Buckle up, because this is one hell of a story. It ends with Jerry Seinfeld, an avid collector of Porsche 911s and any number of other vehicles, settling a lawsuit wherein he was accused of selling a fake Porsche 356 at auction for $1.54 million. It starts way back in 2016 when Seinfeld sold the car for the above sum. A few years later, Seinfeld is sued for the sale of the 356.
It was and is an incredibly rare car. Back then everyone thought the 1958 Porsche 356 A 1500 GS/GT was the real deal. Until it wasn't. Seinfeld consigned the car to Gooding & Company to sell at Amelia Island. The buyer of the car was Fica Frio Limited, a company based in the Channel Islands off the coast of the UK.
Back then, Frio alleged that the Porsche was a fake, and demanded "unspecified damages including the costs associated with the purchase." The suit claimed that Seinfeld apologized and promised a full refund, despite never sending the money.
Fast forward a bit, and an understandably upset Seinfeld reaches out to European Collectibles out of Costa Mesa, CA, demanding they resolve the dispute with the car's new owner. Seinfeld even files a lawsuit against the car dealer, claiming he relied on the company's certificate of authenticity, taking it in good faith when he bought the car.
In Seinfeld's eyes, he was sold a very literal false bill of goods and wanted European Collectibles to set things right. European Collectibles refused.
At the time of the 2019 suit, Seinfeld's legal counsel issued a statement, saying "Mr. Seinfeld, who is a very successful comedian, does not need to supplement his income by building and selling counterfeit sports cars... Jerry has no liability in this matter, but he wants to do the right thing, and is, therefore, bringing this action to hold European Collectibles accountable for its own certification of authenticity, and to allow the court to determine the just outcome."
Fast forward to 2022 and the settlement in principle was disclosed as of Wednesday, June 1 in a Manhattan federal court. We just don't know how much it cost to settle.
We combed through the court filings, one for Fica Frio Ltd v Seinfeld, and another for the suit against European Collectibles, Seinfeld v European Collectibles Inc, but were unable to find a final settlement statement.
For now, it's subject to final documentation. At that point, we're hoping we'll be able to learn how much, if any, cash Seinfeld had to fork over for his fake Porsche.