A 1956 Porsche 550 Spyder


This 1956 Porsche 550 Spyder has spent the higher a part of 35 years sitting in a barn someplace within the Swiss countryside. Early in its life it was owned and pushed by plenty of well-known Swiss racing drivers together with Rita Rampinelli, Heinz Schiller, and System 1 ace Jo Siffert.

In the course of the Sixties the automobile was upgraded with plenty of “werks” manufacturing unit parts together with an engine improve and new Porsche RS60 bodywork – as a way to make sure the automobile would stay aggressive towards extra fashionable equipment.

Quick Information – A Barn Discover Porsche 550 Spyder

  • The Porsche 550 Spyder was launched in 1953 and offered till 156, with simply 90 examples produced in complete. Values have been climbing steadily lately, a 1958 550A offered for $5.17 million {dollars} in 2018.
  • Not like the Porsche 356, the Porsche 550 is mid-engined, with the engine within the rear however in entrance of the rear axle line. It was designed to be as low and aerodynamic as attainable, and it racked up many wins in interval 1.1 and 1.5 liter racing courses.
  • The 550 Spyder was powered by the legendary flat-four Porsche Carrera four-cam engine, with double shaft-driven overhead cams per financial institution, twin ignition, dry sump lubrication, and 110 bhp from a displacement of 1498cc.
  • The automobile you see right here began out as a regular 550, it was then later upgraded with a brand new manufacturing unit engine and an RS60 physique within the Sixties to stay aggressive. It was lately rolled out of a barn the place it had been sitting for 35+ years and it’s now being supplied on the market.

The Porsche 550 Spyder

The Porsche 550 Spyder might be best-known in the present day because the automobile that James Dean was driving in September of 1955 when he was concerned in an accident and killed immediately.

Image DescriptionThis 550 Spyder was rebodied within the Sixties with an alloy RS60 physique, and it was given a brand new manufacturing unit engine.

In some respects the tragic loss of life of James Dean has overshadowed what would have in any other case been a completely constructive story a couple of small European automaker that constructed an progressive racing automobile, and went on to win numerous David vs Goliath battles on the race tracks of Europe and North America.

The primary manufacturing Porsche had been the rear-engined 356, it proved profitable as a race automobile in its personal proper nevertheless it was clear {that a} newly developed racing mannequin could be extra aggressive.

Some early experiments into mid-engined automobiles had been undertaken at Porsche, and naturally Ferdinand Porsche had developed the enduring mid-engined Auto Union Grand Prix automobiles within the Nineteen Thirties.

With all the above in thoughts, Porsche engineers developed a flat-welded metal tubular body onto which they affixed a light-weight and low-slung aluminum physique. The automobile was so low actually that racing driver Hans Herrmann as soon as famously drove one underneath the increase gate at a railroad crossing in the course of the 1954 Mille Miglia.

Above Video: This brief movie from Porsche provides an enchanting and fast-paced look again on the historical past of the 550 Spyder, together with loads of interval racing footage.

In each 1.1 and 1.5 liter kind the 550 Spyder would show extremely profitable for the fledgling automaker, taking class wins within the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Carrera Panamericana, and profitable the Nurburgring Eifel Race, the Targa Florio, and a slew of different occasions.

At this time the surviving examples of the 550 are among the many most collectible classic sports activities automobiles on the earth.

The 1956 Porsche 550 Spyder Proven Right here

The automobile you see here’s a 1956 Porsche 550 Spyder, curiously it was initially used for a promotional picture outdoors of the Porsche manufacturing unit to show the big selection of shade choices obtainable for the mannequin.

When it left the manufacturing unit it was completed in purple with white darts, its first proprietor was Rita Rampinelli, a highly-regarded Swiss racing driver who competed with the Spyder in interval. The automobile was later offered to fellow Swiss racing driver Heinz Schiller who competed within the automobile in Switzerland and at notable circuits like Monza and Avus.

Porsche 550 Spyder Barn Find 9

Image DescriptionUnusually for a Porsche from this period the 550 was powered by a mid-mounted engine for optimum weight distribution. It might be the primary of many profitable mid-engined Porsche race automobiles.

The automobile would later be purchased by Edouard Margairaz, who raced the automobile in Swiss hill climb occasions. Later in its life the automobile would additionally belong to Swiss Grand Prix winner and System 1 driver Jo Siffert.

Sooner or later within the Sixties this automobile had its unique physique and engine eliminated, a Porsche RS60 physique was fitted together with a brand new manufacturing unit engine – more than likely to maintain the automobile aggressive. For causes unknown it ended up storage in a Swiss barn the place it remained from the Eighties to the current day – over 35 years.

The automobile is now resulting from cross the public sale block with Gooding & Firm on the third of September at their London Public sale, resulting from be held on the prestigious Concours of Class at Hampton Courtroom Palace.

For those who’d prefer to see extra in regards to the automobile or register to bid you possibly can go to the itemizing right here, the value information is £1,250,000 – £1,750,000 which works out to roughly $1.5 – $2.1 million USD.

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Porsche 550 Spyder Barn Find

All photos copyright and courtesy of Gooding & Firm. Photographs by Mathieu Heurtault.

Porsche 550 Spyder Barn Find 1


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