Credit: Original article published by Barrett-Jackson.
Written by Nicole Ellan James
Here’s a fun fact: The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum has an outstanding collection of models, with one of the most popular being the USS Enterprise, a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. This incredible model has an “Easter egg”: a small model 1968 Porsche 911 coupe hidden among its components. It’s important to note we aren’t talking about something associated with the holiday bunny, but rather an unexpected and relatively undocumented feature included as a joke or a bonus.
We know what you are thinking: Who would do such a thing? You can thank Barrett-Jackson consignor Stephen Henninger for the addition of the Porsche on the impressive 1:100 scale model of the USS Enterprise. Henninger spent approximately 1,000 hours per year for 12 years building the ship completely from scratch. He came to build the model aircraft carrier after a colleague dared him to construct something more ambitious than the small-scale models he had been building at the time. The resulting project was donated to the museum in 1982, and Henninger has regularly been invited back to the museum to dust the model and keep it in ship-shape condition. To add an entertaining challenge, for years he has been hiding the model Porsche in different places on the ship for children and adults to find. While the exhibit is not currently on display due to building renovations, rest assured the Porsche is being stored with the USS Enterprise model as a registered official Smithsonian artifact.
Henninger based the model Porsche on his life-size car, which will cross the block with No Reserve during the 2023 Scottsdale Auction, January 21-29 at WestWorld. The USA-spec Porsche was obtained in 1968 and delivered to him in Germany. Henninger performed all the maintenance and restoration himself, but, at 80 years old, he now finds the car too much for him to keep up with. The sale of this vehicle includes several extra parts, including two engines and an additional set of wheels.
Register to bid today for your chance to own this real-life “Easter egg” Porsche – made all the more special by knowing its model version resides at the Smithsonian!