Studebaker Golden Hawk
The Studebaker Golden Hawk was produced by the Studebaker Corporation of South Bend, Indiana, between 1956 and 1958. The Golden Hawk took the basic shape of the 1953–55 Champion/Commander Starliner hardtop coupe but added a large, almost vertical eggcrate grille and taller bonnet in place of the earlier car's swooping, pointed nose. At the rear, a raised, squared-off boot replaced the earlier sloped lid, and vertical fiberglass tailfins were added to the rear quarters. In the UK we recognise its styling cues as being behind a whole generation of Rootes Group cars known collectively as Audax.
This is the first American Corgi - a rich seam to be followed over the next few years of the brand. It was interesting of Corgi to choose an oddball maker like Studebaker but typical of their quest for innovation and engineering novelty.
There are three releases of the Corgi Studebaker Golden Hawk. In February 1958 the first two appeared. They were the mechanical version with the friction flywheel motor and the blue freewheeling version. Later in 1960 it was the first Corgi to be given the S treatment receiving seats and suspension and also becoming truly golden, being vacuum plated gold or painted in metallic gold.
The 1958 freewheeling release is always blue with gold painted side flashes, although Ramsay quotes it in white/gold - I think this is probably an error, either by Ramsay or it refers to a factory error piece where the wrong body has been mated to the mechanical chassis. The freewheeling version was produced until 1962 when it was replaced by the 211s.
The 1958 mechanical release, 211m, is always white with gold painted side flashes. It was only produced for one year. The mechanicals all seemed to disappear in 1959. It is consequently quite rare, less than 100,000 were produced. It is the most highly valued of the Studebakers and there are no listed variations.
211S Interior & Suspension
The Studebaker Golden Hawk became truly golden with the 211S model. Seats were added and suspension and then to finish it off properly the whole casting is vacuum plated in gold or else painted metallic gold with a white side flash. You will find it with turned hubs and later releases with spun hubs. This variation does not seem to affect value, however the plated cars get lower prices than the older releases, perhaps reflecting its popularity at the time it was in production. The painted gold version gets a premium over plated gold.
|Corgi Toys 211; Studebaker Golden Hawk; Blue, Gold Flash||Corgi Toys 211M; Studebaker Golden Hawk Mechanical; White With Gold Side Flashes||Corgi Toys 211S; Studebaker Golden Hawk; Plated Gold||Corgi Toys 211S; Studebaker Golden Hawk; Gold Painted with White Flash|