Truck Rewind: The 1963 Studebaker-Westinghouse Pickup Truck Concept – Their Final Design

The 1963 Studebaker-Westinghouse Pickup Truck Concept was simple and inexpensive compact runabout with an 8-foot bed. It also represented one of the last vehicles to be designed by Studebaker before they closed their doors for good.

Studebaker did build several trucks in its time, but it was never the main emphasis for the automaker.

On the verge of bankruptcy Studebaker was approached by Westinghouse asking them to build a simple, inexpensive vehicle that they could use for in-town deliveries. Studebaker just completed one of its last projects, several Zip-Vans for the U.S. Post Office. This USPS order kept them afloat while the desperately tried to acquire more contracts.

Built using many off-the-shelf parts, the The 1963 Studebaker-Westinghouse Pickup Truck Concept was 168-inches long, 72″ wide, 78″ high and it had a 95″ wheelbase. To put that into perspective, the current Nissan Frontier King Cab has a 125.9″ wheelbase.

The 1963 Studebaker-Westinghouse Pickup Truck Concept used the same 289 cid engine used in their other products. It was placed directly underneath the cab-over compartment and was mated to a 3-speed automatic transmission that had a manual hold option known as “power-shift.” 

Designed to be very simple to stamp, there are only a few curved lines on the body. It was as basic as can be both externally and internally. There were only a few internal components including a few switches and one small, main gage cluster. The steering wheel was nearly horizontal, like many trucks and busses of the day.

There was a panel-van version built as well, but it seems there are no photos of this vehicle.

All hope ended for the possible production of the 1963 Studebaker-Westinghouse Pickup Truck Concept when Studebaker closed its South Bend complex in December 1963.

 

 

 

 

Easily amused by anything with four wheels, Nathan Adlen reviews vehicles from the cheapest to the most prestigious. Wrecking yards, dealer lots, garages, racetracks, professional automotive testing and automotive journalism - Nathan has experienced a wide range of the automotive spectrum. Brought up in the California car culture and educated in theater, childhood education, film, journalism and history, Nathan now lives with his family in Denver, CO. His words, good humor and video are enjoyed worldwide.