50th Anniversary
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50th Anniversary 1961-2011
2013 was the 50th anniversary of the 1963 Studebaker Avanti and the introduction of the 1964 model. During 1963 three events contributed to the increased visibility of the new Studebaker GT. First, in early 1963, Studebaker Avanti production reached the highest levels of the production period. A record 592 cars came off the assembly line in January and 581 in February. Second, praise from the automotive press and increased visibility in magazines and on television made the Avanti a pop culture icon. Car and Driver said, "The Avanti is sensational for its appearance alone, and its performance places it in a class by itself." Third, the changes that would distinguish the 1963 model from the 1964 model were introduced in August. 1963 and 1964 models were the same except for the introduction of square headlight bezels, a grill in the air scoop below the bumper, and new interiors. The largest number of changes were made in August of 1963 and these are considered the changes that defined the 1964 model.
1963 Production AvantiProduction - Studebaker production of the Avanti was from June 1962 through December 1963. Highest production months were January (592) and February (581) 1963. Studebaker produced 4647 Avantis during the production period. 1963 and 1964 models overlapped during August 1963. The primary differences were round to square headlight bezels and revised interiors. 1963 interiors were often 2-toned combining the base color with a medium beige; 1964 interiors were one color with black carpeting.
1963 Media AccoladesAccolades - Canada Track & Traffic called it "A bold, fresh concept with an undeniable feeling of motion that makes Avanti's competitors seem decidedly old-fashioned." Sportscar World said "Studebaker's startling Avanti has caused raised eyebrows among diehards in the American motor industry, who have already nicknamed it America's 'Ferrari. Car and Driver said, "The Avanti is sensational for its appearance alone, and its performance places it in a class by itself."
1964 Production Model1964 production model - 1963 and 1964 Avanti models overlapped in August of 1963. The square headlight bezels were the most obvious change and 1964 models had solid color interiors with black carpeting. Production of the 1964 model ended in December 1963 and none were actually made in 1964. The Avanti seemed to be a dazzling star that would shine brightly for a short time then would disappear into automotive history, but the car was soon to be reborn.
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