A nod to the Stuttgart old school

There’s quite a few big changes going on at Porsche at the moment, but the German brand hasn’t forgot where it came from, as evidenced by this concept throwback that may or may not get a full production version.

Continue reading for the full story.

2018 Porsche Speedster Concept

Enter the Speedster Concept, which was created to celebrate seven decades of Porsche history, or more specifically, the Porsche 356 from 1948.

As Porsche starts to phase out the 991-generation 911, while also ramping up its forthcoming Mission E all-electric, the brand wants to remind folks that it isn’t about to toss away its long history of superb sports cars in favor of something newer and more high-tech.

Enter the Speedster Concept, which was created to celebrate seven decades of Porsche history, or more specifically, the Porsche 356 from 1948. This latest concept was unveiled as a nod to the Porsche 356 “No.1” Roadster, which got its operating permit 70 years ago to the day.

Alongside a slew of official press shots, Porsche also released a 1-minute, 13-second video talking about the history of the Speedster, while also showing off the lines and gear for the new concept. Check it out above.

Framed as a “road-ready study of an open-top and particularly exciting sports car,” the Speedster Concept looks 100 percent production-worthy to us. The body was adapted from the Carrera 4 Cabriolet, with a slew of exterior upgrades added to bring the old model’s style into the modern era and justify the concept’s refurbished nameplate.

The first thing to jump out at us is the lack of a roof, with Porsche instead adding a tonneau cover to ward off the elements should the weather turn sour. Extra carbon bits are used for the front bonnet and rear engine cover, similar to the old 356 1500 America Roadster’s aluminum body. The concept also gets a shorter window frame, a steeper windshield angle, and shorter side windows, plus a rear carbon fiber cover for the roll bar and a “double bubble” design element. The whole thing is done up GT Silver and White paint, while black contrast elements and a large “70” was added to the doors.

Meet the Porsche Speedster Concept, A 500-Horsepower Six-Speed Monster
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The devil is in the details for this one, and diehards are sure to appreciate the attention Porsche paid in that respect.

However, the devil is in the details for this one, and diehards are sure to appreciate the attention Porsche paid in that respect. For example, the fuel filler cap gets a 50s-style to it and is placed on the front bonnet cover. There’s also Talbot-shaped exterior mirrors, plus a unique headlight design meant to mimic the taped-over headlights of motorsport competitors in the past. Gold-plated Speedster lettering can be found in the B-pillars and in the rear, and the “70 years of Porsche” logo was added to the plexiglass wind deflector.

Meanwhile, the interior looks like it was pulled direct from the production line, minus a few basic pieces of equipment. In a bid to provide a “pure driving experience,” the interior was stripped of a variety of extraneous equipment, including deletes for the nav system, stereo, and air conditioning. Carbon is used for the bucket seats to cut weight even further, while the Aniline leather upholstery is finished in a hue dubbed Cognac 356, giving another nod to the classic that came before.

Meet the Porsche Speedster Concept, A 500-Horsepower Six-Speed Monster
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In a bid to provide a “pure driving experience,” the interior was stripped of a variety of extraneous equipment.

Under the skin, the Speedster Concept gets tech from the modern GT line, including chassis components from the 911 GT3. Large 21-inch five-spoke wheels with center locks occupy the corners, while good sounds are made by the new titanium exhaust. A six-speed manual transmission provides appropriate engagement, routing power from a rear-mounted flat six-cylinder. Bury the throttle, and this powerplant will spin to 9,000 rpm, delivering more than 500 horsepower along the way.

Porsche says its not sure whether or not it’ll put this thing into production, but we think the brand is just playing coy. In the likely scenario it does get the green light, look for the official production version some time in 2019.

Further Reading

2018 Porsche 911 Speedster

2018 Porsche 911 Speedster Exterior Spyshots
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Read our full speculative review on the 2018 Porsche 911 Speedster

1955-1958 Porsche 356a Speedster

1955 - 1958 Porsche 356a Speedster
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Read our full review of the 1955-1958 Porsche 356a Speedster

2010 Porsche 911 Speedster

2010 Porsche 911 Speedster High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review of the 2010 Porsche 911 Speedster

1989 Porsche 911 Speedster

1989 Porsche 911 Speedster High Resolution Exterior
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1989 Porsche 911 Speedster

Read our full review of the 1989 Porsche 911 Speedster

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