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1960 Porsche 718/RS60 news, pictures, specifications, and information
Chassis Num: 718.044
S.N. 718.044 - Famous for Stirling Moss's almost win at the 1961 Targa Florio when the gearbox seized with less than three km to go in the race. The numbers in the names refer to the year in which it was built. Campaigned both by the factory and by private teams, these cars performed impressively at major races in the early 1960s.
Chassis Num: 718-060
Sold for $3,465,000 at 2012 Gooding & Company.
The RS-60 marked Porsche's hurdle into the big league of racing. Built in response to changing FIA regulations dictating frame width and windshield height, the RS-60 was on evolution of the '718 Series' RSK, itself a successful sports/racing car utilizing Porsche's fabled small bore 4 cam motor. The year 1960 witnessed Porsche losing the world manufacturer's championship by the slimmest of margins with the RS-60 defeating the mighty Ferrari's and Maserati's at Sebring and the Targo Florio. Throughout its racing career, 718-060 was never crashed and today retains all of its original components including body, engine and transaxle. Although this particular car did not participate in the Targa Florio it represents the RS60s that did.
Chassis Num: 718-041
The Targa Florio coursed through a Sicilian countryside with a landscape that was medieval in some sports, ancient in others and breathtakingly beautiful throughout. To survive 10 laps of its mountainous and punishing 44.64-mile circuit was an accomplishment. To win the Targa Florio was truly remarkable. This car won the Targa Florio in 1960, and Porsche won seven Targas during that decade. The remaining three were taken by Ferrari. The rivalry was fierce. Because of Ferrari's horsepower advantage, journalists referred to Porsche as 'giant killers.' A second in the Nurburgring 1000 followed this car's Targa win. Despite fellow team cars having a good season as well, Maranello won the war. Totaling up the points at season's end showed a Ferrari-Porsche tie, but the FIA's more-total-victories bonus gave the 1960 Manufacturers Championship to Ferrari for the fifth straight year.
Chassis Num: 718-041
The legendary Targa Florio ran annually through the tortuous Sicilian countryside for nearly seven decades. The island landscape was medieval in some spots, ancient in others, and breathtakingly beautiful throughout. To survive ten laps of the brutally mountainous 44.64-mile circuit was an accomplishment; to win the Targa was a truly remarkable achievement. The car on display won the legendary race in 1960. Indeed, Porsche won seven Targas during that decade against some of the other great names in motor racing, such as Ferrari, Maserati, and Ford.

The Porsche-Ferrari rivalry at that time was fierce, and because of Ferrari's horsepower advantage journalists often referred to the Porsches as 'giant killers.' By 1960, Ferrari's determined efforts had extended the already considerable horsepower gap. Porsche had been expected to reply with a show of brute strength, but didn't as neither the engine nor transmission was significantly changed in the new RS-60. After all, a Testa Rossa had not been able to interrupt the relatively diminutive Porsche RSK's one-two-three finish the year before.

A second in the Nurbugring 1000 followed this car's Targa win. In addition to racing, this car, 718-041, served the factory as a Porsche test bed for various transmissions and later the 2.0-liter Type 587 engine.
Chassis Num: 718-061
Porsche factory records show that only 22 RS 60s were produced, and that chassis number 718-061 was delivered on October 6th of 1960, to Don Berzin of Pennsylvania. The car was sold by Bill (Murf) Mayberry, who was the chief mechanic for Bob Holbert and Roger Penske. This car is believed to be one of Bob Holbert's cars, which was simply brokered by Mayberry. Mayberry sold the car to Herb Wetanson, a famous restaurateur and racer. Jerry McCarthy prepared the car for racing and campaigned it for Wetanson in the 1960s. Wetanson owned the car for over 40 years before selling it to the current owner.
Beginning in the early 1950s, Porsche unleashed a series of four cylinder, four cam sports racing cars that were extremely quick and ruled the small bore International Racing circuit for an entire decade. The car had a powerful engine but the cars true advantages were the use of 'free horsepower' - meaning in its lightweight chassis and running gear comprised of streamlined alloy bodies which offered great braking, fuel efficiency, handling, and acceleration.

The Porsche 550s won their class at Monaco in the early 1950s, along with similar wins at the Mille Miglia, the 24 Hours of Le Mans and in the Nurburgring 1000. They would repeat these victories in hillclimbs, international road races, and rallies. At the 1955 24 Hours of LeMans, their 550s finished in an astonishing 4th, 5th and 6th.

At the 1956 Targa Florio race, a Porsche driven by Umberto Maglioli earned Porsche their 'Greatest Victory' by coming in first overall. This was done by beating much more powerful vehicles such as the Ferrari Monza and the Maserati 300S.

Another victory was had at the 1959 Targa Florio and at the 1960 Sebring 12 Hour Endurance Race, the Type 718 Porsche RS 60 Factory entry captured the checkered flag.

