Tasteful Performance Upgrades. Unsurpassed Driving Experience!
1958 Porsche 356A Speedster 1600
s/n 84541 Engine no. 733209
Black with Red Leather
The Porsche Speedster is a true legend among automobiles. Built with the less is more mentality, it was actually a case of removing equipment to reduce the cost of the car and compete with less expensive cars. Ironically, the cars are more collectible now and worth considerably more than their plusher counterparts. The car was built in direct response to requests for American Porsche distributor Max Hoffman for a car that would sell better in the United States and would be inexpensive enough to compete with Triumphs and MG’s. The resulting car had only what was necessary: side curtains, a cut down windscreen, bucket seats, and a rudimentary top. The cars sold well, especially in the United States, and were popular among racers and enthusiasts. Certainly they occupy a unique place among American sports car culture.
Later examples, such as this one, were fitted with the enlarged 1600cc engine, in addition to a number of detail updates. This particular example has GT strips, and been further upgraded for driving pleasure with disc brakes on all four wheels, a recently rebuilt hot rod engine built from a 912 case, and a later 741 series transmission (retaining the stock shift linkage), a roll bar, and slightly lowered and stiffened suspension. The net result of these tasteful upgrades is a wonderfully powerful, quick stopping, highly agile and responsive Speedster while retaining a largely stock appearance.
This example was found by the previous California owner in the Lake Tahoe region where it had sat unused in dry storage for approximately 25 years. Restored with performance in mind, this example retains its original floors, battery box, and longitudinals- obviously benefited by the dry climate of Northern California for much if not all of its life. The body and chassis appear to be rust free and extraordinarily solid. There are no non-factory welds or seems evident within the front or rear wheel wells. The panel match at the doors, bonnet, and engine lid are excellent, with regular, even gaps. The paint work was done to very high standards, and has a glossy, highly polished appearance, with just a handful of minor signs of age and use present. The factory badging is present throughout, including the “1600 Super” script on the engine cover area. The exterior brightwork is excellent. This example sports bumpers without over riders, giving the car a sleek, clean look. It sits on restored, silver painted steel wheels without hubcaps, as was the competition tendency in period. The tires are near new 15” Continentals. The car wears yellow California year of manufacture plates, lending nicely to a period look.
The interior is also very nice, trimmed in very high quality red leather with correct square weave grey carpets. The dashboard paint is in fine condition, with equally high quality paintwork as was applied to the exterior. The instruments are like new, the switches are similarly nice, and all electrical systems work. The floor mats have been replaced with the correct rubber. The seats, dash pad, and door panels are all done in high quality leather. A beautiful wood rimmed steering wheel is fitted, which has a period appearance. The top frame has been restored, and new Hartz cloth canvas material applied. A very tasteful, nicely painted roll bar adds a bit of safety and rigidity to the chassis. This example is equipped with a full cockpit tonneau, as well as side windows.
The engine compartment and trunk are both extremely clean and solid. The engine bay displays some of the upgrades that make this Speedster so fantastic to drive. Later model carburetors have been installed, with higher flow K&N air cleaner housings. A remote oil filter is installed, plumbed with stainless steel braded lines. The exhaust has also been upgraded to a higher flow system. The front storage compartment remains largely stock, and contains the matching spare wheel and tire.
The underside is wonderfully original and solid, confirming the structurally sound nature of this West Coast car. No repairs from damage or corrosion are evident. The roll bar is tied into the chassis with a car-width plate fastened to the undercarriage, which also, intelligently, receives the seatbelt fasteners. Both the engine and transmission are dry and nicely detailed, and there is evidence of the much recent work performed virtually everywhere you look.
We cannot express in words what an outstanding example this Speedster is to drive. The additional horsepower of the upgraded engine, along with the more user-friendly transmission, suspension, and disc brake upgrades make this car an obvious choice for tour and rally events, as well as aggressive street driving or even track days. The car has a stable platform, with virtually no leaning or body roll, even when cornering aggressively. It begs to be driven enthusiastically, much to the enjoyment of the occupants!
This is an opportunity lovely restored example of the iconic Speedster with wonderful performance upgrades. If you’ve been wanting a 356A Speedster without the primitive qualities of drum brakes or the early 356A transmissions, the car offered here is the answer. These cars occupy a unique place in motoring history, and have appreciated significantly in recent years because of their timeless appeal and usability. This particular example is ready to enjoy and fully sorted, and is quite complete with all weather equipment, spare tire and wheel, and the tool roll. Also included in the sale are many of the original parts removed during the upgrades (wheels, drum brakes), save for the motor and transmission.
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