1966 Studebaker Daytona 2 Door Sports Sedan

This is a great opportunity for anyone interested in the late model Studebakers. Currently available on Ebay USA , bids are still under the $600 (USD) mark, with around one day remaining as we write this. The Sports Sedan was Studebaker’s high end compact model, available at a time when the company was struggling to stay afloat. Sadly, only 620 of the 1966 model V8 Sports Sedans were built, with fewer than 40 listed on the Studebaker Driver’s Club Register as of March 2016. We also maintain a small register of 1966 cars which can be viewed here.

This car is certainly a big project, and would require serious work to become roadworthy. It has a bit of rust in the usual places, and the seller advises that the engine is seized, noting the car was parked in 1973 with 24,410 miles showing. The car was purchased by the current seller as part of a collection of 15 cars, and now resides for sale in Alabama. Despite the issues noted, it’s totally worth the restoration effort to save such a rare car. We have not previously seen a "Sienna Red" 1966 model, and it was our understanding that this was only available on the 1965 cars. We assume the paint is original, and it seems closer to Sienna Red than the 1966 "Mount Royal Red". With production of the 1966 model beginning in September 1965, it may be possible that some 1966 model cars received the 1965 colours. The 1965 and 1966 Sports Sedans are our favourite Studebaker models, and we’re hoping the right enthusiast can save this one, and restore it to its original state. Despite the work needed, the price is certainly right.

The 1966 model Sports Sedan was regarded as a compact car at the time, and was well equipped with the option of either a 283 cubic inch V8 (as is the case with this car), or a 230 cubic inch 6 cylinder. The cars were fitted with front disc brakes, optional air-conditioning, and what was known as the “Refreshaire” ventilation system. This innovative Refreshaire system used air coming in through front vents, funnelled it through the cabin and then out through vents placed above the taillights, eliminating the need for ventilation windows. The 1966 model was also one of the earliest production cars to offer an electronic ignition system, a standard feature of the Daytona Sports Sedan. All 1966 Studebakers were produced at the Hamilton, Ontario plant in Canada, following the closure of Studebaker’s Indiana plant in December 1963. Both the 6 cylinder and V8 engines were sourced from General Motors following the closure of Studebaker’s engine production facilities.

The financial difficulties and rumours surrounding Studebaker’s circumstances forced Studebaker to release details of the 1966 model in May of 1965, occurring earlier than planned in an attempt to reassure the public of the company’s confidence. The 1966 model line-up is believed to have sold from late September 1965. The line-up (including the Daytona Sports Sedan) was a revision of the 1964-1965 model design, and received a styling makeover in many subtle but significant ways by the well regarded independent design firm Marcks, Hazelquist and Powers. This independent firm was selected for the 1966 design project because Studebaker phased out its own internal design teams, with revisions successfully achieved on what was an extremely tight budget. In addition to the external design changes, 1966 saw the introduction of six new metallic paint colours, upgraded interior trim options, and several additional ‘safety’ features such as padded sun-visors and anti-glare wiper arms.

Studebaker’s president at the time, Gordon Grundy, had requested additional funding for the production of a redesigned 1967 model, and significant design and prototyping had already begun during 1966. Funding for the 1967 model was, however, rejected by Studebaker’s board of directors, which sealed Studebaker’s fate. Studebaker had struggled financially for many decades in the highly competitive mass production U.S. market, and never achieved the volumes necessary to maintain sufficient profitability. Studebaker officially closed its doors on March 16, 1966, with the last car produced being a 4-door cruiser, which now lives at the Studebaker National Museum in South Bend, Indiana. More details and information on these cars can be found in Patrick Foster’s book, Studebaker – The Complete History. We highly recommend this book for any Studebaker enthusiast. Classic Register also maintains identification guides for the 1965 Sports Sedan and the 1966 Sports Sedan .

If you have a 1966 Daytona Sports Sedan, please contact us so we can request images and details, or sign up yourself and add your car to Classic Register so we can continue to document more of these rare Studebakers for everyone to admire. Keep in touch with the latest interesting cars found for sale and ID-guides through our Facbook page.

Vehicle details

Added on 25 Jun 2016

Vehicles are added to the register for historical record purposes by owners and enthusiasts. If you have a question about this vehicle, please contact the user that added the vehicle by clicking "Contact Author" below.

Vehicle Location: Country: 
United States
Build date: 
built in 1966
Automatic (column shift)
24410 Miles
Paint Colour/Code: 
Sienna Red
Interior Colour/Code: 
Black Vinyl
Engine Type: 
8 cylinder
Engine Fuel Type: 
Petrol (4 stroke)
Engine Number: 
Chassis Number: