This Avanti was the first production car to reach 170 miles per hour. Studebaker National Museum Archives
This Avanti was the first production car to reach 170 miles per hour. Studebaker National Museum Archives
SOUTH BEND — Studebaker Corp. is woven into the fabric of South Bend and its long and storied history is well known to many.

From its start in 1852 when Henry and Clement Studebaker opened a blacksmith shop downtown, to the 26,000 employees who worked for the company at its peak producing a total of 4.2 million vehicles, the company endures as a legacy.

Studebaker shuttered its South Bend plant in December 1963, ending the production of its cars and trucks in America. But a facility in Hamilton, Ontario, remained in operation until March 1966.

Some facts are not so apparent when it comes to Studebaker. We asked Kyle Sater, curator of the Studebaker National Museum, about some of the lesser-known points about all that is called Studebaker:

Avanti: Need for Speed

The Studebaker Avanti was the first production car to reach 170 mph. With its supercharged 289-cubic-inch engine, the Avanti broke 29 world speed records at the Bonneville Salt Flats in the early 1960s.

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