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Classic Porsche 911 - Surveys owners, repair and operation of 911 news stories and page model, sales and much more in ou...
Classic Porsche 911 - Surveys owners, repair and operation of 911 news stories and page model, sales and much more in our club fans and fans of the legendary series cars Porsche 911. All about 911-901, 930, 964, 993, 996 and new era 997 and 991-series.

If you're buying a used 911 as an investment, send me your address so that I can arrange a visit from the boys. Investors who never drive their 911s bring a word to mind. That word is 'pimp'. As 911 diehards, the boys don't like pimps, so when they arrive, make sure your engine is still warm, the exhaust system is making that tinkling noise and there is evidence in your tyres of some recently accomplished brisk cornering.

All 911s, from 1963 to this afternoon, share a characteristic 911 'feel', but that varies greatly in degree. Bog-standard used Coupes from the late 1970s or 1980s once delivered the goods for sensible money but they might demand some restoration work now.

Choosing a 911 is such a very personal matter. Just go for what you really want, get the best straight car you can find and look after it. Reliability is legendary but repairs can be costly.

My choice is currently the 993 Carrera 2 Coupe of 1993-98. Its predecessor, the 964, was respectable but dull. The 993's different, agile feel makes it terrific to drive and good ones go for less than £30,000 - this week, anyway.
It's the last air-cooled 911 model but so what? Later models lost nothing by being water-cooled. No, pick a 993 for its exhilarating agility, and its price.

A friend of mine paid £26,000 for a superb 1994 993 Carrera 2 in late 2013. He loves it, whether he's tootling about the shops or on a 300-mile blast through the remote Highlands of Scotland, where it truly excels. And that's no more than it deserves.

Porsche 911 Carrera RS
1973 // £500,000
The eternally great, ultimate development of the original 911 concept, it combines high performance and low weight with inch-perfect precision handling. Superb but the price of this model now, sir, is officially‘through the roof'. If you buy one, promise us you will use it.

On an autumn day in 1972 the salesman from Porsche GB came to visit our house. 'We're making a special car,' he told my father. 'Only 200 will be built, and we're offering them to our best clients first as demand is sure to be strong.' They built more than 1500 in the end, and demand was so great that, instead of management having to use them as company cars to use up unsold stock as expected, Porsche sold out the first batch of 500 immediately and had to build two more series.

Why the fuss? Because the RS is so much more than the sum of its parts. It was derived from the relatively humble 2.4S, but with flared rear arches and wider wheels (a 911 first), bored-out engine (at 2.7 litres Porsche's biggest road car motor to date), a rear spoiler (another first, and not just for Porsche, so initially illegal in some markets) and, last but not least, weight-loss that took the RS under the magic 1000kg in 'lightweight' trim.
The result: 150mph, 0-60mph in 5.0sec, handling to die for (and you would if you lifted off mid-comer) and a string of victories on every continent including rallies, Le Mans and the Targa Florio. Oh, and you can drive it to the shops.

Mine's been in the family for 42 years and has never once 'failed to proceed'. Beat that, Enzo...


Porsche 911 GT3 (997-series, generation II)
2009-12 // £80,000-120,000
The 997-series Generation II cars were terrific in their time and the naturally aspirated 997 GT3 was a hugely powerful, seriously fabulous machine, subtly better in fast corners than previous GT3 models.
A classic in waiting - bound to be a sound long-term investment.

Any brand new 911
2015 // From around £75,000
Admit it, they are absolutely brilliant. If you don’t want one, you should. Buy it, keep it, service it properly. One day, it will be a classic but, meanwhile, enjoy a few happy decades driving it. The best of all worlds.
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  •   Antonio Ghini reacted to this post about 2 years ago
    No more slip, just more grip

    CAR: #1973-Porsche-911S-2.4-Targa / #1973 / #Porsche-911S-2.4-Targa / #1973-Porsche-911S-2.4 / #Porsche-911S-Targa / #Porsche-911-Targa / #Porsche-911 / #Porsche /

    OWNER: Robert Coucher

    As mentioned last month I took my Porsche 911 2.4S Targa up to Prill Porsche Classics, where Andy attended to the fuel tank, suspension bushes, tuned the fuel injection and exacted a few other tweaks.

    But I didn’t have room to mention another important fix. The tyres. The Targa arrived from Australia wearing a nice-looking set of 195/60x15 Pirellis. Lots of tread and in fine condition. With the car up at the workshop, Andy called to tell me he’d date-checked the Pirellis and found they were 11 years old! No great surprise, as the 911 spent its life in dry, speed-restricted Sydney, where tyre performance is not so critical.

    I have a bit of a fixation about tyres, especially fitted to classics. Original tyres are narrow and high-profile so have a smaller footprint than modern, wide, low-profiles. So you really need classic tyres to be fresh and grippy, not hard and slippery. I’d noticed on a rally and at an Octane trackday at Goodwood that the 911 felt rather twitchy coming out of corners under power. I now know why.

    I called Dougal Cawley of Longstone Classic #Tyres to order some fresh rubber. Dougal pointed out that 195 Pirelli 6000s are wrong and that I needed a set of original-equipment Pirelli Cinturato 185/70VR15 CN36s for optimum handling. At £179 each (£799 for a set of five) plus the Vodka And Tonic, Dougal sent the set to Prill. Longstone doesn’t charge delivery in UK, Europe and most other countries.

    Combined with the replaced suspension bushes, the new Cinturatos offer a great improvement and the Porsche now rides superbly. There’s no more crashing over transverse ridges, the ride is quieter and the grip hugely increased. On top of that, the previously good steering is now even better, with sharper turn-in and lighter feel.

    A very satisfying result, which demonstrates the difference a decent set of fresh, correct-spec tyres can make. I’d suggest you check yours (date-stamped on the sidewall) and, if they’re more than six years old, a new set will transform your classic.

    Thanks to Dougal Cawley, www.longstonetyres.co.uk; and Andy Prill, www.prillporscheclassics.com.
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  •   Ben Koflach reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    WORK OF ART PORSCHE 1973 CARRERA RS

    The 1973 #Porsche-911-Carrera-RS is recognised by many as being the finest #911 ever. Hailed by many as the greatest road-legal 911 of all time, the #1973 #Carrera-RS remains top of the desirability stakes more than 40 years after its launch, but how many people are aware of the links between this desirable #Porsche-911 and the mighty 917? Words: Keith Seume. Photos: Stefan Bau.


    Some people believe that the Carrera RS is the best road car that Porsche ever built, and it’s easy to see why they might think that way. But can you really say that this 42-year-old car is better than, for example, a modern #997 GT3RS, or the newly-announced #Cayman GT4? That’s an impossible question to answer, for you have to put the RS in context with what else was around at the time.

    Modern limited-run, high-performance Porsches, such as the 911 GT3 (and its sibling, the turbocharged GT2) are undoubtedly breathtaking cars: they are seeringly fast – too fast, one might argue for road use – and, in the case of the GT3RS, pretty uncompromising. They are brutal trackday machines that are, to be frank, a pain in the proverbial to drive on anything other than billiard-tablesmooth roads. Drive a GT3RS for very long on the average British country road and you’ll soon be visiting your dentist to have your fillings replaced…

    And this is where we get to the crux of what makes the 1973 Carrera RS such a fantastic car. It is simply a great all-rounder. But before we go any further, let’s take a step back in time and look at the circumstances surrounding its development and release.

    Elsewhere in this issue you can read of the story behind Porsche’s greatest race car of all time, the mighty 917 (The Big One). As the cost of developing and competing at the highest levels of sports car racing – Can-Am in particular – had spiralled to what many within Porsche believed was an unacceptable level, the company began to consider other more costeffective ways to promote its products.

    Ernst Fuhrmann is well-known in classic circles today as the father of the four-cam motor in the 1950s. After a sabatical period at Goetze, he returned to #Porsche in #1971 initially as Technical Director, before being appointed Chairman of the Board in 1972. Fuhrmann’s return to Porsche coincided with the departure of Ferdinand Piech, father of the 917, who left to go to Audi. Fuhrmann made no secret of the fact that Piech’s obsession with the 917 and its race programme wasn’t in line with his ideas on how best to promote the marque. In Karl Ludvigsen’s Excellence was Expected, he is quoted as saying of the 917’s participation in Can-Am ‘That was a very interesting adventure, but one cannot constantly play on so many pianos. Now we are going to stay closer to production cars…’.

    But Fuhrmann still believed in the value of racing as a way to improve sales, and even though he was personally at the forefront of the movement within Porsche to ultimately kill off the 911 in favour of the 928 (plans for which were already on the drawing board in the early 1970s), he knew the rear-engined, air-cooled model still had a few years left in it. ‘Racing is good advertising for every car,’ said Fuhrmann – even a flagship front-engined V8-powered GT, like the future #Porsche-928


    Fuhrmann was a shrewd businessman as well as a great engineer. He looked dispassionately at the #Porsche-917 programme, weighing the expense incurred against the monetary returns in terms of sales – ie, did the 917 actually make the company any money? Amazingly, it seems it did, for the cost of the race programme was more than offset by the return in publicity generated by the 917’s successes on track.

    Just two months after he was appointed chairman of the board, Fuhrmann gave the go-ahead to develop the 911 for racing. Not since the days of the #911R had there been such a push, but this was not to be a short-term effort like the lightweight R. Porsche entered a raceready 911 in the #1972 GT Championship, beginning with the 1000km event at the Österreichring in June.

    Driven by Björn Waldegaard and Gunter Steckkönig – an experimental race engineer with Porsche since 1953 – the highly-modified 911 was forced to run under the looser, but highly-competitive Group 5 classification. It finished 10th, behind a series of all-out competition cars. Now lay the challenge of how to apply the lessons learnt from this early success to the 911 as a whole.

    The main questions were how to make the 911 more competitive on the track, and then to examine what modifications would have to be incorporated into a limited-series, road-going production car. To satisfy the requirements of the FIA Group 4 regulations, Porsche would need to build 500 examples – a far cry from the 25 (or, initially, 50) required years earlier for the 917 to be given the go-ahead.

