1964/5 Volkswagen pick-up with Porsche Formula V
An ultra-rare pick-up/race car combination
The Formula V history started back in 1958, almost by accident when the German Joseph Hoppen (chief of Volkswagen Motorsport) and the American Hubert L. Bundage (who had a VW dealership) met. Hubert L. Bundage was also the owner of Bundage Motors, which became the world known Florida based Porsche dealership ‘Brumos” At the time Bundage was a fierce competitor in the Formula Junior category, and he was always on the lookout for new ideas. So for 1959 Bundage and Hoppen decided to have a “one-off” Formula junior built at Nardi in Italy. The shape of the car was loosely based on the pre-war Auto Union GP cars, but engine wise it did receive a VW Bug engine. This car was not a success.
Bundage did lose his interest in racing and decided together with Bill Duckworth and Col. George Smith to build a series of 10 to 20 “spec-class” cars based on VW parts. Thus the Formcar Construction in Orlando Florida was founded. It was a huge success in the US and lots of cars were sold. Other companies such as Autodynamica and Beach specialised in the construction of those little single seater race cars.
Specific history of this car (Porsche / Formcar Formula V):
Dr. Ferry Porsche and his race director Huschke von Hanstein were convinced of the impact of these cars to start the careers of young racing drivers in Europe. So in 1964 Porsche contacted Beach in order to buy one and afterwards some more of these kit car single seaters. Porsche wanted to support the series in Europe and they not only ordered the Beach cars but also 5 Formcar Formula V.
A promotional tour was set up and of material importance was the support of Volkswagen CEO Dr. K. Hahn. The first presentation of these “Volkswagens” took place at the Eberbach Hill Climb competition in May 1965. These cars engendered quite some mockery, but rapidly the mockery changed into respect and the series became more and more important. Most well known racing drivers of the 60-70 and eighties started their career in these single seaters. Just to name a few: Emmerson Fittipaldi, Gijs van Lennep, Ben Pon, Gerhard Mitter, Hans Hermann etc.
These little formula cars had 1200 cc VW Bug engine’s with about 40 bhp they reached a top speed of 160 km/h. This elfenbein single seater accompanying the VW pick up is in fact one of the two remaining Formcar Formula V. These cars are genuine Porsche cars as they were build by Porsche in Werk 1, and their racing was supported by the factory.
This Formcar has been restored to its original condition as raced by Hans Hermann, Gerhard Mitter and Ben Pon. The body has been remade but most of the original panels do come with the car. Everything has been checked over after its last race at the Nürburgring 2011. A suspension set up has been performed, as well as a checking of the brakes. The engine has been fine tuned etc.
As we found out the dashboard instruments did not work properly we decided to have them overhauled. The car also comes with a FIA HTP (historic Technical pass) allowing it to run in FIA sanctioned races. All this means that this little genuine Porsche single seater is ready to be enjoyed by the connoisseur.
This is a very rare opportunity to purchase one of the very few original single seaters Porsche has built. The extremely rare 718’s and 804 are either with the factory or in private collections not to be sold of soon, let alone at a reasonable price.
This is your opportunity to own, enjoy and possible drive an important artefact of the Porsche racing history in particular an of the racing scene in general.
Specific history of this car (VW Bus):
In order to transport the Formula V cars it was decided to buy 6 VW Bulli pick-up trucks. These pick-ups were adapted so they would easily carry the Formula V on its flat bed loading space.
As all the original Porsche Renndienst pickup trucks have vanished (either destroyed or rusted away) decision was taken to try and find a period (month) correct 261 pick-up. This VW was found albeit in original Dove Blue colour (L 31). It was in a rather sorry state so a complete restoration of the pick-up was started.
The pick-up is completely built up to period correct specifications. All the details that were on the pick-ups at the time have been sourced, found, overhauled and installed. For example it took quite some time to find all the additional dashboard instruments, as well as the Westfalia towing hook. Also, and just to point out that no effort was speared, the bronze label tag that was on the Westfalia towing hooks has been sourced and correctly placed.
There are tons and tons of details that have to be seen to be believed. An original Eberspächer heater was sourced and the instruction booklet is with the VW. The engine is a 914 with a 2.4 displacement, mounted with 46 IDA Weber carburettors. The engine was built by renowned Porsche restorer Maxted-Page & Prill in the UK. When the engine was run in at the engine stand it was established that it had a little over 200 bhp.
Some of the aftermarket parts that were used were:
- CSP Porsche fan with Alternator
- CSP fan shroud
- CSP python exhaust system
- CSP oil filler modification
- CSP inlet manifolds
- Thermostatic controller and fan controller for dual oil coolers
Due to this incredible (compared to the original) power increase the gearbox was also strengthened, because it is based on the original 4 speed VW beetle gearbox. A heavy duty clutch kit was installed.
In order to make this VW stop, bigger dimension drums in the back and disk brakes in the front were mounted. Also a CSP dual circuit master brake cylinder was mounted. The chassis was also adapted accordingly and the complete suspension was gone over (adjustable spring plates and relocated shock mounts). Rack and pinion steering wheel conversion, front anti roll bars from VW Heritage and JAZ adjustable rear shock absorbers. The recreation of this Volkswagen Pick-up together with its Formula V car on to, guarantees some head turning motoring. Rest assured that driving the pick-up on the “autobahn” does not pass unnoticed.
A special binder with all the period information of both cars, as well the complete restoration in documents will be joining the car to the next keeper. The binder had a special engraved plate with the VW details on the outside.
By restoring the pick-up and the Formula V car an important part of the Porsche history has been become reality again. The eventual buyer will not only find himself in the unique position of owning a part of the Porsche history, he will also have a good running, fast, enjoyable pick-up to move his Formula V car to the circuits. Many events will most certainly be happy to invite the combination. More and more organizers do want period transporters with their period racing cars.
This is your opportunity!