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SyntheticBlinkerFluid PowerDork
1/29/15 9:32 p.m.

I posted this up on the Grassroots board a while back, but many folks over there are very budget minded, so it didn't go over so well.

The vehicle in mind is a Porsche 356 Coupe replica.

Now, I looked up real 356 Coupe prices and they range anywhere between $60k and &120k+ depending on the year, condition, etc.

So, I looked at JPS Motorsport's replicas, which I like the most. The Coupes (1957 replica) start at $29k for a turn-key vehicle.


For someone who can't afford a real example, I think the replica is a great idea. It's pretty much a brand new car that is almost an actual Porsche.

I'm not looking at getting one, but I thought it would be a good value with Porsche looks and VW internals. By the replicas I've seen for sale, the look like they actually hold their value well.

Any thoughts?

wlkelley3 SuperDork
1/29/15 9:38 p.m.

Actually wouldn't mind a Beck 550 Spider myself.

Replicas can get you into something rare for a lot less. Also great for modifying to your taste or what they should have built. A classic with modern capabilities.

But there are poor replicas out there.

petegossett GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
1/29/15 9:43 p.m.

In reply to SyntheticBlinkerFluid:

True, but it will also depreciate - maybe not quite as fast as a new car. That said, I'd expect it to hold it's value if a.) It's mechanically all VW/Porsche, and b.) It's executed well enough to not be easily identified as a replica.

Well built, quality replicase of some of the most notable cars seem to hold their value fairly well - Stratos, GT40, Lotus 7, etc. but if/when the collector-car market takes another nose-dive, cars like these will lose a greater proportion of their value compared to an original.

wae HalfDork
1/29/15 9:45 p.m.

The real thing is pretty awesome and a great bragging tool, but I'd feel like a bad person if I took it out on the track or drove it around town and it got bent up in some way, so it seems like it would be harder to really enjoy as a car instead of a museum piece. A replica, on the other hand, could be flogged relentlessly and you wouldn't be destroying an historical artifact if something went pear-shaped.

Speaking hypothetically, of course. I don't have the budget for either right now, so what would I know?

TeamEvil Dork
1/29/15 9:45 p.m.

They're pretty neat, but there are a LOT of neater cars our there for $30,000.

I mean a WHOLE lot; new, used, custom, hot rodded, modified, altered, everything . . . other than a fiberglass shelled VW.

SyntheticBlinkerFluid PowerDork
1/29/15 10:00 p.m.

In reply to TeamEvil:

I get what you're saying, but most people who get replicas really want the real deal but can't afford it, so they go for the next best thing.

The0retical HalfDork
1/29/15 10:29 p.m.

I'v never understood the replica hate. A couple guys at work were ragging on someone for wanting a FFR MK4 a while back. Now we all make good money but seriously? I highly doubt any of them will be able to afford a real one at any point in their lives so why be such an shiny happy person about buying a car that looks like (and probably out performs) something that would cost several years of salary?

So there's my rant. I'd still buy a well produced replica in a heartbeat if I couldn't afford the real deal because even the best car in the world can always do with some tinkering.

mndsm MegaDork
1/29/15 10:47 p.m.

I'd rather have a rep than the real thing in nearly Amy classic case due to the simple fact that I can't leave well enough alone and I would beat the hell out of it, and feel bad if I beat a real one. Imagine that 356 rep with a flat 6 or an ej25.... Or even a hot vw1600.....

The0retical HalfDork
1/29/15 11:00 p.m.
mndsm wrote: I'd rather have a rep than the real thing in nearly Amy classic case due to the simple fact that I can't leave well enough alone and I would beat the hell out of it, and feel bad if I beat a real one. Imagine that 356 rep with a flat 6 or an ej25.... Or even a hot vw1600.....

There's a couple of companies that actually produce that exact combo.... Specialty Auto Works (website looks like something out of the 90s) and JPS Motorsports both appear to come in around the 35k mark for what I assume is an EJ25 wrapped in the 356 body. Specialty Auto Works car was featured in Kit Car magazine a while ago I believe, which happens to be where I heard of it.

That's something that comes out of the dark recesses of my mind occasionally holding a "this would be a great idea" sign.

mr2peak HalfDork
1/30/15 3:46 a.m.

I did a 700 mile trip in my dads MGA a few months ago. There is definitely a special feeling when driving a car with history, and that is something that can't be replicated.

However, an MGA isn't a high-dollar car (not a twin cam), so not being able to afford it never crossed the table. If I built a replica, it would have to be resto-modded and significantly altered from an original for me to entertain the idea.

Also, some of the more exclusive and fun rallies don't allow replicas, so that's always worth keeping in mind.

alfadriver GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
1/30/15 8:52 a.m.

