COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

For those who obsess about exactly how their 356 left the factory!
Message
Author
Jerry Garwick
356 Fan
Posts: 198
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 12:44 am

COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#1 Post by Jerry Garwick » Thu Jan 09, 2020 7:28 pm

I'm deep into restoration of my 1955 Speedster. When purchased it appeared that it was another abused amateur racer and painted yellow with no interior. I received the COA from Porsche Cars North America which stated paint - Blue; Interior - Acella Baste Cream Letherette, and chrome wheels. OK, based on this I purchased the entire interior and top from Autos International and all is spectacular. I recently was in Germany and spoke to the Reutter Rep who forwarded to me (at a cost) their Certificate of Production for my car. It stated that the paint was Graphite Metallic (only 4 ever in this color); the seats and panels were green leatherette; the carpet was green wool; the top was beige; and the wheels were chromeffeltlack (painted silver). WOW! What a difference. I can only assume that the Reutter documents are correct. I first suspected the error in paint when referencing Steve Heinrichs reference book and with later discussions with the Porsche 356 North American rep. I know the COA often is incorrect but this is beyond the pale. Keeping in mind that the Reutter information is probably correct this has to be the most unusual Speedster color combinations ever. Now the problem is to locate the correct green vinyl materials and carpets that were used in the 1955 era. Also am I to correctly assume that the side curtains are the same color as the top? Any help out there?
Jerry G

User avatar
Spencer Harris
356 Fan
Posts: 664
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 6:58 pm
Location: San Joaquin Valley, California

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#2 Post by Spencer Harris » Thu Jan 09, 2020 9:38 pm

Jerry, I would certainly source a Kardex for your car before proceeding further. Most will have the color code listed which should match the Reutter Certificate. I believe the code for graphite metallic was 537, and the green leatherette was possibly a special order that may be referenced on the Kardex.
Spencer Harris
San Joaquin Valley, CA.

Jerry Garwick
356 Fan
Posts: 198
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 12:44 am

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#3 Post by Jerry Garwick » Fri Jan 10, 2020 1:54 am

Thanks, Spencer. KARDEXs use to be very difficult to obtain. How can I get a real one these days?
Jerry G

User avatar
Spencer Harris
356 Fan
Posts: 664
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 6:58 pm
Location: San Joaquin Valley, California

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#4 Post by Spencer Harris » Fri Jan 10, 2020 2:10 am

Search “kardex” on the forum. Several sources have been discussed in recent weeks/months.

After you confirm details with a Kardex & the Reutter cert, I would have PCNA correct your COA. They re-did my 53 COA twice with no hesitation.
Spencer Harris
San Joaquin Valley, CA.

User avatar
Spencer Harris
356 Fan
Posts: 664
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 6:58 pm
Location: San Joaquin Valley, California

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#5 Post by Spencer Harris » Fri Jan 10, 2020 2:26 pm

Couple of sources listed in this post:
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=49104

I got my '53 Kardex from Tom Tate and it only took two days!
Spencer Harris
San Joaquin Valley, CA.

Jerry Garwick
356 Fan
Posts: 198
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 12:44 am

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#6 Post by Jerry Garwick » Fri Jan 10, 2020 3:04 pm

During trips to the Monterey CA Historics a rep from Porsche North America had a lap top with KARDEX info for
observation, but could not print it out. I can only guess why Porsche is/was so stringent about providing such information to we owners.
Jerry G

User avatar
Doug McDonnell
356 Fan
Posts: 4035
Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2008 8:21 am
Location: Augusta,Michigan

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#7 Post by Doug McDonnell » Fri Jan 10, 2020 10:03 pm

One of the problems Porsche has is German Privacy Law since original owner's name is frequently on the Kardex which was a warranty document. I got my Kardex from David Pateman whose contact info is in the link in post #5. I knew who owned the car with the exception of original owner, which Kardex had, so I now know all owners names. I am 4th owner of my 64C
1965 356C There is never enough time to do it right, but always enough time to do it over.

Jerry Garwick
356 Fan
Posts: 198
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 12:44 am

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#8 Post by Jerry Garwick » Mon Jan 13, 2020 3:00 pm

A final note on this from me on my subject. I contacted Porsche AG and was informed that the KARDEX on file, from which the Porsche COA was derived is in error. Specifically The paint on the COA and KARDEX is listed ad Speedster Blue but in fact the Reutter Factory had delivered it to the Porsche factory for completion with Graphite Metallic paint. The Porsche advised me, by letter, to use the Reutter Certificate of Authenticity as factual. My take away is that even factory records that are well over 50 years old have not been examined by the experts in Germany for correctness. I will be going with the Reutter facts. Thanks to all for the input and apologize for any false starts.
Jerry G

User avatar
James Davies
356Talk Moderator
Posts: 2294
Joined: Thu Aug 15, 2013 9:15 am
Location: Baltimore, MD

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#9 Post by James Davies » Mon Jan 13, 2020 4:14 pm

Fascinating Jerry! Thanks for sharing. Very unusual color combo.

And yeah, Kardexes can be wrong.

Martin Benade
356 Fan
Posts: 4469
Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2011 10:52 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#10 Post by Martin Benade » Mon Jan 13, 2020 7:27 pm

Did they have an idea why the Kardex was wrong, and why they trusted Reutter’s info more?

Jerry Garwick
356 Fan
Posts: 198
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 12:44 am

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#11 Post by Jerry Garwick » Mon Jan 13, 2020 8:20 pm

The company did not tell me why the KARDEX was wrong. Perhaps back in 1955 The person with the pen had one too many beers for lunch. I also verified the color as Graphite Metallic as directed by the Porsche rep by taking samples from the car in "out of the way" places. Why trust Reutter more over the KARDEX? Probably it is because they built and painted the car's body. Also the COA listed the wheels as chrome (probably from the KAEDEX) but the Reutter document lists the wheels as painted silver. I guess it is possible the wheels were switched at the Porsche factory.
Jerry G

Martin Benade
356 Fan
Posts: 4469
Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2011 10:52 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#12 Post by Martin Benade » Mon Jan 13, 2020 8:44 pm

I wouldn’t think there was any suspension or wheels when it was in Reutter’s possession. I imagine you are correct about the paint.

User avatar
Norm Miller
356 Fan
Posts: 2232
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 9:14 am
Tag: Official curmudgeon
Location: near Ft Collins

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#13 Post by Norm Miller » Tue Jan 14, 2020 12:00 pm

In 1955 there were many people working at Porsche from other countries. The German workforce was not yet up to snuff.
Language/spelling was problematic not to mention the Swabish dialect.
 

Jerry Garwick
356 Fan
Posts: 198
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 12:44 am

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#14 Post by Jerry Garwick » Tue Jan 14, 2020 3:48 pm

Now i'm really scratching my head. Does anyone know what the 1955 cars consisted of that left the Reutter factory? In other words, other than the body work and paint, did they have the interior as well? If they had no suspension or wheels (as Martin suspected) what else did the factory at Porsche add? For instance who did the wiring, lights, instruments, carpet, etc?
Jerry G

Martin Benade
356 Fan
Posts: 4469
Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2011 10:52 am
Location: Cleveland, Ohio

Re: COA versus Reutter Certificate of Production

#15 Post by Martin Benade » Tue Jan 14, 2020 4:27 pm

Not sure about the wiring harness but I think Reutter stopped at a painted upholstered body with zero mechanicals.

Post Reply