    Norbert Singer was placed in charge of the project and his first task was to see how he could ‘build in’ lightness, to achieve a target weight of just 900kg. This was done by reducing the thickness of the steel used on the body pressings of the earliest cars, from 1.00 or 1.25mm to just 0.7mm. At the same time, the glass used in all other 911s was replaced by thinner, lighter material made by the Belgian company, Glaverbel. Lightweight glassfibre panels replaced the steel deck lid and rear bumper/ overriders, too, on models destined for the track. Interior trim was an obvious candidate for attention, with the rear seats deleted, all sound-proofing removed and new door cards installed, which dispensed with the normal armrests and door pulls in favour of plain panels with lightweight plastic handles from a #Fiat-500 and a pull-cord door realease.

    The heavy stock reclining seats were replaced, too, this time with lightweight buckets with thumbscrew adjusters to set the angle of the backrest. Oh, and there was no clock, no passenger sun visor, threshold trims or glove box lid. In short, anything that wasn’t needed got left in the parts bin…

    The bodywork came in for some significant restyling, too, with wider rear wheel arches designed to accommodate 7Jx15 Fuchs wheels, the fronts remaining at 6Jx15. Tyres were 185/70x15 and 215/60x15 #Pirelli-CN36 radials. Under those wheel arches were #Bilstein gas shock absorbers, which helped save just under 4 kilos, while a thicker front anti-roll bar (18mm instead of 15mm) was fitted, along with a 19mm rear.

    Visually, the most significant change to the 911’s profile was the distinctive RS ‘ducktail’ on the rear lid. This followed extensive wind tunnel testing at Stuttgart in the early 1970s, which led to the incorporation of the small lip spoiler under the nose of the 911S models. That was fine for a car with the performance potential of the regular road-going ‘S’, but at higher speeds it was discovered that airflow over the rear of the 911 generated significant lift at speeds over 150mph. By adding this simple ducktail, according to Ludvigsen, lift was reduced from a heady 320lbs to just 93lbs at 152mph. At the same time, the Cd figure fell slightly from 0.41 to 0.40 – a small improvement admittedly, but still worthwhile in the quest for perfection.

    A further advantage of the new spoiler was that it improved airflow into the engine bay, providing extra cooling and intake air for the new engine. And what an engine it turned out to be.

    The contemporary production unit displaced 2341cc (optimistically tagged ‘2.4’ by Porsche), but by increasing the bore from 84mm to 90mm, the capacity rose to 2681cc (nominally 2.7 litres). This was a deliberate choice to allow the engine to be developed for use in the 3.0- litre class, and in fact meant the Carrera had the same bore and stroke as that of the 5.4-litre 917/10: 90mm x 70.4mm. As we are starting to see, the Carrera RS owed much to the mighty 917…

    The lessons learnt from the all-conquering 917 didn’t stop there, for the Carrera’s engine featured Nikasil-lined aluminium cylinders produced by Mahle, in place of the Biral cylinders of the #Porsche-911E and #Porsche-911S models. This process proved to be far tougher than the previously-preferred chome-plating used on aluminium cylinders, thanks to the tiny grains of silicon-carbide contained in the coating. It also had the added benefit of allowing an oil film to adhere to the cylinder walls more effectively.

    The new (or rather ‘revised’) engine, which shared the remainder of its major components with the 2.4-litre unit, produced 210bhp at 6300rpm and some 255Nm of torque at 5100rpm. The transmission – type 915 – was the same as that used in the mainstream models, other than a slightly taller fourth and fifth gear ratios than those used on the 911S.

    The plan was to build just 500 examples of the Carrera RS (as the model became known) but as history has shown, the response was so great that this initial run sold more quickly than had been imagined possible. Four versions would be be available, the rarest being known as the RSH (for ‘homologation’) – a lightweight (960kg) model of which just 17 examples were built. Then came the #M471 and #M472c options, better known as the ‘Lightweight’ and ‘Touring’ respectively.

    The former was essentially a productionised version of the RSH, with slightly less attention paid to all-out weight savings. As a result, the factory-specified weight of the M471 model was 975kg, just 15kg more than the RSH. The #M472 , though, featured the same interior trim and detailing as the regular 911S, other than a smaller 380mm-diameter steering wheel. This trim package added around another 100kg to the all-up weight. The final offering was the 2.8-litre RSR (option M491), of which 55 examples were built for competition use. Ultimately, 1580 Carrera RSs were sold, not including the RSR – a far cry from the original planned run of just 500. However, by building 1000 (or more) examples, Porsche could now homologate the RS for use in the very competitive Group 3 GT racing category.

    The value of genuine, original RSs has, over the last few years, gone through the roof. After a period in the late 1980s when even a Lightweight could be purchased for £20-25,000 in the UK, they have continued to rise in value at an almost alarming rate. This has led to tales of fakes and forgeries (which is where the latest forensic examinations of VIN numbers comes in useful – see Drive-My News, so it is a wise man who seeks expert advice before entering into the purchase (or sale) of an RS today.

    But is an RS really worth a high-six figure (or more) price tag? How much better a car is it than a good 2.4 911S? That depends on who you ask. With a good ‘S’ costing between a quarter and a third of an equivalent RS, you’d need to be pretty set on Carrera RS ownership. But, on the other hand, there is no doubt that an RS is something very special – it’s a limited run model which has direct links to the 917. It was developed by Porsche’s finest engineers for use in the most competitive of all race categories. The letters ‘RS’ stood for RennSport, and that’s a pretty good indication this is something special. If you’ve not driven a 1973 Carrera RS, it’s hard to appreciate what a perfectly balanced package it is, be it in Lightweight or Touring trim – it’s definitely far more than just a ‘hopped up’ 911S. It hasn’t become the stuff of legends without cause. But what would you expect from a 911 born at a time when Porsches ruled the racetrack?
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  •   Antonio Ghini reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    / #1973 / #Porsche-911-Carrera-RS-2.7 £POA. Autofarm, Weston-on-the-Green, UK / THE MARKET / Showroom Stars / #Porsche-911-Carrera-RS / #Porsche-911-Carrera / #Porsche-911 / #Porsche /

    If we had been asked to guess the location of the last right-hand-drive RS 2.7, we’d probably have suggested Narnia before Trinidad, but the little island was indeed until very recently home to chassis 1576, one of only 16 Royal Purple cars built.

    Had we been asked to guess who had extracted it from the Caribbean, however, we would pretty quickly have suggested Josh Sadler. The founder of Oxfordshire-based Porsche specialist Autofarm has a knack for turning up interesting cars, and with the help of US contact Rikard Asbjornsen he was able to strike a deal to repatriate 1576, which was sold new to the UK back in 1973.

    If the car is not immediately recognisable as that most desirable of all 911s, it is because a previous owner sought to ‘improve’ it in the 1980s with a cosmetic modifications including a tea-tray style rear wing and aftermarket seats and steering wheel. Fortunately the latter are not visible through the tinted windows.

    The car was laid up at some point in the late 1990s, and its present condition is the result of being left to sit outside for more than a decade following the murder in 2002 of its most recent keeper, whose family subsequently covered the 911 with old furniture to deter nosy locals and, presumably, potential thieves.

    ‘It had literally baked in the sun,’ Sadler says. ‘The fuel tank was completely dry and I’ve never seen that.’ He quickly established that underneath its incorrect, greed-is-good-era exterior, the car was remarkably original; unlike many RS 2.7s that were raced hard, 1576 retains its original engine. The right short rear trailing arms are still present, and the original Silumin crankcase, too. ‘It remains a very good car. Retaining matching numbers is remarkable, and we are in contact with the original exporter to gather more details of the car’s fascinating history.’

    Just what will become of 1576 now is unclear. Sadler is yet to decide whether to sell or restore the car, or simply to sort the mechanicals and drive it as is. Would be buyers, then, should probably get in touch before he has time to conclude that he’d like to keep it…
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  •   Antonio Ghini reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    A LIVING LEGEND / #Porsche-911 / #Porsche / #1973 / #Porsche-911-Carrera-RS / #Porsche-911-Carrera / #Porsche-911 / #Porsche-911-Carrera-RS-2.7 / #Porsche-911-2.7-Carrera-RS / #Porsche-911-2.7 / #Porsche-911-Carrera /

    The life and times of the most successful Carrera RS competition car ever. Calling any car ʻthe most successful of all timeʼ is quite a claim, but in the case of #AUI-1500 , the ex- #Cathal-Curley 1973 RS, it is perfectly true: no other similar Carrera can match this legendary Porscheʼs competition history. After a hard life and an exacting restoration, it is now back on the road thanks to the exhausting research of marque specialist, Mark Waring. Words: Mark Waring. Photos: Antony Fraser and Mark Waring.

    AUI 1500 is immortalised in Mark Copelandʼs book, The Porsche 911 in Irish Rallying, as ʻThe most successful 2.7 Carrera RS of all timeʼ. In my research of over 1200 records of Porsches in rallying, I concur. There is quite simply no other RS that has achieved anywhere close to the success AUI 1500 has enjoyed in rallying without any modification, straight off the showroom floor.

    AUI 1500 is unique in winning three international rallies outright – The Circuit of Ireland, The Donegal and The Manx – against the stiffest opposition found anywhere in the world, competing against fourteen other RSs, at the same time ending the dominance of the works-backed Ford Escorts. This achievement was nothing short of sensational, but AUI 1500 is also a very special car due to its continuous competition history and miraculous survival.

    Registered initially as OM 77, the last RS with Sport Equipment delivered to the UK, this car was the highest placed Porsche in the RAC Rally in 1973, winning the Team prize driven by 1972 Motoring News Rally Champion Harold Morley. Only a few other RSs have ever completed this gruelling world rally championship round in period out of the 11 that have tried.

    By 1975, most RSs were entered as Group 4 cars with at least 2800cc and utilising other homologated parts, such as twin brake cylinders and larger brake discs. To succeed without these modifications proved to Porsche and the world a standard RS was a winner at a time when Porsche was, regrettably, concentrating on other forms of motorsport deemed more important for impressing the American market for which the RS was not eligible.


