Rock River Valley Chapter of the Studebaker Drivers Club

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Prelude: The Sedans and Wagons manufactured from 1956 to 1958 (the end of full sized cars) is a period of significant struggle for Studebaker.  The reason these sought after cars are now becoming fairly scare is that there were just not that many of them made.  Some were extremely low production, especially some of the Wagons and of coarse the 1958 Sedan Hardtops.  Even the 1958 pod (dual headlight) cars, are being forgiven.  Actually, these were very good cars with fair economy, nice styling, and a great ride.  If your in the market for a Studebaker, you owe it to yourself take a look.  PS Just my opinion.

The 1956 Champion:
 
After the 1953 to 1955 design cycle, in 1956, Studebaker was ready to reshape the sedan and wagon body panels front and back.  While the center section would remain the same, gone were the sloping hood and trunk.  The new face lift would introduced squared-up styling for 1956.  Many of the Studebaker executives felt that Studebaker had developed a reputation for creating odd looking cars and wanted to break that cycle for 1956.  Lowey's expensive contract was not renewed for the sedan and wagon design.  Most of the exterior design work is done by Vince Gardner (now a freelance designer) and most of the interior is done by Duncan McRae.  The grille, fenders, taillights and sedan rear bumper were new.  The sedan rear bumper, has slots for the exhaust pipes, which was all the rage in the mid-fifties.  However, after the chrome pitted and turned black, not so much.  The side “reverse angle contour” (still present on Hawks), seen since 1953 is eliminated.  The rear quarter panel on the new two-door sedans extends all the way to the door, finally removing that fake looking rear ½ door look.  The wagon, still has the sloping rear quarter panel, but a small fin is added to remove the slope.  The new grille has a large center section of square mesh, with two side grilles.  The coat of arms badge returns to the center of the hood and there is a new bull's eye hood ornament.  The 1947 to 1949 regular hubcaps return, the full wheel covers are new.  Eyebrows top the headlights and a single side trim starts near the headlight and ends at the taillight.  It droops starting at the front of the front door, running just below the door handles and then kicks up rapidly and finishes in a straight line to the end.  Exception on this trim, is the Sedanet, where the side trim ends just before the rear wheel well.  Both the front fenders and the rear-quarter panels have stamped-in flares just behind the wheel wells.

The interior has a new dash design featuring a “Cyclops Eye” speedometer on top of the four remaining instruments below; two “idiot lights” for amps and oil pressure; and two red and green lighted gauges for gas and temperature.  The light and heater controls were placed below these four gauges.  The glove box is in the center of the dash, below the radio (if installed else below the radio delete panel).  The clock and radio speaker (if installed) are to the far right.   Built in arm rests and colorful new cloth/vinyl or all-vinyl upholstery are available.  The door handles and window cranks are now installed with hidden snap rings instead of those former visible Phillips screw.  

       Note: this is a right hand drive cars

Mechanical changes were limited, but significant.  First, the electrical system is now 12 volts.  This would be the year most American car manufactures changed over from 6 volts to 12 volts.  12 volt systems provided more starting power and could support a heavier electrical load for things like power windows, power seats, and air conditioning.  Second, gone forever is the Automatic Drive transmission.  Having never lived up the volume Borg Warner or for that matter Studebaker it's self had expected, this transmission just becomes to expensive.  The replacement is the Flightomatic, a two speed automatic similar to a transmission Borg Warner would make for Ford called the Fordomatic.  Studebaker would use the PNDLR shift pattern where Ford used PRNDL.  The Flightomatic has no torque converter bypass, but is a lot cheaper to produce.  This would be the staple automatic for Studebaker until the end of production.

Restoration Information:  Champion and Commanders road on the same wheel base, 116.5 inches and the sheet metal was the same for both cars.  The difference, mainly in the engine where Commanders were V8's and Champion's were straight-six.  The model line-up was identical one Hawk (Flight Hawk / Power Hawk), one Wagon (Pelham / Parkview), one 4-door Sedan, one 2-door Sedan, and one 2-door Sedanet.  The former trim levels like “Custom”, “DeLuxe”, “Regal” are eliminated.  The Sedanet is the least expensive car, but is not near as spartan as the former “Custom” series.  They were initially painted only in single tone colors.  Studebaker like most manufactures though the public was not interested in a stripped down very spartan car.  The Scotsman's for 1957 would prove how much they were wrong.  At start of production 23 two-tone paint combinations were available and 10 solid colors.  In the spring, 6 new two-tone combinations would be offered and Sedanet could be had with most of the color combinations.  Five metallic colors were used and two of the two-tone color combinations were available only on the President Classic, (Mocha/Doeskin and Mocha/Snowcap White).  While of coarse , many options and accessories were available, the newest would be the uniquely mounted “Karbelt” (seat belt), which was attached to the door, not the floor.  When not in use, the longer section clipped to the door for storage.  It was though that this set-up would prevent the door from flying open in the event of an accident.  Click here to see the Options and Accessory listing.

