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Winner By A Nose

Our favorite car at the Studebaker Spring Meeting was this 1950 Champion coupe.

Our favorite car at the Studebaker Spring Meeting was this 1950 Champion coupe.

Okay! We’ll admit it! We’re kind of stuck on cars from the late 1940s and early 1950s. Such cars may lack the two-tone paint jobs and fins of later ‘50s cars or the big engines of the ‘60s muscle cars, but they do have their attributes.

Our passion for early post World War II models may have something to do with being born in 1947 (Do you think?). But we’ll take a 1946-1954 car, over one from any other era, any day of the week.

There were a lot of Larks and Hawks and even an Avanti at a recent gathering of members of the Wisconsin Region of the Studebaker Drivers Club (*), but we couldn’t take our eyes off of the 1950 Champion “bullet-nose” coupe that also showed up. It wasn’t low-slung like a Hawk, powerful like a Lark V-8 or sporty like an Avanti, but it was our favorite car out of a nice assortment of cars.

Not too many years ago, a friend of ours put forth the theory that late 1940s cars marked the ultimate development of the automobile as a well-balanced transportation machine. It was his belief that cars of this era combined the rich detail and luxury found in many 1930s cars with the reliability and convenience features that evolved after World War II.

This fellow felt that styling motifs such as flashy colors, tailfins and two-tone paint were nice trends, but basically decorative. He also felt that big V-8s were fun, but not nearly a necessity to move a car from Point A to Point B. “If you think of sitting in the easy chair comfort of an early postwar car, while you cruise down the highway a 65 mph with no need to shift gears, you begin to see why I hold these cars in high regard,” he said. “Later cars may have had more pizzazz in both looks and performance, but 1946-1964 cars were unsurpassed when it came to a comfortable ride and top-notch build quality.”

Of course, out of all of them, the 1947 models are the dream of the crop!

(*) For information about the Wisconsin Region of the Studebaker Drivers Club contact Ed Carmo at 1-920-553-2206 or

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