The great success that Porsche enjoyed with its first 550 Spyders spurred its small but effective racing cadre to a more ambitious design with its 1956 Type 550A. It's stiffer space frame was inside the 550A that Umberto Maglioli drove single-handed to win the 1956 Targa Florio -- Porsches greatest victory yet. Experiments in 56 with an even smaller racer, the Type 645, ended with a disastrous crash. Not for nothing was it nicknamed "Mickey Mouse". In 1957 Porsche created the immortal RSK, a race and hillclimb winner. The RS60 arrives in 1960 to meet new rules, winning Sebring outright. It evolved into the RS61 and then the Type 718, using the Grand Prix eight-cylinder engine. Races and hillclimbs throughout the world were mastered by these agile silver cars through 1964, depicted in magnificent images from the Ludvigsen Library.
Karl Ludvigsen is respected as a close and knowledgeable observer of, and participant in, the world motor industry. In addition to his industry activities as an executive with GM, Fiat and Ford and head of a consulting company, he has been active for over 60 years as an author and historian. As an author, co-author or editor he has some five dozen books to his credit, all concerning cars and the motor industry, his life-long passion. Many have been garlanded for their high standard of writing and research. An American, he lives in the UK, in Suffolk.