There were over 100 examples of the 550 Spyder produced beginning in 1954 and it was easily the company's most successful 'customer' sports racing car to date. Modifications were continuously made, resulting in the 550A, 1500RS, RSK, the RS60 and the RS61 Series.

The early Porsche 550s produced 105 bhp while the final evolution of this successful Porsche Sports Racer, the RS61, produced 174 bhp from the 1600cc engine. By this point in history, the car had been subjected to hours of wind tunnel aero studies along with many races and continuous fine-tuning. When the RS61 was introduced, it was a very polished machine. It had a low coefficient of drag and, along with the RS60, was the ultimate development of the four-cylinder boxer Spyder series.

The RS60 and the RS61 (known as the Type 718) were a new marketing concept for the company. For the first time in the company's history, the customers were able to buy and race identical cars to the ones races by the Factory. Similar to the RSK, the Type 718 had a tubular space frame chassis but with an additional four inches in the wheelbase and a wider cockpit. This was done to comply with the new 43-inch minimum imposed by the FIA. The front suspension was similar to the RSK but now incorporated a hydraulic steering damper. The rear suspension, however, was new - now fitted with a double wishbone system with Koni shocks and coil springs.

There was space for an F.I.A. suitcase under the rear deck. Each car had a top, though it was designed to comply with regulations rather than be effective against the elements. Perhaps on of the largest disadvantages to the RS61 was the new curved safety glass windshield which was higher and wider than in the past. This, along with bigger doors, the convertible top, wider cockpit, and several other changes were done to comply with racing regulations. The extra size of the windshield did little to help with its aerodynamics and the engine had to work harder to keep pace with the more powerful competition. The engine, a Type 547/7 1587cc unit had a 9.8:1 compression ratio and was capable of producing 178 bhp.

Even with these new 'Road Car' regulations, the Porsche Spyders continued to perform extremely well in international endurance competition.

There were only 14 examples of the RS 61 models produced.

By Daniel Vaughan | Mar 2009
Chassis Num: 718 042
This Porsche RS60 is chassis number 718 042. Porsche's first over-all victory at the 12 Hours of Sebring was with this car. It was driven by Jo Bonnier and Hans Herrmann who won by a formidable 9 lap margin over the second place 'sister car.' This is one of five Werkes racecars during the 1960 and 1961 racing seasons. The RS60-61 series cars were the final model in the Spyder series and became known as 'Giant Killers' of the era for their high placings against the larger displacement Italian Ferraris and Maseratis of the same period. This car was also a class winner and fifth overall at the 1960 Targa Florio FIA race, maintaining the continuing reliability and durability of the Spyder era cars.

1959/60 Porsche 718 RS 60 Spyder

Automobile sport was part of the picture for the fledgling Porsche sports car firm from the first. The 356 quickly became popular around the world, in the hands of private drivers wîth sporting ambitions. New racesports cars were developed in Zuffenhausen at the beginning of the fifties: the1.5 liter 550 Spyder proved a shark in the goldfish bowl against larger-displacement competitors in major races. This Spyder used the first engine developed by Porsche for Porsche: the Type 547 wîth 1.5 liter displacement and four, shaft-driven, overhead camshafts.

Porsche had made the change from a floor pan to tubular space frame for racesport construction, established the five-speed gearbox, continued to increase performance and fitted larger drum brakes. These improvements, along wîth countless other modifications, kept the Spyder at the head of the ' small sports car class ' (up to 1500 cc) throughout the fifties.

But 1960 brought new regulations for racesports cars, leading to the Spyder RS 60 wîth displacement increased to 1600 cc, larger windshield, a 'functional' top and a regulation trunk in the tail, behind a four-cam engine which now produced 160 HP. This RS 60 brought Porsche its finest results up to that time, particularly in long-distance events. While an overall victory in the 44th Targa Florio in 1960 by Bonnier/Herrmann, wîth a lead of more than 6 minutes over a 3 liter Ferrari, was within the range of previous achievements - sports cars from Zuffenhausen had already captured overall Targa Florio victories in l956 and 1959 - a new Porsche chapter opened wîth the first appearance of the RS 60 at the 12 hours of Sebring in the ÚSA. Olivier Gendebien and Hans Herrmann won outright while Holbert/Scheckter/Fowler drove a second factory RS 60 into second, ahead of Nethercutt/Lovely in a 3 liter Ferrari Dino. Swiss driver Heini Walter, at the wheel of an RS 60, secured Porsche's third and fourth European Hillclimb Championships in 1960 and 1961, following those from 1958 by Count Berghe von Trips and 1959 by Edgar Barth.

Source - Porsche
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550/718 Sports Racing Cars
918 Spyder
956 and 962
Carrera GT
Type 959

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