The Golden Hawk was Studebaker's first attempt to increase space under the hood to make room for a larger engine. That engine was a 352 cubic inch V8 from Packard. It made 275 horsepower, which was a very impressive number for a car as light as the Golden Hawk. This car was built before the official start of the muscle car era of the mid-1960's, but it certainly was built with the same low weight, high power concept in mind.
Packard continued to make a Golden Hawk for the 1957 and 1958 model years, except with a smaller engine that was supercharged. The Supercharged Golden Hawk had a 289 cubic inch V8 engine, but with the help of the supercharger it had power output equal to that of the 352 in the regular Studebaker Golden Hawk.
The late 1950's were not a good time for the American economy. As people struggled to make ends meet, they also stopped buying luxury and sports cars, including the Golden Hawk. Unlike it's competitors, which included the Ford Thunderbird and Chevrolet Corvette, the Golden Hawk would not survive this recession.
People who have way too much time on their hands and watch movies over and over again might remember spotting a Golden Hawk in the movie "Rainman." Dustin Hoffman's character spotted the car and began to quote its impressive performance numbers, all of which were accurate.
The Golden Hawk might not command the same attention as the Corvettes and Thunderbirds from the same era, but they are still highly regarded by the collector car market. If you want to buy or restore one, the first place you should go is eBay. They not only have listings for restored Golden Hawks, but there are also lots of listings for parts that you can use for your own restoration or even parts cars to help you get your Golden Hawk into better than new condition.