DECEMBER 2023: A 1957 STUDEBAKER SILVER HAWK HAS A FEARLESS ADVENTURER BEHIND THE STEERING WHEEL

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Studebaker was a very innovative car company, mostly out of necessity because it was a small fish in a big domestic automobile pond and did not have the financial capital to retool their car designs every year.

Instead, Studebaker figured out how to run with the big dogs in a cost-effective way.

A good example is the 1957 Studebaker Silver Hawk and its bolt-on tailfins that were basically added to a Studie model from the early 1950s to compete with the Big Three tailfin craze of the late 1950s.

Jim Sutherland

The result was a car that looked fast at a standstill and could compete with other domestic 1957 cars in terms of style and performance. Geoff Gogle is the proud owner of a 1957 Studebaker Silver Hawk and places great emphasis on the fact he is a member of the Studebaker Drivers Club-not the Studebaker Owners Club.

The biggest distinction is Geoff loves to get behind the wheel of his ’57 Silver Hawk and drive it. Geoff figures he has logged over 40,000 miles driving the car to distant locations over the years.

Initially, Geoff discovered the car via a buddy and wanted to buy it, even though the ’57 Studie was “in terrible condition”, according to him. The car’s previous owner had a collection of vintage vehicles in various states of disrepair but told Geoff, “I don’t sell any of my cars”.

Life has a way of changing the game and eventually the former owner had to sell his cars, including the 1957 Silver Hawk, to Geoff.

Geoff was working overseas in Central Africa and was forced to sell everything and move to the Okanagan region in western Canada during the 1990s after an extremely violent home invasion completely changed the game in his former residence.

Fortunately, Geoff chose a location close to his 1957 Silver Hawk, so he was able to use his sizable mechanical skills on the car’s restoration. Geoff began the process in 1999 and completed the restoration in 2005.

The ensuing years have been a long series of road adventures that included trips to Arizona and the southwestern United States on numerous occasions. The adventures included an incident near Pendleton, Oregon when a semi truck blew a tire and Geoff ran over the pieces on a highway.

The result was severe damage to the oil pan, oil pump drive, and steering on the Studie. The other complication was Geoff was stranded in Pendelton with no access to parts until he phoned a fellow Studebaker buddy from British Columbia. The man drove to Pendleton with the right parts and told him “It’s over to you buddy” because he had to turn and burn back to BC due to a family obligation.

The close brotherhood in the Studebaker car club was illustrated by Geoff’s experience and he was able to fix his Silver Hawk and continue his road trip after he installed the replacement parts. 

The reliable factory 259 cubic inch Studebaker engine and 3-speed automatic transmission have been an unbeatable combination over the years and Geoff is always confident whenever he gets behind the wheel and tackles another long road trip.

In Geoff’s words, “I drive everywhere in it”-and we at MyStarCollectorCar applaud him for it.                       

Jim Sutherland

BY: Jim Sutherland

Jim Sutherland is a veteran automotive writer whose work has been published by many major print and online publications. The list includes Calgary Herald, The Truth About Cars, Red Deer Advocate, RPM Magazine, Edmonton Journal, Montreal Gazette, Windsor Star, Vancouver Province, and Post Media Wheels Section. 

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