Tuner Tuesday: RUF Auction Roundup

It’s August and that means it’s car auction time. Much of the car-collecting world will be out in California this weekend either at Monterey or Pebble Beach – maybe even Carmel. A lot of cars will change hands and some of those will help set the market over the next six months. I always like to highlight a few that seem particularly fun.

As usual, there are a lot of Porsches on auction, though truthfully there is less this year that really grabbed my attention than in years past. But there is always good stuff even if there are fewer of them. For instance, if you’re a very esoteric Porsche fan, Gooding & Company will be auctioning this 1 of 1 1966 Porsche 911 Spyder. This post will not be about that car, in part because I don’t even know where to begin with that car, and, in fact, this post will be slightly tangential to Porsche. We’re going to look at RUF because there are a few very cool RUFs being auctioned. These are the real deal; these aren’t conversions carried about by shops here in the US nor even are they conversions carried out in Pfaffenhausen at the RUF factory. All three of these have a RUF VIN. They are all insanely rare and like all RUFs insanely fast and focused.

We’ve seen a lot of RUF 911s come up for sale over the years, but the three we have here are some of the best examples available. They all come from the 911’s air-cooled days and are a mix of almost unknown and iconic. Let’s begin with the icon: a 1989 RUF CTR, the model famously tested as the ‘Yellowbird’ and which put the rest of the tuning world on notice:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 RUF CTR at RM Sotheby’s Monterey Auctions

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Tuner Tuesday: 2001 Porsche 911 Turbo RUF RTurbo Conversion

How do you take one of the Porsche’s best performance values and make it even better? You send it to…RUF? To be honest that would not have been the answer I’d have thought was correct. A RUF conversion isn’t exactly a cheap enterprise to undertake so while the performance and overall appeal certainly will be increased those improvements typically come with a significant increase in price. Such does not appear to be the case with this 2001 Porsche 911 Turbo, which in 2012 was converted to RUF RTurbo specs.

Granted we are a few years down the road and pricing for a RUF conversion always has been significantly lower than for one with a true RUF VIN so perhaps it does make sense that the pricing here seems quite reasonable relative to the performance. But in a world where we frequently see a 996TT with the X50 package priced higher than this (with the caveat that those are asking prices and not necessarily selling prices) I think this one represents kind of a nice bargain.

It also looks phenomenal. Ordered in paint-to-sample Bugatti Strong Blue and then enhanced by the various RUF additions, this 996TT stands well apart from others of its kind. I’m not sure if this sort of lighter, non-metallic, blue will appeal to everyone, but it most definitely is unique. I happen to love it!

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 Porsche 911 Turbo RUF RTurbo Conversion on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 1987 RUF BTR

The well worn cliche is that power is intoxicating. While typically that expression is used in reference to abuses by individuals it seems no less applicable to cars. Once you get a taste of a level of acceleration, you begin to want more. And more. And maybe even a little more. Thankfully there exist outlets for such desires; builders who are happy to provide you with completely unnecessary levels of power in our continual pursuit of more. Just bring your wallet.

For your Porsche the name nearly synonymous with the need for extra power is RUF. RUF has been in the game for a long time, producing modified Porsches for 40 years. While in many cases these are conversions where the owner buys a 911 and has RUF parts added by an appropriate installer (or by RUF themselves), RUF also has produced their own builds utilizing nothing more than a Porsche chassis. These cars were badged as a RUF rather than a Porsche and come with a RUF VIN. The one we see most commonly and the one that really got the whole thing started is the BTR. Fitted with a 3.4 liter turbocharged flat-6 mated to a 5-speed manual the BTR was a much more powerful version of the 930 capable of outclassing most any production car available at the time. Naturally that extra performance along with their relative rarity makes them a highly sought after commodity. Here we have one such beast: a 1987 RUF BTR, located in Virginia, with 37,472 miles on it.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 RUF BTR on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday GCFSB Alumnus: 2002 Ruf Volkswagen Beetle Turbo S Concept

Update 2/16/18: After showing as sold in November for $14,900, the mega-cool Ruf Bug is back again for the same $14,900 ask.

It’s back!

