Back when we had the Favorite Porsche Down On The Street Poll, the winner was the '67 Porsche 912. While it's possible that the vote-splitting among the four Malaise Era 911s may have handed the win to the 912 by default, the fact remains that the oldest Porsche won. Is that because 1967 was long before the Porsche name got weighed down with all the Lifestyle Symbolism it bears today? Well, that '67 is a Porsche-come-lately next to today's DOTS find! Here's a street-driven '63 356 that still has the original paint and is no stranger to the autocross course to boot.
I caught sight of this Porsche parked in front of the Peet's downtown and- for once- I hadn't forgotten to bring my camera when out on a non-DOTS mission. The owner was sitting outside with his coffee and was happy to tell the story of his car and let me shoot the engine and interior (it always helps in such situations when both of you went to the same high school, as was the case here).
This car doesn't live on the street (the owner has one of the few Alameda houses with a proper garage), but it gets driven regularly, including a fair amount of commute duty. I'd seen it around town, but had lost hope that I'd ever catch it holding still for the camera (much like the BMW 1500 that keeps taunting me). The engine has a recent high-buck rebuild, but the original paint- warts and all- is still there.
No doubt Porsche obsessos would cringe at the idea of a street-driven 356 with non-coucours-quality paint... but they'd probably look for the nearest tall building for jumping-off purposes if informed that this car has been autocrossed. But don't stress, purists; the owner has since obtained a 914 for his racing adventures and the 356 is now treated more gently. Hey, check out that factory AM/FM radio! How rare were those things back in the early 60s?
So there you have it: our oldest DOTS Porsche yet!