The Porsche 356 Speedster was developed at the request of influential automobile importer Max Hoffman, who saw a gap in the US market for a stripped down, lower cost version of the already popular 356 model. Hoffman wanted a German cabriolet that could compete with the popular sports roadsters coming out of England, and his initial suggestion to Porsche was to build a car that resembled a smaller Jaguar XK120 with a lower sticker price than the 356.
The new Speedster was fitted with a smaller removable windscreen (good for weekend racing), simple bucket seats, a minimal folding top, and very little in the way of creature comforts. As was almost always the case, Max Hoffman was right on the money, and the new minimalist Porsche became a popular choice among America’s upwardly mobile petrolheads.
and check out this poor ISO
The Iso Grifo is a great example of what happens when Europeans install American V8s into sports cars. The vehicles that typically emerge from these alliances are extraordinary, with stunning styling, world class handling, and a mighty V8 burbling just under the surface.
The Grifo was built by Iso Autoveicoli from 1963 till 1974, the two men behind it were some of the most important Italians in the automotive industry at the time. Giorgetto Giugiaro of Bertone designed the Grifo, and the engineering was done by Giotto Bizzarrini.
Bizzarrini was the man who developed the Ferrari 250 GTO, and he saw the alloy bodied racing version of the Iso Grifo as his “Improved GTO”. It was called the A3/C, and surprisingly, no one has ever raced a GTO and a A3/C in a fair fight.