Porsche's legend started right here, with this car.
This 1956 Porsche 356 A 1600 Speedster is out of the automaker's personal museum collection, and they foolishly and magnanimously let Roadshow drive it.
The 356 might have its roots in VW's humble Beetle, but it feels totally different and altogether more special.
We drove it as part of a Porsche Heritage event in Hawaii, where this 356 was just one of five generations of Porsche convertible models that we could sample.
We had the chance to sample everything from a new 911 Turbo Convertible to a 944 Turbo Cabriolet and a rare 914/6. Our editor didn't expect to bond the most with the 356 Speedster, but it's the one that he most wanted to take home at the end of the trip.
The opportunity to compare today's latest-and-greatest Porsches with their historical predecessors was a rare treat.
There's a reason the 356 is an icon, and not just because it's the first chapter in the book of Porsche.
Interiors don't get much more focused.
Those tiny bucket seats are like stadium cushions.
Note the Speedster's cut-down windshield height.
Look at how tiny the 356 looks next to its nearest modern approximation, the 718 Boxster.
Here's another opportunity for perspective.
Both cars are lovely to drive in their own way.
The 1,600cc air-cooled flat-four engine is tiny, and it reportedly made just 60 horsepower when new. It still feels spry, in part because it only has to tow around 1,700 pounds of Speedster.
This wasn't our author's dream car at the beginning of this drive day, but it was by the end of it.
Cute as a bug.
A very, very expensive bug. Today, highly original early 356 Speedsters like this one routinely hit $300,000 to $400,000 at auction.
This one is right out of the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart, and that provenance might mean it's worth closer to a half-million dollars.
Keep clicking or scrolling for dozens of additional images of this 1956 Porsche 356 A 1600 Speedster.