The Porsche 70th Anniversary Auction | Lot 187
1963 Porsche 356 B 1600 'Sunroof' Coupe by Reutter
$117,600 USD | Sold
| Atlanta, Georgia
27 October 2018
- A wonderful, unrestored, and largely original ‘sunroof’ coupe
- Matching-numbers engine and gearbox as verified by Porsche Kardex
- Factory options include rare electric sunroof, Becker radio, and Rudge wheels
- Two owners from new; always meticulously maintained
- Runs and drives superbly; includes receipts for reconditioning
The 356 was the dreamchild of Ferdinand Porsche, who believed that mating a generously powered engine to a diminutively deft body would produce the ultimate “fun” driver. The lightweight rear-wheel-drive, rear-engine sports car was first built in 1948 in Gmünd, Austria. By 1950 the aluminum body was replaced by a Reutter-built steel-shell and production was moved to Zuffenhausen, Germany. The following year the 356 won its first Le Mans, earning the Porsche icon an exalted reputation both on the street and the circuit. Riding the wave of the model’s initial popularity, the ‘B’ series was launched in 1959 and almost 31,000 356 B sports cars were built, before production moved to the ‘C’ series in 1963.
As verified by a copy of the original Porsche Kardex, chassis 125136 left the Porsche factory on 11 July 1963 and remains a matching-numbers unrestored car, which has been lovingly driven and meticulously maintained by only two owners. This car was ordered with the rare electric sunroof, Becker radio with speakers, and leather seats with headrests and seat belts. It also sports a Leitz luggage rack, deluxe horn ring, tinted windshield plus highly desirable Rudge knock-off wheels. Initially purchased by William Silano, the 356 remained with its first owner for more than 50 years, garaged in the Hamptons at the Silano summer vacation home. In 2014 it was acquired from the Silano estate by the current owner, a Porsche devotee who inducted the 356 into his collection in California where it has been driven sparingly by his wife to Cars & Coffee events as well as local outings.
On inspection, this 356 retains more than 50 percent of its original paint, and the interior is untouched, including the factory headliner, carpets, and lustrous black leather seats. Underlining the authenticity of this example, the three factory-installed radio suppressors and the original voltage regulator are still attached to the engine. It is believed the engine has never been overhauled, although the current owner can provide receipts for reconditioning, including a clutch and carburetor rebuild.
Coddled since birth, this 356 is in excellent running condition, an enthusiastic starter and non-smoker. Chassis no. 125136 presents with incredibly original aesthetics and the prestigious 356 pedigree, deserving of the appreciation of a Porsche collector who still craves the ultimate “fun.”