1960 Porsche 718 RS 60 Werks
How often do you see an ex-works Porsche race car hit the auction block? It rarely happens and this is one of the few that were sold publicly in recent history. This is a 1960 Porsche 718 RS 60, member of the 718 RS family of open-top sports cars built and raced by Zuffenhausen for half a decade beginning with the RSK in 1957. The RS 60 appeared at a time when sports car manufacturers started realizing that mounting the engine behind the cockpit might be beneficial to the performance of the car after witnessing Jack Brabham muscling his way to the title in F1 in 1959. Porsche was already doing it and had been doing it for years, beginning with the 550 Spyder, a car infamous for having an important part to play in actor James Dean’s death but one that was, more importantly, a successful car in road racing.
The RS 60 Spyder raced everywhere around the world, following the trek of the World Endurance Championship and, along the way, ticking starts at Le Mans, the Nurburgring, and Targa Florio. Only 18 were built in period and the factory kept for its own use a mere four examples and this, according to RM Sotheby’s, was "the only to likely become available". Powered by a four-cam engine - first a 1.6-liter mill and, in 1961, a 2.0-liter one - the car you see in the pictures, chassis #044, doesn’t boast with the most enviable of racing records having retired out of both the 1960 24 Hours of Le Mans race and all of the three major races it contested in 1961: the 12 Hours of Sebring, the 1,000-kilometer race at the Nurburgring-Nordschleife and the Targa Florio in Sicily. Having said that, it must be said that the car was fast, taking pole position outright in the Italian road race before being raced extensively by Bob Holbert, father of Porsche legend Al Holbert, an amazing driver in his own right - both behind the wheel of Porsches and, later, Cobras. It is, then, no wonder that chassis #044 sold for over $5.0 million back in mid-August during the Monterey sale. That’s one expensive aluminum Spyder!
1997 RUF Porsche CTR2
RUF builds some of the fastest modified Porsches in the world, cars altered so much that they are barely Porsches when the process reaches the end and the car is ready for delivery. Such a car is the CTR2, the replacement of the Yellowbird, a 993-based monster that could reach 215 mph in 1995, beating anything but the McLaren F1.
If you’re asked to name a few really fast cars of the ’90s images of the Lamborghini Diablo, the Bugatti EB110, or the Jaguar XJ220 would probably spring in your mind. Well, how many of you would think of a modified Porsche that could beat anything that Zuffenhausen had to offer, even the ludicrous race-bred 911 GT1? Yes, it’s the product of a tuner, but the cars built by Alois Ruf Jr., and his men have always been impeccably well-built. They also have an enviable record of humiliating established supercars over the years. The CTR2 is the bridge between the pure Nurburgring-slashing CTR and the mid-engined CTR3 that takes the ideas of the Carrera GT to another level.
1965 Porsche 911 007
A Porsche Art Car isn’t something unheard of, but this is one of the strangest of them all. Designed by Peter Klasen, a German artist part of the ’La Nouvelle Figuration’ movement, it is an early 911 modified for racing with about 192-horsepower on tap and is named ’Project 007’. And no, there are no links to that secret agent.
Early 911s are revered for their purity in terms of the construction and the classic design of the body. The original 911 (901) is a Butzi Porsche design whose lines are still relevant on modern Porsches that we see and hear today. This particular 911, though, is something that we don’t see every day. Its colorful livery was drawn up by Klasen in 2009, and it’s similar, in terms of the color palette and some of the themes and elements displayed, with previous liveries he’s done.
Maybe Klausen’s most prominent work in the automotive world is a racing livery that adorned a Porsche 962 CK6 entered by German outfit Kremer Racing in the 1990 edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The German artist also designed the red-white-and-blue livery of a Porsche 911 (993) GT2 entered by French team Sonauto in the French GT Championship in the late ’90s.
1992 Porsche 911 Carrera RS
The Porsche 911 Carrera RS is an exercise in reducing a formula to its purest form. It was built as a lighter, faster, and more powerful version of the 964-generation Carrera 2 and it stands as a spiritual successor of the magnificent 911 Carrera 2.7 RS from the early ‘70s.
