» more from Autos

Porsche 550 Spyder (1953-1955)

Estimated Value: In excess of $1.5 million
Units Built: 90
Speed: 130 mph

“Porsche’s first true sports racing efforts came from the 550 Series in 1953, when it entered the 110-hp engine in the LeMans 24-hour endurance race," Raskin said.

At LeMans, Porsche won its class and continued to enter and win at other European endurance races during 1954.

According to Raskin, the author of “Porsche Speedster TYP 540 Quintessential Sports Car” and “James Dean: At Speed”, many 550 Spyders were sold to American sports-car racers, including actor James Dean. Dean was on his way to his first race at Salinas, Calif., when he was killed in a two-car crash on Sept. 30, 1955.

Source/Photo: Lee Raskin