We’ve all seen the insanity of the Porsche 993 Turbo market. As air-cooled 911s in general have steadily appreciated in value, the most powerful of the last of the air-cooled models has lead the way with precipitous gains seemingly defying all reason. Naturally, the more rare the model the more extreme those value increases have been and with buyers now showing little hesitation to ask for $200K+ for a standard Turbo it is no wonder that Turbo S owners would seek to capitalize on the madness with even steeper asking prices. That brings us to the example here, a Black and Tan 1997 Porsche 911 Turbo S, located in Florida, with just 9,208 miles on it and an asking price over half a million dollars. There is no doubt that these will stand beside the 993 Carrera RS and GT2 as the most sought-after models, with the GT2 leading the way by a substantial margin. While power increases weren’t substantial for the US market (424 hp vs 408 hp for the standard Turbo) the relative scarcity of the model and the cachet of saying you have the baddest air-cooled 911 around garner these cars significant appreciation. They also marked a slight change in the ethos of the model itself that has continued up to today. Unlike the 964 Turbo S, which was lightened and austere in its fittings, the 993 Turbo S retained the luxurious offerings that have been a hallmark of the 911 Turbo since its inception. It was to be the most refined and powerful road-going 911. Of course, with the release of the GT2 Porsche insured that its customers had both options available to them and sent the air-cooled 911 out in the best ways possible.
For me, the R129 Mercedes-Benz 300SL came one year too late. The US market was never privy to its predecessor, the R107 300SL, which was available with both automatic and manual gearboxes. This was always a favorite R107 variant of mine, its smooth 3.0 liter inline six seemingly more suited to this car’s size than a big V8. And of course, the available 5-speed manual was a huge attraction for me. Mercedes decided to take a little bit different direction for the 1990s and made available the six cylinder SL to North American customers, even with a manual gearbox option for a few years. This 300SL for sale in Illinois is a Canadian market SL with the 5-speed automatic gearbox in one of my favorite SL colors, Cabernet Red.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 Mercedes-Benz 300SL on eBay
Yesterday, our editor Paul sent me a quick message with a link enclosed – “Enjoy a late birthday present!” he said. The link was to the movie Le Mans, the 1971 classic staring Steve McQueen piloting the equally iconic Gulf-liveried John Wyer run Porsche 917Ks. But while that combination would be emblazoned in history as the defacto color for the Porsche 917, to me the more memorable combination was the car that actually won the 1971 Le Mans 24 Hours. That was the magnesium-framed number 22; a pale white car that debuted an equally iconic combination for me as it was sponsored by Martini Racing. Later in the 1970s, the livery would become more famous as the multiple winners with both 935 and 936 chassis, but few remember that the connection went back into the era of the light-blue Gulf cars. The Martini livery is still popular today, carried on by a proud tradition into Formula 1 as well as being recreated by amateur enthusiasts in the Porsche Interseries, a Cayman-only race program that notably offered drivers to run famous Porsche colors. Very few can afford the opportunity to even see 917s in action – never mind own one. But a Cayman S racer? While not cheap, they’re considerably more affordable than you’d expect:
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2007 Porsche Cayman S on eBay
Featured here is a decent example of the highly desirable 5-speed Porsche 928 GTS. According to the 928 Registry, this particular car is the 114th out of 139 GTS’s imported in 1994, and one of only 44 fitted with a 5-speed manual transmission. Furthermore, it is one of 62 GTS’s spec’d with a schwartz exterior, 20 of which were five-speeds.
In addition to sporting the desirable black/black color combo, this GTS was fitted with around $12,000 of extra options. This is unusual for a later model GTS, as most were ordered as dealer inventory with few options (most GTS’s with many optional extras were 1993s). Some of the options I particularly like are the rootwood handbrake and shift lever (I know that many don’t like wood in a Porsche, but I do), the car phone, the extremely rare CD/cassette holder in the door, and the deletion of the exterior rubstrips. These extras, along with a few others brought the original sticker price to over $95,000.
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1994 Porsche 928GTS on eBay
I love Rabbit Pickups, and they’ve experienced a bit of a renaissance here in the Bay Area with more and more moseying by on the road. Perhaps the newly-rich hipsters are realizing how cool they are and plucking them from around the country. Demand has risen to the point where some jokers think a diesel and a crappy respray can demand $15k, but it seems like the ridiculous prices may just be encouraging other silly sellers as opposed to truly elevating prices. This one doesn’t have an extensive history but it does have some nice parts, namely a 1.9-liter turbodiesel upgrade and some large, late-model VW wheels.