The Benjamin Dimson-penned Porsche 911 (964) debuted in 1989 and featured a rounder body shape in tune with the times which was a clear, but not profoundly radical, departure from the design of the previous 911 that was still tracing its roots back to the original Ferdinand Alexander Porsche-drawn model launched in 1963.
For 1992, Porsche launched the Carrera RS in Europe which was, in essence, a road-legal version of the Carrera Cup racing cars. This single-make series was on the bill of the Formula 1 World Championship weekends as support races in between F1 sessions.
The 911 Carrera RS never officially made it across the Atlantic and into the U.S. market. With that being said, 45 cars that were meant to be used in a Carrera Cup U.S. series that never materialized did trickle down to dealerships and were quietly sold in 1993 in the shadow of the RS America which deserves its own review as it isn’t identical to the European RS.
1988 Porsche 911 Turbo ’Ruf CTR’
The original RUF CTR, commonly known as the “Yellowbird”, outran the Ferrari F40 and the Porsche 959 from 0 to 100 mph and kept going all the way to a top speed of 213 mph. It was the fastest car of the ‘80s and, arguably, the most extreme road-going interpretation of the Porsche 911 Carerra at the time.
As a follow-up to the vicious BTR, the RUF CTR was even more insane. It used parts from the Porsche 962 Group C prototype racer, had lightened body panels, a gearbox built just for it, tires similar to those on the spaceship that was the 959 and a bright yellow paintjob that made it stand out and earned its nickname: Yellowbird.
Before Alois Ruf and the team set about building the CTR, the world’s fastest car was the Lamborghini Countach. Surely, with all the wings it had grown by the time it received four valves per cylinder in 1985, it looked the part. Sadly for the Italians, the more understated Ruf CTR blew by the Countach, and the Testarossa, and the 288 GTO and just about any other supercar you can think of. And Ruf themselves thought that they could’ve eeked more with longer gears.
Keep reading to learn more about the ludicrous Ruf CTR
1985 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe
The Porsche 930 Turbo was a turning point for the German manufacturer as it debuted turbocharging for the public rich enough to afford it. Debuting in the mid-‘70s, it took a turn towards flamboyance in the ‘80s with the Slant Nose version which, in its rarity, is as era-defining as the Ferrari Testarossa or the Lamborghini Countach. Early turbo-lag freights never looked this wacky!
The 930 Turbo, or rather the Turbo Carerra as it was sold in the US, was Porsche’s first stab at turbocharging a car for the public roads. Sure, they weren’t the first of the European manufacturers to do it, with BMW launching the 2002 Turbo three years prior in 1972, but the Turbo from Stuttgart had substantially more grunt which made it a bit of a menace.
From the get-go, a Turbo’ed 911 had over 250 horsepower making it the fastest car Germany could offer. It also had an unmistakable look with the black graphics on the lower sides and the enlarged whaletail wing that aided in both cooling and downforce. The German manufacturer had loads of experience with turbocharging on the racing front, debuting the 917/10-TC in 1972 and sweeping the Can-Am title with it. Then came the 917/30 which was even more dominant, to the point that it killed off the series, and then the 911 Carerra RSR Turbo which was based on a road-going 911 albeit with countless modifications.
That purpose-built prototype that looked like your streetwise 911 is the father of the 1975 930 Turbo which was unveiled at the Paris Auto Show in October 1974. For 1975, Porsche put out just 400 Turbos to meet homologation requirements for their next racecar, the 934. Unlike the previous homologation special, the Carerra RS 2.7, the Turbo really caught on, and by 1976 it became available in the United States.
The one-off, road-going 935 replica ordered by McLaren backer Mansour Ojjeh, then president of TAG, sparked an interest among well-to-do Porsche customers for a 930 with the nose flattened. The German manufacturer duly listened to the wishes of its customers and the Slant Nose – Flachbau in German – was born.
The design proved polarizing, and with an MSRP in the period of $29,000, which increased the cost of a 930 Turbo by almost 60%, less than 1,000 Slant Noses were made beginning in 1981. This special optional extra was also available in the US under the 930 S moniker.
