Thursday, October 21, 2010

Found: Oldest Porsche Import in the USA is a 1952 356 Cabriolet

The owner of the "Strawberry Red" 356 Cabriolet pictured above has earned the bragging rights for owning the oldest Porsche model sold in America. The discovery was made as part of the My Porsche Classic Search, which was launched in August to celebrate the brand's 60th anniversary.

The Porsche Classic Search was conducted online with owners having to submit documentation that their Porsche was one of the earliest in its category to be retailed in the USA.

The oldest documented sale was this rare 1952 356 Cabriolet owned by Dr. Robert Wilson of Oklahoma City, Okla. According to the company, Wilson's car was imported in November of 1952 by Austrian businessman, Max Hoffman, in New York, who brought the first Porsche cars to the U.S. beginning in 1950.

The 356 Cabriolet, which is powered by a 60-horsepower 1.5 liter engine, was discovered in a salvage yard by Wilson many years after landing on this side of the Atlantic. Wilson bought the car and painstakingly restored it to its original condition.

Porsche said its search also yielded the discovery of an even rarer and older model, a blue 1950 356 Cabriolet owned by Richard Brumme of Annapolis, Md, which was one of the very first series production 356s built in Stuttgart, after the company relocated from Gmund, Austria. However, this car was not actually retailed in America so the title went to Wilson's 356.

Aside from the oldest Porsche sold in the US, the company also made a list of the oldest models in each range:

  • 1965 911: Barry August of Clarksville, Md.
  • 1965 912: Steve Torkelsen of Wilton, Conn.
  • 1970 914: Ralph Stoesser of Marco Island, Fla.
  • 1977 924: Jay Hoover of New Haven, Ind.
  • 1977 928: Jim Doerr of Richmond, Va.
  • 1983 944: John Denning of Covington, Wash.
  • 1992 968: Jeffrey Coe of Trumball, Conn.
  • 1997 Boxster: David Adrian of Worcester, Mass.
  • 2004 Cayenne: Adam Reichard of Magnolia, Texas
  • 2005 Carrera GT: Robert Ingram of Durham, N.C.
  • 2006 Cayman: Eugenie Thomas of Martinez, Calif.

The Stuttgart-based firm said it plans to honor the owners of all of these cars with an exclusive badge issued by the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart, and by featuring photos of the cars at the new "Sixty Years of Porsche in America" exhibit, which opened in the museum on Oct. 12. Furthermore, Wilson's 356 Convertible will make its way to Porsche's LA Auto Show stand in November.


Volkswagen Adds Exclusive Models to 2011 Eos Facelift Range

If you haven't heard already, earlier this month, Volkswagen lifted the covers off the redesigned 2011 Eos Coupe-Convertible. And while here in the U.S., buyers will have to wait until next year for the revamped model, in Europe, the 2011 Eos is not only available for order but Volkswagen also introduced the Exclusive Edition package.

Available with all engine variants from the 140HP 2.0 TDI to the 210HP 2.0 TSI, the Exclusive trim adds a raft of features such as sports seats in two-tone Nappa leather upholstery and decorative elements in aluminum.

The interior also benefits from a sports steering wheel, gear lever sleeve and hand brake lever finished in leather with matching colored stitching, Black Piano lacquer trim elements on the center console, and unique door sills.

Every Eos Exclusive model gets standard 18-inch alloy wheels in a choice of two designs and standard sport suspension. Prices in Germany start from €35,275.


Vipervette is the latest project to kill two performance nameplates in one go

The 1986 Vipervette is exactly what you think it is: part Dodge Viper, part Corvette, all painful. Riding on a 1986 Corvette chassis, the Vipervette is said to have inherited its body (and not much else, apparently) from a 2000 Dodge Viper. Because of this hodge-podge mix of machinery, we have a car with some very awkward proportions.

The car is motivated by the '86 Vette's power train - a 5.7-liter V8 and a 4-speed stick - so don't expect to be going anywhere in too much of a hurry. Inside is more of the 1980's, with the Corvette interior color-coded to line up with the Viper exterior (meaning it's the mighty played-out red and black).

At least it's based on a relatively modern car, so it's got common amenities like power steering, power windows, the Viper's removable top, and a CD player. There's no telling about the quality of the project's fit and finish, but if you're interested in finding out for yourself, this little monster can be yours for the low, low price of $12,250.

For that money, I'd pass and get a cherry 1980's Corvette (and still have money for a vacation, to boot).

By Phil Alex

Link: Autabuy - Hat tip to Brian!