Back in April of last year, one of the world’s best collections of vintage Porsches, the Ingram Collection, was severely damaged when a natural gas explosion destroyed the building right next to the collection in Durham, NC. That collection had many rare and incredibly valuable old 356s and 911 and Speedsters and all kinds of amazing stuff, and a number of these cars were very badly damaged in the explosion. Now, they’re showing up on salvage auction sites, and, even beat to hell, are probably still far too expensive for anyone I know.
Our pals over at the smashed and burned-beyond-recognition-car auction site Copart have some listings of cars that are clearly from the collection, pretty messed up, but, being air-cooled Porsches, will still likely sell for crazy money.
There’s this lovely 1955 Porsche 356 Speedster:
I mean, really, this one’s not too bad! A few hours with a rubber mallet and a can of Krylon, some air fresheners, and you’re in business!
The engine is remarkably intact, too! I should see if I can just get that to pop into the back of my Beetle.
I’m a bit surprised that they seem to have lost the key, but the good news is that, according to the chart, the primary damage is only in one place: ALL OVER.
They’re listing the retail value at $295,000. Bidding hasn’t started yet, so there’s still a chance you can get it for, like, $1,500!
This 1960 356B has the much more rare ‘notchback’ styled body—a Reutter Coupé, though the explosion had enlarged that notch pretty significantly. It’s really more of a crater than a notch now.
This one is said to retail for $395,000, and it lists the primary damage as TOP/ROOF, and the secondary damage as ALL OVER, so I think that may be worse than the Speedster up there.
This 1964 Porsche 356C has bids up to $75,500 already, and while the body is pretty bad, the engine looks pretty intact, and I suppose in the insane world of air-cooled Porsche collecting, this may still be a pretty good deal.
It’s pretty hard to see some of these cars in this condition. While, sure, I’m technically aware that cars are non-sentient and can’t actually feel, but it’s hard not to have some kind of misplaced sympathy for this 1959 356A Carrera GT that in 2018 was winning the Porsche Corporate Award at Amelia Island:
...and is now here:
I mean, that’s a pretty dramatic change in fortune. That’s like going from being the Prince of Monaco to being a disembodied voice that comes out of a cigar box.
Still, who knows, this could be just the opportunity you’ve been looking for. Maybe, just maybe, your bid of $3,300 will take that very damaged $1,850,000 Carrera GT and you’ll be able to cut out that smashed roof area and replace it with the hatch from an old Ford Aspire and have your dream car, finally.