1963 Studabaker R2 Avanti
289 R2 Supercharged Engine
The Studebaker Avanti was a personal luxury coupe built by the Studebaker Corporation between June 1962 and December 1963.Studebaker itself referred to the Avanti as "America's Only 4 Passenger High-Performance Personal Car!" in its sales literature. The Avanti was developed at the direction of the automaker's president, Sherwood Egbert."The car's design theme is the result of sketches Sherwood Egbert "doodled"on a jet-plane flight west from Chicago 37 days after becomingpresident of Studebaker in February, 1961. Designed by Raymond Loewy's team of Tom Kellogg, Bob Andrews and John Ebstein on a 40-daycrash program, the Avanti featured a radical fiberglass body design mounted on a modified Studebaker Lark Daytona 109-inch convertible chassiswith a modified 289 Hawk engine. The car was fitted with front disc-brakes which were British Dunlop designed units, made under license by Bendix , "the first American production model to offer them." A Paxton supercharger was offered as an option.
We are not sure the paint is original. In the paperwork, the car is said to have been gold. There is no doubt the car could use a professional repainting in order to restore it to original status. Safety? The Avanti (Italian for "forward") was the first mass-produced fiberglass-body four-passenger American car. It also was the first such car to use caliper-style disc brakes.
The Avanti had advanced safety features, when no U.S. automaker particularly gave a darn about safety. Such features included a built-in roll bar, padded interior and door latches that became structural body members when closed. It is possible that these are original miles on this car. We don't have absolute proof, but the condition of the car hints that it could be.
The interior of this great Avanti is said to be original. It is showing it's age a bit, but not bad for a 51 year old car. Performance? An Avanti with a supercharged V-8 was one of the fastest 1960s autos. A supercharged model hit 168 mph, while a modified version reached 196 mph--a staggering speed for a 1960s production street car. Some 29 Bonneville speed records were smashed by a supercharged Avanti.
Powering the Avanti was a modified version of Studebaker's dated but sturdy 289-cubic-inch V-8. This "Jet Thrust" engine developed 240 horsepower in standard "R1" form, with such items as a 3/4-race high-lift camshaft, dual-breaker distributor, four-barrel carburetor and dual exhausts. It developed 290 horsepower in supercharged "R2" form.
The undercarriage of the Avanti is in very good condition. You can see there is no evidence of rust, and everything is very well detailed.