The Second Emory Outlaw Ever Built Is Still An Incredibly Mean Machine
Photography by Sean Smith
Editor’s Note: Photographer Sean Smith got in touch recently around his friend Bob Torre Jr.’s absolutely stunning Emory Outlaw. Knowing Sean’s work I asked if he wouldn’t mind snapping a few shots and having a chat with Bob to get the story of how the car entered his life. Hope you enjoy this as much as we do.
Update: Rod Emory chimed in on being around this build as a kid:
“My Dad and I built this car when I was in High School. One of my favorite cars growing up. There is nothing like a 356 with a “Golde” sliding ragtop sunroof. This was the go-to car for my Mom and Dad for events because it was my Mom’s favorite 356 to drive. Here is a picture of my Mom (Linda Emory) driving the Outlaw to Sedona Arizona in 1989.”
Before he could legally drive, Bob Torre Jr. was in love with Porsches. He learned mechanics at his father’s side while working on old cars.
In the dark days before Hemmings or the Internet, young Bob would page through the Pennysaver looking for cars. A 1963 356 caught the 14 year old’s attention. It was near their home, so they went and had a look. It had no floors or pedals—but it had a motor in it, and it steered.
Torre put floors in it, hooked up the linkage for the gas, brakes, and clutch, and got the car running. Sitting on milk crates with his father driving (junior was still too young) they took the car out for a test drive. The brakes were put to the test almost immediately when a local kid ran in front of the car. The car stopped on a dime—a good thing for the young mechanic and all concerned.
There was still lots to do, so the 356 was traded for a 124 Fiat Spider, still before driver’s-licence age. Finally old enough to have a licence, Bob found himself behind the wheel of a Corvair. That car had a tie-rod end failure and met with a stone wall. The next car was a rotary-engine Mazda. While out on a lake in South Salem, NY, Torre saw his car tearing around the lake’s perimeter road—a neighbor kid was joy riding. By the time Bob raced to shore, the Mazda was done racing, wrapped around a tree. Turning back to the trusty Pennysaver, Bob re-equipped himself with a 912.
Fast forward. Now a successful contractor, Bob gets himself a brand new ’07 Turbo cabriolet. It’s fun, but he still has the urge for the older models. Another 356 comes and goes; an ’87 Turbo joins the family, then moved on. He then finds a ’73 911T that’s been ordered with all the 911S extras. Then he gets a call from a Nick Soprano of Motor Classic and Competition who has the perfect car for Torre. A 356—but not any old 356, a Gary Emory built 356 Outlaw.
But Torre was out of town for the weekend. But to whet his appetite Torre send Bob a few choice pictures and Bob spent a sleepless weekend thinking about that special machine.
The car’s the second 356 Emory built. It gave him the name “356 Outlaw.” The car isn’t that wild, but at the time people thought Emory was on the outer fringes of the Porsche world. The car has a large Golden canvas sun roof taken from a European delivery car; Speedster seats, decambered suspension, and a Carrera valence on the back end. But there’s something else in the back end: a 912 block with a cam and big bore kit, bringing the engine up to 1720cc.
Turn the key and a rough-and-ready, definitely non-stock engine starts growling at you. There are many more Emory details spread out through this bitchin’ ride. (One drive, and Torre knew the car was coming home with him.) It’s sometimes hard to put into words how a car makes you feel. Not this time: this one just puts a smile on your face and makes you happy.
There are 4 other Porsches keeping company with the Outlaw in Torre’s home garage. While some move to another space on occasion, this Porsche is always at home. All the cars in the home garage have covers on them, but not the 356. Not because he loves it any less, but so Torre can walk into the garage and lock eyes with his favorite Outlaw when ever he wants.
Gary Emory said “Hot Rods are all about going fast and looking cool.”
That pretty much sums up this machine. Job done, Gary!