Bob's Studebaker Resource Website Studebaker and Mercedes-Benz, early 50's
This topic was mentioned early in 2008 on the SDC Forum....
Bob's Studebaker Resource Website
Studebaker and Mercedes-Benz, early 50's
I have a theory.....Look at these rooflines. It's the early 50's and the design studios are in need of a fresh look for the roofline of the new 53 C/K models.
Mercedes-Benz was noted for it's quality and presence in the European market. Some models have come to the U.S. Another German heritage based car family....
Could some of the Studebaker design team have been influenced by the lines of the Mercedes Ponton Coupe? The lines and radii of the roof are almost identical. The chrome trim design is identical. The only difference being the side window is split to create a rear quarter window for the K model Hawks.
Studebaker and Mercedes-Benz became partners in the market around 1956. It's not unforseen that the two companies had an association well before that time, resulting in design teams visiting each others facilities.
Studebaker had a styling agreement with Porsche which resulted in Porsche realizing enough profit from it to build the facility which their 356 model series was created.
Granted, this Studebaker roofline came out in 53, but in 53, Mercedes complained about the use of the tri-star emblem on the Studes. Could they have crabbed about the roofline also, but since it was too much to change, dropped the complaint? The tri-star was replaced by the V with the 8 emblem on Studebakers.
In 56, the grill was also replaced to emulate a Mercedes type style.