An original Porsche 356 Speedster (1954-1958) is priceless. If only because James Dean had one. The price level is surprising for what was the cheapest Porsche at the time. Now it is one of the most expensive. Also because there is not really much left of the 4100-4800 copies (Porsche's figures are not very uniform) that Porsche made.
Fortunately, people have found something about the 'priceless'
These are the designers and builders of replicas, or 'kitcars'. That kitcar phenomenon was once conceived in England for tax reasons. VW Beetle frames were an ideal basis for all kinds of dream shops, because with a little bit of goodwill you could only tinker on such a VW platform.
A Speedster with a Subaru block?
In terms of motorization, we find everything in the kitcar / replica corner between an 1200 cc block up to and including Porsche six-cylinder blocks and Subaru boxer engines. Oh yes: there are also adapters for the air-cooled six-cylinder boxers from Chevrolet Corvair to get used to VW transmissions. With the Speedster replicas, the assembly of good-looking Porsche cooling air plating or the assembly of a Porsche block applies as perfectionism. At the time, putting such an own structure on the license plate was pretty clear.
There were quite a few Speedster kitcar providers
Porsche Speedsters have inspired many kitcarmakers: The Chesil Speedster from England is on an 27,3 cm shortened Beetle platform, just like almost all other Speedsters. And let that be 27,5 cm. The Belgian Apal Speedster came from a whole family of VW-based kitcars. Aircooled Vintage was and is a renowned Speedster replica builder, just like the American Vintage Speedster. Also from the USA: Beck and Outlaw. We also know CMC. The Dutchman G. Vaandrager from Strijen also delivered a quality product, the production of his VPS Speedsters has been stopped for a few years. But he still provides support.
Intermeccanica. The first Speedster Replica builder?
Intermeccanica was famous in the States for its 356 Speedster replicas. According to experts, Intermeccanica was even the first company to make a 356 Speedster replica, of the first series only 246 units were made. Van Grinsven from Veghel also supplies the Speedsters as a kit to ready-made. And apparently that company also knows the ways to get such a creation registered.
The Speedster replica prices
Not long ago, beautiful Speedster Replicas cost around 20.000 euros. Now there are toppers for which 42.500 euros is requested. That is a pittance compared to the original. Because for a true Porsche 356 Speedster you can just count two and a half tons. If it is one with a king-axle driven 'Fuhrman' Carrera block (200-300 pieces produced), another ton can be added.
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For a shortened VW base, you will now have to look for an already approved chassis, a buggy chassis or a fixer with the correct papers. The hassle mainly comes from sticking to the 1 / 3, 1 / 3, 1 / 3 control. This means that the car is subdivided into three parts: the chassis, the engine and the bodywork. 1 / 3 May be replaced. That is why there are no problems for Burtons. But a Speedster replica? After all, it has a modified chassis plus a different carriage. Its a shame, but there is nothing to do about it.