Source:  Parts of the information above is from "Studebaker the Complete Story" and "TW October 1989".

Interior Seat Fabrics 1956 Sedans and Wagons (Domestic Models)
Champion & Commander Sedanet
Standard Upholstery
Optional extra cost Upholstery
Charcoal Diamond Pattern cloth with Offwhite vinyl bolster
All black Vinylab Waffle Grain Imitation Leather with Offwhite vinyl bolster
Champion & Commander 2dr & 4dr Sedans
Standard Upholstery - Triangle Pattern Cloth with vinyl bolsters in the following colors:
Cloth Seat Upholstery
Vinyl Bolster
Charcoal Black
Offwhite
Dark Blue
Light Blue
Dark Green
Light Green
Optional extra cost Upholstery - All vinyl in the following colors: 
Vinyl Seat Upholstery
Vinyl Bolster
Charcoal Black
Offwhite
Dark Blue
Light Blue
Dark Green
Light Green
Champion Pelham and Commander Parkview Wagons
Standard Upholstery
Opional extra cost Upholstery
Charcoal Black Vinyllap with Offwhite vinyl bolster
Charcoal Nylon Frieze Cloth and Offwhite vinyl bolster

Exterior Colors 1956 Sedans & Wagons
Solid Colors
Code
Midnight Black
P5611
Snowcap White
P5612
Daybreak Blue
P5613
Airforce Blue Mettalic
P5614
Seaside Green
P5615
Glenbrook Green Metallic
P5616
Cambridge Grey Metallic
P5617
Yellowstone
P5618
Two-Tones
Accent Color
Basic Color
Code
Daybreak Blue
Airforce Blue Matallic
P5620
Airforce Blue
Daybreak Blue
P5621
Snowcap White
Daybreak Blue
P5622
Snowcap White
Daybreak Blue
P5623
Seaside Green
Glenbrook Green Metallic
P5624
Glenbrook Green Metallic
Seaside Green
P5625
Snowcap White
Seaside Green
P5626
Snowcap White
Glenbrook Green Metallic
P5627
Snowcap White
Cambridge Grey Metallic
P5628
Snowcap White
Midnight Black
P5629
Midnight Black
Snowcap White
P5630
Midnight Black
Romany Red
P5631
Romany Red
Midnight Black
P5632
Romany Red
Snowcap White
P5633
Snowcap White
Romany Red
P5634
Sunglow Gold
Romany Red
P5635
Snowcap White
Sunglow Gold
P5636
Doeskin
Mocha
P5637 1
Snowcap White
Mocha
P5638 1
Midnight Black
Yellowstone
P5639
Sunglow Gold
Yellowstone
P5640
Snowcap White
Tangerine
P5642 2
Snowcap White
Rosebud
P5664 3
Snowcap White
Redwood Metallic
P5665 3
Redwood Metallic
Snowcap White
P5666 3
Seaside Green
Midnight Black
P5667 3
Daybreak Blue
Cambridge Grey Metallic
P5668 3
Snowcap White
Yellowstoneit
P5669 3
Champion and Commander Sedanets were only available in solid colors until April of 1956.  After that date they could be ordered with most of the above two-tones (see 2).  Colors 5619 & 5641 (not listed above) were used on some 1956 Hawks exclusively.  Wheels were painted body color on solid tone cars or the basic color on two-tones.
1 Only available on the President Classic.  2 Discontinued in April 1956.  3 Spring color combinations introduced in April 1956.

