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1963 Porsche 356 for $5,500


With all the rusty Porsches that we have watched sell for big money lately, I figured this one at least deserved a mention. Other cars in this sort of shape would have already been stripped of all useful parts and crushed, but there is no doubt in my mind that this 1963 Porsche 356B will be lovingly restored. It’s will take bucketloads of cash to bring this basketcase back to life, but at least the entry cost isn’t too bad. Find it here on craigslist in Inland Empire for $5,500. Thanks goes to Robert M for the tip!


It may not look like much now, but this was once a beautiful Bali Blue Porsche 356. It wasn’t exactly a powerful car, but with a sub-2,000 pound curb weight it was agile and having the engine out back always kept things interesting. Well, the engine was out back at one time, but it appears to have gone missing here. Replacing it will cost a pretty penny, but as the seller mentions, at least the transmission and suspension are still there.


The seller claims that they purchased the car in hopes of restoring it, but instead let it sit in there back yard for many years. I bet they would have found a storage unit for it if they would have known where values were going were headed. Prices for these German sports cars just keep going up with no signs of stopping. That’s great new for all the Porsche enthusiasts out there who already have a car or two parked in the garage, but for the rest of us, that just means that it is getting next to impossible to own one.


This project does represent an opportunity to those of us who have longed for a 356. Most people can scrape up a few grand, but that is where the fantasy ends here unfortunately. Buying all the missing parts is going to be expensive and then there is the extensive metal work needed… I suppose you could take out a second mortgage on your house to complete the work, but that would be a big gamble. Then again, there aren’t too many investments as safe a Porsche 356!


  1. Dolphin Member

    A Southern California car this rusty was probably bought out of the rust belt years ago for peanuts, cannibalized for parts, and now the owner wants to turn what’s left into some decent money. Well, $5500 anyway. And who can blame him for that, given the crazy prices that some 356 Porsches can bring?

    Problem is, these are near the bottom of the 356 food chain, and only cars like the unloved notchback are valued below this model. The car will need a lot of parts and work, and a lot of time will need to pass before the value of a 356B Coupe catches up to the all-in cost of this car……if it ever does.

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    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      For some strange reason, I prefer the notchback…

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      • DT

        Thats what I was thinking

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      • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

        Me too!

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  2. hhaleblian

    At $5500 I don’t think one could part it out and break even. I agree with Dolphin entry level in the 356 world, but at least your in. 356 Registry is the best Marque club hands down. Very helpfu,l little attitude. Doesn’t help no title no motor. Could be resurrected, but one would be underwater for sure for a while. However, if it were in the midwest I’d be travelling cash, trailer, and winch in tow. I bought a 63 roadster last year that was sitting in a garage for 30 years. No title, needs everything, non matching numbers. I suspect/hope it brings some serious coin. I’m paying off two DePaul college tuitions.

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  3. jim s

    i think the buyer will be after the VIN and data plates. interesting find

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  4. Dirty Dingus McGee

    This car certainly can’t be “native” to the area(I have a passing familiarity with the area its living in). If it IS native, someone parked in the surf around Long Beach for about 4 too many years.

    Certainly not a project for the faint of heart.

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  5. Bob Hess

    Spent 20 years restoring 356s. All I can say is “you’ve got to be kidding!”. This thing wouldn’t make good bean cans.

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    • Woodie Man

      Finally a comment reasonably related to reality! Sheesh…….

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  6. Wayne

    I thought I was an optimist about restoring Porsches until I saw this one. How many years did the poor thing hold the sailboat in place in the harbor before it was drug out and offered for such an interesting sum ?

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  7. Horse Radish

    A year too late and a couple grand short, is my (altered) saying here…..
    I had solid 356 Nose to match what’s here, too bad I sold it to Europe……….
    that would have made this car salvageable…..
    as is ?, I don’t know…..

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  8. Rancho Bella

    All the body parts are available (thank the gawds)……….but at what price? (not just the parts, but the combination of parts and labor)

    I reckon I’m odd man out here as I like ’62 and ’63 B’s. There is nothing wrong with those big drum brakes. The B’s can be purchased in nice condition for far less than the cost of re-construction of this poor gal. But, if someone wants to go down that road CPR isn’t to far from sellers location.
    Now excuse me……..I’m off to see a man about an Elan ……………..

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  9. John M

    Once again, if only I knew. Recalling the time 37 years ago I test drove a 356 S90 convertible that the owner wanted $3,500 for. I passed on it and bought a Ford pickup instead. $#@%$#&$%!!!!

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  10. JimmyinTEXAS

    I don’t think a second mortgage on my place would get this started..

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  11. marc

    At least a notchback could be an excuse to convert to a convertible…speedster or…
    Also, as long as there is this much work to do just go the outlaw route instead of trying to make original.

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  12. BobinBexley Bob in Bexley Member

    Unless one is in it for the money why bother restoring ? Refurbish as necessary to drive it. Bug motor, brakes & tires & jerry can for gas ! The restoration thing is so over-played. Gather ye rosebuds while ye may.

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  13. Jimmuh

    I’m with Bob Hess; this one is way past restoration. There is very little usable metal left, so why not just buy new pieces and build your own from scratch? The ask is even too much for the VIN tag!

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  14. John M

    After thinking on this, the coolest thing to do would be to get it running real good and do absolutely nothing to the body. Would love to see the looks on peoples faces as I bombed around in this just as it is.

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    • Brian

      If the bottom side looks like the top, it’s likely not safe enough for the road. If your state has any safety inspections, you’d probably be grounded.

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  15. jimmy

    It’s certainly better than this one

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  16. Brian

    Yet another opportunity for people to learn the seemingly lost art of just saying “It’s not worth it.” and just walk away. If this were a VW Beetle, it MIGHT be a parts car, if you were really hard up for parts, but since it’s a Porsche, its therefore valuable to the tune of five or six figures, even if it was drudged up from the bottom of a lake! Honestly, if I had to have an old Porsche THIS badly, my money would be better spent on a newer, less valuable model that would be just as much fun to drive and cost less than my home!

    If the market for restorable 356s has dwindled down to examples like this, then it’s too late – the window of opportunity has already closed and it’s time to move on to another up and coming model. Buy low, sell high – don’t buy high and hope it stays high!

    Like 0

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