In 1953, a motoring legend was presented that went down in history with the nickname “giant killer”: it was the Porsche 550 Spyder. It was designed for racing, a fact it confirmed by winning the first race it entered, at the Nurburgring Eifel. With that win, the reputation of the tiny roadster that sported a mid-engined 1.5-liter boxer-four began to build. The sporting successes of the 550 Spyder continued and in 1956 Umberto Maglioli took the first overall motorsport victory for Porsche at the Targa Florio. Many wins and podium finishes followed. Only 100 Spyders were built until 1957, making the car one of the most expensive Porsche collectibles today. In 1955 James Dean became a tragic part of its history when he was killed in an accident while driving a 550 Spyder.
The model served as the basic design for the company’s subsequent cars. An extensive presentation of the 550, based on information obtained after access to Porsche’s internal archives, includes the collector’s item in 1,500 copies and in a special-showcase-edition package, “Porsche 550 Spyder”. In the pages of the book, Stefan Bogner and Glen Smale highlight the Spyder’s classic and clean form, presenting some of the rare original models through color illustrations, photographs and blueprints, unfolding the history of the creation of one of the most important models of the historic brand.