1956 Studebaker Champion Series 56G
Model
No. Doors
Passengers
TW Original Price
Original Price
No. Produced
Flight Hawk(C3)
2
5
$1,996.00
$1809.00
4,389
Pelham (D4)
2
6
$2,232.00
$2038.00
2,236 2 & 3
Sedan (F4)
2
6
$1,946.00
$1772.00
4,301
Sedan (W4)
4
6
$1,996.00
$1819.00
11,983
Sedanet (F2)
2
6
$1,844.00
$1678.00
3,097
4dr CustomSedan (W4) 1 
4
6
?
?
1,170
4dr Regal Sedan (W6) 1
4
?
?
1,180
Total
28,356 
1 Special Order, Canada, and export.  2 All Canadian sold wagons were assembled in the U.S.  3 Includes D8 Ambulet production.
The data in this table is taken from CCD, except the TW Price, column 4.  The CCD production numbers and TW production numbers were identical.
Serial numbers for South Bend – G-1,357,501 to G-1,379,200 for Los Angeles – G-936,701 to G-938,797 for Canada – G-763,701 to G-769,100
Starting engine numbers South Bend – 1,180,251 to 1,202,100 for LA – L-3,201 to L-5,297 for Canada C-66,001 to C-71,400

The 1957 Champion:

 
The 1957 Sedans and Wagons were mostly based on the 1956 models, the 1957 exterior changes included new front and rear bumpers, a new grille design, and new taillights.  The side trim and the full rim hubcaps were revised.   On the interior, the speedometer housing is widened to include turn signal indicators.  The molded -in arm rests from 56 are replaced with a conventional replaceable versions and a new dished steering wheel is standard on all but a few of the earlier Custom models.
 
Mechanical improvements include new variable ratio front coil springs and optional Twin-Traction introduced on 1956 Packard's and light duty Studebaker trucks.
 
Last for 1957 is the release in May of the Scotsman line listed below.   The Scotsman is essentially a Champion stripped of it's side chrome and other ornamentation.  The interior is very basic.   The speedometer and trunk handle are left over 1956 parts and simple oil pressure and charging warning lights are employed.  The rear window are fixed.   Exterior paint is limited to a choice of three solid colors.  Vacuum windshield wipers were standard with electrics as an option.   Hill Holder, TwinTraction, and wet type air cleaner were about the only other options available.   Dealers were discouraged from adding options to this very spartan offering.  The Scotsman is only manufactured in South Bend and those sold in Canada were shipped there from South Bend.  There is no Los Angeles production as LA is shutdown at the end of the 1956 model-year.

Restoration Information:  The earlier engines were painted Turquoise with Black valve covers, air cleaner, generator, and starter.  Most oil pans, filler caps and fans were also Black.   Fuel pump, wiper motor, and carburetor were natural metal. Engines after about May of 1957 and all Scotsman  engines were painted Silver-grey.  The panel under the front bumper on all Scotsman's and most later model Sedans and Wagons was painted Silver-grey.

 Exterior Colors: 1957 Sedans & Wagons Solid Colors
Color
Code
Studebaker
Packard
Midnight Black
P5710
x
x
Artic White
P5711
x
x
Apache Red
P5712
x
 
Coppertone Metallic
P5713
x
 
Tiara Gold Metallic
P5714
x
 
Woodsmoke Grey Metallic
P5715
x
x
Glendale Green Metallic
P5716
x
x
Turquoise
P5717
x
x
Azure Blue Metallic
P5718
x
x
Wedgewood Blue
P5719
x
x
Taupe Metallic
P5720
x
 
Regal Red P5771
 
x
Cumberland Grey
P5772
 
x
Lilac
P5773
 
x
Slate Mist Metallic
P5779*
x
x
Inca Cream
P5780*
x
x
Admiral Blue
P5786**
x
 
Highland Grey
P5787**
x
 
Lombard Green
P5788**
x
 
*Spring Color **Scotsman Only.   The Lombard Green color offered on 1957 Scotsmans was a returned 1953 color.  The lower instrument panel color on Scotsmans was Florida Beige.

