1956 Porsche 356

A Carrera Coupe - The ex-John Lucas


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  • Exterior colour 
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  • Performance 
    130 BHP / 132 PS / 97 kW
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Chassis #58162
The ex-John Lucas - Right Hand Drive
& 1720cc twin-plug engine
Price £POA

An extremely rare Right Hand Drive Porsche 356 A Carrera Coupe, formerly owned and raced by John de Lucas.

Manufactured at the Porsche factory in December 1956 and then supplied new in Kenya, via Cooper Motors. Chassis #58162 was originally finished in Aquamarine Blue with Grey leatherette upholstery and fitted with a 1500cc Type 547/1 Carrera four-cam engine number 90743.

The car was acquired new by W.J. ‘Jim’ Cardwell, who was known for his many class wins over the years in the East African Safari. He also won the African GT Championship in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s with the Porsche Carrera. Nakuru in Kenya’s Rift Valley is famous for its lake, which is home to millions of Flamingos, but in the early 1960’s it was also the location of the only race track in East Africa. The Carrera was taken on a trailer for a weekend racing every three months, which is how often car racing took place there and afterwards put back on a trailer and taken back to Nairobi for a full service and checks ready for the next race meeting.

Cardwell sold the Carrera in 1963 to Bill Parkinson who also raced and rallied the car in East Africa and won the GT Championship with it in 1964. Bill also lent the Carrera to an Italian friend who raced it at Nakuru and, due to a lack of experience in a right hand drive competition car, managed on the back straight to change gear from 3rdto 2ndinstead of 4thwith disastrous results to the four-cam engine. With little official Porsche service and support in East Africa at the time, repairing the four-cam engine would have meant sending it back to the factory. Instead, the decision was made to install a Super 90 engine. It has been a pushrod engined car ever since and in a recent Classic Porsche magazine feature, the editor ventured the opinion that it might overshadow much of its history if it were to be returned to Carrera 4 cam power.

Cardwell sold the car soon afterwards to Ian Johnson, who also continued to race it occasionally at Nakuru. Around that time Gordon Crowe had opened an official Porsche Centre in Nairobi, which was a considerable help in maintaining the car. In 1969 Johnson then moved to England and brought the Carrera with him, registering the car in the UK on 17thMarch 1970. Johnson became an early member of the PCGB and continued to race the Carrera at UK club races. After nineteen years ownership Johnson then emigrated to New Zealand and sold the car to John de Lucas another PCGB member who also raced 356’s.

John de Lucas was already known for getting the maximum output from Porsche 356 engines and also set about lightening the Carrera further by drilling holes in areas of double-skinning, which can be seen on the underside of the bonnet lid today.

His daughter Caroline also regularly raced the 356 into the late 1980s and the car has competed in countless races at various tracks in the UK, such as Brands Hatch, Silverstone, Castle Combe and Oulton Park and Prescott.

The car was eventually sold to well known 356 expert Roger Bray who planned to keep the car for his own use. He restored it in 2016 to its present immaculate condition and had to be persuaded to sell it to its present owner. Today the car is also fitted with a late 1720c pushrod engine with twin-plug ignition, producing high torque from low revs and circa 130hp, as supplied and built by us in 2017.

We are delighted to offer this rare and wonderfully historic right hand drive Carrera, which is presented in excellent restored condition, complete with UK registration and documented history file.