    In 1974 AUI 1500 won events in three different formats, among them the Circuit of Ireland. This is the third oldest rally in the world and the jewel in the crown, for nowhere else was there a round of the European Rally Championship lasting five days and covering 1200 miles, of which 600 were stage miles. Two of those days, the rallying continued through the night and AUI 1500 won by a margin of 5 minutes 48 seconds, a record that still stands today. Its pilot Cathal Curley followed this with a win on the threeday June Donegal Rally, and the September Castrol Manx rally, beating the great Roger Clark at the peak of his career into third place in a works-backed Escort.

    The first international rally win for a 1973 Porsche 911 RS came at the hands of Jack Tordoff in 1973 on the Circuit of Ireland. He was one of three foreign drivers to return after it was cancelled in 1972 due to the political situation. His direct competition came from one other RS and a 911S. Adrian Boyd, driving a Ford Escort, led then retired on the penultimate stage, leaving the way clear for Tordoff. The following year eleven RSs entered the Circuit of Ireland. The touch paper had been lit and was to burn for six more years, lighting up fierce competition between the Porsches.

    AUI 1500 changed hands several times after 1974, returning to England and eventually competing in over 42 rallies, fourteen of which were at international level. When homologation finally ran out for its eligibility as a rally car, it was subsequently sold to a buyer in South Africa. Briefly rallied again, it was converted to an RSR with parts supplied by Porsche that included a full 3.4-litre twin plug ʻwerksʼ engine. AUI 1500 evolved from a Group 3 2.7 RS to Group 4 RSR.

    For three years, from 1984 to 1987, commercial property developer Albert Van Heerden raced the car in the Rolo Motors Historics Championship and PSCA events, by all accounts proving to be a very quick driver. In its last race, he achieved pole at the old Kyalami Formula 1 racing circuit, but in a 155+mph accident, the car hit the wall separating the circuit from the town of Johannesburg.

    The ensuing impact caused the car to cartwheel, ending on its roof with the engine running and on fire. Albert escaped unhurt but was so traumatised by the experience he never raced again. #Porsche-911-AUI-1500 ʼs long career as a competition car effectively ended, as it was deemed uneconomic to repair. The ʻwerksʼ engine and gearbox survived, however.

    A private Porsche collector bought the damaged car and stored it for 23 years unbeknown to anyone save two of his closest friends. A private man, he wishes to remain anonymous but without his intervention AUI 1500 would have been lost forever. For that, every Porsche enthusiast should be eternally grateful.

    And so began the rebuild. There is nothing original about a successful competition car. The legal identity of a vehicle is defined by its original chassis number for that is the process the registering authorities identified the car in period as meeting the type approval for its use on public roads. I bought the entire damaged shell, so in that respect I had no concerns. But there was little else of the original car that survived.

    The due diligence I carried out revealed the gearbox had been damaged on the second attempt on the RAC rally in 1978, and the right hand front strut on the Scarborough Stages in 1979. Front spoilers were damaged and replaced rally to rally, and several sets of wheels were used, both Fuchs and Minilites. The ducktail frame was replaced later, due to corrosion.

    The tired engine was not suitable, or required, for an RSR and found its way into a 912 and, latterly, a 2.4T. It was rebuilt before, finally, the crankshaft broke – it was irreparable. I inspected the damaged cases but the engine number did not appear original, and were magnesium not siluminum alloy cases, as expected.


    I located 911/83 crankcases and rebuilt an engine of the correct type.

    To complete the transformation to RSR, the bodywork had been replaced with wider arches to cover 9J and 11J wheels, the front inner wing and struts modified for coil-over shock absorbers and holes cut for brake cooling ducts. Both battery boxes were removed, and a front oil cooler installed. Instruments were necessarily replaced due to the increased top speed and rpm.

    In the accident all the glass was broken, the engine loom was burnt and the roof damaged. My trip to South Africa was successful, though, as I purchased from the first owner the two original seats and a prototype rally navigation aid trialled in the car.

    On the matter of authentication, before restoration began the VIN numbers were inspected by Porsche AG and a new alloy chassis plate reissued. A letter was received stating all the requirements for doing so were met in full. The MD of Porsche Cars GB and the Register Secretary of the Porsche Club GB both wrote letters supporting the car and the reunification with its registration number AUI 1500.

    The first task was to straighten the ʼshell and after seven days of pulling and relaxing the metal, the car was sitting once again on a factory-spec jig. To ensure I had all the correct style of panels, I bought a very late M-registration accident-damaged RHD 2.4T which provided common parts; most critically it was a rare non-sunroof model.

    The dials bearing the correct dates required only to be refurbished and the speedo and tacho recalibrated to read 150mph and 7200rpm, respectively. Three of the 6J wheels were also in date range, so were ideal. Everything else was correct and most probably manufactured in the same batch, or close to the manufacturing date, as everything originally fitted to AUI 1500. Clear glass I sourced along with the – unusual for an RS – two-stage rear screen that had originally been ordered for AUI 1500. A thinner front screen without manufacturerʼs marks was purchased new because of safety issues, and is complete with Glaverbel identification.


    The roof from the ʻTʼ was removed, leaving all the factory welds in situ, and reattached using stronger invisible welds on the RS chassis. A third-series RS would not have been fitted with any thinner panels, so the donor roof was perfect.

    Alternatively, I could have bought all the individual roof panels from Porsche and assembled a new roof but without the appearance of an original, and that was never going to be acceptable.


    Regrettably, the floor of AUI 1500 had been modified with twin brake master cylinders and seat braces, and had been the subject of numerous repairs. It was impossible to straighten the battered floor, but a new RHD floor panel has not been available from Porsche for twenty years .

    I received a tip-off suggesting Porsche had two new old stock RHD floors lost somewhere in its warehouse. With an appropriate part number they could be located, but which one? I ordered every superceded part number from 1973 until 1976 until I hit the jackpot. I bought them both!

    The inner rear wings were more difficult. Only 1990s versions were available and required extensive modification. The 2.4Tʼs inner rear wings were corroded beyond use. I was determined to fit new old stock wings and when I did locate a pair they were initially not for sale, but nine months later the owner changed his mind. It was game on!

    Planning the restoration was helped by an improving market, but even in 2010 there was no guarantee costs would not exceed the ultimate value. Despite increased knowledge, better technology and improved parts availability since 1987, it still took a year in the planning as nothing of this magnitude had ever been undertaken before. What followed was executed with military-style precision and is almost certainly the most extensive and sympathetic restorative work carried out on a 1973 RS completed by a private individual.

    The principle of restoration was a simple one, to reuse as much of the salvageable metal from the original damaged shell as possible. To establish this every panel was removed piece by piece and before long I had a full-scale ʻAirfix construction kitʼ of an RS on the floor in front of me!

    Decisions had to be made about what metal to cut in order to leave factory welds on the panels I was going to reuse. The floor, for example, was cut 10mm from the edge and the metal ground away from behind the inner sills to leave them intact.

    Refitting the panels was achieved by drilling holes in between the factory welds and welding panels together with a weld in the new hole, then grinding these flat. This resulted in only factory welds being visible, and a stronger chassis.

    Where new panels were used, we counted the old welds and their position, and replicated them. This approach was necessarily much more time consuming and the bodywork took two years to complete.

    My sanity was questioned, especially after fitting the perfectly good inner rear wings and then instructing my bodywork specialist to cut a third away and reinstate the original metal we had saved. I can honestly say the people that built AUI 1500 would not be able to tell their work from ours as we even copied their less than perfect work that had been original to the car!

    With the bodywork complete, a factory-manufactured ducktail was fitted, along with a rare front bumper. The car was then finished in Glasurit Grand Prix White. A periodcorrect date stamped wheel and rear half cage were installed, the latter extended as it had been in 1974 to a full cage, with period-style fixings.

    The exterior is as it won the Circuit of Ireland, complete with alloy sill covers, which are immediately recognisable in photographs. Unlike the original full undertray, they are for show only and attached with industrial Velcro, thus avoiding making any more holes in the bodywork. The rally equipment is period-correct and mounted on a removable board utilising the original mounting holes under the dashboard.

    Finished in April 2014, AUI 1500 was unveiled in a special ceremony at Porsche Centre Isaac Agnew in Belfast. I had promised Cathal Curley throughout the four year restoration he would be the first person to see the finished car. Joined by navigator Austin Frazer the car was kept under cover whilst the waiting press and invited guests turned their back as it was unveiled. The following day it was photographed on the start/finish ramp of the 2014 Circuit of Ireland, which celebrated 40 years winning the event.

    Returning in June for the Donegal International Rally and the Manx Rally in September, I was honoured to be invited to drive as a ʻDouble Zeroʼ car ahead of the rally on several stages before being photographed on the start/finish ramp of both events. No other RS has ever received this accolade.

    AUI 1500 gained high level sponsorship after winning the Circuit of Ireland, when Porsche Cars GB provided a full engine rebuild kit, offering to carry out the work. Porsche AG sent a letter of congratulations and an unexpected cheque equivalent to £1000.

    So impressed were they by mechanic Patsy Donaghy that they flew a representative over especially to offer him a job. Patsy was looking after eleven RSs at the time, had just got married and bought a new house, so turned down the offer.


    I visited the garage where he rebuilt the engine and we drove the test route he used. Even when AUI 1500 raced in South Africa it managed to obtain the patronage of importers, Lindsay Sakers, providing service and mechanical support. AUI 1500 became quite the media star. An RS rarely appears in adverting, Pirelli being the exception, but AUI 1500 appears on rally tyre sponsor Dunlopʼs advertising campaign, plus Porsche direct advertising. There is little actual film of any Porsche RS in rallying in the 1970s but when it was recorded, it was courtesy of the BBC/RTE. As the winner of three events there is naturally footage of AUI 1500, affectionately described thus or simply ʻAUIʼ. This footage can now be seen on five different DVDs.


    The most iconic photo ever of an RS rallying is arguably AUI 1500 landing from three feet high and appears on the front cover of Marc Copelandʼs book in which several pages are dedicated to the driver and car. Motor magazine, one of several that covered the continued success of the car, depicts AUI 1500 in a water splash, and most popular motoring press reported all the wins with accompanying photos.

