Porsche led Project 550 in view of the 1953 Le Mans 24 Hours race. Two cars were prepared (550-01 and 550-02), with the 1498cc flat-four, air-cooled engine and fitted with an original coupé body designed by Erwin Komenda, well suited to the long straights at Le Mans. Both cars finished the race, at 15th and 16th places overall respectively. During summer, Porsche embarked upon 550 RS Spyders and the two Coupés were sold to the Automobile Club of Guatemala, freshly affiliated with the FIA. At instigation of Czechoslovak (later naturalized in Guatemala) Jaroslav Juhan, a car enthusiast settled in Guatemala City to import European cars, a racing team - "Los Caminos" - was formed and the two cars were entered in the upcoming Carrera Panamericana, to be run in november in Mexico.
550-01 was to be driven by Jaroslav Juhan, with Antonio Asturias as co-driver (racing # 154), and 550-02 by José Herrarte, a rich Guatemalan coffee-grower, with Oscar Gonzalez as co-driver (racing # 152).
The two Coupes dominated the under 1600 cc class. Jaroslav won the second, third and fourth legs, but had to retire in the last leg, leaving the 1600 class victory to teammate José Herrarte at the wheel of 550-02. Needless to say that both drivers were much celebrated in Guatemala for such a bright participation in the so fascinating Carrera Panamericana (a few years later, José would even become a senator in his country).