Farmin’ With Ferdinand: 1960 Porsche-Diesel Super

042716 Barn Finds - 1960 Porsche Diesel Super - 1

Did you know that Porsche made tractors? If not, you do now. This one was sent in by Barn Finds fan, Jim S., and it’s located, coincidentally, in Sebring, Florida. You can find it listed on eBay with an unmet starting bid of $8,500 and a Buy It Now price of $11,500. There are a full six days left so you have no excuse not to get your bids in if you’re a Porsche fan or collector, or a tractor collector.

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Dr. Ferdinand Porsche sure had some hits in his career including, of course, the Volkswagen Beetle, and one that you may not know about: he created the first gas/electric hybrid vehicle and it was shown at the Paris Exhibition in 1900! He was given direction to work on the people’s tractor in 1937 by the German government as he was also working on the people’s car. Over 125,000 Porsche diesel tractors were produced between the mid-1950s and 1963 when tractor production halted. Only around 1,000 of these tractors were sold for the North America market.

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The tractors weren’t actually built by Porsche in the era after WWII as only German tractor companies who were producing tractors before and during WWII were allowed to continue. But, the Porsche tractor was such a unique design that two companies, Allgaier GmbH and the Austrian company Hofherr Schrantz, used the Porsche design. In 1956, a company called Mannesmann AG bought the rights to produce these tractors with the name of Porsche-Diesel Motorenbau GmbH and they continued until 1963 when the division was sold to Renault. This 1960 tractor was built under that confusing umbrella of companies. So, even though it’s a “Porsche” in name and spirit, and in most of the design, it’s not a Porsche-Porsche, per say. But, these tractors are hot, hot, hot right now with fully-restored examples going for easily $20,000. This one may be a bit on the heavy side, price-wise given its condition and the current market. But, I’m guessing that they’re hoping to ride the Porsche bubble, I mean, the Porsche wave…

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This is a three-cylinder (my favorite number of pistons), 2,466 cc, four-stroke, air-cooled diesel. Porsche tractors came in four models: the Junior with 14 hp, Standard with 25 hp, Super with 38 hp, and Master with 50 hp. This tractor needs work, but if you can get it for around the opening bid price you should be able to restore it within a reasonable budget and still not lose your shirt. They are really nice to see when they’re red and shiny. Are you a tractor collector or a Porsche fan?

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Comments

  1. robert

    I have a cattle ranch in the mid-west. Have three tractors all cases as old as this one. One gas, two diesel and still productive. I think in the last twenty years I’ve spend maybe $300 not including changing oil and filters. The neighboring ranch spends as much as $150,000 every five years for tractors and most of the time his are in the repair shop after warranty. Proof that us old things really just keep going.

  2. Howard A

    I have heard of Porsche tractors, but not until recently. Sure looks like a tough unit. If cars were built like farm tractors, there’d be no need to ever buy more than one. The farm I stayed at in Wis. still has the IH “H” model their grandfather bought new. (’47?) Not sure about the “air-cooled”, I suppose it’s a lot simpler. I’d think dust, the farm tractors worst enemy, would clog the fins. I’m a big fan of older tractors, and some restored units are mighty impressive. Be great to have this in a collection.

  3. DougM

    I worked in the parts dept. at a Porsche/Audi dealer in the late 70’s and had a fellow show up one day asking if we could order parts for his tractor, after the manager made a few calls to our parts rep. we did come up with a contact for him. Memory is vague now but I think he was able to source what he needed out of Germany. FFwrd to 2009 and while attending a Florida Flywheelers event in Ft Meade, lo and behold there were 2 of them on display.

  4. Tom Hall

    “it’s not a Porsche-Porsche, per say. But, these tractors are hot, hot, hot right now with fully-restored examples going for easily $20,000”

    A hot, hot, hot Porsche…imagine that….all except my not a Porsche-Porsche 924 Turbo. But nevertheless, it is somewhat comforting that someone can say “Porsche” and “$20,000” in the same sentence

    They had one of these at the now gone Tired Iron Museum in central New York at one time. Sorry to see that that place is gone.

    Neat cuz’ it says “Porsche” on it but I think it is to tractors as 356’s are to Beetles.

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