Lot 154

2021   |   Pebble Beach Auctions

1964 Porsche 356 C Carrera 2 Cabriolet

From the Stephen P. Dean Collection

Estimate

$650,000 - $850,000

Chassis

160790

Engine

97423

Car Highlights

Among the Most Desirable of All 356s; One of 30 C Carrera 2 Cabriolets Built
Factory Ordered in Champagne Yellow and Equipped with Many Rare Options
Delivered New to Legendary Film Director John Sturges
Purchased by Stephen P. Dean from Vasek Polak Porsche in 1967
Retains Matching-Numbers Engine and Transaxle per Factory Records
Offered with COA, Kardex, Factory Literature, Hardtop, Tool Kit, and Jack

Technical Specs

1,966 CC DOHC 587/1 Flat 4-Cylinder Engine
Twin Solex 40PII-4 Carburetors
130 BHP at 6,200 RPM
4-Speed Manual Transaxle
4-Wheel Disc Brakes
Independent Front and Rear Suspension with Torsion Bars
Register to Bid

David Brynan

John Sturges, Los Angeles, California (acquired new via Competition Motors in 1964)Stephen P. Dean (acquired via Vasek Polak Porsche in 1967)

Monterey Historic Automobile Races, California, 1982

Introduced in 1962, the 2000 GS – or Carrera 2 – was created to meet customer demand for a four-cam Porsche with greater mid-range power and torque. The early four-cam engines, with their roller-bearing crankshafts, produced power high in the rpm range, a characteristic acceptable for the lightweight Spyder models; however, for a 356-based sports car, greater displacement was needed to remain competitive.

At the heart of the 2000 GS was the new two-liter Type 587 engine, which, in its various iterations, represented the ultimate development of the Ernst Fuhrman-designed four-cam. Benefiting from a reinforced crankcase, redesigned heads, larger bore, and increased cooling capacity, the Type 587 engine produced 130 bhp in GS specification and 150-plus bhp in GT tune.

In all, approximately 300 examples of the Carrera 2 were built during B-series production, with an additional 100 or so built as C-series cars. Although most Carrera 2s were built in Coupe form, Porsche also offered the 2000 GS as a glamorous Cabriolet. Just 107 Carrera 2 Cabriolets were built – 77 in B specification, featuring Porsche’s annular disc brakes, and a final 30 in C specification fitted with the improved ATE system.

As documented in Rolf Sprenger and Steve Heinrichs’ definitive book Carrera, this 2000 GS Cabriolet, chassis 160790, is among this extremely rare breed of late-production C-series cars. According to a copy of the factory Kardex, this car was originally finished in the elegant color combination of Champagne Yellow (code 6405) over black leather. An impressive list of optional equipment included a Blaupunkt-Köln de Luxe radio, lockable antenna, one leather headrest, safety belts, Coco mats, luggage rack with straps, an electrical windshield wiper system, and chrome wheels with Dunlop tires.

Completed on July 9, 1964, the Carrera 2 was shipped to Competition Motors in Culver City, California, for delivery to Hollywood legend John Sturges. Sturges was one of the era’s most acclaimed directors, responsible for iconic films such as Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, The Magnificent Seven, and The Great Escape. He also had a keen appreciation for sports cars and was the original, uncredited director of Le Mans, which starred his frequent collaborator Steve McQueen.

While it is not known how long Sturges retained his Carrera 2 Cabriolet, by fall 1967 it had already covered 17,000 miles, been repainted black, and was offered for sale at Vasek Polak Porsche in Hermosa Beach, California.

On September 16, 1967, Stephen P. Dean made a deal to purchase the 356, trading in his 1966 911 toward the $5,000 Carrera. Smitten with his four-cam Cabriolet, Mr. Dean devoted much time and effort to the Porsche hobby. Not only was he a member of the PCA for more than 50 years, but he was also the founder and publisher of the well-known 4-Cam Register, which served as an important resource for owners and furthered appreciation for Porsche’s exotic Carrera and Spyder models.

Throughout his ownership, Mr. Dean drove his Carrera 2 Cabriolet regularly and exhibited it at various events, including the 1982 Monterey Historic Automobile Races, where Porsche was the featured marque. Many enthusiasts will recognize his Carrera’s distinctive California vanity plate “4 CAM,” which it still wears today.

Through his active use of the Carrera, Mr. Dean accrued most of the 84,577 miles recorded at the time of cataloguing. He also repainted the body silver early in his ownership, though sections of the original Champagne Yellow are visible on the dashboard. Partially disassembled and stored in recent years, the Carrera is not in running order and will require mechanical attention before use. However, given its fascinating celebrity provenance, decades-long ownership, and exceptional factory specification, this Porsche is a compelling candidate for a concours-quality restoration.

Significantly, this Carrera 2 retains its matching-numbers engine and transaxle per Porsche build records. The last digits of the chassis number can be found stamped on the hood and deck lid. Accompanying the sale of the car are a rare factory hardtop, luggage rack, tool kit, jack, and assorted factory 356 C literature, including an owner’s manual, sales brochure, and color chart. Beyond these accessories, the Porsche is accompanied by factory 2000 GS literature – an original Carrera 2 owner’s supplement, Carrera guide, and spare parts catalogue. Other notable documentation includes the original 1967-dated Vasek Polak sales contract and Mr. Dean’s personal logbook, in which he meticulously noted the mileage, repairs, and various comments during his ownership’s first five years.

Gooding & Company is honored to present this magnificent Carrera 2 Cabriolet at auction for the first time in its history and recommends it to any collector looking to acquire a significant example of the legendary four-cam Porsche.