The 1965-1982 Avanti II was a continuation of Studebaker's 1963-64 Avanti. The cars were mostly handbuilt in a corner of the old South Bend plant under former dealers Leo Newman and Nathan Altman, who resurrected Stude's would-be sales-sparker.

The Avanti II retained the Lark convertible chassis but was altered with a small-block Chevy Corvette V-8, a higher hoodline to accommodate it, reduced-radius wheel openings and less front-end rake for a tidier appearance, and "Avanti II" badges. Offered with "stock" paint colors and interior trims, the Avanti II could be done in virtually anything the customer wanted -- Altman loved pleasing clients this way.

This car was a great buy early on, and only a bit less so through the '70s despite steady price escalation, mostly due to inflation. Workmanship deteriorated over time, especially after Altman's untimely death in 1976, but low production almost guarantees collectibility regardless of year.

Pluses of the 1965-1982 Avanti II:

  • Smooth performance
  • Ubiquitous engines easily serviced
  • Sensational styling still snares stares
  • Individual
  • Out of production (as of 1991)

Minuses of the 1965-1982 Avanti II:

  • Poor finish post-1975, especially paint and chrome
  • Gas mileage falls off in '70s
  • Poorer investment than original Avanti

Production of the Avanti II:

  • 1965: 25
  • 1966: 98
  • 1967: 60
  • 1968: 89
  • 1969: 103
  • 1970: 111
  • 1971: 107
  • 1972: 127
  • 1973: 106
  • 1974: 123
  • 1975: 125
  • 1976: 156
  • 1977: 146
  • 1978: 165
  • 1979: 142
  • 1980: 168
  • 1981: 200
  • 1982: 200

Specifications of the 1965-1982 Avanti II:
Wheelbase, inches: 109.0
Length, inches: 192.5
Weight, pounds: 3,150-3,570
Price, new: $6,550-23,000

Engines for the 1965-1982 Avanti II:

Type Size Horsepower Years
ohv V-8 327 cid 300* 1966-1969
ohv V-8 350 cid 300 1969-1972
ohv V-8 400 cid 180/245 1973-1976
ohv V-8 350 cid 180 1977-1980
ohv V-8 305 cid 155 1981-1983

*SAE gross horsepower; all other figures SAE net

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