Found: Oldest Porsche Import in the USA is a 1952 356 Cabriolet

The owner of the "Strawberry Red" 356 Cabriolet pictured above has earned the bragging rights for owning the oldest Porsche model sold in America. The discovery was made as part of the My Porsche Classic Search, which was launched in August to celebrate the brand's 60th anniversary.

The Porsche Classic Search was conducted online with owners having to submit documentation that their Porsche was one of the earliest in its category to be retailed in the USA.

The oldest documented sale was this rare 1952 356 Cabriolet owned by Dr. Robert Wilson of Oklahoma City, Okla. According to the company, Wilson's car was imported in November of 1952 by Austrian businessman, Max Hoffman, in New York, who brought the first Porsche cars to the U.S. beginning in 1950.

The 356 Cabriolet, which is powered by a 60-horsepower 1.5 liter engine, was discovered in a salvage yard by Wilson many years after landing on this side of the Atlantic. Wilson bought the car and painstakingly restored it to its original condition.

Porsche said its search also yielded the discovery of an even rarer and older model, a blue 1950 356 Cabriolet owned by Richard Brumme of Annapolis, Md, which was one of the very first series production 356s built in Stuttgart, after the company relocated from Gmund, Austria. However, this car was not actually retailed in America so the title went to Wilson's 356.

Aside from the oldest Porsche sold in the US, the company also made a list of the oldest models in each range:

  • 1965 911: Barry August of Clarksville, Md.
  • 1965 912: Steve Torkelsen of Wilton, Conn.
  • 1970 914: Ralph Stoesser of Marco Island, Fla.
  • 1977 924: Jay Hoover of New Haven, Ind.
  • 1977 928: Jim Doerr of Richmond, Va.
  • 1983 944: John Denning of Covington, Wash.
  • 1992 968: Jeffrey Coe of Trumball, Conn.
  • 1997 Boxster: David Adrian of Worcester, Mass.
  • 2004 Cayenne: Adam Reichard of Magnolia, Texas
  • 2005 Carrera GT: Robert Ingram of Durham, N.C.
  • 2006 Cayman: Eugenie Thomas of Martinez, Calif.

The Stuttgart-based firm said it plans to honor the owners of all of these cars with an exclusive badge issued by the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart, and by featuring photos of the cars at the new "Sixty Years of Porsche in America" exhibit, which opened in the museum on Oct. 12. Furthermore, Wilson's 356 Convertible will make its way to Porsche's LA Auto Show stand in November.