1955 Porsche 356

As the 356th design study by Dr. Porsche, the 356 reigns as one of the longest running body styles. Out of the ashes of WWII and on the 'heels' of his successful Volkswagen design, Dr. Porsche invented an icon. The 356 went through iterations A, B, and C before ultimately being replaced by the 911 model. The shape of the 356 led to its nickname, the 'bathtub' Porsche.

No sports car is as recognizable or has as sensational history as the 356. Porsche's first production automobile earned racing victories during its production run from 1948 to 1965. Earlier cars designed by the company included the Volkswagen Beetle as well as Auto-Union and Cisitalia Grand Prix racecars. The 356 is a lightweight and nimble-handling rear-engine, rear-wheel drive two-door sports car available in hardtop coupe and cabriolet models. The first 50 cars, aluminum-bodied prototypes, were built in Gmund, Austria before the factory relocated to Zuffenhausen, Germany in 1950. Zuffenhausen 356s are steel, with bodies built by Reutter, which Porsche bought in 1963.

Ferdinand 'Ferry' Porsche created the 356. Like its Volkswagen cousin, the car was made with a unitized pan and body construction. The chassis and body were a completely new design. The car has a 1.5-liter, 55 horsepower flat-four, air-cooled engine. The basic design of the 356 did not change during its production cycle, with minor improvements, not superficial styling changes. Cabriolets were offered from the start, and comprised nearly 50 percent of production.

In 1955, Max Hoffman was the sole US importer of Porsche products. He convinced Porsche that Americans did not buy cars with numbers for names. Hoffman created the name 'Speedster' for the stripped-down 356 and 'Continental' for the coupe and cabrio. The 'Continental' name was short-lived, as Ford Motor Company insisted that Porsche drop it, as it conflicted with the name of Ford's newest division. The Continentals were recalled and badged as 'Europeans.'


Related Reading : Porsche 356 History

During the war Ferdinand Ferry Porsche and a handful of his proven, faithful employees had started work on development number 356 in their workshops moved to the town of Gmünd in Kärnten. The first design drawings were completed on 17 July 1947 and on 8 June 1948 the Kärnten state government issued a special permit homologating the car. Returning home after being held by the French as a prisoner....
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Related Reading : Porsche 356 History

The Porsche 365C has been named the number ten on the list of Top Sports Cars of the 1960s by Sports Car International in 2004. The Porsche 356 is still widely regarded as a collector car that has capably stood the test of time. There is some debate over which vehicle was the first official Porsche, the pre-war Porsche 64 being actually a VW racing automobile. The 356 was a sports car designed....
Continue Reading >>

Related Reading : Porsche 356 History

The Porsche 365C has been named the number ten on the list of Top Sports Cars of the 1960s by Sports Car International in 2004. The Porsche 356 is still widely regarded as a collector car that has capably stood the test of time. There is some debate over which vehicle was the first official Porsche, the pre-war Porsche 64 being actually a VW racing automobile. The 356 was a sports car designed....
Continue Reading >>

1955 Vehicle Profiles

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

America Roadster

Chassis Num: 80741
Engine Num: P-84239
Gearbox Num: 6573

Porsche built their sports car in 1939. It had a VW-derived engine placed ahead of the rear wheels and never went into production due to the outbreak of World War II. The hand-built Porsche project 356 began in Gmund, Austria in 1948. In the sprin....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Coupe

Towards the end of the original 356's time (in 1955, when the 356 A was about to be introduced) Max Hoffman, sole U.S. importer of Porsches, wanted a model named rather than just a number and got the factory to use the name 'Continental' which was ap....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Coupe

Chassis Num: 54089

Neil Emory owned Valley Custom Shop and for years, his son Gary ran the parts department of a major dealership. He enjoyed adding small custom touches and personalization to his own cars, as well as customers', and he even created a small badge with ....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Coupe

For the 1955 model year, Max Hoffman, the principle importer of Porsches into the United States at the time, convinced Porsche to use a name instead of a number to distinguish their models. So, in the spirit of American marketing, Porsche began putti....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Coupe

The 356 was Porsche's first production automobile, and was built from 1948 until 1964. Its name came from the fact that it was the 356th project to come off the Porsche design desk. But in late 1954, sole U.S. importer Max Hoffman convinced Porsche....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Cabriolet

