Estimated value: 25.000-30.000 US$
Modernist 20th Century
Sales date: 2004-06-06
Lot number: 590
Raymond Loewy and a team of three designers designed the 1963 Avanti in Palm Springs, California in just six weeks. The Studebaker Avanti is a completely hand-built automobile made of 183 individual sections of fiberglass, which take over 1000 hours of labor to produce. America's first four-passenger luxury sports coupe, the Avanti is also the first car with a focus on safety. The Avanti is outfitted with front disc brakes, seat belts, mid-body fuel tank and integrated roll bar. The aircraft styled interior features red night-view dashboard lights and a vanity makeup tray. The Avanti was produced from 1962 until 1964 and the first Avanti's, such as this example, were made by the Studebaker Corporation. Studebaker produced 4647 Avantis between June 1962 and December 1963 and it is thought that 1600 examples are still in existence. With a top speed of 180 miles per hour, the Avanti has set over forty auto club records including twenty-nine stock car speed records in 1963 at Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, records that have stood for over thirty years. The wedge design and Coke bottle styling contribute to its high performance and illustrate Loewy's distinctive design style.
This example is in excellent working condition and has been completely restored. The rebuilt engine has fewer than 5000 miles. This car is sold with a folio of various magazines, advertisements, brochures and articles on Loewy's Avanti by Studebaker. An excellent example of American industrial design at mid-century by one of the greatest industrial designers of the twentieth century.
Exhibited: Raymond Loewy Exhibition, Spiral Hall, Tokyo, November 2002