Porsche’s holy grail, and perhaps the most significant car in brand’s history, the 1939 Porsche Type 64, will be auctioned in August during Monterey Car Week. The car has a truly fascinating history, the Type 64 was designed by Professor Ferdinand Porsche to compete in the 1939 Berlin-Rome race, which was canceled due to the onset of World War II.
Only three Type 64s were built, and this, the third, was kept as a personal family car and driven extensively by Ferry and Ferdinand Porsche.
Type 64 has a sculpted aluminum body and removable fender skirts and shares the same drivetrain and suspension as the Type 1 Volkswagen, — what we know as the Beetle.
“Without the Type 64, there would be no Porsche 356, no 550, no 911,” says Marcus Görig, Car Specialist, RM Sotheby’s. “This is Porsche’s origin story, the car that birthed the company’s legend, and it offers collectors what is likely an unrepeatable opportunity to sit in the seat of Ferdinand and Ferry Porsche. With this car, the new owner will not only be invited to the first row of every Porsche event worldwide—they will be the first row!”
Unfortunately, RM Sotheby’s has not publicized an estimated value for the unique car. For more information be sure to visit the auction website.
*UPDATE 1: Chris Harris was lucky enough to drive the incredible 1939 Type 64.
*Update 2: Porsche’s Type 64 failed to sell at Monterey after massive auction snafu.
RM Sotheby’s provided the following statement:
We have been honored to present a car that holds such significance to automotive history as the 1939 Porsche Type 64. It has been an incredible journey in the lead up to Monterey as we were given the opportunity to share the genesis of one of the hobby’s most legendary brands with the world and work with renowned enthusiasts in the Porsche community. It is difficult to put a price on such a unique and historically significant artefact, and despite interest from discerning collectors, we were unable to reach common ground between seller and buyer on the night.
As bidding opened on the Type 64, increments were mistakenly overheard and displayed on the screen, causing unfortunate confusion in the room. This was in no way a joke or prank on behalf of anyone at RM Sotheby’s, rather an unfortunate misunderstanding amplified by excitement in the room. The auction was not canceled. The car reached a high bid of $17 million.