Announced in August as part of its 60th anniversary celebration, the Porsche Classic Search set out to document the oldest existing examples of 12 different model ranges that the automaker had retailed as new in America during the past six decades. With the vetting process now concluded, the honor of being recognized as the official elder statesman of the entire Porsche clan was awarded to a beautifully restored 1952 Porsche 356 Cabriolet owned by Dr. Robert Wilson of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Fitted with a 60-horsepowere/1.5-liter air-cooled flat-four, the car was originally imported in November 1952 by Porsche's then-exclusive U.S. retailer, Max Hoffman, who introduced the German marque to this country in 1950. Wilson found the car languishing in a salvage yard years later and had it fully redone to its current show status.
Although not sold "new" in America and therefore not eligible to claim the tribute accorded Wilson's vehicle, the Porsche Classic Search turned up one even older and rarer example of the breed: a 1950 Porsche 356 Cabriolet. Now owned by Richard Brumme of Annapolis, Maryland, it's one of the first series-production 356s to be built after the firm relocated from Porsche's original home in Gmund, Austria, to Stuttgart, Germany. Meticulously restored using all original parts, the car earned both Best in Class and Best in Show honors at the most recent meeting of the 356 Registry.
Other vehicles singled out for recognition in their respective categories by the Porsche Classic Search committee include a 1965 911 owned by Barry August of Clarksville, Maryland; a 1965 912 owned by Steve Torkelsen of Wilton, Connecticut; a 1970 914 owned by Ralph Stoesser of Marco Island, Florida; a 1977 924 owned by Jay Hoover of New Haven, Indiana; a 1977 928 owned by Jim Doerr of Richmond, Virginia; a 1983 944 owned by John Denning of Covington, Washington; a 1992 968 owned by Jeffrey Coe of Trumball, Connecticut; a 1997 Boxster owned by David Adrian of Worcester, Massachusetts; 2004 Cayenne owned by Adam Reichard of Magnolia, Texas; a 2005 Carrera GT owned by Robert Ingram of Durham, North Carolina; and a 2006 Cayman owned by Eugenie Thomas of Martinez, California.
The owners of all 12 of these Porsche variants will receive a unique badge issued by the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart, and be showcased in the new "Sixty Years of Porsche in America" exhibit, which opened there earlier this month. Porsche also plans to feature Brumme's 1950 356 as part of its display at the Los Angeles Auto Show next month.