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George Krem's '64 Studebaker Challenger

The "Plain Brown Wrapper"

Studebaker R3 supercharged 304.5 ci engine rated at 335 HP

At the Pure Stock Muscle Car Drag Race, as seen in Hemmings

At the 2012 Pure Stock Muscle Car Drag Race

Purchased new in 1964, this car was selected because it was lightweight with no options. It did not come with carpet - only a rubber floor mat, and it came with only one sun visor and one armrest. The goal was to make the fastest Studebaker possible using all factory parts. Later an R3 engine was purchased from a Studebaker dealer for $725, complete except for the Paxton supercharger.

This car is raced at the Pure Stock Muscle Car Drags, and has posted 12.85 seconds at 111 MPH, running a T-10 4-speed and G70-15 Firestone street tires.

The T-10 has just been replaced with a Powershift automatic. Traction is a real problem and the hope is, with an automatic, better 60' times can be had.


Video and audio clips

Ted Harbit pilots George Krem's '64 Studebaker Challenger down the track at the 2012 Pure Stock Muscle Car Drag Race



Specs
Engine:304.5 ci Studebaker R3
Paxton supercharger
Cast-iron headers
Carter AFB carb
Transmission:Powershift automatic (was a T-10 4-spd)
Rear end:Twin Traction, 4.56 gears
Race weight:3300 lbs
Rear-wheel HP:365HP @ 5830 RPM
Best ET:12.85 seconds at 111 MPH on street tires

Related

Ted Harbit's '51 Studebaker Drag Car
Ted Harbit's '63 Studebaker R2 Super Lark
Ted Harbit's '64 Avanti Drag Car
More Cars of the 1960s
More Studebaker Coverage


Comments

Anonymous on Aug 29, 2008 said:

This car belongs to George Krem who lives in Colorado but the car is kept at our place in central Indiana, to be closer to the PSMCDR held in Michigan each year.

George has graciously let me drive it in the PSMCDR. The car's best time of 12.85 seconds could definitely be better if I felt comfortable enough to drive it as if I stole it but with the value of this unique car I have been extremely careful not to abuse it. Under the right conditions I feel the car could run at least a couple tenths quicker than it has.

Ted

[Reply to this comment]

Anonymous on Sep 2, 2009 said:

awesome! i love these off the wall scrreamers. in a sea of 69 camaros and chevelles galore, this is so refreshing.

sincerely, joegagan

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Anonymous on Dec 31, 2009 said:

I'm looking at a Hot Rod magazine from October 1963. There is a letter from George Krem of Roslelle, IL. He says he worked for Studebaker that summer demonstrating the Avanti. He also had several comments about the Lark. Is George still around? I can send an image of the letter to him if he wants it. Let me know at wspizzi@us.ibm.com

[Reply to this comment]

Anonymous on Jan 3, 2010 said:

Yes, George is still around; living in Berthoud Colorado, and still caring for this 1964 Studebaker Lark Challenger, a/k/a "The Plain Brown Wrapper."

I am George's 4-years-younger cousin; he is 67 and I am 63. When he was 22 and I was 18, we together found this 1964 Challenger brand new on the rear sales storage lot of Studebaker Indianapolis in Summer 1964, and, subsequently, I was with him when he bought the car brand new.

He and I together uncrated and installed the R3 engine less than a year later at my father and our mutual Uncle's Ford/Mercury dealership in Ottawa Illinois.

It has been our privilege to watch Ted Harbit wring more speed out of this car at the annual Pure Stock Muscle Car Drag Race than either George or I could do if we had 100 years to practice!

Bob Palma
Technical Editor
Turning Wheels
(The international monthly magazine of The Studebaker Drivers Club.)

[Reply to this comment]

Anonymous on Oct 22, 2012 said:

1964 Callenger 6 - my dad gave it to me when it swallowed a valve, fixed that and drove it a for while, told him i wanted supercar. dealer got me 58 packard to strip and 4 speed to install. Homace superlark. My friends were astonished.

[Reply to this comment]

Anonymous on Jan 3, 2010 said:

It sure has been fun to watch national champion Ted Harbit drive my car at the Pure Stock Drags. I figure that with only 14,000 miles on it, a quarter mile at a time can't run up the mileage too fast. The very best the car has ever done in the quarter is 12.71 sec. at 111.64 mph. This occurred at Muncie Drag Strip in cool evening air and in Pure Stock trim with street tires, full exhaust and the original ForgeTrue pistons. Thanks for the ride, Ted.

George Krem

[Reply to this comment]

Anonymous on Jan 4, 2010 said:

cool! nice car!

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Anonymous on Jan 7, 2010 said:

My son Ryne Sanders rode in this car with Ted at the Pure Stock Drags in Stanton in 2004 when he was 12 (back when passengers were permitted during qualifications) and Ted did a 12.85 @ 110mph which at the time was the car's fastest ever. Ryne and I are Studebaker fans for life thanks to Bob Palma, Ted and the whole Studebaker crew! Paul Sanders

[Reply to this comment]

Anonymous on Feb 26, 2010 said:

I recently aquired a 64' Studebaker Challenger, but it is in a sorry state, I am starting the restoration this summer and I was wondering if anyone could recommend a reliable place to get original or quality re-make parts, please e-mail me at chrisc29@live.com, Thank you very much Chris Campbell, Gibbons, Alberta, Canada

[Reply to this comment]

ghpcnm on Sep 25, 2012 said:

That is one cool 'Baker...THUMBS UP !!!

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Anonymous on Mar 2, 2014 said:

My buddy Paul's son started a replica of this car but lost interest. I have to sell this car.It has a like new California rust free frame supplied by Robert Peterson and a nearly rust free brown 2dr.Challenger body. I am too old to finish the car and wish to sell it to a young Stude fan that will finish it. I can supply many parts to someone that is serious and young enough to finish it. Robert Kapteyn studebaker@mac.com

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