Studebaker Pickup Trucks
I started really paying attention to Studebaker trucks for the first time at this year's SDC Ohio Chapter meet in Tallmadge.
Most of the Studebaker trucks on display were what Stude people call "C-cabs." The C-cab was styled by Bob Bourke, designer of the magnificent '53 coupes and the forward sheet metal of the popular 1950-51 "bullet noses." Most were two-wheel drive, but four-wheel drive was available. The engines were all flathead straight sixes at first, but the OHV V-8 developed for passenger cars became available in late 1954. They had solid axles front and rear, with leaf springs. (Sounds primitive, but this was standard practice at the time; independent front suspensions didn't become common in the pickup world until the 1960s.) The most notable feature of the C-cabs was the double-walled bed; they were the first pickups to have them.
Techincally speaking, C-cabs are actually two different trucks, the "2R-series" built from 1949 to 1954, and the "E-series" built from 1955 to 1960. Studebaker truck people can tell a 2R from an E, and one sub-variation of E from the other, with a sideways glance at a hundred yards distance with one eye closed. As for the rest of us--well, me anyway--they're just about indistinguishable. The only obvious changes in the appearance of Studebaker trucks were the one-piece windshields introduced in 1954, and the larger rear cab window that followed a year later.
This one's a '49, and looks like it just came back from a run to the feed store.
The interior is rather Spartan--heaters were an extra-cost option!
C-cabs even look good in Camry beige.
The E-series C-cab pickups were replaced in 1960 by the "T-cab" Champ---which still carried an "E" catalog number just to confuse people. The Champ replaced Bob Bourke's 1949 cab with the front half of a Lark sedan body--a clever restyling that completely changed the look of the vehicle at the cost of tooling up only one new sheet metal stamping (the back wall of the cab). The frame, suspension, and bed were unchanged.
This particular Champ had the 289 V-8. After 1960, the 6-cylinder Champ would use the OHV "Skybolt Six" in place of the old-school flathead