As his web series, Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee shows, Jerry Seinfeld has a penchant for classic automobiles. He is, however, most famous for his love of Porsche – and sometimes some extra room needs to be made in the garage. In 2016, it is alleged the comedian auctioned off his 1958 Porsche 356 Speedster Carrera. And now, years later, Brazillian company Fica Frio are claiming the car that they purchased off Seinfeld for $1.4 million USD is a fake.
It’s reported that Fica Frio – who has an ironic translation of ‘chill out’ in English – do not believe that Seinfeld knew that the Porsche he sold them was a fake. Rather, the incident occurred through a series of various missteps and misjudgements on behalf of many Porsche ‘experts’ who agreed the car they were selling was a rare 1958 Porsche 356 Speedster Carrera. Seinfeld, being the classy guy he is, then apologised for the confusion and said he would return the money. Legal documents state that Porsche enthusiast called the Brazillian company, saying that he intended to ‘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.’ A slightly more colourful (and perhaps more incriminating) inclusion of the call was this:
‘I 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.’ – Jerry Seinfeld in a call to Fica Frio.
Fica Frio maintains they have not received this payment from Seinfeld – hence the court order.
The 1958 Porsche 356 Speedster Carrera was just one of many cars sold on the auction day as part of the ‘Jerry Seinfeld Collection.’ The other Porsches have not been deemed as ‘fakes’ at the writing of this article. However, this particular Porsche 356 was found to be a fake after the British-based Maxted-Page Limited – whom Fica Frio hired to retail their latest purchase – was preparing the car for resale. Maxted-Page ‘expressed concern regarding the limited contents of the vehicle’s history file’, the court documents continue to reveal that the retailers then deemed that the ‘vehicle is not authentic.’
RELATED: ‘THE BEST OF PORSCHE DESIGN BAGS’
The vehicle that Seinfeld sold to Fica Frio is not some plastic, barely-running impression of a legitimate Porsche 356. From an outsider’s perspective, and even from the perspective of Seinfeld’s personal array of Porsche professionals, the 356 at least looked and felt legitimately like a legitimately rare release. Gooding and Co., the company who auctioned the vehicle, state that the 1958 Porsche 356 Speedster Carrera came to them with a Porsche Certificate of Authenticity. Although these little bits of paper are usually just used for garage-wall decor, their legitimacy is to be believed. We can pretty safely assume that this is a standard-release of one of 1,200 356 Speedster releases. But this rarity pails in comparison to the release of a mere 56 1500 GS/GT’s that Seinfeld originally claimed the vehicle was. The difference in value between the standard release and the rare release sits at around $1 million USD, probably something that should be brought to the attention of the courts.
Although similar, the reasoning for the difference in price extends beyond its inherent rarity: 1500 GS/GT’s are pure racing machines with Type 692/0 1,500cc Carrera four-cam competition engines, removal of any sound deadening, a greater fuel tank, and a sports exhaust. Furthermore, this 1958 Porsche 356 Speedster Carrera is believed to be the only one available with its stunning auratium green paintwork.
I can’t imagine Jerry Seinfeld would be strapped for coin, but for the mere sake of justice let’s hope that Fica Frio is paid their due and then the comedian may be entitled to receiving what he originally paid for the 1958 Porsche 356 Speedster Carrera.
For a definitely real vintage racing Porsche up for sale, see ‘The Only Road Worthy Porsche 345 Ever Built Is For Sale.’