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Yep, Studebaker built trucks and rather stylish ones at that! After the war, it was a virtual free-for-all in the automotive world with alliances and corporations being built, and Studebaker was definitely a player at almost all levels. This handsome 1951 pickup was worlds ahead of the Big Three, and if you're looking for something unusual today, it's a fabulous choice.
Studebaker was perhaps the first truck manufacturer (except for maybe Hudson) to realize that style would sell trucks as well as it sold cars. Sure, they all had rugged good looks, but if you look at this Stude next to any of the others, it looks sleek and advanced. Painted bright green, it has a working-class shine that works well at the garden center, especially with the wood stake sides. A professional cut and buff would really help, but then again, would you use it as a truck if it were too perfect? I think I'd leave it as-is and just have fun and not worry about it. The important stuff is in great shape, and it doesn't look like it was ever rusty or patched back together, which is a rarity among vintage pickups these days. There's not much trim, and most of it is painted for a working-class purposefulness, although the hood ornament is definitely a Studebaker trademark! And you're really going to love the "Studebaker" script on the tailgate which will set this truck apart at any show you attend.
Quite likely vinyl when it was new, the bench seat now wears gray fabric upholstery that's a lot more comfortable, particularly on hot days. The dash is covered in low-contrast gray paint that reduces reflections in the windshield and matches the upholstery pretty darned well. Simple door panels cover the inner workings of the doors and offer an armrest, which was still a luxury not found in most pickups, and the step-up design makes it easier to get into this Stude than the competition. The instruments are all housed in their own rectangular panel with the primary controls for lights, ignition, and wipers, and the center grilles are where the optional radio would have lived. An under-dash heater is effective on cool nights and the lone option on this hauler. Studebaker floor mats are a nice touch, too!
The engine is a 170 cubic inch inline-six that is about as durable and sophisticated as an anvil, but it sure works.. The engine bay is likely original and unrestored, with factory-applied red engine enamel, single downdraft carburetor, and cast iron manifolds. An aftermarket air cleaner is easier to maintain than the original oil bath setup, and there are plenty of signs this truck has had regular maintenance over the years. The transmission is a 3-speed manual with truck-like gearing, so while it's happy at 50 MPH, it's definitely not for the Autobahn. The suspension is fortified with modern tube shocks, and the brakes are quite effective. Stock steel wheels with flashy 6.00-16 wide whites also give this truck a big boost in the charisma department.
For the guy who likes to be a little unusual but doesn't need a lot of flash, this Studebaker makes a fine statement. Call today!
- Cloth Interior
- Numbers Matching
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