Welcome to Down On The Street, where we admire old vehicles found parked on the streets of the Island That Rust Forgot: Alameda, California. Here's a car that I found parked in front of one of my favorite East End bars, the Lemon Tree. For a moment, I thought I'd found a genuine 1950s Speedster, but the four-lug wheels gave away its VW Beetle roots. You need to make sure you've got all four hubcaps when you drive one of these!


Still, it's an interesting car, based on a 60s or 70s chassis, and so I figure it qualifies for this series. There's no telling what engine it's got, though the most likely candidate is some member of the souped-up, larger-than-1600cc Type 1 family. Chances are this machine is quite a bit quicker than a real Speedster, though the handling might not be quite up to Porsche standards.

The original Speedster was a stripped-down, lightweight 356 Cabriolet, initially sold only in North America. You could get one for $2,995 in 1954, 700 bucks cheaper than the 356 convertible (but $800 more than a new MG TF).

First 300 DOTS VehiclesDOTS FAQ