Everybody knows that prices for vintage Porsches have soared, but here’s one that – at least for the uninitiated – will make your eyes water and a smoky question mark rise above your head.
What looks at first blush to be an ad for a rather nice 1963 Porsche 356B cabriolet, which normally would have a value of around $175,000, has a nearly unfathomable asking price of just under $1.3 million.
How crazy is that? Well, apparently, not at all.
That’s because the Pick of the Day is a rare and massively desirable 1963 Porsche 356B Carrera 2 GS Cabriolet. What all that means is that this is a special 356 powered by Porsche’s legendary 4-cam 4-cylinder engine, the revolutionary design that powered Porsche 550 Spyders to class wins at the Mille Miglia and Le Mans in the mid-’50s.
As well as being equipped with its original 4-cam, the Porsche has been restored to “spectacular concours level,” according to the Saint Ann, Missouri, dealer advertising the 356 on ClassicCars.com. “Arguably the best example in the world!”
Total mileage for this cabriolet is just under 65,000 miles, the dealer says, and the car is in great running condition and ready to romp. It is fully documented and with complete ownership history, including 30 years with a well-known Carrera collector in Denmark.
In the ad, the seller notes that the OHC competition engine was designed by Ernst Fuhrmann who, under instructions from Ferry Porsche, created it based on the existing 1.5-liter pushrod boxer engine. The 4-cam’s strong, high-revving performance made it a giant killer on race tracks against much bigger machines.
By 1963, the Carrera 2 engine had grown to 1,966cc. The Porsche is fitted with some other factory upgrades, such as specialized 4-wheel disc brakes and other competition-quality gear, all of which are said to have been restored and renewed.
“Renowned Carrera 4-cam specialist Armin Baumann was tasked with rebuilding the original numbers matching engine and then underwent a thorough technical inspection by noted German Carrera specialist Karl Hloch in 2017,” the ad says. “Part of the work performed then includes a thorough mechanical restoration by the marque specialists at Hapke Original Restoration in Leverkusen, Germany, so that all of the major components perform as new.”
Naturally, the Porsche looks to be in immaculate condition in the photos with the ad, both on top and underneath. The underside chassis photos show part of the 4-cam heads of the Carrera engine.
A 4-cam Carrera engine can be fussy to set up and tune, requiring specialized expert ministrations, but once dialed in, they are known to be reliable and durable. When it does need maintenance, though, it can be an expensive undertaking, that is if you can find someone knowledgeable enough to work on it.
As for its value, Hagerty’s price guide shows that the asking price of $1,299,900 is totally within reason for a Porsche 356 Carrera 2 GS as nice as the one described. Prices on these cars have slipped a bit in the past couple of years, as with most Porsches, but this ask apparently would be in line with current values.
This is a rare configuration for a late-model 356, which transforms a fine little sports car into a spectacular one. Worth the lofty price? That all depends on what the right buyer is willing to pay.
To view this vehicle on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.