1950 Studebaker Champion Starlight Coupe

Barry Caillier
Bothell, WA

Barry's beautiful Starlight Coupe was purchased as an empty shell and he has done most of the work on this car himself. Starting with the chassis, a Fatman Mustang II crossmember with 2" drop spindles was installed and Barry and a friend fabricated a rear airbag suspension system. Power is provided by a highly detailed Chevrolet 350 driving through a TH350 automatic transmission. The firewall in the engine compartment is a quilted, Nomex 3 mat (like the racing suites) that snaps in and out. Wheels are American Racing Torque Thrust with chrome center caps.

The body has had many changes and starting at the front, Barry removed the bumper and frenched the headlights. The hood was nosed, the eyebrows were removed and the holes under them were filled. The front fenders were welded to the cowl and the fresh air doors were filled in. Perforated metal was used in the grill openings and after-market Harley Davidson turn signal lights were added under the grill panel. Out back, Barry welded the rear fenders to the body and removed all trim. Aftermarket 70's Corvette taillights mounted in 54 Ford buckets replaced the stock units. The rear bumper was removed and Barry added a rolled pan and mounted the eyebrows that were removed from the hood on each side of the license plate. The door handles were shaved and the doors and trunk are now power operated. The car was finished off with GM Hawaiian Orchid Metallic paint.

Inside, the original Champion dash was used but it is now covered in grey leather. The original instrument cluster was updated by United Speedometer with new white face gauges in the original cluster. A small Autometer tach was added to where the optional clock would have been mounted under the speedometer. The front bucket seats were donated by a 1999 Ford Explorer and Barry built a custom fiberglass console with cup holders that fits between the buckets.

Barry says "The car rides great. It's a cruiser, and I love driving it all over the northwest".