356 speedster

Price: - Item location: Upper Black Eddy, Pennsylvania, United States
  • Condition: Used
  • Make: Porsche
  • Model: 356
  • SubModel: Speedster Replica
  • Type: open
  • Year: 1956
  • Mileage: 1,000
  • VIN: 159488663
  • Color: Red
  • Engine size: 1600
  • Number of cylinders: 4
  • Fuel: Gasoline
  • Transmission: Manual
  • Drive type: RWD
  • Interior color: Black
  • Drive side: Left-hand drive
  • Vehicle Title: Clear
  • Want to buy? Contact seller!

1956 Porsche 356

I purchased this 1956 Speedster replica in 2015 and have garaged it since. Recently pulled and flushed and refilled the gas tank; and the car starts and runs great. It stops and goes and slides around corners as it should.

I’ve read that early kit Speedsters are as good as the builder. This one was constructed in the mid 1980s by a revered car-truck-motorcycle restorer, Frank Nettelton. From his 2005 obituary: “…well known …restoration[s]… including having been commissioned by the State of Connecticut to restore ‘The Hartford Seldon motorcar.’”

The build on Nettelton’s Speedster (my car) is good, with its donor chassis shortened correctly and the finished car structurally stout. The drive train is also excellent and the handling is a blast.

The car looks to have been garaged since assembly. The paint is good, the britework gleaming, and the undercarriage clean, with seat bolts shining like new. The only splashes inside the fenders are recent, from me ripping through a puddle or two.

The engine number indicates an early ‘70s 1600 engine, but it sounds more robust. Sparse build notes indicate a “rebuilt engine,” with the donor chassis identified as a “Karman Ghia.” However, there are also receipts for a low mileage ’69 bug convertible. The car is titled as a 1969 VW.

The front wheel cylinders and backing plates on my Speedster are from a ’63 or ’64 Porsche 356 B, which we discovered when recently replacing wheel cylinders, shoes, and hoses. Not sure if there are other Porsche components.

This car can be fun right now but is also a good candidate to be taken to a higher level. Were I keeping the car, I would replace the VW instrumentation and VW steering wheel. Sale includes an adapter hub to accept Nardi or MOMO steering wheels. Also included are a vinyl top, top frame, and side curtains (one side curtain plexiglass is broken; and the top is not worn but is ill-fitting.) I will post photos of these soon.