Studebaker Commander Starliner - 1953
Within compass -- Raymond Lowey is one of main important designers of the 20th century. With a French origin, he developed most part of his activity in USA, where he was favored by his relationship with the biggest industry of the world. In all his projects and works he showed a remarkable ability to understand machines and systems and look beyond. He was rational and bold at the same time and defined new standards for the modern design. The famous streamline style, for example, a great characteristic of the '50s, was originated at his drawing board. Among the equipments and objects he designed -- and there were many -- one of the dearest products of the American industry could not miss: the car.
Loewy collaboration to the automobile industry began in 1936, as he was hired by the Studebaker Company as a consultant. Later he started to execute several design tasks, like reformulating the mark logotype. Only in 1953 the opportunity came and he conceived a new model, designated for young clients. Loewy developed the project with the designer Robert E. Bourke. And then the Starliner was born, known as the first American sport automobile. New patterns were established with this model and even today they are attributes of any sport automobile, as the low and long aspect, and a front side wedge-liked with the radiator hidden behind the stoker. He also converted, with this project, the exaggerated taste for chrome -- he was used to call the American cars of that time "jukeboxes with wheels".
A little time later, Lowey left Studebaker and designed series of sport automobiles for several marks. In 1956 he was invited by Jaguar to conceive a new coupé. Except the fact it was just a prototype, there are few information about it. There are rare photographs about it, but they reveal the designer traditional stylistic principles added to some innovations: a short-lowered rear and an inclined roof. Those who look to the famous Jaguar XK-E, designed by Malcolm Sayer in 1961, can see the influences of Loewy anterior project.
Jaguar coupé - 1956
The time of BMW 507 came in 1957 at the Paris Auto Show. The same stylistics characteristics are present in this prototype that, like Jaguar, was not even produced. Instead of this, the Albrecht Graf Goertz project was chosen. After, in 1960, Loewy projected Lancia Loraymo -- a word composed by three syllables of his own name. In this project, the design was changed a little bit. We can see an aggressive front side with a huge stoked sided by two lanterns which, as someone said, remind a Hammerhead Shark head.
BMW 507 - 1957
Lancia Flaminia Loraymo - 1960
The last project of an automobile and the apogee o Loewy career was in 1961, when he regressed to Studebaker to design the Avanti. The great line of the automobile were ready in a record time, approximately 15 days, thanks to the experience and confidence of this designer on his own principles. At this time, the project passed to the production and the first samples came out from the assembly line in 1962. It was one of the most advanced and equipped cars of its time. It had front disc brakes, car body style elements made by glass fiber and an exceptionally ergonomic control board. Some time later, Studebaker finished and the production ceased -- but not before Avanti became a success and went to the mythical automobiles' gallery.
Studebaker Avanti - 1962
Source: The Avanti