This is a car which has haunted these pages since we first began writing up German cars, if you can believe it. Originally, Aaron wrote this car up nearly 6 years ago to the day – November 8, 2011. Back then, the seller was asking an incredibly steep $60,000. Three years later in 2014, Paul spotted it again and revisited the concept. It was then up for sale for a scarcely more reasonable $50,000. In both cases, it was really hard to justify the substantial premium even if it was a neat looking car.

Fast forward to today, and we’re finally getting somewhere. Although the car appears to have changed little since 2014, the asking price is now $14,900. Mileage is far below average at only 51,722 and condition generally looks very good. It has only accrued 10,000 miles in the last three years. Although this car lacks true RUF credentials, the general concept pulls together pretty well and the execution looks nice. Is this the one to have? It’s certainly a lot more compelling than a standard Beetle in many ways and has big dollar mods, but do those mods justify a $11,000 premium over a standard Turbo S?

-Carter

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2002 Ruf Volkswagen Beetle Turbo S Concept on eBay

The below post originally appeared on our site November 9, 2011:

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Tuner Tuesday: 1984 Porsche 930 RUF BTR Conversion

The last two weeks we’ve looked at the wilder side of the Porsche tuner world with cars from Gemballa and RWB. This week we’ll go a little more traditional with the styling and make a return to RUF. RUF likely is the most well known and highly regarded in the Porsche world, so much so that RUF is not just a tuner, but a manufacturer utilizing blank Porsche chassis for its cars. In some ways, RUF is the inverse of RWB. Where RWB goes over the top with styling and leaves the performance mostly alone, RUF keeps the styling changes somewhat minimal (at least from the perspective of how much they depart from a 911 itself) and goes over the top with performance upgrades. Over the years they’ve produced some blistering fast machines capable of competing with the best cars in the world. Even capable of competing with the likes of Porsche’s own 959.

The one we see the most often is the BTR and that’s just what we have here. However, this is not one of the very rare RUF VIN BTRs, but one of the more common converted examples, which in this case was based off of a 1984 Porsche 930. That’s a nice base with which to begin and with the RUF upgrades you get a car that can make even the prodigious 930 seem tame.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1984 Porsche 930 RUF BTR on eBay

Year: 1984
Model: 911 Turbo
Engine: 3.4 liter turbocharged flat-6
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 35,014 mi
Price: $225,000 Buy It Now

1984 Porsche 930 RUF BTR DOCUMENTED

This remarkable example has remained unrestored and original until today. Only 35k miles and 2 owners since new this 930 is in beautiful condition! Full RUF BTR conversion with letter of authenticity from RUF, this 1984 Porsche 930 is not your average 911 Turbo. Per documentation, it was completed by German car-manufacturer RUF Automobile. Accompanied by a letter of authenticity from RUF, this Porsche 911 Turbo received the RUF 17-inch wheels, revised suspension, front spoiler with oil cooler, heavier-duty “dog-leg” 5-speed gearbox, steering wheel with RUF-embossed center pad, and a boost gauge. The engine was also upgraded as a RUF BTR with 374 HP, thanks to 3.4L pistons and cylinders, an intercooler mounted underneath the vented whale-tail rear spoiler, revised camshafts and a 4-pipe exhaust system.

The BTR designation came from “Group B,” “Turbo” and “RUF.” A respected manufacturer and tuner, RUF had a close relationship with the Porsche factory. Its modifications could easily double the cost of a Porsche 911. In the mid-1980s, RUF-built Porsches ranked among the fastest cars in the world. In top-speed tests conducted by “Road & Track,” the RUF Porsches achieved the highest top speed and best reliability records. Blue with black leather Recaro seats, this 1984 Porsche 930 RUF BTR also comes with Simpson competition seat harnesses and its letter from RUF, which includes a list of all modifications from RUF Automobile. All of the interior is remained untouched an original and completely functional.

