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Hi all:

I just got the OK from my wife to start looking for a speedster. The question is: "how much is a turn-key 356 and where do I get one?" I've read the web-page about the place in Hawaiian Gardens (Vintage Speedsters)and understand they make a pretty good product. Question is: how much for one of these babies? DM, Southern California
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Hi all:

I just got the OK from my wife to start looking for a speedster. The question is: "how much is a turn-key 356 and where do I get one?" I've read the web-page about the place in Hawaiian Gardens (Vintage Speedsters)and understand they make a pretty good product. Question is: how much for one of these babies? DM, Southern California
Only my opinion ..... but the best is Intermeccanica Speedsters.

They are located in Vancouver, B.C. Canada

I personally feel that they are not "kit" cars, but more like factory built replicas.

IM Speedsters do not use the V-Dub pan. It's a brand new custom built chassis. Only avalable on IM Speedsters 1989 and newer.

They have door locks, side row up windows, windshield spray nozzles, shoulder strap seat belts etc.... a lot of fine details that I have not yet seen on Vintage Speedsters.

If you're trying to convince your wife, then go for a IM Speedster or Roadster. You can drive in the rain and have good vision on all sides with top up.

Also the defog and functions should be a factor in your decision.

Look through the Speedster owners web site and see what people have to say about their cars. But please keep in mind the year of the vehicle they are commenting on or own.

You should look at the newer models. Older Speedsters versions did not have some of the newer options.

Hello Dave,
Look at the "makers" page on this site to get an overview of what is available and from whom/where. What you select will depend very much on how much you want to or can spend on your Speedster. All of the makers listed produce a good product, but the more you have to spend, the better car you will get. I personally have a 2000 VS which I purchased used and overall have been satisfied with. I love to drive the car and look for excuses to take a spin, which isn't hard. I'm weak when it comes to this car.
Hang out at the site for a while and you will learn a great deal. We have a talented and informed group of folks who will be glad to share their experiences with you. Enjoy! You are embarking on an adventure more exciting than you might first believe.
John H.
Feckless tuner and journeyman Duck Kicker
Hey Dave...
Like George,(I can see him cringing at the thought,LOL) I too have owned a few Porsche 356's. I have found my Vintage replica to be a more than satisfactory substitute, mechanically sound, detailed reasonably similar, etc!

I bought mine used, it's a 69VW pan ( I thought it was a '64 until I re-registered the other day)and it was built I think in 1999 or 2000.
It had the single carb 1776 and disc brakes up front. It only had 2500 KM's (?) on it and I paid $17,500.00

If you watch eBay you will see some resellers asking $19K-25K
Individuals selling their cars seem to ask $10-15K
There was an older InterMcManiac, yellow, on eBay and I think this guy went over the top with Porsche-like features and he was touting a price in the $13's based on eMail exchanges...

Think about how much you plan to use it and what type of driving you do, and where. Your wallet will be your guide.

While a lot of guys on the forum talk mechanical stuff, don't overlook the accessory details, they cost a little money and are options, but they really are worth it to sell the look and finish off your baby!

Definitely get a bigger engine no matter where you turn your key!
Medicine Man

Don't forget to look through the files section...A lot of nice pics of various cars, classic, widebody, etc!

Vintage and JPS (see Makers tab above) are very similar in their pricing. JPS lays out the prices for nearly all options, except for custom requests, in their new updated site. Vintage has all their basic option prices at their site too.

To give you a ballpark number for a JPS or Vintage, plan on at least $19,000 for entry level with a few small options. I think that with engine, transaxle, canvas, etc upgardes you will be looking at 21,000 to 25/26,000. That will buy you a heckuva car.

