Porsche 356

Porsche 356

The Porsche 356 is an impressive car. It was a re-engineered Volkswagen Beetle that launched the iconic Porsche brand. There are currently many imitators who make kits for the original 356, including a French company know as PGO. But just like its done with the Speedster, PGO has decided to go one step further and make a modern interpretation of the 356 coupe called the Hemera.

The base car is a Peugeot with a 140 hp 2.0-liter engine (the last original 356 Carrera Bs came with a 136 hp 2.0-liter engine.) Performance should be about 0 to 60 in 7 seconds and a 124 mph top speed. Sales should begin in 2009.

While it does carry some of the original shape of the 356, the Hemera’s best quality is probably the safety improvements. The 356 was built to 50s and 60s crash standards, which amounted to, well, nothing. So the tubular frame should provide some crash protection, which any protection is an improvement. Also important is that the Hemera’s engine is mid-mounted. The original 356 was a completely rear-engined car, which created a huge, sometimes dangerous, bias. In fact, many new Porsche 356 owners had to take courses on how to drive the car.

Earlier this month we announced that Porsche was looking at possibly making its own version of the future four-cylinder roadster from Volkswagen and Audi . At the time the assumption was that the car would be compared to the 914 and would possibly carry its name. Now Car Magazine is wondering if Porsche will reach further back into its history and call the car 356 . From this new perspective, the future roadster from Stuttgart may look like the picture above.

Whether or not Porsche decides to join the new roadster project, it looks likely that Volkswagen and Audi Audi will team up for the project. VW will likely show its future version at this year’s Los Angles Auto Show. Audi’s concept will likely appear later as a replacement for the current TT .

Although the 356 would be an appropriate name for the new small offering from Porsche (the original 356 was Volkswagen Volkswagen -based and had it’s engine behind the driver,) it would be hard for Porsche to resurrect the 356 name. Not only is still-in-production 911 is considered a direct decedent of the 356, but the 356 is also a sacred name in Porsche circles because it is the car that started it all. So, Porsche should know better than to plunge its history to sell a few cars, right?

Source: CarMagazine
When you hear the phrase "cult cars," you might think of Ford Ford Motor’s Mustang or General Motors’ Chevrolet Chevrolet Corvette, which have legions of devotees but are very common and still in production. Similarly, the Jeep Jeep Wrangler, Porsche 911, Mini Mini Cooper and Volkswagen Volkswagen Beetle and New Beetle are so high profile and commonplace that their followings are merely large. The vehicles from Forbes list of the coolest cult cars of all time were niche cars when they were new—supercars, race (...)
Source: ForbesAutos

The Porsche 356 was a Porsche sports car sold from 1948 through 1965, and Porsche’s first production automobile. It was designed by Ferdinand "Ferry" Porsche. His father, Ferdinand, Sr., was the designer of the original Beetle, and the 356 was designed utilizing may Beetle parts, including important drivetrain components.

Produced from 1959 the 356B was an improved 356A with modifications aimed no doubt at the US market. Notable alterations were a higher nose height at the front, larger bumpers and the addition of a pair of twin-choke carbs to boost performance.

The first major style innovation since 1950 was the introduction of the "Speedster" in 1954 primarily aimed at the Californian market, where in its 1500S form it became a popular race car. 1955 saw a major change in engine specifications with the 1500 being replaced by the 1600, providing Porsche with their first genuine 100 mph production car and detail changes to the bodywork introduced as the 356A.

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