Chassis Num: 80879
Engine Num: 60493

This early model Speedster was completed in Stuttgart in July of 1955 and is believed to have been destined for the US market. The early history is a mystery until 2004, when the current owner purchased it for the first time from Dr. Robert Wilson of....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Coupe

Chassis Num: 54126

This German car was in the care of single-family ownership for 25 years. It is a matching numbers 'bent-windshield' Pre-A 356 Coupe powered by a 1500cc engine with twin Solex 32 PBI carburetors and a four-speed manual gearbox. It is finished in facto....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

America Roadster

The sleek 356 Speedster was introduced in 1954 and was the idea of Porsche importer Max Hoffman who was based in New York. It was a less-expensive or Spartan model with a rudimentary top and side curtains. Ferry Porsche did not like the concept but n....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Cabriolet

This 1955 Porsche 356 Speedster was built in June of 1955 as a Porsche show car. It was displayed on the Geneva show stand in July alongside a Jagdwagen (hunting car). This Speedster was retained by the Porsche Factory for over a year being used as a....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Coupe

This very special Porsche 356 was delivered on the 3rd of May 1955 by Reutter coachbuilding to Porsche but was released from Porsche two months later on the 11th of July. This abnormal delivery delay was founded in the problem of mounting the brand n....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Coupe

This vehicle was located in the back of a Los Angeles body shop. They were not Porsche knowledgeable owners. It had a poor paint job in red and it had been there for 10 years and the paint was peeling. Inspection revealed panels and engine were match....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Cabriolet

The car shown was severely damaged during the summer of 2006 when its trailer crashed into a guardrail, flattening the passenger side and folding the suspension under the car. Fortunately, the Detroit area is home to a very active Porsche community a....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Coupe

This 1955 Porsche 356 was highly modified by a former owner to compete in the LA Carrera Panamericana. These modifications include: a Type-4 high performance 2.0 Liter 914 engine with stinger exhaust, Plexiglas side and rear windows, full roll cage,....[continue reading]

1955 Porsche 356 vehicle information

Cabriolet

Chassis Num: 80920
Engine Num: 71315

This Porsche 356 Speedster by Reutter was owned by a Chicago-area foreign car dealer who had disassembled the car for restoration. By mid-1975, it was determined that the project was not going to be completed, and the original 1500S engine had been m....[continue reading]

America Roadster
Chassis #: 80741 
Coupe
 
Coupe
Chassis #: 54089 
Coupe
 
Coupe
 
Cabriolet
Chassis #: 80879 
Coupe
Chassis #: 54126 
America Roadster
 
Cabriolet
 
Coupe
 
Coupe
 
Cabriolet
 
Coupe
 
Cabriolet
Chassis #: 80920 


Concepts by Porsche

Porsche Monthly Sales Volume

December 2019
4,733
November 2019
6,326
October 2019
5,447
September 2019
5,213
August 2019
4,636
July 2019
4,956
June 2019
5,205
May 2019
5,010
April 2019
5,018
March 2019
4,779
February 2019
4,826
January 2019
5,419
Additional Sales Volume Data


Recent Vehicle Additions

Performance and Specification Comparison

Price Comparison

1955 356
$4,580-$22,520
1955 Porsche 356 Price Range: $3,455 - $4,580

Model Year Production

#1#2#3Porsche
1960Chevrolet (1,653,168)Ford (1,439,370)Toyota (1,068,321)7,559
1959Chevrolet (1,462,140)Ford (1,450,953)Volkswagen (575,407)4,681
1958Chevrolet (1,142,460)Ford (987,945)Volkswagen (451,526)4,201
1957Ford (1,676,449)Chevrolet (1,505,910)Plymouth (726,009)5,241
1956Chevrolet (1,567,117)Ford (1,408,478)Meteor (1,408,478)4,201
1955Chevrolet (1,704,667)Ford (1,451,157)Buick (738,814)4,529
1954Ford (1,165,942)Chevrolet (1,143,561)Plymouth (463,148)1,891
1953Chevrolet (1,346,475)Ford (1,247,542)Plymouth (650,451)1,941
1952Chevrolet (818,142)Ford (671,733)Plymouth (396,000)1,297
1951Chevrolet (1,229,986)Ford (1,013,381)Plymouth (611,000)1,169
1950Chevrolet (1,498,590)Ford (1,208,912)Plymouth (610,954)410

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