Lot 36: Porsche 356B Coupe
Though few would have realised it at the time, the 1948 launch of the Porsche 356 was a significant landmark in automotive history. It marked the commercial birth of what has become one of the world's greatest car manufacturers; a company that has many times won Le Mans on Sunday and inspired the rich of the road on Monday. Its achievements are unique. The 356 was a collaboration between 'Ferry' Porsche, the son of the company's founder, and the company's chief body engineer Erwin Komenda. The first examples of the 356 were handcrafted from aluminium in Gmund, Austria. And, with parts being in short supply following the war, the model initially employed the engine, transmission and suspension from the Volkswagen Beetle (the car famously designed by Porsche Senior). However, within two years much had changed. The car had been considerably re-engineered and was now less reliant on stock Volkswagen parts, while production had moved to Zuffenhausen in Germany. The bodies were now made of steel. The development of the 356 was charted by the suffixes A, B and C, and by the time production ceased in 1965, the cars had evolved in every respect - eg the last of the line were powered entirely by Porsche-designed engines. The total production run was 76,313 units. Thanks to efficient aerodynamics, sporting handling and fine build quality, the 356 quickly established itself as a worthy competition car and it achieved success in such top events as Le Mans, the Mille Miglia, Targa Florio and Carrera Panamericana, as well as countless other races and rallies around the world.
The right-hand drive 356B Coupe on sale is a T5 model built in 1961. Its replacement 1582cc flat-four engine is mated to a four-speed manual gearbox. The silver coachwork is complemented by a blue leather interior. The car has apparently been in its present ownership for the last nine years, during which time the suspension, brakes, steering and electrical system have all been completely overhauled. We understand that all such work and the vehicle's regular maintenance have been carried out by recognised marque specialists and all the related receipts are on file. The engine was apparently refurbished 11 years ago by renowned 356 engine expert Barry Curtis, since when it has covered some 24,000 miles. The car is fully prepared for road rallying and has been regularly campaigned in navigational rallies by its current owner. It comes with an extra set of road wheels shod with mud and snow tyres. The 356 is MOT'd and taxed until January 2011.
H&H Sales Limited, Stoneleigh Park
|Hammer Price (inc premium)||£20350|
|Registration number||OVS 507|
|Engine capacity (cc)||1582|
|Engine - cylinders|
|Number of doors|