This Fancy Beetle is Expected to Draw More than $20 Million at Auction

A very rare and very significant Porsche is coming up for auction later this summer. Believed to be the oldest surviving model to wear the name and one that’s older than Porsche the company by almost 10 years.

It’s a Type 64. Ferdinand Porsche designed the car for a Berlin to Rome race that was planned for the end of 1939. As you can probably guess, that race never happened.

The car was a Beetle underneath, or at least the KdF Wagen that would later become the Beetle. But in Porsche fashion, this one wore a streamlined aluminum body and had the flat-four engine tuned to a hotter 32 hp. With the start of the war, the project was stopped and the car taken by the government.

Except that Ferdinand’s son built two more. One in December of 1939 and one in June of 1940. Of them, only this car, chassis 3 survived. Better yet, it stayed in the possession of the Porsche family.

In 1947, the car was restored. The next year it showed up alongside the first 356 Roadster when that car was demonstrated. The Type 64 was then sold, staying with that buyer until he passed in 1995.

The car is now with only its fourth owner, who is selling it at the RM Sotheby’s Monterey auction with historic documentation and original spare parts. A cool find from before Porsche was Porsche and designed by the original Porsche. Expected to draw more than $20 million, if it lives up to expectations it will become the most expensive Porsche ever.

[via: RM Sotheby]