1954 Studebaker Starliner

Rear Left Red and White 1954 Studebaker Starliner Picture

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The 1954 car year was highlighted by a glut of cars for sale. Not that Studebaker's regular run of the mill competition wasn't enough but Henry Ford decided to produce as many Ford vehicles as possible to sell at low dealer prices. Dealers were flooded with Ford models to be sold as soon as possible so Ford could capture more market share. When Chevrolet found out what Ford was up to, it tried the same thing.

The outcome of this Ford-Chevrolet battle was that many smaller competitors such as Packard, Hudson, and Kaiser suffered. Studebaker did not do well in 1953 and the 1954 models were only slightly updated for the market. Vertical fins were added to the Starliner's grill. Mechanically, there were no major updates on the Studebaker models but the company did offer a new station wagon model.

In addition, Studebaker missed a golden chance to take on the distributorship of a new car, selling well in Europe, called the Volkswagen Beetle. The company had been presented this opportunity way back in 1947 and had first chance to carry the Beetle in North America. For some reason, Studebaker again turned down what came to be a huge market for that particular European car.

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