1964 Stude­bak­ers (with the R2 en­gine)

Australian Muscle Car - - Top 25: Classic American Muscle Cars -

Num­ber Pro­duced: 2157 (R2 cars for 1964 MY)

wasn’t just the var­i­ous di­vi­sions of the Big Three that made mus­cle cars. Stude­baker also got into the ac­tion. Okay, they were more hairy-chested in per­for­mance than looks, but quick they most cer­tainly were. The early model Su­per Larks were blunt in­stru­ments brought to the Amer­i­can public with a num­ber of in­no­va­tions. In or­der to cap­i­talise on the high-per­for­mance com­po­nents de­vel­oped for the fu­tur­is­tic luxury car, the Avanti, un­der the su­per­vi­sion of leg­endary speed­shop and rac­ing fig­ure Andy Granatelli, Stude­baker pres­i­dent Sher­wood Eg­bert de­cided that some of this equip­ment should be made avail­able to buy­ers of the new-look 1964 model range that in­cluded the Chal­lenger, Com­man­der, Day­tona (pic­tured as a two-con­vert­ible, but also avail­able as a two-door hard­top and a four-door sedan) and Cruiser mod­els. Of­fered across the range was the R2 per­for­mance en­gine de­rived from Stude­baker’s 289ci V8. The R2 had been de­signed to blow the com­pe­ti­tion into the next state. The en­gine boasted a Pax­ton cen­trifu­gal su­per­charger sup­ply­ing al­most six pounds of pres­sure. Horse­power reached the magic one-for-one for­mula: 289 horse­power from 289 cu­bic inches. Other op­tions in­cluded Warner T-10 four-speed man­ual trans­mis­sion (or heavy-duty BorgWarner three-speed au­to­matic), heavy-duty sus­pen­sion, rear sta­biliser bar, limited-slip dif­fer­en­tial, and caliper-type front disc brakes. Among the ear­lier go-fast Stude­bak­ers were the ‘Su­per Larks’ and although the name had dis­ap­peared off the cars by 1964 model year, the public con­tin­ued to ap­ply it. Although quite at­trac­tive, the restyled Stude­bak­ers didn’t sell well. In part, no doubt, the prob­lem had to do with the public’s con­cern about the com­pany’s fu­ture. No­body wanted to be stuck with an or­phan. Power Out­put: 289bhp (215kW) Top Speed: 212km/h

6.7 sec­onds Quar­ter Mile: 14.4 sec­onds Price New: Var­ied ac­cord­ing to model

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