How much would you pay to own the world’s oldest Porsche?
Auto valuation experts believe some enthusiastic soul with deep pockets will fork over $20 million for the antique collectible known as the Type 64 #3.
If it happens, it would be the most expensive Porsche purchase in world history, according to Road and Track.
The one-of-a-kind antique Porsche is scheduled to be auctioned RM Sotheby’s in August during the 2019 Monterey Car Week in Monterey, California.
Designed for racing, the Type 64 sports car actually predates the creation of the inaugural Porsche 356 and the Porsche brand as a company by almost a decade.
It’s currently owned by Porsche enthusiast and author Dr. Thomas Gruber of Vienna, Austria.
Porsche engineer and founder Ferdinand Porsche’s son, Ferry Porsche, originally came up with the idea for the Type 64 in 1939, but completed its design in 1940, according to Road and Track.
The vehicle’s rounded features mirror the popular Volkswagen beetle of the same era. However the Type 64 was supposed to help its creator win a 1,500 kilometer race between Berlin and Rome in 1939.
The invasion of Poland by Nazi Germany in September of that year prevented the race from ever occurring.
‘Without the Type 64, there would be no Porsche 356, no 550, no 911,’ RM Sotheby’s car expert Marcus Görig said in a statement.
‘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!’ he added.
In 1948, Porsche debuted its first car, the 356, which appeared side by side with the Type 64 at an early appearance in Austria.
Racer Otto Mathé was the first to buy the Type 64 from the company in 1949, according to Road and Track. He used the early sports car frequently during races in the early 1950s and held onto it until he died in 1995, when the car was sold to Gruber.
Sotheby’s Global Head of Auctions Gord Duff said: ‘The Type 64 helped define what a sports car is today.’
‘It carries many of [the] traits we’ve seen throughout seven decades of Porsche production and still see in some of the marque’s most sought-after contemporary models,’ he added.
The current record for world’s most expensive Porsche purchase is the 1970 Porsche 917 that sold for $14 million in 2017.