“Top of the muffin to ya!”
A Brazilian company may be wondering what happened to the top of their muffin when they bought 1958 Porsche 356 1500 GS/GT Carrera Speedster after experts are doubting its authenticity.
Fica Frio Limited, a company with reported Brazilian ties, recently filed a lawsuit in Manhattan Federal Court over the dispute.
It’s a story that would fascinate a Porsche technician or any Porsche enthusiast.
The company purchased the 1958 Porsche at Gooding & Company’s 2016 Amelia Island auction with a high bid of $1.4 million (or $1.54 million after the 10 percent bidder’s premium paid to the auction house.)
Comedians in Fake Cars with Lawsuits
Part of a highly publicized “Jerry Seinfeld Collection,” the car was one of several classic Porsches being sold at the auction by Seinfeld. The collection sold for more than $22 million in 2016 and was part of Seinfeld’s collection of classic automobiles.
But the Porsche may not be genuine, according to U.K-based Lee Maxted-Page, managing director of Porsche dealer Maxted-Page Limited, who was hired by Fica Frio to prepare the car for resale. He said he would “not be comfortable marketing the vehicle.”
Maxted-Page “expressed concern regarding the limited contents of the vehicle’s history file, particularly the lack of photographic evidence of the restoration work,” according to the court filing. ”Subsequent inspection and investigation revealed that the vehicle is not authentic.”
The company that originally sold the car to Seinfeld lacked the proper paperwork.
The company stated in court documents:
“Unfortunately we do not have a lot of information on the 1958 Porsche 356 A 1500 Carrera GT Speedster VIN 84908. We purchased the car from a broker who would not take me to the car [sic] original location to meet the family that owned it originally. I tried very hard to find out more but never could.”
Seinfeld Personally Apologizes, Offers to Refund Money
Seinfeld called the allegedly defrauded company personally to apologize:
Seinfeld left a voicemail stating that he “offer my apology for this nuisance and assure you that you will be completely indemnified in full and not have to keep the car and get all your money back. “I did want to apologize to you personally for that happening.” According to the suit, Seinfeld also said that he “would love to know how you guys figured it out because I find that to be interesting ’cause that’s impressive my guys did not, I guess, see anything amiss with the car when I bought it.”
So far, the company has yet to receive payment from Seinfeld, hence the lawsuit.
So is it a faux Porsche, a fugazi as Donnie Brasco would say?
“It’s more likely that this is an authentic 356 Speedster, but not necessarily one of some 56 1500 GS/GT Carrera versions extant. Nearly 1,200 356 Speedsters were produced in total but the difference in value between a standard car and a GS/GT Carrera version is about $1 million.”
Either way, a Porsche is a Porsche, just as a muffin with no top tastes as good as any other muffin. Our Porsche technicians would be happy to take it off their hands. We’ll even offer a lifetime of free Porsche repair as compensation.