Upholstery Materials: 1957 Sedans & Wagons
A detailed presentation of all the interior fabrics and the exterior colors that they went with is beyond our scope here.  That information can be found in Studebaker's 1957 Color and Fabric Selector dealer album.  The following is just a listing of the fabrics and trim codes.  The trim codes show up on the production orders.  Production Orders for most years and models can be purchased from the Studebaker National Museum.  Most fabrics are two-tone, light and dark. 
Scotsman 
Textured Breathable Naugahyde, & Grained Vinyl
Color
Code
Charcoal (& tan)
?
Custom Champions & Commanders
Triangle Pattern Cloth & Hair Cell Grained Vinyl
Color
Code
Charcoal (& off white)
21 CH
Blue (two-tone)
22 BL
Green (two-tone)
23 GR
Deluxe Champions & Commanders
Jacquard Cloth & Down Cushion Vinyl
Color
Code
Charcoal (two-tone)
41 CH
Blue (two-tone)
42 BL
Green
43 GR
Pelham, Parkview & Provincial Wagons
Pre-embossed Down Cushion Vinyl & Grained Vinyl
Color
Code
Charcoal (& white)
51 CHV
Blue (two-tone)
52 BLV
Green (two-tone)
53 GRV
Red (& white)
54 RDV

1957 Studebaker Champion Series 57G, 116.5 in. wheelbase
Model
No. Doors
Passengers
Original Price
TW Original Price
No. Produced
Scotsman 4Dr Sedan (W1)
4
6
?
$1,826.00
3,005
Custom 4Dr Sedan (W2)
4
6
$1,868.00
$2,049.00
2,106
DeLuxe 4Dr Sedan (W4)
4
6
$1,981.00
$2,171.00
8,313
Regal 4Dr Sedan (W6)
4
6
?
?
581182 (247)
Scotsman 2Dr Sedan (F1)
2
6
?
$1,776.00
2,943
Custom 2Dr Sedan (W2)
2
6
$1,823.00
$2,001.00
1,751
DeLuxe 2Dr Sedan (W4)
2
6
$1,936.00
$2,123.00
1,950
Scotsman 2Dr Wagon (D1)
2
6
?
$1,995.00
3,400
Pelham 2DR Wagon (D4)
2
6
$2,176.00
$2,382.00
1,120
Custom 4DR Wagon (P2)
4
6
?
?
252
DeLuxe 4DR Wagon (P4)
4
6
?
?
13
Total
24,861
1 Canada 2 Export 3 The one Champion 4DR wagon may have been a Provincial.
Scotsman Serial Numbers ─ Start 1,393,130 ─ Ending 1,405,239 ─ South Bend
Champion & Pelham Serial Numbers ─ Start 1,379,201 ─ Ending 1,404,239 ─ South Bend
Champion & Pelham Serial Numbers ─ Start 769,101 ─ Ending 772,216 ─ Canada
Engine Serial Numbers ─ Start 1,202,101 ─ Ending 1,228,400 ─ South Bend
Engine Serial Numbers ─ Start C-71,401 ─ Ending C-74,700 ─ Canada
The majority of the information in this table came from TW February & March 2005
 
The 1958 Champion:
 
1958 is a year in which Studebaker is just trying to get by until the planned Lark can be introduced in the fall.   Interesting, is the amount of money Studebaker would speed to produce the Packard Hawk and the Sedan Hardtops, considering they were aware these models most likely would not be needed in a Lark based future.  However, this was not the big news for 58, it was the pod based duel headlights and large tail-fins.  The add-on pods looked like a poorly though-out, nickel-and-dime design, Studebaker would most likely have been better off without.  We probably need to cut Duncan McRae some slack, as for sure he had little tooling dollars to work with.  The fins, fared a little better and looked the best on the longer Presidents. The product line is reduced from 23 models to 17, which included the release two new models.   The result would be a significant reduction of the number of Scotsman and Champion models.  The Scotsman would field 2 & 4 Door Sedans and a 2 Door Wagon.  The Champion would be available (Domestically) in only 2 Door and 4 Door Sedans.  The Champion line would be the models least effected by pods and fins.   The Scotsman was designed with neither.  Exterior Scotsman changes are in the center grille where the pattern is now square instead of rectangular and the taillights which are now round instead of being oval.  It does however get the grille based vent system (gone in the entire sedan and wagon line are the front fender vents seen since 1941), new “Studebaker” script on the left rear fender, and the lowered roof on the sedans.  The Champion gets the pods, but only a single headlight (duel headlights are optional) and the fins.  It also gets round taillights and a refined grille.  The hood ornament and and crest are eliminated and “Studebaker” is now displayed near the bottom of the hood.  There are no interior changes to the Scotsman.  Champion changes include an enlarged speedometer housing to hold all the gauges and several of the toggle switches.  The ignition keyway is lighted and smaller flush-level door sill molding are added. Many new fabrics, colors and prints are available in cloth and vinyl or all vinyl.
 
