1953 Studebaker Champion Regal Starliner hardtop coupe, part of the 1953-1954 Studebaker Champion Regal Starlight/Starliner line of collectible cars.
1953 Studebaker Champion Regal Starliner hardtop coupe

The 1953-1954 Studebaker Champion Regal Starlight/Starliner featured what was probably the outstanding American automotive design of the '50s, and certainly one of the all-time greats. The smooth Starliner hardtop and companion Starlight fixed-pillar coupe were mainly the work of Robert E. Bourke, chief of the Raymond Loewy studios at South Bend.

The styling for the Starlight and Starliner was about as perfect as it could be: nothing was out of place, and there was nothing contrived or unnatural. The Starliner is the purer of the two in styling, but the Starlight holds together better because of the extra body rigidity conferred by its fixed roof pillar. Vertical grille teeth distinguish the 1954 Starlight and Starliners from the toothless '53s.

As in past years, the Champion versions were six-cylinder cars, identifiable externally by an S-on-a-V emblem on the hood and deck in place of the V-8 emblem found on the costlier Commanders. Studebaker's side-valve six was lighter than the V-8, providing better balance and less final understeer.

The 1953-1954 Studebaker Champion Regal Starlight/Starliner was also capable of notable economy (especially with overdrive), though it offered far less performance than the V-8. The '53 Champion dashboards differed from Commander dashes, grouping instruments under a single panel instead of housing them in hooded pods.

Pluses of the 1953-1954 Studebaker Champion Regal Starlight/Starliner:

  • Landmark American styling
  • Still very affordable considering design merit
  • Less numerous but cheaper than Commanders
  • Strong appreciation potential
  • Both coupe and hardtop are Milestone cars

Minuses of the 1953-1954 Studebaker Champion Regal Starlight/Starliner:

  • A serious ruster
  • Indifferent brakes
  • Only fair construction quality, mainly '53s

Production of the 1953 Studebaker Champion Regal Starlight/Starliner:

  • Starliner 2-door hardtop: 13,058
  • Starlight 2-door coupe: 25,488

Production of the 1954 Studebaker Champion Regal Starlight/Starliner:

  • Starliner 2-door hardtop: 4,302
  • Starlight 2-door coupe: 12,167

Specifications of the 1953-1954 Studebaker Champion Regal Starlight/Starliner:
Wheelbase, inches: 120.5
Length, inches:
201.9
Weight, pounds: 2,700-2,825
Price, new:
$1,955-$2,241

Engines for the 1953-1954 Studebaker Champion Regal Starlight/Starliner:

TypeSize
Horsepower
Years
sv I-6169.6 cid
85
1953-1954

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