1953 Studebaker Commander


Rear Right Biege 1953 Studebaker Commander Car Picture

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There was no doubt the 1953 Studebaker series of cars looked like a real winner, however, the fact the company was building models using two different wheelbase lengths presented unexpected problems. The design staff was aware there might be manufacturing problems but not to the extent that came about. Tooling became very expensive as Studebaker was in effect building two new car designs in one year. In 1952-1953 car manufacturers did not have the same flexibility of pre-production testing they would have in the 21st century. Workers complained that front end metal parts would not match to the body which was naturally considered a major flaw and production of 1953 models had to be halted until dies could be revamped.

Another problem occured when Studebaker, for some reason or another, underestimated the demand for the Champion Starlight and Starliner models but overestimated the demand for Studebaker sedans. Then too sometimes engineers used cheaper but not as effective parts to save money. At one point, numerous complaints were coming in that doors were swinging open when going around corners which turned out to be caused by a decision to use cheaper door latches. People started questioning the production quality in Studebaker cars. The higher wages being paid to the workers did not necessarily mean better workmanship in the cars.





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