    Bizarrely, AUI 1500 was also the inspiration for a pop song! Written by longtime friend and fellow Porsche rally driver Phil Coulter, ʻHey CBʼ chronicles the struggle by fellow competitors to keep up with ʻCʼathal ʻBʼrendon Curley and his car. ʻHey CBʼ was released on vinyl by ʼ70s pop sensations The Bay City Rollers. Phil Coulter wrote two Eurovision Song Contest winning songs, ʻPuppet on a Stringʼ and ʻCongratulationsʼ, performed by Sandy Shaw and Sir Cliff Richard, respectively.

    In 2014, AUI 1500 joined by special invitation a selection of Porsche factory Museum cars performing display laps at Brands Hatch. It has recently been filmed at the same circuit for a TV programme and displayed at two Porsche Centres and various club events.


    In a re-enactment in Ireland April 2016, AUI 1500 joined 172 rally cars on six special stages and was displayed in the hotel headquarters at the gala banquet. Both Cathal Curley and co-driver Austin Frazer drove the car before a delighted and enthusiastic public. AUI 1500 has now covered 2000 miles, mostly on Irish and Isle of Man stages, including a special lap of the TT circuit with seventeen-times side-car champion, David Molyneux.

    As owners we are just custodians of the cars we cherish and, by restoring AUI 1500, I hope I have preserved a legacy of Porsche that will endure for ever. AUI 1500 is now a permanent reminder of what Porsche could have achieved in rallying with the car most collectors now consider the most iconic 911 ever produced. But in hindsight, with the Suez Crisis in 1973 affecting European sales, it was the correct decision by Porsche to focus on the US market with the impact bumper model, thus ensuring the companyʼs survival.

    Undeniably AUI 1500 is a very special RS. It is a testament to Porsche of the quality of a car built so well 43 years ago that it survived to be restored, and throughout its life protected its drivers from injury. It proved its versatility as a Group 3 and 4 car but should be remembered most for what it achieved straight off the showroom floor, doing exactly what Professor Porsche designed it for. Most of us could never afford an RSR but we all could have owned this car and thatʼs probably why we all identify so much with the 1973 2.7 Carrera RS. For more photos and details visit www.porschers.com


    Thanks to: Esler Crawford, Leslie Ashe, Fergus McAnallen, Robin Parkes for the period photos; my wife Sarah and all like her who enable enthusiasts like me to enjoy and realise our dreams; Chris Craft, Managing Director PCGB; Joe Duggan for his unequalled depth and knowledge of rallying history in Ireland, and for being a true and valued friend; Fred Hampton, PCGB; Richard Clarke for pushing himself to achieve work at the highest level; Paul Robe of Parr for help finishing the car in time for Ireland; all my friends (you know who you are) for the unstinting support and belief in my abilities during the challenging moments of the restoration, and help sourcing parts; Porsche AG for continued support and making a great car in the first place – and for making available the parts to repair it; Carl Russell, MD Porsche Belfast, for hosting the unveiling, vacating half his showroom to display the car at short notice during the week of the Macan launch; the 1000s of rally enthusiasts in Ireland and the UK that have made me and the car so welcome.


    Engine was rebuilt using correct 911/83 cases – AUI 1500 was mechanically stock, although prepped to withstand the rigours of international rallying Driver/navigator list reads like a whoʼs who of Irish rallying in the 1970s.

    “AUI 1500 BECAME QUITE THE MEDIA STAR…” “ATTENTION TO DETAIL REIGNED SUPREME…”

    Original seats were purchased from its former South African owner. The restored AUI 1500 is a timecapsule, perfectly capturing the golden years of rallying in the 1970s. If only Porsche had stayed in the game, but the US market was deemed more important, and promotion of the ʻimpact bumperʼ models took priority.

    AUI 1500 is testimony to the exhausting research carried out by Mark Waring (left) who refused to let this legendary RS die. No wonder he looks pleased to be behind the wheel!

    Opposite page:

    01. On the final stage of the 1974 Circuit of Ireland
    02. Flying high! Greatest photo ever of AUI 1500 – Circuit of Ireland 1974
    03. Cathal Curley hits the watersplash on the 1974 Manx Rally
    04. To the victors, the spoils: celebrating victory in the 1974 Circuit of Ireland
    05. Tarmac stage on the Donegal International Rally
    06. Life as an RSR in South Africa in the hands of Albert van Heerden at Kyalami
    07. 1974 Circuit of Ireland
    08. After the big crash, AUI 1500 ends its first life…
    09. …before beginning its resurrection in the hands of Mark Waring
    10. The guts of a legend – an immortal one at that

    “THAT WAS NEVER GOING TO BE ACCEPTABLE…”

    Cathal ʻCBʼ Curley

    Cathal, or ʻCahalʼ Curley, as he is also known, was Ulster Rally Champion in 1968 and 1969 in a Ford Cortina and won the Galway international in 1971 in a Ford Escort Twin Cam. In 1972 he won three more rallies in a lightweight BMW, including the inaugural Donegal International Rally, and changed the BMW in 1973 for the ex-Ronnie McCartney Dalmatian Blue RS Touring, taking delivery in the car park prior to the 1973 event.

    Complaining that it didnʼt handle after the first stage, he soon changed his mind when informed he was already leading by ten seconds! He went on to win the Donegal Rally in June 1974 for the second time in a row. It was the first RS Touring to win an international rally outright. Jack Tordoff beat him to the first International win in an RS by two months. In April 1974, Cathal Curley won the Circuit of Ireland International Rally in AUI 1500, when eleven RSs were entered, and returned to the Donegal International Rally in June, winning for the third time in a row.

    Cathal also led two other rallies before retiring the cars. Using AUI 1500 in 1975 and leading the Galway International Rally, he slid into a ditch and the car rolled onto its roof. He sold it shortly afterwards and, after a brief spell in a Lancia Stratos, which he described as ʻhandling like a cat walking on wet linoʼ, he led the Donegal Rally for the fourth year in a row until damaging a rear trailing arm after hitting a rock. Both cars were supplied by London dealer Chequered Flag.


    He did, however, win the Cork 20 Rally in 1975 (upgraded to an international a year later) with the 3.0RS. His total international rally wins in three different RSs was four, all in period against the stiffest opposition, by then over 15 different RSs. Only two other drivers achieved an outright win at international level in period in an unmodified RS in Irish rallies, matched by only three drivers on mainland Europe. Only one other driver achieved three, but not against the same level of competition.

    Cathal also won the Ulster Rally in 1976 one year before it was upgraded to an international rally and was second twice in the Manx in 1973 and 1976. He is without doubt one of the greatest Porsche RS rally drivers, a fact overlooked by Porsche who had by that time turned its focus away from rallying, the discipline that earned its reputation as a world leader in sports car manufacturing.

    Porsche was about to dominate Prototype racing for years to come. The 956 era was dawning.

    “HIGHEST PLACED PORSCHE IN THE ’1973 RAC RALLY…”

    Photos courtesy Mark Waring AUI 1500: A LIFE WELL LIVED
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  •   Darren Tompkins reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    SOME LIKE IT HOT

    Our cover car in all its glory: Darren Tompkins’ wonderful ‘Mongrel’ outlaw. Although it may have started out as a simple no-frills hot-rod, Darren Tompkinsʼ ʻMongrelʼ project quickly morphed into something far more complex. After countless hours of research, the end result is a perfect example of a ʻsports purposeʼ Porsche 911. Words & Photos: Darren Tompkins.

    / #1973 / #Porsche-911-Carrera-RS / #Porsche-911-Carrera / #Porsche-911 / #Porsche-911-Carrera-RS-2.7 / #Porsche-911-2.7-Carrera-RS / #Porsche-911-2.7 / #Porsche-911-Carrera /

    Heavily into the restoration of an F-Series 911, the last thing I needed, or could afford, was another project. Like many before me Iʼd been badly bitten by the early 911 bug and set out to build a ʻsports purposeʼ 911 ST-style hot-rod. I stumbled upon a very nice 1973 2.4E, but the one fly in the ointment was that my nice car was, well, a little too nice! I switched course and set out to restore the car to as close to factory perfect as I could.

    Two years into the costly full-on rebuild (which was featured in issue #21 of Classic Porsche), a friend mentioned he knew of an early Porsche requiring restoration that had been stored in a garage since 1989! I was slow to respond, badly feeling the financial pain of my current project, but eventually made arrangements to view the car back in April 2012. Basic homework confirmed the car as a RHD 1972 911T Sportomatic, first registered in the UK in December 1971 and finished in Light Ivory.

    At first glance it certainly appeared rough, having lost its original engine and gearbox, the seats had been changed to 924 ʻtombstonesʼ and it had gained the obligatory ducktail and glassfibre spoiler for an RS look. The car had been vandalised just prior to being taken off the road in the late 1980s, with the half-hearted repair never completed. But the car also had plenty going for it: it had new sills, wings and rear quarters that looked in good shape, but best of all it was being disposed of by a ʻmotivatedʼ seller.

    A deal was done and, filled with excitement, I called Nick Fulljames at Redtek to ask what could be done with what I thought was a Japanese-spec SC engine and sent him a couple of photos. An even more excited Nick called back telling me I had a highly-desirable complete 2.2S engine with the potential to be transformed into a 2.5 short-stroke screamer!

    While I started with the intention of building a budget hot rod, what followed was a three-year journey that became ever more obsessive, detailed and uncompromising in the quest to build my ultimate ʻsports purposeʼ early 911.

    One of the most refreshing things with this project was the ability to do exactly as I pleased; nothing could be ʻwrongʼ. My inspiration was to come from all of the great racing 911s Porsche had ever built, along with many hot-rods Iʼd been studying. I set myself the fictional criteria of the car being built in 1978, allowing me to use any parts that had been introduced up to that point, including the Turbo brakes I wanted!

    Deciding on the basic spec was easy as Iʼd been planning this in my head for a long time: it had to be lightweight, narrowbodied, with a hot engine coupled to a performance gearbox with limited-slip differential. A stripped-out interior with half cage and racing harnesses, and as many period racing features as I could muster. Oh, and not only did I want my car to look like a period racer but I wanted it to drive like one, too.

    For me, Porscheʼs own period race manual ʻInformation Regarding PORSCHE Vehicles Used for Sports Purposesʼ became my Bible, with the suspension set-up lifted from the manual and the guidelines closely followed. The other thing the car had to be was orange – 1970s in your face orange!

