Studebaker was founded in Indiana during the 1850s as a wagon maker for the military as well as the mining and farming industries. The first Studebaker motor car arrived in 1902, and was swiftly followed by high-end limousines and buses, as well as Speedsters and Tourers for the 1920s. The company benefitted from the outbreak of World War I with vast orders from the British Government; similarly, WWII brought further opportunities with the production of trucks and the famous M29 Weasel. Post-war, attention was turned to ‘average Americans’ and a long-line of increasingly innovatively designed models were launched, appealing not just to the American market.
This original right hand drive 1956 Studebaker Champion-President resided in South Africa before being imported to the UK in 1989, when it formed part of a private collection. A bare metal respray was carried out in 2012, and we understand that the paintwork, bodywork and underside remain excellent. The striking interior has survived well and is largely original, as is the brightwork; however, there is evidence of a small repair to the rear bumper and the grille bars have some slight pitting. We are informed that the mechanics are excellent and that the exhaust system is stainless steel.
From the design house of America’s ‘father of modern design’ Raymond Loewy, the innovative Studebaker models of the mid-Twentieth Century boasted sleek, low and clean lines. The vendor informs us that this is the only known ‘Ladies Model’ residing in Europe and features special switches (for long fingernails) and higher pedals suitable for high-heeled shoes!
This easy to drive, fabulous-looking American motor is equipped with ‘Easyshift’ transmission and ‘Hill Holder’ brakes. The flight-style instrumentation boasts a Cyclops magnifying speedometer to further impress.
Supplied with the Studebaker is the V5C registration certificate and two spare gearboxes.