By this point, you’ve probably heard enough and seen enough about the Le Mans-winning 356SL that was shown at Pebble Beach in 2016 you could probably recite its history from memory. It won its class at Le Mans in 1951, and 66 years later it’s been returned to the exact state it was just before the Tricolore flag fell to start the race. In between, it was shipped to the US and its top was cut clean off.
Chuck Forge vintage raced this SL as an open top roadster for years, it even helped inspire a few of Rod Emory’s Outlaws. Porsche collector Cameron Healy had an opportunity to buy the car after Forge passed away, and he began the lengthy process of researching the car’s provenance. He was relatively certain that this SL with no roof was the exact SL that had won at Le Mans, but proving it wasn’t exactly easy.
From Roughcut to Finished Product
I first saw a rough cut of this video last summer at Emory Campout, and it took a long time for the finished product to make it to public consumption, but the perfectionists at Rennfilms have done a phenomenal job of it. Everything from the cinematography to the voiceover work, animation, and sound design are spot on. When you’re dealing with a perfectionist like Mr. Emory, and believe me when I say that this 356 is perfection, the video documenting the process can’t be half-assed.
This video shows a bit of the behind-the-scenes look at how this Porsche, of which 1/3rd was missing, returned to its original spec. Rod even made sure to include a small section of cut braided rubber hose tucked behind one of the driving lamps on the front bumper to point it at corner apexes. One of the drivers requested that last minute mod just before the start of the race in 1951, and Rod has photographic evidence of everything he did. Hard to argue with minutiae like that.
To see more of this Porsche 356SL and its fantastic story, check out this video below. It’s just shy of 20-minutes long, so pour a nice glass of wine and stream it to your big screen for a lovely wind down at the end of the day. No matter how you watch it, just make sure you watch it. You won’t regret this click.