A 1955 Porsche 550 RS Spyder with a prominent wing made quite the impression at the 2015 Pebble Beach Concours, held Sunday, August 16th at the Pebble Beach Golf Links in California during Monterey Classic Car Week. The 550RS finished second in the Postwar Racing class at the Pebble Beach Concours.
Inspired by the Porsche 356 created by Dr. Ferry Porsche, Porsche decided to build a car designed specifically for racing. The Porsche 550 Spyder was introduced at the 1953 Paris Auto Show and 78 cars were produced in open and closed configuration. The first three prototypes were coupes with a removable hardtop.
The first Porsche 550 Spyder appeared at the Nürburging in May 1953 winning its first race. Porsche 550 Spyders started in over 370 races around the European and US circuits between 1953 and as late as 1965 winning 95 races outright as well as 75 class wins.
The 550 RS Spyder (chassis 550-0031) on display at the Pebble Beach Concours 2015 was originally delivered to Swiss racer Walter Riggenberg in March 1955. With co-driver Richard von Frankenberg, they set several new international records at Montlhéry in France.
The car also raced at Le Mans and AVUS in the same year. The 550-0031 was later raced by Michael May where, with an adjustable aerodynamic rear wing, it earned the nickname ‘the first winged Porsche’.
Owned by Ugo Gussalli Beretta of Brescia, Italy, the 550RS finished second in the Postwar Racing class at the 2015 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.
1955 Porsche 550 RS Spyder 550-0031 – Photo Gallery (Click image for larger picture)
[Source: Pebble Beach Concours; photos: Tim Scott, Sports Car Digest]