Auctions and Brokerage
Coachwork by Reutter
According to Porsche factory records, this exquisite 356 A Speedster was originally finished in Meissen Blue, a distinctive pastel shade that was only made available between 1957 and 1959. Initially specified for export, this late-production 356 A Speedster was equipped from the factory with sealed beam headlamps, US-spec bumpers, and a type 616/1 engine, no. 67644. All told, just 556 of these lightweight sports cars were built during 1958, the model’s final and most developed year of manufacture.
While little is known of this car’s earliest history, a respected Chicago-area collector purchased them speedster approximately 10 years ago, at which time it was described as a long- term California car. When the car arrived at its new home in the Midwest, it was immediately sent to Continental AutoSports for a detailed inspection and service that included oil, filters, carburetor and ignition settings, as well as a valve adjustment. Over the next few years, the Porsche was driven sparingly and maintained as needed, with yet another comprehensive service in 2007 that totaled nearly $7,000 in expenses.
Between 2009 and 2010, the Speedster was treated to a complete cosmetic restoration performed by Custom Cars Unlimited, a respected Chicago establishment that has decades of experience working with a wide variety of collector cars. In an effort to return the speedster to show-quality condition, the body was completely stripped to bare metal and any necessary metalwork was attended to before refinishing the car in its original Meissen Blue livery.
Inside, the speedster features the classic bucket seats, upholstered in black, and complemented by lighter carpets of the correct German square-weave type. In keeping with the high standards of the restoration, the engine compartment and front storage area are beautifully presented with the original matching-numbers engine and an appropriate, “November 1957” date- stamped gas tank.
Not only does the car posses a reassuringly consistent level of fit and finish, but both the front and rear panels are also stamped with the last three digits of the serial number, confirming their originality. On the whole, the presentation is most impressive and the overall attention to detail contributes to a proper, period-correct look.
While in the care of its current owner, the Speedster has received a great deal of cosmetic and mechanical attention. Since 2011, highly respected Porsche specialist Beck’s European in Scottsdale, Arizona, has overhauled the matching-numbers engine, addressed the braking system, and performed a variety of minor repairs to ensure that this beautiful 356 runs and drives as well as it looks. Receipts from this process are included in the sale and attest to almost $10,000 worth of recent mechanical work.
Offered with side curtains, a tool roll, jack, Certificate of Authenticity, and service records, this exceptional 356 A Speedster makes no excuses and is ready to join an appreciative new home. Given the difficulty associated with finding a quality example of the Porsche 356, the appearance of this car at auction represents a marvelous opportunity to acquire the most famous model of all, with the added benefit of recent restoration work, a matching-numbers engine, and an exciting original color scheme.