    Barry Carter was charged with the task of making the car solid and straight again. Heʼs a metalwork genius who never really promotes himself but is revered in early Porsche circles, having rebuilt dozens of early bodyshells, including my previous project. The plan was to restore the body using all steel panels, followed by switching to glassfibre panels and race car strengthening as needed. Barry suggested carrying out the modifications with a little more care and finesse than most race builders and building in a little more detail. That worked for me.

    Specification for the build was for a narrow-bodied car which retained steel rear quarters and front wings, with a glassfibre front hood, engine lid and bumpers. We were to add strengthening to all suspension points, torque tube and engine mounts, along with a unique design for the jacking points. Inner door skins were to be cut out, opened and lightened with a nod towards those in the 911R, and we added twin harness brackets welded into the rear parcel shelf. The floorpan was modified to allow gearbox removal without the need for an engine drop, and final touches were the fitting of a factory-correct 40mm half roll- cage, along with an RSR-style front strut brace.

    The car was taken to Barry after blasting in March 2013 with an expected four month build time. Now you never really know the true extent of a ʼshellʼs condition until you have it media blasted. This one turned out to be a horror! At this point, if I knew just what I was getting into I could never have justified the cost, and probably would never have started…

    The new front wings and rear quarters had disguised what lay beneath, as the car was pretty much rotten to the core – and it transpired that the whole front nose was pushed a full 19mm to the right! Barry also commented that the car was probably on its third set of sills and heʼd never previously seen these air-chiselled off! One of the the crowning glories had to be the holes cut into the front bulkhead so that speakers could be fitted under the hood.
    The ʼshell was first pulled straight and then received new front inner wings, doors were fabricated and re-engineered, the inner rear wings were lovingly recreated, a complete new roof section was added, deleting the previous sunroof, along with new sills, sections of floors and countless other repairs and modifications. The newly-fitted rear quarters were carefully unpicked at the seams and perfectly refitted onto the final solid ʼshell.

    It was a full 11 months before I collected the car following more than 600 hoursʼ work on the bodyshell. It was well worth the wait, for the car returned as straight and true as the day it left the factory, although this time ʻraceʼ strengthened with a number of discreet modifications. While the ʼshell was being prepared, the engine was delivered to Nick Fulljames at Redtek, who suggested building a twin-plugged 2.5, boring out the butterflies and stacks to suit.


    One way to achieve the engine size, and by far the easier option, was to fit 90mm pistons and 2.7 barrels, however the true short-stroke engines were built using 89mm barrels and pistons and this is the way I wanted to go, although these are came from FVD in Germany who stated that they were one of the last two sets available from Mahle. With such a small market and no plans to produce any more, they were a pretty lucky find.

    Around this time a discussion was started on the DDK-online forum about the ingredients of an authentic ST engine. I asked Nick how mine would differ: ʻJust the induction system, reallyʼ, came the reply! This led to a whole new chapter of learning for me and I was soon to appreciate the ingredients of what made a real race-spec engine. My slippery slope was about to become a vertical drop!

    A key ingredient for my engine build was now to fit the correct high butterfly injection. My search led to Ben Coles, who showed us his range of high-butterflies, racing oil filter housings, Magneti Marelli twin-spark distributors, and much more. All had been produced copying genuine original items, using the same processes and materials, and in minute detail.

    My engine wouldnʼt be what it is without him; at one point I realised the distributor Iʼd purchased only fitted later engine cases. ʻNot a problem – Iʼll make you oneʼ. And thatʼs what he did, from scratch and exactly as per the original! The one item that was missing was a racing MFI pump, and I planned to modify the pump that came with my 2.2 S engine.

    However, I started to explore the possibility of finding the correct 2.5 ST pump I needed. From my research on the Early 911S Registry forum in the USA, Gus Pfister at Pacific Fuel Injection, an old school MFI specialist, came highly recommended.

    This is when luck and timing all play a part. After a conversation with Gus, it transpired he could supply it in just eight weeks – that subsequently turned into five weeks when I discovered a relative was visiting San Fransisco, so Gus pulled out all the stops to ensure my pump was ready in time!

    With Redtekʼs engineering, machining and build skills, along with parts from Ben and Gus, I now have my ideal 2.5 ST-style engine, the spec of which is as follows: 911/02 2.2 S shortstroked, twin-plugged, bored, fully balanced, blueprinted and taken to 2.5-litres with new 89mm Mahle barrels and pistons, the barrels having been modified and gas flowed. It also has GE60 cams, Pauter lightweight forged steel con-rods, Patrick Motorsport lightweight flywheel and Sachs racing clutch.

    High-butterfly induction fed by the Gus Pfister 2.5 RSR-spec pump is used in conjunction with early Magneti Marelli twinspark distributor, while a racing oil filter housing with disc filter and twin front-mounted oil coolers keep things lubricated, a 226mm small-diameter fanhousing and ʻclearʼ lightweight shrouding keeping things cool.

    Custom race headers can be used with straight-through megaphones, but a twin-outlet sport muffler is usually fitted for ʻquietʼ days.

    With up to 250bhp now available, the 915 gearbox required a meatier build. Mike Bainbridge was chosen to take this on, specifying a stronger side-plate with 930 bearing and bearing retainer, while the main-shaft was upgraded to an SC type with aluminium selectors. Mike suggested a plate-type limited differential from Matt Monson at Guard Transmission and, with Matt and Mikeʼs input, Guard Transmission custom gear ratios were fitted to make the most of the characteristics of the short-stroke engine. To cool things down, a Ben Coles RStype oil pump and spray bar kit was also fitted.

    We set about painting the car in our own small bodyshop, this work being carried out by Richard Deegan, our bodyshop manager. Rich is a perfectionist who cares deeply about the quality of his work – probably too deeply, as these projects give him sleepless nights!

    No underseal has been added to ʻbuild inʼ lightness, and the bulk of the ʼshell and complete interior have been painted satin black, as have the engine bay and door shuts, as per factory race cars. The body was then painted in 018 Tangerine (or Blood Orange), with slots cut into both sides of the front bumper to increase airflow to the oil coolers. The front and rear bumpers are excellent quality EB Motorsport items that have been modified to fit.

    The gauges were refurbished by North Hollywood Speedometer, copied from an old photo of a racing RSR, complete with 180mph speedo and 10,000rpm rev counter. The oil level gauge has also been flipped, with the fuel sender gauge omitted and replaced with a warning light. The clock has also been deleted.

    For headlights, I sourced a set of Cibie Biodes, a preferred choice for early rally cars. These resembled little more than a collection of tired, worn parts which were sent to Genius of the Lamp in Birminghamʼs jewellery district, coming back looking as good as new.

    When it came to seats, I learned that Vintage Seats produce the most accurate reproductions available. I chose their ST driverʼs seat, with an R-type passenger, both finished with German black vinyl bolsters and basket-weave insert, all mounted on lightweight Recaro sliders.

    For wheels, I had the idea of replicating a wide-body ST look by fitting 7R-type Minilites to the rear, but hit a stumbling block when I discovered they werenʼt available in the required 7R offset. After talking to Harvey Weidman he suggested that ʻdeepsix ʼ front and 7R rear Fuchs in a racing finish would give me the look I was after. The quality of the finish is superb and they look fantastic fitted with Avon CR6ZZ 185/70s on the fronts and 215/60s on the rears.

    Marek Lappock is a keen early Porsche enthusiast who helps many specialist suppliers, including Porsche themselves, by manufacturing obsolete and hard to find parts. When I learnt he was displaying the first prototypes of a 100-litre fuel tank, another rare race part, at Techno Classica in Essen I decided I had to get there first before these tanks were snapped up! This involved a round day trip of nearly 1000 miles, where I secured my tank and was also able to collect a number of other parts I needed.

    Through this journey, I have developed a passion for early steering wheels, with my favourite being a flat black Momo from the late ʼ60s or early ʼ70s. Itʼs the first thing I notice when looking in an early Porsche and for me enhances any hot-rod build. Thereʼs something about a well-used early wheel that I find intoxicating with its worn leather holding on to secrets of a life well spent.

    When it was time to start the assembly, Nick Fulljames introduced me to Gary Cook. At the time he was working freelance for a number of early Porsche specialists, having spent 17 years working at Autofarm, and I was told he was very knowledgeable when it came to early Porsches. That has proved to be an understatement, for this guy knows everything!

    Parts were sent to Gary for cleaning, re-plating and powdercoating. The wiring loom was taken apart and carefully restored, front A-arms strengthened and all the other parts needed for the build finally acquired.

    Gary has now opened his own workshop – GD Automotive near Buckingham – and I soon learnt to have full faith in his ability, knowledge and attention to detail. Being a modified car thereʼs a whole host of items that have needed to be fabricated or adapted. For example, the 930 calipers were shaved to fit behind the Fuchs wheels, and re-engineered to fit the early 1973 aluminium rear trailing arms.

    Special brackets were also made to mount the twin ATE brake fluid bottles and an adjustable brake bias set-up was added, with a modified pedal box. With every detail Gary has kept to the pre-1978 ethos and ensured all is period-correct. When it came to the interior we received the help of Dave OʼConnor. Dave is building his own ST and is a stickler for detail.

    He reproduces authentic Repa harnesses using the correct webbing and labels, and all original restored hardware. Gary has carefully cut and glued Daveʼs own correct needle-felt lightweight carpet into the car with unbound edges as per earlier STs which, along with the ribbed matting and a black headliner, provides a stark race look. Finishing touches included a period Butlers map reading light, a Halda Twinmaster and a Heuer Master-Time set, all essential equipment for rally cars of the period.

    Finally complete, the car was sent to Center Gravity for geometry set-up and and corner balancing, where it spent a whole day with Chris Franklin, who knows just how to tune the suspension perfectly for fast road use.

    Was all the heartache, mental anguish and financial pounding worth it? Well, as soon as the car was complete, I spent a frantic few days piling on some miles to get a running-in service out of the way in time for a planned tour of Wales. It turned into a two-day, 700-mile trip with several other early Porsches, including two genuine 2.7 RSs, a 993 RS and a very quick 930 Martini tribute hot-rod. Road trips donʼt come any better than that!

