 289 cubic inch V8 last used in 1958. This was the only engine available for U. S. orders in both 1960 and 1961, the last year of the finned Hawk. Some six-cylinder and 259 cu in V8 models were built for export markets; the 1961 models saw the limited return of a second paint color, beige, in a stripe along the base of the fin between the two lower moldings. Interiors gained the option of comfortable bucket seats; the Hawk was replaced for 1962 by the stunningly-restyled Studebaker Gran Turismo Hawk. When the 1960 model year began, U. S. automakers were in the throes of a steel strike, the shortage of steel hit Studebaker, a much smaller company than AMC or the Big Three hard. Studebaker had a proven sales winner in the 1959 Lark, continued into 1960 with little change. With steel in short supply, the company chose to focus on building as many Larks as possible to ensure an adequate supply for the company's dealers; this meant that Silver Hawk production for 1960, scheduled to begin in November or December 1959, was delayed.
Sales of the Lark began to fall off in the closing months of 1959. By the beginning of February 1960, Hawks began to roll from the South Bend assembly line, it isn't known what might have happened had Lark sales continued at their 1959 levels, but speculation has been advanced that the company might not have produced any Hawks. The lengthy delay between new-model announcement time and the start of Hawk production in 1960 shows just how close Studebaker came to not producing a model that they had at least halfheartedly promoted in print advertising and showroom brochures; the Hawk lived on, that year a stock production model won its class in the 1960 Mobil Economy Run, deliver
The Studebaker Champion is an automobile, produced by the Studebaker Corporation of South Bend, Indiana from the beginning of the 1939 model year until 1958. It was a full-size car in its first three generations and a mid-size car in its fourth and fifth generation models; the success of the Champion in 1939 was imperative to Studebaker's survival following weak sales during the 1938 model year. Unlike most other cars, the Champion was designed from a "clean sheet", had no restrictions caused by utilizing older parts or requiring the subsequent use of its components in heavier vehicles. Market research guided the selection of features, but a key principle adhered to was the engineering watchword "weight is the enemy." For its size, it was one of the lightest cars of its era. Its compact straight-6 engine outlasted the model itself and was produced to the end of the 1964 model year, with a change to an OHV design in 1961; the Champion was one of Studebaker's best-selling models because of its low price, durable engine, styling.
The car's ponton styling was authored by industrial designer Raymond Loewy, under contract with Studebaker for the design of their automobiles. Champions won. During World War II, Champions were coveted for their high mileage at a time when gas was rationed in the United States. From 1943–1945, the Champion engine was used as the powerplant for the Studebaker M29 Weasel personnel and cargo carrier, which used four sets of the Champion's leaf springs arranged transversely for its bogie suspension; the Champion was phased out in 1958 in preparation for the introduction of the 1959 Studebaker Lark. Prior to this, Studebaker had been placed under receivership, the company was attempting to return to a profitable position; the Champion was introduced in 1939. Deluxe models came with dual wipers; the 164.3 cu in I6 engine produced 78 horsepower. In 1940, Studebaker claimed 27.25 mpg‑US. In 1941, the bodies were given a more streamlined look. In 1946, Studebaker built a limited number of cars based on their 1942 body shell in preparation for its new body and design roll out in 1947.
All Studebakers built in 1946 were designated Skyway Champion models. Only the Champion series was produced. In 1947, Studebaker redesigned the Champion and the Commander, making them the first new cars after World War II; the styling included a new rear window, flat front fenders, as well as convenience features like back light illumination for gauges and automatic courtesy lights. The Champion made up 65.08% of the total sales for the automaker in 1947. The 169.9 cu in I6 engine produced 80 hp in 1947. In 1950, output was increased to 85 hp. New styling was introduced, as well as an automatic transmission. One of the new styling features on the cars was the wraparound, "greenhouse" rear window, on 2-door cars from 1947–1951, at first just an option, in 1950 it was given its own trim line, the Starlight coupe; the "spinner" grill was introduced in 1950, similar to that of a Ford Deluxe, but was dropped again for the 1952 model year. In 1953, Studebaker was redesigned by Robert Bourke, from Raymond Loewy's design studio..
The 2-door coupe with a central pillar was called the Starlight while the more expensive hardtop coupe was called the Starliner. With regard to the 2-door coupe it is important to note that there were 2 versions of it. There was the shortened 4 door sedan version; the back side windows in the shortened 4-door sedans are noticeably bigger than the windows in the Loewy Coupe. The Loewy Coupe is more collectable than the shortened 4-door sedans. Although similar, the body pieces on the 2 cars are not interchangeable; the front end of the new Champion was lower than contemporaries. No convertible was offered in 1953. In 1954, a new 2-door station wagon called. Power of the L-head inline-six remained unchanged at 85 hp, although in 1955 this was replaced by a larger version with 101 hp. For 1955 the Starlight/Starliner labels were dropped and a wraparound windshield was introduced; the 1956 Champion sedans received different bodywork, with pronounced "eyebrows" over the headlights and large tailfins. The coupes received the new Hawk-style bodywork with a centrally placed square grille reminiscent of a period Mercedes-Benz.
In 1957, the Champion Scotsman, a stripped down Champion, was introduced in an attempt to compete with the “Big Three” and Nash in the low-price field. Shortly after its introduction, the model was renamed Studebaker Scotsman. Two engines were available, a 185 cu in 101 hp "Sweepstakes" L-head I6, or a 289 cu in 210 hp "Sweepstakes" OHV V8. Maloney, James H.. Studebaker Cars. Crestline Books. ISBN 0-87938-884-6. Langworth, Richard. Studebaker, the Postwar Years. Motorbooks International. ISBN 0-87938-058-6. Gunnell, John, ed.. The Standard Catalog of American Cars 1946-1975. Krause Publications. ISBN 0-87341-096-3. Reminiscence from the 1985 Interview with Audrey Moore Hodges