Owen Smith posted these shots at the Cohort with the caption “Studebaker?”
I’m going to answer that with a “yes”. As in a 1964 Lark Commander, although the brochure shows that with the single headlight grille. But I see some other Commanders with the quad light grille via a Google search. More knowledgeable Studebaker aficionados will know.
“You’re invited for a motoring thrill. It’s The Lark by Studebaker, Lark by Studebaker, everyone’s (I forgot the last word to this jingle).” Then in a loud voice, “THE LARK” Nice to see this car.
Yep. It’s a 1964 Commander. Studebaker technically dropped the Lark name from all models (Commander, Daytona, Cruiser) except the bottom spec Lark Challenger for 1964. Quad headlamps were standard on the Daytona and Cruiser, and optional on the Commander… seems like most Commanders are so equipped. Also, parking lamps switched from amber bulbs behind a clear lens to amber lenses with clear bulbs somewhere near the end of production in South Bend, so you will see a few later production 1964’s with the same amber lenses that were used for all of 1965 and 1966.
The four-headlight setup in ’64’s was standard on Cruiser and Daytona, optional on Commander and Challenger.
I rather like these late Studebakers. I think with 15 inch wheels and four headlights, the cars seem bigger than the compacts they really are in dimension. Straightforward styling inside and out….nothing ‘googie’.
Nice, the 64-65 restyle is my favourite. Even in green.
Is this in South Bend? Looks like that car is wondering where it’s birthplace has gone. It’s not Hamilton, redevelopment of the old Studebaker site is moving forward, there’s at least one new building on Studebaker Place.
The 4-headlamp system on the Commander was offered as an option late in the 1964 model year.
That green is Horizon Green – needs a bit of work with a buffer. I owned a 1964 Daytona sedan (six cylinder) done in Horizon Green. Don’t expect to win any speed competitions with it, but it was a very comfortable car to ride in.
Lifelong fan, here. But I still cannot casually tell the difference between the 64 and the 65 without more photos (especially under the hood). Maybe I just have not studied enough.
I have never been a silver car fan, but this one doesn’t look bad in this paint color.
Is it silver? I see a green tint to it, if I really think hard about silver while looking at this photos I see grey.
It must have been the monitor. Looking on my phone I see green (albeit a pretty faded one). Or maybe I didn’t get enough sleep.
Same issue with Ford Spruce Green in the 2000s. It was used for many years throughout the line, both cars (my Gen 4 Taurus wagon) and trucks/SUVs. But many people think it is grey, even in real life (computer monitors and photo printers can be inaccurate).
The main giveaway that this particular car is a 1964 is the trunk-mounted script. 1965 had the ‘Studebaker’ chrome script on the lower panel to the left of the fuel filler.
My BMW K100 motorcycle was a similar color, called “Madison” (note vague MidWest connection to Studebaker). I just called it silver but some of my friends and in fact the BMW salesman said it was green. In either case, an attractive shade, whether on a bike or a Lark.
In those last Canadian years, Studie hired former Loewy man Bob Marcks to create new interiors. The result was impressive, with split reclining seats. Too bad they didn’t try this earlier. They could have been competing with Mercedes instead of franchising Mercedes.
I wonder if the reverse wedge profile will ever return to cars. The best hope for a resurgence in sedan sales would be something “new” and different, but no one wants to go first.
While there are certainly early Lark fans, in one of those ‘what might have been’ moments, one wonders if the very good looking 1964 Lark update had come out just a year or two sooner. Compared to the other compacts of, say, 1962, the 1964 Stude easily cuts the most attractive stance (especially in that side profile shot).
Imagine what a big compact sales surge in 1962 might have done for the company. Probably wouldn’t have saved it, but the Studebaker board might have let them live on for a few more years past 1966.
And the 1967 Studebaker would have become a reality beside the prototype and some “Phantom” ’67 Studebaker.
Interesting stuff in that thread. I actually rather like the coupe with the wraparound rear window and ’53 Starliner prow (but I’d lose the big front fender blades). And I still think the Sceptre should have made production, too.
Likewise, the mild touch-up of the Lark front end works well, too, although I don’t know how far that might have gotten with the rest of the car remaining virtually the same as the ’64-’66.
My first thought upon seeing these was: the last series Studebaker parked by long- abandoned railroad tracks among the weeds…an allegory of the end of the line”.
is it me or are those rear lights a sign of a car that has facelifted many times on small budgets?
But it is still fundamentally decent looking without the flamboyance of some cars of the time. Or perhaps it’s just plain?
Yes. Most of the tooling for the 1964-66 rear fenders (yep, they bolt on) was carried over from 1962-63, which had round tail lamps. That was one of the only areas that sticks out to me as being carried over from the earlier car.
There is a very good piece, which I think was featured here on CC, that covers the evolution of Studebaker cars from 1953-66. They pulled off some pretty amazing stuff to disguise the fact that their basic bodyshells dated to ’53, but their efforts were sometimes thwarted by having to spread major restyles out over a couple of model years instead of doing the whole car at once.
Here’s a picture of a 1963 for comparison:
I see a faint green tint as well (I’m using an iPad). I always liked the last of the Studebakers – a simple, good looking style that has aged better than many of its peers.
Many car people don’t realize that Studebaker made a huge styling change for the 1963 model year. They lowered the roof line by about 2 inches. 1962 and earlier glass is different, as well as the door frames. The seat frames were also lowered, so legroom was smaller, but most people didn’t notice.
About 40 years ago I didn’t know this. I had a very nice 1962 Lark 2-door sedan, all original, but the driver’s door had been hit directly in the center. So I had a 1964 2-door sedan sitting out in the back field. On fitting the 1964 door up to the opening, I quickly realized there was a very big gap between the roof rail and the door’s window frame. Oh well, I switched the window frame out for the original.
Haha, knew it was a studebaker? Of course! But narrowing it down to year/trim? I had no idea
Studebaker’s and AMC’ s of that era remind me of Wolgas.The Russian influence, also nicely depicted in the photos,is in my opinion overwhelming.But maybe it’s the other way around.
Had neighbors ((as a kid)) with two Larks. One (black) was a “Daytona”. The minty green one was just a “Lark”. Think they were 64-65ish vintage.
I rode in the “Daytona” once/twice.
This is a nice looking car , a staff member in new Hampshire had a nice rust free white 2 door one of these in 1969 and it needed small repairs (brakes or maybe the clutch) so it was summarily junked .
I remember it to be roomy, quiet and always started in those cold Winters .