    Since completion late last year Iʼve enjoyed the car on track at Oulton Park, along with other trips and another Welsh tour, hanging with friends and clocking up nearly 4000 miles in the process. The drives, community and friendships are what itʼs all about. Itʼs certainly been worth all the effort to get here.

    The restoration process is a love/hate experience for me. I find it too intense and the guilt I feel from it taking over my life is difficult to live with. But no-one got harmed in the process – there are many worse vices. Iʼm finally cured of my restoration addiction and have promised my wife thereʼll be no more projects… Well, not quite yet!


    Slots cut into the front bumper are a Darren ʻsignature touchʼ, allowing air through to the front-mounted oil coolers. Panel fit is exemplary throughout…

    Halda Twinmaster and Heuer Master-Time help add to the period race/rally look that Darren was keen to replicate. ʻFrostedʼ finish on the Fuchs wheels was courtesy of Harvey Weidman in the USA. Tyres are Avon CR6ZZs.

    Interior features seats from Vintage Seats, with one of their ST-style perches for the driver, an R-style one for the passenger. Period Momo steering wheel adds a touch of patina to the interior.

    World-famous Pendine Sands in Wales was the photo location – 5.00am and the lighting is perfect to bring out the best in this spinetingling symphony of detail.

    Early morning sunlight shows the lines of Darrenʼs narrowbodied hot-rod to perfection. Car is impressively detailed throughout – check that slotted rear apron.

    “WITH UP TO 250BHP NOW AVAILABLE…”

    “THE LAST THING I NEEDED WAS ANOTHER PROJECT”

    A trip to an Oulton Park trackday gave Darren the opportunity to wind those high butterflies wide open…

    Opposite page: photo montage only hints at the amount of effort that went into this build, but check the state of the original car, and how much work was required to put it right! Strengthened ʼshell is full of neat touches by Barry Carter. Nick Fulljames built the engine, Mike Bainbridge the ʼbox.

    Things donʼt come much better detailed than this. Note cross-over pipes running between twin frontmounted oil coolers. Engine is a short-stroke 2.5-litre ʻscreamerʼ running highbutterfly injection, and pumps out 250bhp.
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  •   Andy Everett reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    Narrow Bodied #Porsche #911 Turbo - Vanilla Shake. Don’t let the innocuous looks of this delectable cream classic fool you! This pretty Porker has a dark side too in the shape of a #930-Turbo engine in the back Words: Johnny Tipler. Photography: Antony Fraser.

    Buy Pirelli shares now! Johan is on track, lighting up the Cinturatos on the back of his #1972 911T around Abbeville circuit’s twelve twists and turns! Sideways action is his forte, but it’s easier with this car because, unbeknown to the casual observer, there’s a surprise lurking in the engine bay. This innocent-looking cream cracker with its mellow green stripes just happens to be packing… a #1977 European-spec 3.0-litre 930 engine, complete with K27 turbo and 964 camshafts! It’s a pretty special prospect even before we open the engine lid. Created in San Diego by veteran Porsche specialist Tom Amon, it has an exemplary paint finish: Chrysler ‘Cool Vanilla’, overlaid with Ford ‘Kiwi Green’ stripes – painted, not decals. In Abbeville and the surrounding villages it’s a real head turner.

    The 930 engine and 915 transmission were rebuilt by Tom Amon and fitted around 15 years ago. Other modifications carried out at the same time included a B&B dual outlet exhaust, new Bilsteins, anti-roll bars, rear torsion bars, ball joints, steering rack, TT rods, plus 964 front brake calipers with a 22mm master cylinder. The Fuchs wheels are special items as well, being Harvey Weidman refinished ‘Deep Sixes’, with 7R on the back.

    Once I’ve finished admiring the tantalising exterior I open the door. Another amazing aesthetic feast! Green leather upholstered GTS Sport S seats, and similarly clad dash top and door furniture, with carpeting consisting of German Squareweave matting by Autobahn Interiors. There’s a 380mm RS steering wheel, and a North Hollywood Speedometer turbo boost gauge instead of the 911 clock. The 1972 F-programme 2.4-litre 911T was good for 140bhp, and now with the 3.0-litre 930 engine it sports a rampant 300bhp. The first direct evidence I get of its enhanced performance capability is on Abbeville’s twiddly circuit. Among the tracksters doing their hurlaround thing is a red Ruf CTR, a Yellowbird in all but plumage, and having warmed up the 2.4T, Johan locks on. Like a cruise missile, gradually we reel in the Pfaffenhausen twin-turbo CTR, and it’s a well-driven car too. With 500bhp it pulls away from us along the half-mile start-finish straight, but not by much and, a couple of turns into the mid-field section, Johan’s caught up again. We are holding onto a Yellowbird, and we are not in a lowered chassis, just a narrow one. It’s incredible to be able to do that with a 1972 car, to have that kind of power available, and it’s enormous fun riding the kerbs. Talk about doing a Ruf, this is exactly the sort of concept that Alois Ruf embraced when he began tuning Porsches.

    Of course, Porsche was one of the first car manufacturers to embrace turbocharging, beginning with the 917/10 Can-Am cars in 1972 when this 911T started life. The first 911 race car to run with a turbo was the 500bhp 2.14-litre RSR that came 2nd in the 1974 Le Mans 24-Hours and Watkins Glen 1,000kms, and then another year on, in Spring #1975 , the 930 Turbo road car was unveiled.

    There’s another angle to this. Forced induction is one thing, but a dramatic capacity hike is another, and the impact on performance is inevitably startling. Shoehorning a bigger motor into an unsuspecting minnow has long been an efficacious way of gaining more horses: in the ’60s Carroll Shelby did it with the AC Cobra, and TVR did it with the Griffith. In the early ’70s, Autofarm’s Josh Sadler was an early Porsche panderer, transplanting a 911’s flat-six into a 912 to go hillclimbing with. A decade later I worked over an innocent Alfa Romeo 1300Ti tin-top, installing a 2000 Berlina engine and LSD so it went like shit off a shovel. The 911 was a special case though: its flat-six had the advantage of having individual cylinder barrels so you could increase capacity by changing bore and stroke without resorting to a larger engine: no need to switch a 2.0 for a 2.7. But the temptation to transplant little for large remains attractive because it’s swifter to achieve and probably less fiddly. And that’s what Tom Amon did with Johan’s car in the USA in #2005 , out with the 2.4, in with the 3.0 turbo.

    Back in the paddock apron, Johan lets the turbo cool off. ‘We’ll just let it spin out for a minute or two,’ he says, ‘because the oil line for the turbo comes from the engine, so when you turn off the engine the bearings on the turbo are still spinning without oil so that’s why you need to have it come down from about 100,000rpm to zero, just as a cool down, and that’s why you have to let it run on idle so that when the turbo is on zero rpm the bearings don’t need oiling. And that prolongs the life of the turbo.’ It’s a recent addition to Johan’s collection. He first saw it in the States in 2007, but it changed hands and came to Holland in the meantime. ‘The car wasn’t sorted, and I’m sure that the last owner didn’t drive it much. In fact, I’m almost certain that he was daunted by the car, so he decided to sell it. It wasn’t cheap, and of course if you make a conversion like this it’s an expensive task, and then you take into account the lavish interior, but even so, the price I paid was a fraction of the build cost of the car. The only thing I don’t like is the coconut floor mats, but that’s typically American; they absolutely love those things, but on the other hand they protect the other mats underneath. When we first got the car we ice blasted the chassis to clean it, and we could see that the original colour of the car was probably Gemini Blue. But I think it does look period in vanilla and green. Whoever painted the stripes on did a good job, and that was done in the States. It’s got the mph speedometer so it’s still to US spec. Otherwise, the only thing I would have liked is a sliding roof, but then it’s better not to have one for optimum torsional rigidity.’

    Johan still wants to make some minor adjustments. ‘I like everything about it, except that I need a steering wheel that comes closer to my body because my knees are hitting the wheel. And I would like to change the gauges, so probably I’m going to have a design made to match the beige and the green stripes of the exterior. Something like they had in the Sport Classic. And I’m going to get a 300kph speedo like the RS’s, and a rev counter that goes to 10,000rpm without a red line, just for fun. I’ll have the turbo boost gauge incorporated in the speedo, and a proper clock re-fitted, because it bothers me that I don’t have a clock. I couldn’t care less if I have 1 bar or 1.2 bar or 1.8 bar boost; it’s nice to see the needle going up and up, but if you’re driving really fast you don’t have the time to look at it! Basically I don’t have time to look at my speedometer either, the only thing I’m concentrating on is changing gears.’ It’s a fine looker from any angle. But the posture of the car is slightly out of kilter with a normal F-programme 911, because the rear wheels have been made wider on the inside so that there is no offset projecting into the wheelarch; common practice in the ’60s before specialist aftermarket wheel manufacturers got going, a set of wheels was taken to the local blacksmith where the wheel rim was cut off, a hoop spliced in and the rim welded back on again, and a suitably wider tyre fitted. That’s what’s happened to the rears on this vanilla fudge car, though the offset has been implanted on the inside of the wheel so it’s not obvious externally. It allows bigger tyres to be fitted on the back than this narrow-bodied car would normally have and it does give it a slightly curious tail-up attitude.

    Those extra millimetres do make a difference on track, according to Johan. ‘Though they kept the original body they widened the back wheels on the inside, so from the outside they look like the standard wheels, but they are half-a-centimetre wider on the inside, and although my rear tyres are a little wider than the front ones it is still not enough to handle the potential power and provide traction. You sense that, when you come out of a corner and floor it so you’re in turbo boost mode, the wheels are spinning and you don’t get the power to the tarmac, but at the same time you have to be very tender on the accelerator.’

