2020 Porsche 99X Formula E Electric Racer
Porsche returns to single-seater racing after a +30-year hiatus this year as it embarks on a new adventure in Formula E, the world’s top EV racing series. The factory-backed Tag Heuer Porsche Formula E team will field a pair of Porsche 99X Electric cars for Messrs Neel Jani and Andre Lotterer, both formerly part of the company’s LMP1 program. Expect to see this 335-horsepower red, white, and black beast battle at the sharp end of the field in the 2019-2020 season that’ll kick-off later this year.
Porsche halted its involvement in the FIA World Endurance Championship, where it raced in the top-flight LMP1 class with a pair of hybridized 1,000-horsepower prototypes, to race in Formula E. The German automaker will thus move forward in its quest towards electrification by competing in the first all-electric racing series in the world with a car powered by a 900-volt battery, just like the 2021 Taycan sedan. But you’d rather see Batman ride in this low-flying spacecraft than the Taycan and that’s why Porsche hopes to garner a new, younger, and tech-savvy crowd through its participation in the eco-friendly championship.
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!
2019 Porsche 911 RSR
Porsche unveiled at the 2019 Goodwood Festival of Speed the most expensive, most advanced, and fastest 911-based race car in its portfolio, the emblematic 911 GT3 RSR. This latest version takes everything good about the 2017 model and distills it all in a better overall package that’s been improved in all four corners, even if you can’t tell the differences from the outside. The engine is still naturally aspirated, but it’s bigger than ever, and it’s still placed in front of the rear axle. Power is said to surpass 500 horsepower depending on the restrictor, and it gets sent to the back wheels only, just as before. Now, however, the car is easier to service and is safer.
Porsche has been putting out 911-based race cars since the ’60s and, in the five decades that have passed, the German automaker has constantly been improving the recipe while also staying true to the original ingredients. The shape is still largely familiar, albeit wider than ever, and the engine is still a six-cylinder boxer, and it’s naturally aspirated. However, the differences are aplenty: the engine is now in front of the rear axle instead of behind it, the exhaust now exits in front of the rear wheels through the sills, it’s water-cooled, and the capacity went up from 4.0-liters to 4.2-liters to make it more elastic. Is this the best 911 GT3 RSR ever? It has to be if it wants to surpass the impressive 2017 model that’s won almost anything there is to win in the FIA WEC and the IMSA Weathertech Sportscar Championship. And, frankly, with a $1 million + price tag, it better be!
2019 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport
The Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport is a track-only version of the 718 Cayman developed for customer use. It replaces GT4 Clubsport that Porsche introduced in 2015 and represents a notable update over the outgoing model. Unlike its predecessor, it’s offered in two distinct versions: Trackday and Competition. The GT4 Clubsport Trackday was built specifically for amateur racing drivers that like to spend weekends at the race track without participating in FIA events. The Competition model features a more complex suspension system, and it’s a direct replacement for the old GT4 Clubsport, as it is eligible for GT4-spec competitions in Europe, North America, and Asia. According to Porsche, the new race car features improved driveability, and it’s capable of quicker lap times.
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 RSR
Truth be told, Porsche did decent with its racing program for the 2015 FIA GTE season, but the German brand decided to sit out the 2016 season to prepare for 2017. Since we’ve last seen Porsche in GTE, the brand has been busy building its new GTE racer for the 2017 season. The new 911 RSR has been put through the paces on various tracks around the world, with a majority of the Porsche Works drivers getting behind the wheel at one time or another – a feat that’s quite rare in the development stage. But, it’s paying off well, and it looks like the new RSR is ready to take on the competition. It needed a break, though, so Porsche saw fit to show it off at the L.A. Auto Show, and boy does it look ready. With up to 510 horsepower on tap and, real driver assistance systems (a first,) and an improved body panel mounting, this racer will not only be ready to devour the competition and keep its driver safe, but can be serviced easily mid-race thanks new quick-release fasteners that are used for mounting a majority of the body panels.
