1958 Porsche 356 Cabriolet D

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Red | Convertible | 4 Speed Manual | 1600 cc flat 4 cylinder | 80,059 miles showing | AU$299,995

WPCS 2.1.0
 

A special, one-year-only model hand-built by German coachbuilder Drauz, the 356A Convertible D (“D” for Drauz) offers similar styling to the racy, minimalist Speedster but provides more in the way of creature comforts including wind-up windows, a taller windscreen, deluxe interior trim and more practical soft-top.

Brought to market as a premium specification run-out edition before the arrival of the Type B and only ever offered in left hand drive, the Convertible D represents a high point for Porsche’s inaugural model and just 1,331 examples were built between August 1958 and September 1959.

Of the three versions of Porsche’s lightweight open style 356’s the Convertible D is the rarest and fewer than half are known to survive around the world today. Producing a spritely 75hp from a 1600cc air-cooled, flat four-cylinder engine with dual carburettors mated to a four-speed manual transmission and weighing just under 1000 kilograms the Convertible D was/is a flyer.

Period Porsche sales literature described the car as “a dynamic car of beautiful proportions. Extra light and low in design for competition and pleasure driving”. Its improved features like the higher windshield made for easier entry, the well cushioned bucket seats and “padded brow” dash enhanced long distance comfort, and the easier to manage soft-top with its larger rear window gave the Convertible D a practical edge over the earlier Speedster.

Today, the Convertible D’s ever-increasing values and interest reflect its miniscule production numbers and unique specification with surviving examples rarely offered to market.

Owned by the same collector since its arrival from the U.S.A. in 1989, the impressive and ultra-rare 1958 Porsche 356A Convertible D offered here was treated to a ground-up restoration by specialists Porsche 356 Werkes, Melbourne in 2010.

One of less than a handful on our shores and importantly retaining its original LHD configuration, the comprehensive works list included bare metal body-work and refinish in period Karmin Red, re-chromed brightwork, a detailed mechanical overhaul, new soft-top and masterfully re-trimmed interior.

The result produced a very original and stunning sports classic, a credit to its last custodian and an asset to the next with small details like the original Blaupunkt radio, correct “D” badge perfectly integrated into the famed chrome shoulder strip and period Coco mat carpets all hallmarks of a well-restored car delivering that original factory feel.

The drive is also sensational. As though it were cut from one piece, the feeling inside the well-made cockpit is solid, the pedals and steering fell well weighted and offer totally uninhibited positive feedback, corners are the best thing since sliced bread to downshift-re balance-turn in-and fire out of, and acceleration is fun and punchy around town, begging you to raise the rev counter.

Totally on the button and highly authentic, a model that enjoys a fanatical following throughout the world and seldom available to own, drive and invest in this perfectly prepped Porsche 356A Convertible D is a must experience for any motoring enthusiast.
 
 

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