    How does the 911T turbo compare with the 930? Johan provides a very interesting take on the two installations: ‘Well, the early 930s were even more dangerous than this one, because they had huge turbo lag, which this one doesn’t have. To counter that, they changed the turbo and the response time, so you still had a little bit of turbo lag but you didn’t have the residual power coming through when you lifted off and the turbo was still blowing. And because this one has a smaller turbo the response is better all round, with no lag or hangover.’ The 930 benefited from much broader tyres, brakes and suspension, which Johan acknowledges: ‘Chassis-wise, this one is not as good as a Turbo because it’s smaller, so I guess the 930 would be the better bet as a turbo road car, but they still remain dangerous cars. What you’ve got here is the classic body and in this body size they never had more than 210bhp in an RS, and even that was a little wider at the back. So, basically, the most brake horsepower we had in this chassis was 190bhp in the 2.4S, so this car has another 110bhp on top of that, and in fact it’s a bit too much for the chassis.’ Therefore, upping the boost pressure is of no interest to Johan. ‘There was still a way to get more out of the 930’s 260bhp 3.0-litre engines; basically you’d just turn up the turbo boost, and I’m sure that you can boost it with this one, but I don’t want to go any higher because we could have some problems with reliability. It’s fun on the road and the way it passes cars like the BMW 6-series on the track is simply awesome.’ Seems to me it passes everything – except, frustratingly, that CTR!

    Surprisingly, the chassis has not been upgraded in any way, apart from slight wheel widening, and that smacks of a novelty exercise. Surely you would augment the damping and brakes while you’re nigh-on doubling the power? ‘I don’t think anything has been done to improve it torsionally,’ says Johan, ‘so what I’m doing here on track you can do once in a while, but you are not supposed to do it on a regular basis. You have to put in a roll cage and lower the centre of gravity to start with. So it’s a nice car on the road. When you are on the highway it’s very fluent in traffic, with the power capability to match any modern car, and that’s the main aim of the car.’

    The ‘3.0’ T has also provided Johan with an inspiration. ‘It’s a fun little car, and I’ve been thinking of building something like it just for pleasure, and I’m going to sell my r-gruppe car because I’ve bought this one, so now I’m thinking I’ll build something like it myself, but have it torsionally stiffened, have a rollcage in the cabin, clad in leather just like a real CTR. And I absolutely like the idea of having a Targa with 300 brake horsepower, but then you really do need to stiffen up the chassis.’ Watch this space! I search for parallels with other on-track experiences: to make it work around the circuit like he just demonstrated, is Johan’s technique particularly different to the lightweight 911R? ‘The R is easier because it’s lighter, and this car has a bigger engine which is heavier in the back end, so in order to make this a really good track car we would have to upgrade the suspension and probably put on low profile tyres.’ But to be able to stay with a Yellowbird like we just did, there’s not that much wrong with the way the suspension is set up as it is. ‘No, but I could make it better, with less body roll, and I could probably make it so it would get ahead of the Yellowbird! But then you’d have to work on the suspension, and I don’t want to do that to this car because I don’t think you have to change everything on a car. Once in a while you have to give the car a shakedown on track as it is, and it would be possible to make it better in that context, and if we did that, despite the disparity in the power, I’m sure it would be faster than the CTR.’

    There are no two ways about it, of course, it’s a much quicker car than a regular 2.4, a direct result of its lightness and the available power, and in terms of on-road performance it feels more like a 2.7RS, and that’s without bothering to trouble the turbocharger. The narrow-bodied Turbo T’s steering is very light, and the ride is admirably dainty for such a veiled beast with a latent sting in its tail. It’s firm but light over these bumpy French country roads that switchback over the arable hills. The tall tyres that no doubt contribute to the easy ride are Pirelli Cinturato P1s, 205/60/R15 on the front and 215/65/15 on the back.

    When the turbo starts to kick in at 3,500rpm it’s a very smooth power delivery – though I don’t hoof it lest it plays the bucking bronco. In fact, on these back roads I’m resisting the temptation to explore it to the full but one excuse is that the brakes require very firm pressure on the pedal and I’ve used up half the travel without anything very much happening. That means I’m having to pre-judge acceleration as well as braking points, what with the turbo thrust and the ‘period’ anchors.

    Like the brakes, some other aspects are also authentic #1973 . For instance, there is only a single Durant door mirror, and the rear three-quarter windows open but the front ones don’t. On a hot, sultry day in Picardy the cabin needs as much ventilation as I can muster, and those back side windows levered open certainly help cool it down.

    Fundamentally this is a great open road machine, where you can be fairly relaxed about driving it. Gun it on a back lane and you’d better be pretty sure where it’s going to go. First gear is hardly necessary because it’s so torquey, pulling strongly from 2nd through 5th. Five gears: one more than the 3.0-litre Turbo ever had. It’s a smoothie when simply cruising around and off-boost. Ultimately it’s a wolf in sheep’s clothing, though. A bit like Johan himself: there’s a little of the Jekyll and Hyde going on, the easy-going charmer becomes the sideways king who takes no prisoners on the race track. So it’s a paradox of a car. You’re not supposed to have that many horsepower in a small body, but it’s huge fun! Cool, too, just like a vanilla shake.


    Left: It’s a 911T but the ‘T’ takes on a rather different meaning when there’s a turbo in the back! Subtle metallic green stripes are painted on. Those opening rear windows are essential on a hot day in an early #911 .

    Widened rear wheels give this narrow-bodied turbo a slightly raked stance and lose in the battle for grip against 300bhp. Twin exit exhaust is a bit of a giveaway if you know what to look for.

    Interior is testimony to an impeccable custom job. Seats are green leather clad, as is door furniture and dash top. Steering wheel is an RS item. Coco mats protect the German Squareweave carpets. Right: Getting a wheel off the ground!
    Now that’s a bit of a surprise! Where once a normally aspirated flat-six sat, now resides a full on #930 Turbo engine giving a wholesome 300bhp.
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  •   David Simister reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    ‘S’ FOR SEPIA! BROWN GIRL IN THE RING

    Car #1973 #Porsche-911S-2.4

    What was once an unpopular colour is now the height of good taste. Restored in France in 2013, imported into Britain and tweaked by Autofarm last year, this sepia brown 2.4S could be the perfect period 911. Its six-figure price tag reflects that quality – and the current market trend… Words: Johnny Tipler. Photos: Antony Fraser.

    Here’s one boxer that I wouldn’t mind going the full ten rounds with, and I’m not just talking fisticuffs. Stringback Les Lestons rather than bulging Alibaba thwackers. Bam! It’s not just the car’s pristine condition; a spirited drive through the lanes of north Essex and south Suffolk tells me that I’m at the wheel of a classic #Porsche-911S . Zesty, lively and, the faster I go, delicately poised on the edge of the outer limits. We’re visiting specialist Paul Stephens, purveyor of interesting historical Porsches and noted bespoke build specialist with his PS AutoArt range. Touring the showroom, our gaze alights on the sepia-hued non-sunroof #Porsche-911 coupé, and while it’s not quite love at first sight, it certainly is an intriguing proposition.

    Sepia Brown is one of the more conservative choices on the Zuffenhausen colour chart in the early ’70s, vying for attention with louder hues like Viper Green, Roman Purple and Blood Orange, no doubt being chosen by dint of intriguing understatement rather than eccentric ostentation. Sepia 911s are rare birds; I’m told there may have been only six finished in that colour with tan leather interiors, though our subject car is spec’d in black from new, with typical vinyl and aluminium strip below the dashboard, which is a signature of a 2.4 911.

    A recent arrival on these shores, Brown Girl (chassis #9113301078, engine #6331688) spent most of her life in France, having been delivered to the Parisian concessionaire (Sonauto) in May 1973. The bulk of the copious information in her bulging history file relates to a major restoration carried out between 2009 and 2013 by Special Auto SARL, based at Herblay, 20km northwest of Paris. This included a full mechanical rebuild and bodyshell respray in paint code 415, under the direction of proprietor Daniel Dechaumel, who's described as ‘highly recommended, an outstanding mechanic, a little gruff, but a real pro.’

    There’s no sense that this was the resurrection of a basket case, but its overall condition prompts the assumption that it was a comprehensive renovation. Apparently the odometer read 51,945 kilometres before the restorer re-set it at zero on completion of the restoration, which was clever of him. Or not.

    Right now it reads 38,000kms, though Charlie Abbott of Paul Stephens, who is now marketing the car, reckons the reality is probably more likely to be 152,000kms. In view of the work done on it, the mileage is not particularly relevant, though a stamped log book saying who did what and when is always helpful.

    In 2013 the car passed on to Automobilia, a well-regarded classic Porsche specialist in Reims, were the subsequent indepth 230-point inspection and report by sleuthing Peter Morgan was sufficiently complimentary to prompt its purchase by its Devonian custodian. It was no sooner imported than it was handed over to Autofarm for a couple of engine-out bids to identify and staunch a number of oil leaks. After British registration, including distinctive number plate NVV 73, Autofarm had the car MOT’d locally, having traced an oil leak to the nearside lower crankcase. That was done on 27th June 2014, and no sooner completed than it was back with them for another engine-out procedure in July, where another oil leak was identified seeping from a crankshaft dowel-pin.

    Whilst the drivetrain was out, the shift linkage was replaced and a new fuel pump fitted, the indicator switch rectified and the hand throttle adjusted. Also at Autofarm, the underside of the car was Waxoyled and it was professionally detailed inside and out. ‘The owner is the kind of guy that wants it to be perfect, down to spending £600- worth of machine polishing just to finish it off,’ comments Charlie. No question about that: the two stints at Autofarm cost £8200 and £8719, respectively.

    In today’s financial climate, there’s no question it was worth spending the money. Not only is this brunette bombshell a fine example of a 1973 911, the fact that it’s an S is a bonus, too. In several ways the 1973 F-programme 911S represented the zenith of Porsche’s roadgoing sportscar programme in the early 1970s.

    For one thing, the 'S' employed the final incarnation of the free-revving 2.4-litre type 911/53 engine, delivering 190bhp against the 165bhp of the 911E and the T’s 130bhp. Their rarefied colleague, the competition-focussed 210bhp 2.7 Carrera RS, was in a rather different league and aimed at a distinct marketplace; competition derivatives of mainstream models – such as the Lotus Cortina and Alfa Romeo GTA – were quite unusual at the time.

    The 1972 E-programme 911s were the first to receive the new 915 transmission, which was stronger and slicker than the previous 901 ’box, while the embryonic aero kit was also novel: the 2.4S sports a front chin spoiler to reduce front-end lift. Both sets of front and rear Fuchs rims are shod with Michelin XWX 185/70 VR15s, making this F-programme model the last to be built with the same size wheels back and front. Significantly, its 2.7 Carrera RS stablemate came with 215/60 VR 15s on 7J rears, setting the precedent for all subsequent 911s, post-1975.

