According to a copy of the original factory built sheet (Kardex) on file, this beautiful Porsche 356 Pre-A was completed at the old Stuttgart-based Porsche works in 1952 and was delivered in Palm Springs on 19th of May 1952. The new 356 was finished in the lovely exterior color of 'Elfenbein' (Ivory White) and destined for an American buyer without any mentioning of the selling dealer and importer.
In 2019, the second German owner commissioned a complete restoration on the car. Everything was carried out to get paintwork and mechanics in new to perfect condition. There are several invoices on record stating the countless hours and lots of parts. We can see chrome, brake parts & lines, glass, fuel lines, filters, leather, carpet, seat fillings, body preparation, paint work, engine tin work, a gearbox rebuild,...
The engine is from a 912; the gearbox is a VW "crashbox" as used by Porsche in '52. The fuel system was gone through, with the carburetors rebuilt, fuel tank reconditioned, and fitment of new fuel lines. Underneath, the steering box was rebuilt, and new shocks, tie rods, wheels bearings, brakes shoes and cylinders were fitted. The body was stripped to bare metal, professionally painted in period correct Ivory, and refitted with all new rubber seals and gaskets, while the wheels were painted in body color to match. Chrome and brightwork was restored. New leather and carpeting create lovely interior which is neatly finished by the period dash-mounted Telefunken radio.
Inside the cockpit a new Red leatherette interior was professionally fitted, with color-matched German type square weave carpets featuring ribbed rubber mats and tunnel, and a new mapped cloth headliner installed. There’s no interior mentioned on the Kardex but the red matches incredibly well with the Ivory paint.
There's an extensive history including pictures and also mails between several previous owners, telling stories about the car and its life. Of course there's countless invoices on the restoration as well and some feedback from a famous 'pre-a connaisseur.
Today this early Pre-A 'bend window' 356 looks stunning, and the attention to detail is magnificent throughout. This early Pre-A 356 Coupe beautifully demonstrates the pure and clean design of these early Porsche cars.
HISTORY / OWNERSHIP
THE EARLY 356
Although Ferdinand Porsche had established his independent automotive design consultancy in the early 1930s, his name would not appear on a car until 1949. When it did, it graced one of the all-time great sports cars: the Porsche 356. The work of Ferry Porsche, the Type 356 was based on the Volkswagen designed by his father, Ferdinand, and like the immortal 'Beetle' employed a platform-type chassis with rear-mounted air-cooled engine and all-independent torsion bar suspension.
Having commenced manufacture with a short run of aluminum-bodied cars built at the Gmünd, Austria-based old sawmill, Porsche began volume production of the steel-bodied 356 Coupe at its old base in Stuttgart, at first in premises shared with coachbuilders Reutter and then from 1955 in its original factory at Zuffenhausen. In 1951 a works car finished first in class at the Le Mans 24 Hours, thus beginning the marque's long and illustrious association with Le Sarthe.
Constant development saw the 356's engine progressively enlarged, and in 1952 the original split windscreen was replaced by a one-piece bent screen and a Porsche synchromesh gearbox adopted. 1955 marked the arrival of the revised 356A, the newcomer being readily distinguished by its curved windscreen and 15" - down from 16" - wheels.
These early 'Pre-A' Porsche 356 models are today considered some of the most collectible and rare Porsche cars ever produced and are admired for their pure and clean design.