Something to ponder- there's a movement of Resto-mods recently. Rest-modding a replica is a whole lot more bearable than a real one.

I know of an Alfa TZ kit that would be a good option for a strong resto-mod where the replica is a whole lot easier to live with.

T.J. PowerDork
1/30/15 9:17 a.m.

If I really wanted a 356 type car, I'd go for a replica based on the cost. The funny thing about cobra replicas is that they are so common compared to a real cobra that when I see a cobra looking car out in the wild, I hardly even look at it assuming that it is not the real thing. If I saw a Porsche speedster with a widebody look I would assume replica, but one like the OP posted, I would probably think it was real if I saw it in passing.

I say go for it if it makes you happy.

TR8owner HalfDork
1/30/15 9:31 a.m.

IMO it depends on the replica. Some are better built than others. A friend of mine had one of the better 427 Cobra replicas, can't remember which one, but was a lot cheaper than the original.

I can't get overly excited over a 356 replica because in the past I owned real ones. As a result, a 356 replica with VW bug running gear just doesn't do it for me personally, but that's just me.

Graefin10 SuperDork
1/30/15 10:16 a.m.

This car and Cobra replicas I would enjoy owning. There are many replicas that I would never want to own, such as a VW based MG TD; Fiero based Ferrari, etc.

Rupert HalfDork
1/30/15 10:44 a.m.

In reply to T.J.:Funny you should mention the Cobra. In most cases no one, including Ole Shel before he died could/can tell you for sure many that are original and many that are not.

I have a friend who's had his built two years ago Cobra "replica" registered as an antique. He has original & correct serial numbers too. As do a lot of "replicas" out there. So if it has an original and correct serial number and the "correct" drive train installed, is it a replica?

Now a "TD" with a VW motor in the rear is a little easier to spot.

nderwater PowerDork
1/30/15 12:31 p.m.

I did a little digging to see what was currently available on the replica market. I'm sure I missed a bunch, but the cars on this list alone are astounding:

Aston Martin DBR1 Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato Aston Martin DB4 Zagato Barchetta

Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport

Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder Ferrari 500 Mondial Ferrari P4

Ford GT40

Jaguar C-Type Jaguar D-Type Jaguar E-Type Coupe Jaguar E-Type Roadster Jaguar E-Type Lowdrag Coupe Jaguar XKSS Jaguar XJ13

Lola T70 coupe Lola T70 spyder

Lotus 7 Lotus 11

Porsche 356 Coupe Porsche 356 Speedster Porsche 550 Spyder Porsche 718 RSK Porsche 904 Porsche 906 Porsche 917

Shelby Cobra Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe

alfadriver GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
1/30/15 1:11 p.m.

In reply to nderwater:

This is the Alfa TZ I was mentioning. It appears that there are a few who make them it really small numbers.

nderwater PowerDork
1/30/15 1:16 p.m.

How did I forget Alfa Romeo? All the Zagato cars are fantastic; I would do untold things for a TZ2.

Burrito Dork
1/30/15 1:24 p.m.

In reply to nderwater:

Hooooman. I need a moment to myself

alfadriver GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
1/30/15 1:37 p.m.
nderwater wrote: How did I forget Alfa Romeo? All the Zagato cars are fantastic; I would do untold things for a TZ2.

VERY uncommon.

Rupert HalfDork
1/30/15 1:50 p.m.

Wow, I'd love a Lotus XI. Course I'd have to rent storage.

ronholm Dork
1/30/15 2:00 p.m.

Real ones are always better than fake, but fake ones don't bother me a bit.

The0retical HalfDork
1/30/15 2:29 p.m.

Speaking of kits I found out this exists today:

Not particularly interested in most of the bodywork except the fastback. My automotive ADD is awful.


VClassics Reader
1/30/15 2:42 p.m.

There's a guy who comes to our little local cars & coffee meetings who has a Ferrari P4 replica. It is a totally exact copy of one of the P4s, down to each rivet, same engine, same injection. It's built under license by some outfit in Texas (I think). The only thing it doesn't have are Ferrari badges. He's a Ferrari collector, and I think there were only four P4s built (and fewer survive), so if he wants one that's his only way to have one. He also has a Lola T70 replica, but that's small beans in comparison.

Gary Dork
1/30/15 2:49 p.m.
Rupert wrote: Wow, I'd love a Lotus XI. Course I'd have to rent storage.

I think Westfield in the UK makes (or made) the Lotus XI kits. I always thought one of those with a BMC A engine, 948cc or 1098cc with a couple SU's would be just enough power for the weight. I was at Cars and Coffee in Irvine, CA a few years ago (and now unfortunately defunct as of Dec. 20, 2014), a guy drove in with one. He was wearing WWII goggles and leather helmet. Great little car but a bit scary in traffic (said he).

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