    Being an F-programme 1973 model year car the oil filler has reverted to inside the engine bay rather than via the shortlived external hatch on the 1972 model year. Accordingly, it has black horn grilles and black Porsche letters on the engine lid, and a single rectangular chrome mirror on the driver’s door. A pair of period-correct yellow-lens driving lamps came with the car.

    The cabin interior is a tidy place; all the carpeting is new, as are the seats, though the seat frames are not factory issue. ‘The original standard vinyl seats have been replaced with accurate Recaro reproduction Sport items, even down to the Recaro script on the levers,’ declares Charlie. ‘They fold forward as they should and are more supportive than the rather flat original items. The door cards are in good condition, and the elastic of the door bins has been replaced.’ In the dashboard lives the restored Becker Europa radio with auto-switching iPod connection. It has the correct period seat belts, and the back seats are as new.

    Under the front lid lives the 85-litre long-range fuel tank, and space-saver wheel and tyre. Also stashed in the trunk is the correct green-dot Bilstein jack, plus a complete repro tool kit in an appropriate pouch, while other appendages are contained in a smart flight case and include spare key, original compressor and an original spare Pudenz fuse kit, two original sets of red and black keys. All locks operate with the same key code, and there’s a key code card stamped with chassis and code number.

    The maroon new-old-stock handbook wallet contains the owner’s handbook in English, the guarantee and maintenance booklet in its own original maroon wallet, plus the 1973 technical specifications booklet. A copy of the French registration paper – Carte Grise – states that the car interior was originally black leatherette with standard seats, but as mentioned earlier those have recently been replaced by the black leather sport seats.

    Before the current owner it had two previous keepers, and documents showing each transfer of ownership are also in the history file. However, the paucity of documents prior to 2009 means that you take a lot on trust with this car. It’s gratifying to note that Daniel Dechaumel at Special Auto and Franco Lembro’s Automobilia are reputable specialists, but the three beacons that shine brightest out of four dark-age decades are Peter Morgan, with his par excellence knowledge of the model, Autofarm – peerless practitioners on classic Porsches – and Paul Stephens, supremely knowledgeable and entrusted with its pitch by an owner on the other side of the country. With these leading lights in the picture its provenance is firmly anchored.

    The new owner retained all the reportage made prior to purchase: ‘Panel gaps are all good for the year,’ remarks Peter Morgan in his report, before continuing ‘the rear bumper assembly is accurate, no stone chips, there’s no wear in torsion bar supports, and it bears the correct logo on the engine-lid grille.

    'The front suspension has all been rebuilt, the oil cooler pipework is good, heat exchangers have been painted silver and it’s got a new Dansk silencer. New Koni dampers front and rear, trims on wheel housings, tinted electric windows, rear anti-roll bar hardware is all well finished, the oil tank appears new, oil return tubes are new with no leaks.’ And so it goes on. Amongst the documentation is a #Porsche Certificate of Authenticity.

    Being a French car it’s a left-hooker, which happens to be my preference in any case. The newness of the Recaro seat means I’m sitting ‘on’ it rather than sunk ‘in’ it. A bit of throttle as I turn the key and it fires up. There’s no engine note to match the aural delight of a smaller-capacity flat-six, and the 190bhp 2.4 unit complies.

    I ease out into the byways and press the throttle pedal. Acceleration is brisk, the flat-six snarls, and we’re away. It has a smooth, accurate gear shift, and it gives every expression of its 1973 origins as it darts a little bit, finding its way over the minor undulations. In a slightly paradoxical way, classic 911s benefit frombeing given their head, yet ruled with a firmhand. Instantly it feels lively, energetic, sprightly, and yet it’s elegantly poised as I control it on the throttle and ever-solight, fingertips-on-the-rim, steering. Flicking the slim fourspoke wheel this way and that as the brown girl and I twist through the Suffolk slalom. The handling is as nice as I’ve experienced in an early ’70s 911, and it has the zesty pizzazz of the ‘S’ motor, too. It really feels on the button as the engine revs sweetly to 4000–5000rpm.


    Guiding it through the bends, seeking apexes and exits to aim for, it turns in without a second thought, and it’s balanced, and corners assuredly. I can influence oversteer and understeer on the throttle, which is pleasingly sensitive. No problem with the braking, and the ride is agreeably firm because it’s an ‘S’ riding on tall-walled tyres, which have a big influence on compliance and ride quality.

    So why is the car on the market, barely a year after coming to the UK? Blame another 911S, a low-mile, full provenance car that that the owner has found in Texas. Once the owner of the yellow ex-Earls Court Show 911S, he was seduced by the interloper’s light ivory and tan leather colour scheme and the fanatical Texan owners’ log.

    ‘I wouldn’t settle for anything less than an “S”,’ he tells me. ‘The day the Sepia Brown car came on the market I was over to Reims and bought it there and then. Peter Morgan’s examination revealed a few errors in the restoration, so it went straight to Autofarm for a deeper investigation to get the mechanical aspects ironed out.

    'I wanted everything correct, so we changed a few things like the sun visors and the rear numberplate lights to the right ones. Paul Stephens is asking £200,000 for it, so we’ll see what happens. There aren’t many about and certainly not as good as this one.’

    In the light of that, inevitably we have to consider the values of classic 911s, and that rather quashes the wild, carefree driving experience that these cars were all about, 40 or 50 years ago, framed by cult movies like ‘Two-Lane Blacktop’, ‘Vanishing Point’ and Steve McQueen’s ‘Le Mans’. The 2.4S doesn’t bask in the same glow as its rarer 2.7 Carrera RS sibling, so obviously it isn’t as valuable, and its worth has been inflated by the escalation of RS prices. However, the whole classic Porsche phenomenon has really to be viewed as iconic, the embodiment of exciting historic sports cars, and indeed the 2.4 ‘S’ is still an uncommon car (3160 coupés and just 1894 Targas) from the firm’s halcyon days when the only way was up.

    Here is a car that defines that era precisely. This Brown Girl is in the ring – the sale ring, that is, so if only the best is good enough, this sepia spinster could fit the bill.

    CONTACTS:
    Paul Stephens Sudbury Road Little Maplestead, Halstead Essex CO9 2SE Email: [email protected] com www.paul-stephens.com Tel: 01440 714884

    Vented ‘S’ brakes are adequate without being over the top. Type 915 transmission was an improvement over the old dog-leg 901. 7200rpm redline on tach hints at engine’s character.

    Black grille, black badging: everything about the 1973 is understated – except the sound and the performance. This is a car with which somebody is going to have a lot of fun…

    “The newness of the Recaro seat means I’m sitting ‘on’ it, rather than sunk ‘in’ it…”

    The 2.4-litre 190bhp engine means the ‘S’ is almost as much fun to drive as the iconic Carrera RS. CofA confirms original spec Partially blacked-out trim. was a foretaste of what lay ahead in the later 1970s, but polished brightwork on each flank gives the 1973 ‘S’ some old-school sparkle.

    Our man Tipler gets the bit between his teeth as he hustles the 911S through the Essex countryside. 190bhp gives the coupé exciting performance.

    “Sepia Brown is one of the more conservative choices on the Zuffenhausen colour chart in the early ’70s”
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  • Williams Crawford
    Location #Porsche 911 Forge Lane, Moorlands Trading Estate, Saltash, Cornwall PL12 6LX Tel 01752 840307 Staff nine
    Website williamscrawford. co. uk Labour rate £45-65/hr, larger projects priced per job Specialism sales, servicing and restoration of all Porsche models.

    Despite having generations of their families in the motor trade, Richard Williams and Adrian Crawford only joined forces a few years ago but are already making a name for themselves with their combined nous and skills as top restorers.
    Their modern workshop is near the River Tamar in Saltash, Cornwall, where they have built their business on honest, knowledgeable advice - plainly spoken. As Crawford puts it: “We benefit from lower overheads down here in the South West and little competition, as well as the great lifestyle. Working in a global market, it doesn’t matter where you are. We recently sourced a car for a customer in Thailand via an owner in Malaysia.”

    Crawford’s father was a motorbike dealer with a trader s insurance policy, so Adrian took full advantage of driving everything he could: “The only cars that I didn’t break were Porsches. The first #911 that I owned was a 2.4 Targa, EUF 307L. I’d love to know where it is now.”

    In #1991 as soon as he was old enough, he set up on his own importing Porsches and BMW M3s from Germany: “The exchange rate at the time was beneficial to the pound and you not only got more for your money, but a better choice and quality of cars - if you didn’t mind a left-hand-drive model.”

    Crawford was soon focusing on just Porsches, buying and selling similar numbers of left- and right- hand-drive vehicles. As he recalls: “For servicing, I used to bring my cars to Richard, who ran a local garage and shared my passion for attention to detail. We currently have more than 25 in stock, including a #1973 #911E 2.4, a #1977 S and a very special supercharged #1995 #993 .” The company also offers brokerage and auctions appraisals for the high-value cars. “If we don’t have the right one in stock,” says Crawford, “we can find it for you and ship it to anywhere in the world.” Williams Crawford also provides a full restoration service, from a light-touch renovation to a bare-metal respray. A bespoke car can be built to any spec, too. When we visited, there was a Texan barnfind #356A cabriolet in for a total rebuild and the painted shell of an IROC replica 3.3 turbo that will be good for 450bhp-plus when completed.

    “We are fortunate to have some fantastic people,” says Williams. “Graham Kidd has exceptional knowledge, with over 20 years’ experience of restoring 356s. Becky Turner wrote to us asking not to be discounted because she was a girl and shares Graham’s focus on doing the job to the highest standards.”

    Crawford is keen to share his expertise and has produced a series of buyer s guides that you can purchase via the firm’s website, as well as his video tips on choosing the right car.

    Burfoot starts to dismantle a 2.7 flat-six.
    Turner refits heat shield in painted #Porsche-911 ... ...while Kidd tackles the car's wiring loom.
    L-r: Williams and Crawford by #356 , with Mark Bishop, Dale Salt, Dean Burfoot, Becky Turner, Graham Kidd and Megan Philp together.
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