Despite being founded in the early 1930s, it wouldn’t be until the 1950s that Porsche would go racing — first with its 356SL before unveiling the purpose-built 550 Spyder two years later at the Paris Motor Show. As competition-specific works race cars, only a few dozen were built each year of production. One specimen from 1956 would play a pivotal role in introducing the American market to the Stuttgart brand, purchased new by John von Neumann, the owner of California’s Competition Motors, a local Porsche dealership with a competent race team.
Sporting a number of competition-focused modifications such as a larger oval rear grille, dual air scoops on the hood and fenders, and custom Wendler bodywork, Competition Motors’ 550 Spyder would be extensively used to demonstrate the speed and performance capabilities of Porsche’s racers (and cars in general) and was campaigned in over a dozen motorsport events in the 1950s. Now powered by a Spyder-spec 356 Carrera engine mated to the 550’s original factory gearbox, this 1956 specimen was largely responsible for getting the US car community acquainted with Porsche. Now, more than six decades after its last race, this 1956 Porsche 550 Spyder (Chassis # 550-0089) is for sale through South German auto dealership, Schaltkulisse, where its price is available upon request.