After its production had ended, the 930 Turbo remained a cult classic with the Slant Nose the rarest version of them all. It’s a testament of the times and quite a bit more than that, as the racing-inspired modification actually aided handling and acceleration.
Keep reading to learn the full story of the Porsche 930 Turbo Coupe
1958 Porsche 550a Spyder
The Porsche 550 is a true icon of Porsche history. Known as both a race car and a sports car, the 550 was the kind of machine you could drive to the track, take the win, then drive back home. The famous British-American racing driver Ken Miles called it the “greatest long-distance racer in the world,” and despite its low power figures, this plucky little two-door could take down cars with far more power and straight-line speed. Eventually evolving into the even-quicker 550a, the 550 is now widely recognized as one of the more desirable collectible Porsches in the world.
Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche 550a Spyder.
1968 Porsche 908 Works Short-Tail Coupe
The Porsche 908 is a prototype racer that competed in the mid- to late-‘60s and into the early-70’s, squaring off against some of the best of the best from the likes of Ferrari and Ford in numerous endurance racing events. Bearing an advanced aero package, an innovative flat-eight-cylinder engine, and a tenacious attitude, the 908 played a crucial part in Porsche’s racing development, and now sits as one of the more desirable collectible competition Porsches to go head to auction.
Continue reading to learn more about 1968 Porsche 908 Works Short-Tail Coupe..
1970 Porsche 908
Introduced in 1968, the Porsche 908 was created as Stuttgart’s more-focused shot at competition success in the FIA’s Group 6 Prototype-Sports Cars class. The car is simple and completely stripped of any fluff whatsoever. Outside, the 908 gets a short, flat body made from fiberglass (both coupe and spyder variants were created), as well as simplified aerodynamics. The driver sits very far forward, his or her feet hanging ahead of the front axle to make room for the 3.0-liter flat-eight engine. With as much as 350 horses on tap, the 1,100-pound 908 was basically like a big racing kart, beating its heavier, more powerful competition on the twisty, more narrow tracks of the sports car series.
Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche 908.
2017 Porsche 911 R Steve McQueen Tribute Edition
The Porsche 911 R caused quite a stir when it made its debut at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show back in March. It was, in a lot of ways, the 911 variant that Porsche purists had been clamoring for. It may not be the fastest and most powerful variant of the 911 – take a bow 911 Turbo S, that’s still you – but in terms of pure driving pleasure, the 911 R holds a backseat to no one. Alas, Porsche only released 1,000 units of the special edition 911 R and you’d be hard-pressed to find one in the market today. Fortunately, one of the original owners of the 911 R has decided to make it even more special by turning it into a personal tribute to Steve McQueen and sending it back to the German automaker to have it auctioned. And so, here it is, the 911 R Steve McQueen Tribute, a one-off creation that pays homage to arguably one of the most iconic Hollywood leading men and professional racer in history.
The super exclusive 911 R comes with a host of unique features, not the least of which are specific details attributed to McQueen himself. It also gets a lot of love from Porsche Exclusive with the myriad of options and accessories that were given to it. Suffice to say, this unique 911 R Steve McQueen Tribute was designed to be a legitimate one-off. About the only downside, if you can even call it that, is that it doesn’t receive any power enhancements. Would’ve been nice to have more power to play with for a true and legitimate driver’s car.
Oh, and don’t expect the 911 R Steve McQueen Tribute to come cheap. It’s unclear if it can fetch the same $184,900 price tag of a brand new 911 R since it already has a previous owner. But taking into account its one-off exclusivity and the name attached to it, I expect this particular 911 R to breeze past the $200,000 barrier when it’s auctioned off by RM Sotheby’s on February 8, 2017. The good news is that 25 percent of the car’s auction price above its €25,000 ($26,120) minimum reserve will be given towards research for curing cancer in children.
Continue after the jump to read more about the Porsche 911 R Steve McQueen Tribute.