Mechanical changes are asymmetric rear springs (longer to the rear), a new one-piece drive shaft, and the 14 inch tires found on the Commanders and President are made optional on Champion's.
 
Restoration Information:  The engine block was painted Silver-grey.  The air cleaner, generator, oil filler cap, and starter were Black.  Pan & fan, either Silver-grey or Black.  Fuel pump, wiper motor, and carburetor were natural metal.  Studebakers came in a wide array of interior fabrics.  The best source of information is the 1958 Color and Fabric Selector (PD 8003).  The fabric code can be found on the production order for each car.  The materials had names like Tabby, Jacquard, Thumbprint, Sawtooth, Abstract, Tweed, and Starburst.

 Exterior Solid Colors for 1958 Scotsman Sedans & Wagons
Color
Code
Midnight Black
P5810
Parchment White
P5820
Loch Blue
P5823
Glen Green 1
P5824
Glasgow Grey 1
P5825
Surf Green 2
P5814
Cliff Gray 2
P5816
Parade Red 2
P5821
Mile-A-Thon Yellow 3
P5893
1  Colors phased out in May 1958  2 Made available on Scotsman May 15th, 1958
3 Offered for a short time during the Mile-A-Thon Contest


 Exterior Solid Colors for 1958 Champion Sedans & Wagons
Color
Code
Midnight Black
P5810
Waterfall Blue
P5811
Mountain Blue Metallic
P5812
Park Green Metallic
P5813
Surf Green
P5814
Jewel Beige
P5815
Cliff Gray
P5816
Buff Grey Metallic
P5817
Canyon Copper Metallic
P5818
White Gold Metallic
P5819
Parchment White
P5820
Parade Red
P5821
Shadowtone Red Metallic
P5822


 Exterior Two-Tone Colors for 1958  Champion Sedans & Wagons
Base Color
Accent Color
Code
Code Reverse Color
Park Green Metallic
Surf Green
P5826
P5827
Mountain Blue Metallic
Waterfall Blue
P5828
P5829
Buff Grey Metallic
Cliff Gray
P5830
P5831
Canyon Copper Metallic
Jewel Beige
P5832
P5833
Midnight Black
Parchment White
P5834
P5835
Canyon Copper Metallic
Parchment White
P5836
P5837
White Gold Metallic
Parchment White
P5838
P5839
Park Green Metallic
Parchment White
P5840
P5841
Surf Green
Parchment White
P5842
N/A
Mountain Blue Metallic
Parchment White
P5844
P5845
Waterfall Blue
Parchment White
P5846
N/A
Buff Grey Metallic
Parchment White
P5848
P5849
Cliff Gray
Parchment White
P5850
N/A
Jewel Beige
Parchment White
P5852
N/A
Shadowtone Red Metallic
Jewel Beige
P5854
P5855
Shadowtone Red Metallic
Parchment White
P5856
P5857
White Gold Metallic
Midnight Black
P5858
P5859
Parade Red
Parchment White
P5860
P5861


Model
No. Doors
Passengers
Original Price
TW Original Price
No. Produced
Scotsman 4Dr Sedan (W1)
4
6
$1,874.00
$1,874.00
5,538
Scotsman 2Dr Sedan (F1)
2
6
$1,795.00
$1,795.00
7,654
Scotsman 2Dr Wagon (D1)
2
6
$2,055.00
$2,055.00
7,680
Champion 2Dr Sedan (F4)
2
6
$2,185.00
$2,189.00 
1,455
Champion 4Dr Sedan (W4)
4
6
$2,353.00
$2,253.00
5,178
Champiom 4DR Wagon (P4)
4
6
?
?
122
Champion Sedan Hardtop (J4)
2
6
?
?
1202
Total
27,637
2 Export  Yellow background information comes from (Studebaker The Complete Story)
Starting Serial Numbers 58G 1,405,401 South Bend ─ 772,301 Canada
Starting Engine Numbers 58G 1,228,401 South Bend ─ C-74,701 Canada
Information in this chart comes from (CCD) unless otherwise noted.  The price and production information from CCD exactly matched TW August 1991