From the days of the horse drawn wagon Studebaker built cargo hauling vehicles, and the last of their light cargo haulers was the Champ pickup.
By the late 50’s Studebakers venerable “C” cab truck was showing its age, and the truck division was anxious for a new truck. As always money was short so Studebaker’s talented designers got creative.
They combined the basic frame from the old truck with the sheet metal from the front of the new Lark sedan and created the new Champ, which was introduced in 1960.
Mine was made halfway through the year, on June 9, 1960, and when it left South Bend it was equipped with the Studebaker Champion 170 cid flathead six.
My truck is what Studebaker called a “Standard Cab”, what that meant was it was a very basic truck, as far as I can tell the only options mine had was the heater and turn signals (yes in 1960 turn signals were optional – a delete option but an option nonetheless). Standard cab trucks were VERY basic, only one sun visor was provided, and the drivers side door does not have a key lock. It also has the optional “west coast” mirrors, which appear to be Studebaker mirrors but were added later.
Sometime during this trucks long history it the little six was removed and a 1956 Studebaker 289 V8 installed. And it was installed very badly, I’ve been making things right ever since buying the truck.
Top picture was taken in the North Carolina Mountains in September of 1999 right after the Tri State Meet. It was my first real trip in the truck and we covered about 1000 miles that week. The other two pictures were taken near my home shortly after a fresh coat of paint.