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HomePick of the DayPick of the Day: 1963 Studebaker Avanti R2 in ‘concours-quality’ condition

Pick of the Day: 1963 Studebaker Avanti R2 in ‘concours-quality’ condition

The supercharged version of the unique GT was restored by a knowledgeable collector

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The Studebaker Avanti is a fascinating car, personal-luxury GT with strong performance, unique styling by Raymond Lowey and his team, and built by the most unlikely of manufacturers in, of all places. South Bend. Indiana.

Ten years ago, you would be hard-pressed to see an Avanti on the market for more than $25,000, which was puzzling because when new, it was hailed as a landmark design, and production of the Avanti from 1963 to 1964 totaled somewhere around 5,200 total.

avanti, Pick of the Day: 1963 Studebaker Avanti R2 in ‘concours-quality’ condition, ClassicCars.com Journal

For comparison, two other landmark American cars were introduced in 1963, the C2 Corvette and the Buick Riviera, had much-higher production numbers. There were 21,513 C2 Corvettes built for 1963, and Buick produced around 40,000 Rivieras, making the Studebaker look quite rare today. The Avanti had the right ingredients all along to be a collector car worth considerably more money, and it was only a matter of time before they rose in value.

The Pick of the Day is a 1963 Studebaker Avanti R2 being advertising on ClassicCars.com by a dealer in St. Louis, Missouri, and it appears to be a concours-level example. This car was owned and restored by one of the preeminent Avanti collectors in the world, and it looks to be in perfect correct condition.

avanti

The dealer describes the car as “exquisitely restored and fully detailed to concours-quality standards under the guidance of a devoted marque enthusiast.”

This Avanti is a rare R2 model, which means it was equipped with a Paxton Supercharger from the factory, and one of only 1,883 built during production. The supercharged 289cid V8 in the Avanti R2 was rated at 290 horsepower and 303 pound-feet of torque, making the car capable of a 0-60 time of 7.9 seconds, quite quick for an American luxury GT car in 1963.

This Avanti has been updated with a 4-speed manual transmission, the dealer says.

avanti

This car is presented in factory-correct Avanti Black paint with a correct Orange and Fawn interior. Now that may sound a bit odd, but the pictures with the ad show that it’s a great look, well in line with period taste.

The collector/restorer of the Avanti knows all there is to know about these unique cars; he won his class with one at the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance a few years back.

avanti, Pick of the Day: 1963 Studebaker Avanti R2 in ‘concours-quality’ condition, ClassicCars.com Journal

The fact that an Avanti was invited to Amelia, let alone receiving a class win at the prestigious event, show that these cars are finally getting their day in the sun, and they are being recognized as the important cars they have always been.

Every detail on this example has been attended to, the dealer says, and the pictures with the ad tell the story of a superbly restored Avanti.

avanti

Sure, you could still buy a Studebaker Avanti in driver condition for around $25,000, but to obtain an R2 model and then restore it to this kind of condition would cost you much more than the $86,500 asking price.

To view this vehicle on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day

Hagerty
Andy Reid
Andy Reid's first car, purchased at age 15, was a 1968 Fiat 124 coupe. His second, obtained by spending his college savings fund, was a 1966 Ferrari 330 GT 2+2. Since then, he has owned more than 150 cars—none of them normal or reasonable—as well as numerous classic motorcycles and scooters. A veteran of film, television, advertising and helping to launch a few Internet-based companies, Reid was a columnist for Classic Motorsports magazine for 12 years and has written for several other publications. He is considered an expert in European sports and luxury cars and is a respected concours judge. He lives in Canton, Connecticut.

15 COMMENTS

  1. Hi all,

    The car is beautiful indeed. Seems to have the manual trans which is even rarer. I believe that some production reports should be supplied by Studebaker Museum in order to justify the original specification of the car including supercharger and manual trans.

    To the best of my knowledge exterior black with orange interior color was never an original combination back in 1963.

    Really nice car but let’s see if it gets the appropriate love from the buyers.

    • Hi Cain, In fact it was an original combination but this specific car was not delivered in Black with the Orange seats. The production report for this car is available if not from the dealer then the owner. There were very few Black 1963 Avantis delivered due to the extra work needed to make the black color look good on the cars. they were simply to expensive to built and they did away with the color for the most part.

      That being said the color combo change should really not effect this cars value. Also it was delivered as a real R2 with the supercharged engine and a 4 speed gearbox. It is a truly exceptional example.

  2. Always liked the Avanti styling. This is restored beautifully but it would take me awhile to get used to the orange interior . Nice to see something other than the same old mustangs, camaro’s, etc.

  3. The design was far ahead of competition: curved side glass, coke-bottle plan and profile, bubble glass rear window, and contoured rockers. I always wanted one, so did my Dad, who was a Studebaker enthusiast, always remarking on German technology. He owned 62 and 64 Larks and Hawk. I wish somebody would resurrect with modern technology and body design.

  4. The center console and control knobs are out of a1964 Avanti. The dash clock is aftermarket and larger than the original. There are some issues under the hood as well. This car is well done, too much so in some cases. By the way it’s not a $86,000 car.

  5. Yes I have a gold original nonrestored R2…..only new paint….46000 miles was a feature car in a now extink magazine of which I have a copy and the photo shoot ..favorite

  6. I have my fathers 63 R2. Gold with Black interior. Only thing it’s missing is the standard transmission. He loved the car. You won’t see many of them when you go to a car show. It’s always an attention getter.

  7. I’ve never own a show car, never could afford one. This Avanti R2 is exquisite. But I had $86,500 to invest would invest in something where as I could get my money back quickly. The restoration is to die for, I mean, this piece of equipment is restored to profession . I love it.

  8. What a beauty! Our house has a school parking lot behind it. I remember one of teachers driving an Avanti in the early 1970’s. Always loved looking at it as a pre teen.

    I think certain variants of the Avanti ll would be a great fair weather driver. I remember taking a hard look at an original a few years back that had been exported…it came back to the states but was fitted with metric speedo and odometer.

  9. I saw this car in May- It’s coming to our home in a couple of days. We bought an R2 automatic 6 months ago. I never sat in an Avanti, much less drove one. I’d never sell our ‘62 or ‘67 Vettes but these cars are superior in many ways!

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