1955 Porsche 356 Pre-A Speedster by Reutter

Sold For €341.600

RM | Sotheby's - PARIS 2016

Chassis No.
Engine No.
Gearbox No.

Documents: UK V5

  • Finished in desirable colour combination
  • Copy of original Kardex included
  • Ideal for vintage rallying and club events
100 bhp, 1,582 cc OHV air-cooled horizontally opposed four-cylinder engine with two twin-choke Weber carburettors, four-speed manual transaxle, four-wheel independent suspension, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 2,100 mm

The 356 forever defined Porsche as the maker of lightweight, technically advanced sports cars. It was the brainchild of Ferdinand Porsche, son of the company’s founder, who wanted to explore the design possibilities of an air-cooled, rear-engined, rear-wheel-drive car. He believed a lightweight sports car could be created from a pan and body construction and that excellent traction would result from a rear-engined car.

A mere 1,233 examples of the “pre-A” Speedster were produced in 1954 and 1955. The car offered here left the Zuffenhausen production line in March 1955, and a copy of the original Kardex order sheet details that the importer Max Hoffman ordered the vehicle with an ultimate destination of California, where the vehicle spent its early life.

The quest for greater performance led to the fitting of a later 1600 S (Type 616/2) engine from a 1958 example. This upgrade was a popular improvement, as the “S” engine offered better delivery of more power. The car was also subject to a recent comprehensive restoration and is finished in a stunning metallic grey, and it features the lightweight racing seats finished in contrasting red leather with matching door cards and hood. As part of the restoration, the engine was given a major overhaul with the aim of creating the ultimate unit using the best period tuning techniques. The specification included specialist upgraded parts from Joma, such as a special camshaft, ported valves, and Weber carburettors, and every moving part was balanced to optimise output. A recent dyno test, the results of which are included in the car’s file, was confirmed to be a very potent 100 horsepower.

The result is a 356 that is the ultimate creation of a period California amateur racecar that defined the Porsche heritage and set the benchmark for every sports car the company has created since. This immaculate, much sought-after model is ideal for touring and events, which, combined with its place in Porsche history, makes it a must for an enthusiast collector.

Lot Number

Suggested lots in Paris 2016

1. A packed auction room as the top-selling Mercedes-Benz 540 K crosses the auction block.jpg

18 - 19 January 2018


Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, Phoenix, Arizona


Go To Auction

7 February 2018


Place Vauban, Paris, France


Go To Auction