1980 Porsche Bisimoto 911BR "One-of-a-Kind"
In the 1971 film Le Mans, Steve McQueen delivers one of his all-time most memorable quotes: “When you’re racing, it’s life. Anything that happens before or after is just waiting.” That attitude wasn’t just a figment of McQueen’s onscreen character – the man really did live to go fast. When he wasn’t acting, McQueen participated in a variety of professional racing series, and when he was acting, he regularly performed his own stunts behind the wheel. The Porsche you see here is a rolling tribute to the McQueen mythos, a customized one-off creation packed to the brim with performance-enhancing modifications and polished subtlety. If style were a liquid, this thing would be an ocean, and next month, it’s going to the highest bidder.
Slated to hit the block at the 2016 Mecum Collector Car Auction in Monterey, California, the Mecum website describes the 911BR as “a no expense spared bespoke Porsche” that “reflects [McQueen’s] personality and penchant for straight line performance, cornering prowess and understated appearance.”
Proceeds will go to benefit Boys Republic (hence the “BR”), a non-profit organization in Chino, California that serves troubled adolescents. Since 1907, Boys Republic has helped more than 30,000 at-risk teenagers, including McQueen himself, who credited Boys Republic with refocusing his life towards success.
So what makes the 911BR worthy of association with the King of Cool? Read on to find out.
Continue reading to learn more about the 1980 Porsche Bisimoto 911BR.
1995 Porsche 911 GT2 EVO
Also known as the 993, the third-generation Porsche 911 arrived in 1993 as a replacement for the 964 version. The 993 was quite different from its predecessor, with only 20 percent of its parts carried over from the previous model. Also, the naturally aspirated 3.8-liter and the turbo 3.6-liter flat-six engines were completely new. Built until 1998, the 993 was not just the last air-cooled 911, but also the last of the hand-built 911s. Besides the usual Carrera and Turbo models, the 993-gen 911 also spawned RS, Speedster, Targa, and GT2 versions.
Although the Speedster is the rarest variant of the 993 based on production figures alone — only two were built by the factory — the GT2 is arguably the model that stirs the most interest, especially now that almost two decades have passed since the third-gen 911 was discontinued.
Essentially a racing version of the Turbo model, the 911 GT2 was developed for the new FIA regulations that did not allow all-wheel-drive vehicles. Porsche deleted the front drivetrain, enhanced the aerodynamics, and came up with a lighter package thanks to various lightweight components that were used to replace the standard ones. To qualify the GT2 for racing, a limited number of street versions were created for homologation purposes. This is how the road-legal GT2 was born, and is now a model that is highly prized and valued by Porsche collectors.
But, Porsche didn’t stop there, and eventually developed the GT2 into a more menacing racer. Dubbed the GT2 EVO and assembled in just 11 units, it was crafted for the top-level GT1 series. Keep reading to find out what makes the GT2 EVO one of the most valuable Porsche ever built.
Continue reading to learn more about the 1995 Porsche 911 GT2 EVO.
1981 Porsche 924 GTR
Back in the Porsche 924mid-’70s, Volkswagen contracted Porsche to develop a car based on parts already available from Volkswagen. As the project came closer to completion, Volkswagen canceled it, blaming certain financial setbacks as the reason. Ultimately, Porsche bought the rights to the design and produced the car now known as the 924. Over the years, the 924 spawned a number of different variants, such as the 924 Carrera GT and the 924 GTS, but neither were as potent (or as rare) as the 924 GTR. Only 17 examples of the GTR were built, with more than half of them racing or qualifying at Le Mans. Other models were raced in Europe, the U.S., and Japan, but there was one example of the GTR that was practically unaccounted for on the race track, and that’s the example you see in the pictures here.
The 924 GTR was derived from Porsche’s factory development strategies and featured a number of enhancements over other 924 models. One of the first things Porsche did was enlarge the intercooler and move it to the front of the vehicle – leading to the need for a much taller front fascia with a huge air dam. Furthermore, there was a special suspension system, performance brake system, some serious engine modifications, and a roll cage to help keep the driver safe should it go belly up during an unfortunate incident on the track. We’ll talk more about that a little later, so keep reading to learn more.
Continue reading to learn more about the 1981 Porsche 924 GTR.