Intermeccanica? I do agree with George that the Roadster (59 Convert D) and new Speedster (58) that Frank manufactures are the cream of this genre.... however his pricing is a bit off, probably because it's based on the $$$ he bought at a ferw years ago... BTW, he has a beautiful & exceptionally equipped/powered car. When I was buying 16 months ago a IM Speedster with roll up windows, and equiped with the smae/similar options I eventually ordered from VS. cost $13,000+ more than the Vintage (and probably a similar JPS). Not only that, the wait was 6 months plus before they started on your car. I think the current waiting time is at least that. Having said that, I still think the IM car is primo and worth the $, if you are looking for an all weather driver that can equal a Z-3 in comfort and blow the doors off all Z's except an M-3, and also a car that handles far superior than the original. I may buy one some day.

JPS puts out an outsanding product and you will find many devotees on this forum to both JPS cars & it's owner, John Steele. Check out John Leader's car under the registrty for a prime example.

Vintage was my choice because of the owner, Kirk Duncan, has a reputation for honesty, A+ customer service, and accessabilty. VS has been in business for many years, and has produced the majority of replicas you will find on the street today. I am toatlly satisfied with the car (see Dub U Tub under member's files), and Kirk has been true to his reputation, I think he exudes the best in attributes, especially in this industry (relicars/kit cars.) Both John Steele (JPS) and Frank at IM have earned the same level of respect.. I think any of the 3 will meet your expectations, once you define them.

Hope this helps. The beautifuul thing? If you buy IM, VS, or JPS... then you can be assured that you wil get a quality product.

Jim Ward OKC, Temp STL.
It's all a matter of money, how you will use the car, and how much you are into detail. If the car is going to be a sunny weekend special, buy a VS with an upgraded engine (say a 1,915 or 2,110cc CB Perf. built), transmission (3.88 with super diff and close ratios), brakes, and paint. maybe $25,000?

If you want the best quality build and handling, buy an IM with the same upgrades for about $7,500 more. Henry at Intermeccanica will build you a Speedster or convertible "D". The Speedster will have the same visibility and lack of weather protection as the orginal Speedsters did (spell that drip and wet); the "D" is more comfortable (seats) with better weather protection and visibility (windshield is about 2 3/4" higher, rear window is larger, top is a bit higher and lined, roll up windows).

Years ago I had a '56 356A Porsche 1600 Super Speedster; my current toy car is an IM "D" with 901 5-speed transaxle, 4-wheel disk brakes, and 170 BHP 2,110cc engine. The IM is superior IN EVERY WAY to my old Porsche. Good luck...

(Message Edited 8/20/2002 2:48:38 PM)
I got into my first speedster last summer. I bought it a little on the ruff side and have been refitting ever after. I have to say this however, I cannot compare the speedster at all to the likes of the newer sports cars. I drive a Z3 Coupe as my daily driver and as much as I hate to admit it I have to say the coupe is a way better performance car all around.
Wait before you guys jump all over me;If I had to pick between the two, I would pick the Speedster with out a second thought. Getting behind the wheel of one is a small bit of heaven on Earth! As soon as you take your first ride you will be 100 % in love!
Be warned, Dave, if you buy a used speedster you will spend lots of money on upgrades. I drive an 84 IM with 20,000 miles on it, which meant that it really didn't need much. That didn't stop me from pouring a lot more money into it? It's a sickness you can't (nor want to) cure. I don't know much about the other manufactures but I am really happy with my IM. I would recommend buying one with an irs transaxle and if you like IM's and want to buy a used one, look for 1990 or newer, since they are tube frame instead of a modified bug pan.
Chris has hit a hot button as to why I like these cars. One of my friends is thinking of buying a Lexus, while another is happy with his 356 SC. What's the difference? The late singer/songwriter/clogger John Hartford wrote a song about his mother's new washing machine. In the refrain, he talks about the new one sounding like, 'mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm', while the old one went something like, 'bush-a-boppa bush-a-boppa bush-a-boppa' ..... get the idea? Purposeful and interesting.

My friend's wife, the one with the 356, said his car sounds awful, and VW engines sound like threshing machines. She's not a car nut, after all. There is something refreshing about these elemental creations that gets me where I live. I think that's great.

So Chris, enjoy your Z3 and the Speedster too. They are both great in there own way.
my 2 kroner
John H
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