Posts from ‘What If . . .’


Class 8 Pickups, Big Rig Pickups

By Frank Peiler

The full-size pickup truck market could hardly be hotter these days. Roughly 2.5 million such vehicles were retailed in the United States in 2017, making big pickups the largest single vehicle segment.

1960 Chevrolet Corvair Concept, Studebaker Design

1960 Chevrolet Corvair “what if” concept

By Frank Peiler

Studebaker introduced its Lark series of compact cars for 1959. Though fresh looking, the Lark wasn’t really as new as it seemed to be. Since Studebaker was strapped for cash, the company’s strategy with the Lark lineup was to update its six-year-old basic body structure with newly styled–and significantly shorter–front and rear sheetmetal.

1955 Hudson, by Citroen, 1955 Hudson Drawings

What if another manufacturer had created their own version of the ’55 Hudson?

By Frank Peiler

Anybody who knows a little something about automotive history knows that Hudson merged with Nash in 1954 to form American Motors.  As a result, AMC had to come up with a new Hudson in record time to make the 1955 model year.  The design department at Nash did a very good job transforming the Ambassador/Statesman into the  new Hudson.  The car didn’t look much like a Hudson, and it certainly didn’t handle at all like previous “step-down” Hudsons, but the design was a refreshing change from the old and tired car.  However, we ask, what would the ’55 Hudson look like had the merger been between General Motors, Ford Motor Company, Chrysler Corporation, or the newly merged Studebaker/Packard?

2018 Pontiac GX7, Pontiacs of 2018

The GX7 midsize crossover would be the largest vehicle in the 2018 Pontiac lineup.

Illustrations by Frank Peiler

Since the turn of the century, U.S. car sellers have been shedding brands faster than the cable TV networks have been creating reality shows.

1947 Studebaker Wagon Concept,

Studebaker almost offered a wagon for 1947. Here’s what it might have looked like…

By Frank Peiler

Just after World War II, Studebaker was readying its radical new postwar cars for introduction to a car-hungry public. There would be a nearly complete range of body styles available–from two-door sedans to convertibles–but no station wagons, even though a prototype four-door woodie wagon was featured in a LIFE magazine article.

Diamond T station wagon

Factory photograph of the Diamond T Wagon Prototype (1946)

Text and drawing by Frank Peiler

The American auto industry returned to building cars soon after World War II, and the car-starved public was clamoring to trade in its worn-out old rides for almost anything new that had at least four wheels and was self-propelled.

2016 Kozy Koot

The 2016 Kozy Koot will start at $8995. Model above shown with optional equipment.

by Frank Peiler

A plug-in electric vehicle with a 30-mile range, the Kozy Koot is for the get-up-and-go senior looking to relive his childhood.

Bizzaro World Corvette

What if another manufacturer had created their own version of 1953 Chevrolet Corvette?


Frank Peiler, Consumer Guide Automotive’s Publisher Emeritus, is back for another round of  “What If” design studies. This time, Frank envisions what the 1953 Chevrolet Corvette might have looked like if it had been designed by Studebaker, Hudson, Packard, Nash, Dodge, Ford, or Kaiser. For more of Frank’s “What If?” artwork, check out his blogs on the 1957 Mercury, 1957 Packard, Cord 810, and Lincoln Continental.

1965 Ford Mustang Drawings

What if…the Mustang had been penned by a company other than Ford?

By Frank Peiler

Little did anyone know that the Ford Mustang would be such a big hit. The first-ever pony car spawned a segment that would soon include the Chevrolet Camaro, Pontiac Firebird, Mercury Cougar, AMC Javelin, and Dodge Challenger, to name a few.


What if a company other than Ford had designed the 1956-1957 Mark II? Frank Peiler answers that question. In this case, Chrysler gets a shot at the legendary Continental coupe.

by Frank Peiler

It’s just my opinion, but I think that the 1956-57 Continental Mark II was one of the best designs to come out of Detroit (Dearborn) in the 20th Century, or at least post World War II.  Its clean, dignified, uncluttered lines were in sharp contrast to the flamboyant chrome-laden cars of the day.

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