Bob's Studebaker Resource Website

1963 Studebaker Avanti R-1014, the #8 Car
Photos by Bruce Blum, Frederick, MD

    I found an Avanti having the engine rebuilt in a shop local to me (Frederick, MD). I don't know who the owner is, but the shop owner says he lives on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. The engine is an R3, and the car's VIN is 63r1014, making it a very early car. The shop owner says the car's owner has documentation that the car is one of the cars raced at the Bonneville Salt Flats, and is the car pictured in the Champion Spark Plug ad from that period.

    The car does have a complete roll cage in its interior, and is in pretty fair shape, though definitely not show quality.
    I know that such an early car would not have an R3 engine as original, but could well have been a factory test mule, having different engines, etc., before the Granatelli's got use of the car for the Salt Flats. I also don't know if the R3 is a 299 or 304.5 cubic inch version. The engine has recently been put back together and is about to be painted as soon as the shop owner can get the appropriate color mixed for an R3.

    I don't know how long the owner has had the car, but the shop owner said he has had the car for several years working on the car as a long term project.
    The car used to be owned by Gary Hess, according to Jon Myers, who is familiar with the car. He said he found the R3 engine that's in the car ...not the engine it ran with at Bonneville.
    I also found some documentation from the AOAI newletters from the 1960's that identified the car as being the #8 car at Bonneville.
    (Bruce Blum)