1965 PORSCHE 356SC CABRIOLET
Chassis No. 161471
Engine No. P813412
Signal Red with Pearl Grey interior
Engine: Horizontally opposed air-cooled four cylinder at rear, 1,582cc, 95bhp at 5,500rpm, two Solex carburetors; Gearbox: four-speed manual with Porsche synchromesh; Suspension: front, independent with torsion bars and trailing arms, rear, swing axle with torsion bar; Brakes: hydraulic disc all round. Left hand drive.
As a production car available in Cabriolet, Coupe, Speedster and Roadster form, the 356 quickly became a world phenomenon. As part of an ongoing program of improvements, engine size went up to 1600cc and power to a comfortable 102bhp in the more potent variants such as this model. But above all, it was the quality built into the type - the concentration on a single air-cooled theme, the rewarding handling that gave the car its place in the sun.
In 1960 the B came along, provided with more robust bumpers, higher headlamps and a host of hidden refinements. The aerodynamics were improved, as were the brakes. The top speed was now quoted at 109mph. By 1963 the final version of the 356 became available, the C was available in either standard 75bhp specification or 102bhp SC specification, and all models were now fitted with ATE disc brakes all round.
Christie's is delighted to present this remarkable example of the rare late derivative of Porsche 356. The car is a most unusual balance of being in very good and extremely presentable order and yet at the same time wholly original. That it has survived in this order is firstly the fact that it has had only four registered owners from new, secondly that second and current owner are one and the same person and thirdly that it has been cherished throughout its life.
The Kardex and Factory letter confirms that the car was supplied new through Highland Motors Inc. of Spartanburg, South Carolina. The car first came to the knowledge of the current owner in the late 1980s and was bought by him in January 1990. At this time a mere 44,000 miles had been covered and today, even through one further ownership this has risen to a modest 54,590 miles.
The buyer today will have the opportunity to purchase the car in very similar order to which it would have left the factory, not only in terms of its remarkable condition, but also in terms of supporting documentation for the car still retains: original owners manual, holder, service booklets, body car book, radio manual and cover. Even the original factory touch up paint still comes with the car, as do two sets of original keys and an original key fob and dealers tag. Completing the package is the complete original tool kit and bag.
It was then, as now 'Fit for delivery' as its original window stickers proclaim.
Cosmetically, it is quite clear that the paint is at least 80 original. The prior owner chose to have the front lid repainted as well as some light blending above the rear license plate holder up to the lower engine compartment edge.
The interior, which is particularly unusual in Pearl Grey leather has been preserved and although formerly removed has now been refitted. The driving compartment details from steering wheel to Becker Europa radio, single headrest for the driver and mountings for the passenger rest are also correct original features. A new set of carpets made by Autos International have now been fitted.
The engine bay and motor were attended to in the 1990s, this work included: powder coating of the sheet metal, satin-chroming of the brightwork and linkages. At the same time the car was converted to 12 volt electrics to aid starting and European Bosch lights were installed, this work being carried out by Dave Hammers of Sea Cliff, NY. While the engine was rebuilt and balanced, including new SC cam, pistons and cylinders, valves, tappets etc. the carburettors were rebuilt and new brake discs were fitted all round, this work being completed by John Howe of Goleta, CA, 9,000 miles ago. At just over 52,000 miles a new flywheel and starter were fitted and the fuel pump rebuilt by Autosport of Mineola, NY and more recently in 1999 a dual circuit brake master cylinder was fitted and an additional brake light added beneath the engine grille.
Close inspection of these cars with those who have seen many, good and bad, reveals the precise extent to which originality may be confirmed on this car, such detail features as the sound proofing/insulation inside the door jams and plastic fill plugs beneath the bumpers and on the engine lid, are very rarely still on the cars that have been restored or suffered accident damage. The car will be a joy to the increasingly numerically focused collector for there is also copious numbering throughout the bodywork from the hood hinges to engine cover lid and each of the chrome wheels is dated.
Finding examples in such original and straight order is every collector's dream it is all the better when a car happens also to be the desirable and definitive model, for all of the above and more we can enthusiastically recommend this superb time-warp 356SC Cabriolet.