Porsche-356-carrera-1955-to-1959 | Tyres | Pirelli

356 Carrera 1955 to 1959

Famous racing orientated 356 variant. Built from 1955 to 1959 in A and B versions.

Originally fitted with an obsolete 550-15 crossply tyre (available as a race-only Dunlop) with the option of a 590-15 crossply on a 4.5 inch wide wheel. The best radial replacement tyre would be a 155R15, or a 165R15 on the wider wheel.

The 356 was the first car to come from Porsche and it arrived in 1950 with a 1086cc four-cylinder engine developing just 40bhp. Within a year there was a 44bhp 1.3-litre engine available; at the same time a 60bhp 1.5-litre powerplant was introduced. By 1952 this biggest engine of all was available in 55bhp and 70bhp states of tune – from this point on an all-synchro four-speed gearbox replaced the previous crash unit.

These first cars were known as the pre-A, but from 1955 the Porsche 356A went on sale with 1290cc, 1498cc or 1582cc powerplants. A curved windscreen replaced the previous split item and from September there was a 356 Carrera available too.

The Porsche 356B of 1959 brought a more modern bodyshell with a raised bumper and headlamps, opening quarterlights and a larger rear window. Buyers could choose between 1582cc or 1966cc flat-fours. The ultra-rare 1600GS GTL Abarth-Carrera was on sale in 1960 only, with alloy bodywork, then the final flourish came in 1963: the 356C featured all-round disc brakes and 1582cc or 1966cc engines.