Longtime California Car Emerging from 50 Years of Single Family Ownership. Presented in Original Colors. Structurally Excellent, Updated with 356B Engine, and Accompanied by CoA, Select Records, and an Original Owner's Manual.
1958 Porsche 356A 1600 Reutter Coupe
s/n 103321, Engine no. P*602503*
Ruby Red with Brown Interior
With its iconic shape and race-bred performance, the lightweight and agile 356 Porsche has been continuously sought after by enthusiasts and collectors for their timeless beauty, elegant engineering, and versatile performance. The “A” version of the 356 came to market during Porsche’s rapid growth as a production car company and a formidable motorsports competitor. The ongoing development of the 356 included the 1600 series engine, aptly named for the 1,582cc engine, which was perfectly matched for the rapidly growing US market. The 356A remains today one of the most desirable vintage Porsches, exemplifying all the traits of the original design with vastly improved craftsmanship, performance, and build engineering – features which continue to be hallmarks of contemporary Porsche offerings.
According to the Porsche Certificate of Authenticity accompanying this car, production was completed March 31, 1958, finished in Ruby Red (5702), trimmed with Brown Leatherette/B interior, and fitted with optional USA bumpers. According to the original Porsche Service Booklet retained with the car, this 356A was dispatched to Competition Motors Distributors, Hollywood, CA on May 29th, 1958 and delivered to the selling dealer Michelmore Motors, Reseda, CA. Having been a California car since new, the current family owners have retained records supporting 50 years of single-family ownership since their purchase, sometime in the 1960s. Enjoyably used by two primary family members, the car has been the subject of general maintenance and service, with records dating back several decades. Much of the service history with the car includes purchases for general items such as tires, oil changes, and valve adjustments – a testament to the regular and thoughtful stewardship spanning more than half a century. Among the numerous registration documents accompanying the car, the oldest one supports family ownership dating back to 1966. Having more recently benefitted from restoration work including body and paint as well as interior and various finishing, the car was updated with a 356B engine, a rebuilt 541 gearbox, and wider profile Brazilian chrome wheels.
Today this handsome Porsche 356A presents very nicely with very good quality throughout. The Ruby Red paint has been applied consistently with good coverage and excellent overall gloss. Some minor imperfections are evident including one area along the driver’s side door lower corner and some minor road chips at the front of the car. The body panels are properly finished with good overall gaps and panel fit. Both the hood and engine lid still retain their correct matching factory numbers indicating they are the original panels assembled with the car. The driver’s door sits slightly proud of the trailing edge door gap, while the passenger door fit is better but also slightly proud at the lower portion of the door. The majority of the chrome on the car was redone and remains in excellent condition, including the wheels, hubcaps, light trims, window trim, and door handles. The wheels are wider later series Brazilian type with very nice chrome finish on the rims and caps. Overall the exterior has a satisfying visual presence, including very nice stance on contemporary tires.
The interior is a handsomely finished combination of original components and thoughtfully restored areas only as needed. This combination is not easy to achieve, but here the materials and refinement come together in a cohesive and attractive way, supportive of the long-term ownership without discarding much of the history so carefully preserved during the long-term ownership. Showing just the right amount of patina for a well-sorted car, the more recently re-upholstered vinyl seats, dash pad, door panels, and woven carpet combine very well with the original instrumentation, delicate craquelure gearshift knob, and the various other ivory trim throughout the cabin. The beige carpeting and red coco mats create a nice contrast to the red and brown finishes. The dashboard features clear and crisp instruments with slight aging to the bezels, a nicely hued ivory steering wheel and horn ring, and a modern Blaupunkt radio - carefully installed without cutting the original radio location holes.
The engine compartment is clean, and detailed, with generally correct restoration and finishes. The car has the correct engine decals, mostly correct factory hardware, and various vintage details, some of which show a bit of age. The trunk is correctly presented, consistent with the rest of the car. The fuel tank appears to have been reconditioned and repainted. A correct leather strap properly retains a matching wide chrome wheel and a correct jack is properly stowed nearby. The underside of the car, though not restored or detailed, appears in generally good condition with evidence of work performed to the battery box (reference invoice included). There are no signs of structural compromise to the floor or suspension support structures, which are believed to be the original construction, and believably so given the dry California climate where the car is believed to have resided since new.
The car runs and drives quite well, starting easily and, warm, the idle falls in nicely, indicative of proper tuning. The 541 gearbox, though not the original unit, has smooth operation and good syncromesh with just the right “feel” to the shift linkage. The brakes are typical of the drum type of this era, offering good pedal pressure and stopping power, but requiring more attentive driving in modern traffic. Road manners are smooth with a hint of buoyancy over bumps, an endearing feature one learns to appreciate when driving a 356. Overall, the car is a pleasure to drive, particularly continuing the legacy of proud family ownership. The car comes with the Porsche CoA, the original Porsche Driver’s Manual, Blaupunkt radio operation instructions and yellow acetate cover, Porsche family tree brochure, and the original Porsche Service Booklet delivered with the car when new. Also included are multiple years of older registration slips and selected service records.
Featuring a wonderful combination of long-term family ownership, thoughtful care and selective restoration, combined with original history, this handsomely prepared Porsche 356A is a satisfying car that can be readily enjoyed without hesitation just as it has for so many years. Beautiful colors, iconic body design, and Porsche engineering all come together in a quality road car, ready for another half century of motoring pleasure.
The above vehicle information is complete and accurate to the best of our knowledge at the time it is posted to this website. Corrections or additional information is always appreciated. All advertised prices exclude government fees and taxes, any finance charges, any dealer document preparation charge, and any emission testing charge. Vehicles are subject to prior sale. All advertised to be true but not guaranteed. We assume no liability for errors or omissions.
Fantasy Junction • 510-653-7555 • 1145 Park Ave, Emeryville, CA 94608