The 1938 Studebaker Coupe Express had dropped in sales from 1937 and the updated 1939 pickup did not do as well as Studebaker projected. The truck which
Studebaker had pinned its hopes on just didn't seem to be what the public wanted but much of the blame could be laid on the economy. The truck was priced slightly higher
than other available competitor models. Also in Europe a major war was breaking out which altered the world economy.
The Coupe Express which was based on the now-called Studebaker Commander kept the appearance of the car for the front, provided car-like comfort for the driver, and increased
its horsepower slightly. It was a well designed "luxury" vehicle in looks and in performance but did not capture its intended market share. The cab of the '39 was actually shorter
from the '37 which made the extra wheel on the right fender rise above the hood. Studebaker did not think this was a drawback. It still had the same 116 inch wheelbase with
two-stage rear springs and the standard equipment matched or surpassed the previous versions. In addition, now the headlights were built into the fenders making for a more
Another reason the truck may not have been successful in sales is that many Studebaker dealers did not have a truck franchise and knew little about trucks, hence they were
not keen on ordering a model for their showrooms.