When Studebaker ended production in South Bend, the Avanti continued as a handbuilt car in a portion of one of the old Studebaker buildings. At that time, Studebaker trucks (which consisted of the Champ, Transtar, diesel trucks, and the little Zip Van for the Post Office) seemed to have had a small chance of continuing somehow, as Avanti bought the rights to the trucks, too. It never came to be. Perhaps the trucks were too old.
In 1963, at least one Transtar was built in a crew cab configuration. This custom artist’s design is a suggestion of what the Transtar might have looked like had it lasted another year or so. Up front, the white grille design is changed with a chrome outer surround, black inner cavity, and chrome center. The small hood grille above has the Studebaker emblem flanked by chrome strips. Above that lies a hoodscoop inspired by the Golden Hawk.
The chrome around the windshield is similar to the Hawk and Avanti. The side windows are framed in black, and the five chrome vertical bands at the back are lifted from a Golden Hawk. The hood lettering is spun off the Studebaker script, the fender lights are from the Golden Hawk, and the front bumper is black. At the bottom of the door, the narrow, triangular shape (which all Transtars and older trucks had since the first models were introduced in 1949) is chrome with Avanti tri-color bands.
Ted Alexander was one of those kids who always drew cars. Today, as a freelance designer/illustrator, his car, truck, and bus illustrations and designs are created for companies, magazines, and racing events. His automotive work is shared with a successful advertising career that includes designing brochures and logos and illustrating products for Chicago-area companies. His brochures have won national design awards, and his logo designs have been featured in American and international design annuals.