On top of that, the Porsche gets an all-new body wrap. It still sports the traditional white, red, and black color scheme, but features the new factory design and, from a birds-eye point of view, showcases the silhouette of a Porsche emblem. Pretty cool, huh? In 2017, the new RSR will see some 140 hours of track time over 19 different outings in the FIA World Endurance Championship, including the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the well-respected IMSA Weathertech Championship. The new RSR has a lot of work ahead of it, but as you can see from the photos that we took at the L.A. Auto Show, it’s more than prepared.
With that said, let’s take a closer look at Porsche’s new racer before the 2017 season kicks off, and we’re too busy watching it fight on the track to pay attention to the finer details.
Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche 911 RSR.
2017 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
The current-generation Porsche 911, known as the 991, was introduced in 2011. Penned by Michael Mauer, it features an evolutionary design and rides on an entirely new platform, only the third since the nameplate’s introduction back in 1963. In 2016, Porsche launched the so-called second-generation 991 (dubbed 991.2), essentially a facelift with revised exterior features and new drivetrains.
Along with the facelift, Porsche has developed a revised version of the current 911 GT3 Cup. Based on the RS, the GT3 Cup is a track-only vehicle that’s available to privateers competing in the one-make series that Porsche organizes globally. The new race car received exterior updates similar to the road-going 991.2 911, new safety features, and a brand-new engine under the hood.
Set to make its debut in the 2017 racing season, initially exclusively in the Porsche Mobile 1 Supercup and the Porsche Carrera Cup (in both Germany and North America), the revised 911 GT3 Cup will be built on the same production line as the standard road car. The basic race tuning will be performed at the Weissach motorsport centre, where vehicles are also thoroughly tested by professional race drivers prior to delivery to the customer. Keep on reading to find out what updates the new GT3 Cup has in store.
Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
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.
1966 Porsche 906
Widely known as Porsche’s last road-going sports prototype, the Type 906, also known as the Carerra 6, celebrates its 50th birthday in 2016 and, given its importance in Porsche’s racing history, a look back is by all means necessary. While not innovative in its own right, the 906 put the brand on a road that led, to the launch of the astounding 917 which, like many success stories, had somewhat humble beginnings.
The beginnings lay in Porsche’s Type 904, which was the last to contest the 2.0-liter GT championship in 1964 and 1965. It was rendered obsolete in only its second year by Ferrari’s Dino 206S. Porsche was forced to step up to the challenge and answered with the 906, which, under different guises, ran in the 2.0-liter class for either sports cars or prototypes. It was also the first Porsche to accommodate a long-tail (lang-heck in German) configuration for the Le Mans race alone. A number of updates kept the 906 popular among privateers up until the dawn of the 1960s at which time it was still competitive in the 2.0-liter class as the championship’s focus had shifted toward the 5.0-liter sports cars and the 3.0-liter prototypes, respectively.
Following Porsche’s ethos of learning from the past and applying it to the future, the 906 carried over the suspension and brakes from the 904. Otherwise, it was a completely new car down to its tubular space frame. In racing terms, the 906 was a success, scoring big from its debut onward, a highlight being the victory in the 1966 edition of the famed Targa Florio, which was run in pitiful conditions with rain and fog all the way.
Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche 906.
Porsche has just debuted a new 911 customer race car, and although the GT3 R isn’t a new nameplate, Porsche’s Byzantine model hierarchy and naming system requires us to first explain where the new car fits in. This is the fourth racing version in as many years since the unveiling of the current Type 991 generation of the 911. Starting first with the 991 RSR, then the 991 GT3 Cup, the 991 GT America and now the 991 GT3 R. But all of this looks more complicated than it is; the RSR is a racing version of the regular car, the GT3 Cup and GT America are both based on the GT3 road car, and were simply made for different racing series. And finally we have the GT3 R, which is based on the GT3 RS road car.
To put it more simply still: this is the current ultimate track-focused 911. And since Porsche worked hard to make the GT3 RS as close to a race car as possible while still being street legal, not all that much has really been changed. And the GT3 R is likely to share some race tracks with impatient GT3 RS owners who couldn’t wait and performed the modifications themselves.
Updated 05/25/2016: Porsche dropped a new video in which shows the 911 GT3 R getting ready for the 24 Hours at the Nürburgring. Hit "play" to watch it!
Continue reading to learn more about the Porsche 911 GT3 R.