1962 Porsche 356 B Super 90 'Twin Grille' Roadster by D'Ieteren
Sold For $467,000Inclusive of applicable buyer's fee.
RM | Sotheby's - AMELIA ISLAND 8 - 9 MARCH 2019
- Offered on Saturday
- Numbers-matching drivetrain and well documented
- Award-winning restoration
- Subtly upgraded for touring comfort
- Copy of factory Kardex and Porsche Certificate of Authenticity
Alex Dearborn learned to drive in his father’s 1953 Porsche. He got his racing license with a 1960 356 B and contested the 1963 SCCA National Championship in his 1962 Super 90 GT. Alex has also been keeping a Twin-Grille registry since 1978 and has owned the numbers-matching Porsche 356 B Super 90 D’Ieteren Roadster, offered here, since 2007. Chassis 89665 is one of only 58 Super 90 “T6” roadsters produced. It is safe to say that 356s are in his blood.
Its factory Kardex states that this car was completed on 14 December 1961 and shipped to the Islinger Porsche Agency in Mannheim, West Germany, where it was delivered to Californian Werrner Ehrenpreis. Finished in special-order Black (701) over red leatherette with a black canvas folding top, this car was heavily optioned, including armrests, headrests, fog lamps, seat belts, a cigarette lighter, a radio/speaker/antenna package, canvas tonneau, sun visors with passenger-side mirror, additional soundproofing, touch-up paint, chromed wheels, and a luggage rack. Most importantly, it was delivered with the powerful and more robust “Super 90” engine developing more than a hundred horsepower, giving the car a claimed top speed of about 115 mph.
Following a 1961 road test, Road & Track declared, “. . . both acceleration and top speed are of a very high order, and the Super 90 must be classed as a really fast car,” with handling improved by uprated suspension and steering.
Porsche’s 356 B Roadster was the final evolution of the iconic Speedster, which was replaced by the Drauz-built Convertible D in 1959. Drauz eventually handed over some of its Roadster production to Porsche’s Belgian distributor, D’Ieteren Freres, and the cars from D’Ieteren can be immediately identified by their pair of engine cover cooling grilles.
The history of this well-documented example shows it later being acquired by another Californian, Gary Dixon, and it was under his ownership that it was repainted red and given a black interior. In March 1993, it was offered for sale by southern California enthusiast Sam Cabiglio, by which time it had accrued some 108,000 miles. Its engine had recently been partially overhauled for Alex Bivens of Huntington Beach. In 1994, the car was purchased by Mr. David Heller, and soon resold to Patrick Patterson, who commissioned a full restoration to its original color scheme by Bob Campbell. In 1996 and 1997, it claimed 1st-place awards at the Porsche 356 Club Concours at Monterey.
The car was purchased by Michael Hackney in 2001. In 2007, it came into the collection of the current owner, Alex Dearborn, who had the engine rebuilt in 2010 by George Nelson at 115,480 miles. Displacement was increased to 1,776 cc and the engine bay was carefully detailed. The same year, Vic Skirmants overhauled the transaxle, installing a taller fourth gear for more relaxed highway use. A new windshield and top were installed in 2011, and in 2014, this Roadster captured a Best of Show at the 356 Registry meet in Florida, besting a 904, multiple Speedsters, and about 40 other cars. The following year, it was runner-up at the Boca Raton Concours; the only car in its class not trailered there.
More recently, its owner has driven this Super 90 in the Mountain Mille through the Smoky Mountains and in 2017 it was treated to a complete brake overhaul and major service. The owner has added some subtle comfort and safety amenities, including more sound insulation, a hidden third brake lamp, LED rear lamp bulbs, halogen headlights, and newer 5.5 × 15-in. chromed steel wheels.
At the time of cataloguing, this well-known D’Ieteren Roadster had been driven some 130,863 reliable miles from new. It is supplied with a painted spare wheel, correct jack, tool roll, owner’s manual, and a variety of old registrations, concours score sheets, and restoration and maintenance invoices. Perfect for fast touring or show, this rare and beautiful Porsche is sure to delight its next owner.