The Auburn Auction

Lot 4
1981 Avanti II

Selling on Saturday Evening

1981 Avanti II
For the Benefit of the Studebaker National Museum

CHASSIS NO: 12AAV1231C1003534

• Continuation of the famed Studebaker Avanti
• Chevrolet 305 V-8 engine
• Single-ownership; Sunroof equipped
• Fewer than 200 produced

305 cid V-8 engine rated at 150 HP, four-speed automatic transmission, independent front suspension with coil springs and stabilizer front suspension, rear semi-elliptic leaf springs with solid axle, hydraulic front disc and rear drum brakes; wheelbase: 109Ē

The Studebaker Avanti was radical in styling from anything on the road when it was introduced in 1962 to an eager public. Sculpted by the famed industrial designer Raymond Loewy and his crew of stylists, in the heat of Palm Springs, California, the Avantiís mid-20th century styling was polarizing, but thoroughly modern. The Avanti was essentially a hand-built grand touring car. Studebaker was plagued with financial problems and fewer than 4,700 Avantis were manufactured before production ceased.

In 1964, as the Studebaker Corporation exited the auto business, former Studebaker dealers Leo Newman and Nate Altman picked up the Avanti torch. Newman and Altman bought part of the original Studebaker plant, and had access to Studebakerís molds, tooling and prior development work, along with many chassis and body parts. The duo created the Avanti Motor Corporation and began producing the Avanti II starting in 1965. During Newman and Altmanís ownership, the Avanti II was continually improved and refined. Through their relationship with Chevrolet they were able to procure performance engines and durable drivetrains.

This single owner Avanti survives today with its original fiberglass body and chassis. Under the hood, the original Chevrolet 305 cubic-inch V-8 is correct and is mated to a GM four-speed automatic transmission. The brake system has been rebuilt with DOT 5 silicone fluid for long-lasting stopping power. This also includes upgraded front brakes with GM calipers and rotors. Inside, itís all original as well, with well-bolstered bucket seats up front, and room for three in the back. The padded dash features a burled woodgrain front face with speedometer, tachometer, water temperature, oil pressure, and a vacuum gauge. The factory sunroof is an added feature for touring enjoyment.

With fewer than 200 units produced for 1982, this Avanti II is exclusive. With renewed care and attention by an astute owner and donated for auction to support the Studebaker National Museum, this performance auto will garner admiration for years to come.

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