There have been a hell of a lot of cars since cars became a thing. We’ve gone through countless makes, marques, and models since day one, which means there are countless machines that have been lost to the annals of history. Not every car can be a hit—but that doesn’t mean we’ve totally forgotten about ‘em.
I think my personal favorite has to be the Studebaker Avanti.
I grew up in a car family. I can still remember the thousands of issues of automotive magazines that my dad had collected throughout my childhood—and when a 1963 Studebaker Avanti R2 popped up on BringATrailer the other day, I had a very visceral flashback to seeing that specific car on one of those glossy pages. Something about the goofy headlights and the softly geometrical rear end triggered a whole slew of memories.
It sent me into a research spiral that left me wanting to know everything about this car. It was in production for a little over a year. Roger Ward, who won the Indy 500 the year of the Avanti’s launch, received one of the cars as a prize, which made him the first private owner of the car. It was North America’s first four-passenger sports car, and it smashed 29 records at the Bonneville Salt Flats.
It was ultimately a challenging and expensive car to build because of its weird shape, and it wasn’t the best-selling hit Studebaker needed it to be to keep the brand in business. Since then, the Avanti has kind of slipped out of the public consciousness, popping up every now and again when someone sells or does something spectacular with one.
Now I turn the question to you. Which forgotten car do you still love?