Matching Numbers Convertible D: 1959 Porsche 356 1600-S

This 1959 Porsche 356 is a successor of sorts to the iconic Speedster, known as a Convertible D. In many ways, you could consider it a more comfortable version of the Speedster, but some enthusiasts could also classify it as being softer for having some additional creature comforts. Regardless, this is a rare model made rarer still by being optioned with the higher-output “S” engine and remaining a matching numbers example. The 356 is listed here on eBay with bids just over $72K and the reserve unmet.

The Convertible D really is a special car, as it retains the iconic “wind-swept” look of the Speedster (with the top down). The slightly raked windshield gives it the appearance of moving even while standing still, and the proportions overall just feel tighter and more svelte than the typical 356 roadster. This car left the factory wearing “Meissen Blue” paint, which is significantly lighter than the crude respray it currently wears. The seller notes it left the factory with the luggage rack on the engine lid, apparently painted to match the body.

The interior is tired but by no means a disaster. The seller notes all glass is intact, windows roll up and down, and the doors still close and lock. The Convertible D, unlike the Speedster, also got conventional glass side windows, a taller windshield, and bucket seats with far more padding than the extremely racing buckets that came in the earlier car. Overall, this made for a more pleasant car to spend time in, but you can likely imagine the uproar that emerged from the Porsche faithful who likely felt their hardcore sports car had been neutered.

The Convertible D was available with three engines, which include the base-spec 1600 “Normal”, the 1600-S like this car; and just two Convertible Ds received the gorgeous four-cam Carrera engines. While the Speedster may still be top banana among elusive 356 models, the Convertible D is right up there as one to own. It’s hard to tell just how rough this car may be beneath the sloppy repaint, but as a numbers matching “S” model, it could be held together with bubble gum and it’d still draw a crowd. A very special car that will command a big price.



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  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    Owned 2 of these. Pre ’60 B roadster car but still part of the 356A series. Rare and this one looks good enough to restore and will probably bring big bucks, especially with the S engine. It probably has the factory close ratio transmission which one of mine did. Neat car. Bring money.

    Like 8
  2. Gary McDaniel

    Is that a VW front bumper? Interesting to see how cars survive the years.

    Like 3
  3. Mark M.

    A lot of money for a larger Karmann Ghia

    Like 3
    • SusanOliver

      Maybe its just me, but if I had to just have a poor handling rear engine car, make mine a simple cheap Bug. Just because you have money does not mean you have to flaunt it.

      Like 3
  4. Classic Steel

    I bid one million dollars..
    Kidding but these puppies bring gold !

    Like 1
  5. bobhess bobhess Member

    That’s not the original front bumper. Original bumper looks like the rear. And believe me, with the S engine that’s no Karmann Ghia.

    Like 7
  6. Robert

    Thia car is going to end up in California and will be restored by the Man, Rod Emory. I’m sure you have all heard of him, if not goggle him. He a master of these. It may take a while though his garage is overflowing with them.

  7. John Skeadas

    Nice background as well. Looks like Bedford Village NY.
    Cool vintage NY tags as well

    • Tom c

      Ucking fugly cars, pass.

      Like 3
  8. robert w johnston...... becher ontario

    i have one of these in my lockup will be watching to see what the market brings

  9. jack Quantrill

    Ugly, or not, this is gold on wheels!

    Like 2
    • Robert

      And 76k other people didn’t think so.

  10. Gaspumpchas

    Looks like the trunk in front was hit with undercoating or bedliner. Sure is a cute little thing. Buyer beware but with the bidding at 72 large, reserve not met someone will scap it up. good luck.

    Like 1

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