Recently serviced it performs like an absolute animal, putting about 300 miles on the car recently this 930 is incomparable to any others in its league. The 3.4L engine starts up first crank always with no issues, no leaks or oil consumption. Once on boost it screams to the redline in any gear, the dogleg transmission enters all gears with no grinds or pop out issues. Set at about 0.8 bar it is rated at about 380hp but was variable up to 1.1 bar safely and the output was about 425hp, there was no Porsche in its era or let alone other sports car that could compare to the performance this 930 offered.

35,014 original miles

Turbocharged 3.4L flat 6 engine

RUF BTR engine upgrade:

RUF intercooler

RUF 4-pipe exhaust system

34.41 pistons and cylinders

Ruf camshafts

RUF 17 inch wheels

Ruf Revised suspension

RUF front spoiler with front oil cooler

RUF Dog Leg 5-speed manual gearbox

RUF steering wheel

RUF boost regulation valve

RUF Certificate

Can be viewed in Miami, FL 33126 – Inspections welcomed – Trade in welcomed

I saw this car cross the auction block at Mecum’s Monterey Auctions. High bidding on that day reached $170K and like many of the cars crossing the block – especially some of the higher end Porsches – it did not sell. As we can see from the asking price here, bidders weren’t even all that close. My sense at the time was that $170K was pretty good money for this car. As noted, it’s not a RUF VIN. Those are the cars that command serious money. It is a really nice example of a converted 930 though and there is value in that.

The mileage is quite low at just over 35K and the condition looks really good inside and out. Everything is said to be completely original with regard to the conversion. I imagine it’s level of documentation will be the deciding factor. It does come with a letter from RUF Automobile confirming the conversion, but that is all, or at least it’s all we’re shown here. If it also has a full maintenance history and other historical documentation then perhaps it will achieve this asking price if the sellers are patient. Cars like this are very desirable so it may just be a matter of waiting for the right buyer to come along. Otherwise, the Monterey auction may be as much as this 930 will see.

-Rob

Tuner Tuesday Roll The Dice? 1986 Porsche 930 Ruf

A fair majority of our “roll the dice” features have been cars with high mileage, dubious modifications, or poor maintenance. The question marks are exchanged for, generally speaking, a budget price relative to the rest of the market.

This Porsche has none of that.

What we have here is a 1985 Porsche 930. Even if the air is cooling slightly in the 911 Turbo market, and while there’s probably only a premium on really original early and late examples, one from the middle of production like this isn’t to be shooed away immediately. Second, this car has really quite low mileage reported at under 15,000. Condition looks to be very good, and the car is marketed to be an originally Ruf-modified example. The price is certainly not budget-friendly for most outside of Wall Street. So where’s the rolling of dice to be seen?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 Porsche 930 on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 2006 RUF RT12S

In a strange comparison to earlier’s 500SL 412, here’s another matte black car. It, too, is German. Outside of that, the two share little in common.

That’s because unlike the Mercedes-Benz which was primarily a piece of marketing, this is from the workshop of Alois Ruf. And Ruf’s cars are all about performance. So even though this 997-based turbocharged RUF RT12S is over a decade old, it still produces more power than the current 911 Turbo. Over 100 more. It’s faster, too – get the launch just right and mash the gas, and RUF claimed you’ll hit 60 m.p.h. in 2.8 seconds. When Road and Track tested it, the R12 did a standing mile in 28 seconds at 187.5 mph. In the time it’s probably taken you to read this first paragraph (35 seconds), the RT would be past 200 on its way to the 224 mph top speed. Yet it wasn’t just about raw speed; like all RUFs, it was beautifully built and full of exquisite detail work on par with leading manufacturers.

But while the speed is certainly impressive, it’s not the reason why I decided to feature this car…

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2006 RUF RT12S on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 1994 Porsche 911 Ruf Speedster

This might be the best 911 Speedster I’ve ever seen. That this wonderful Speedster wears Ruf badging probably should not surprise us though in some ways it is sort of a surprising Ruf vehicle. It shows all of the terrific attention to detail we’ve come to expect from Ruf and its Ferrari paint helps make clear it is not your standard 911 Speedster. We aren’t told how many miles it’s traveled in total in its life, but it’s said to be restored and has seen under 2K miles since that restoration. The overall condition appears excellent.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1994 Porsche 911 Ruf Speedster on Ruf Automobile

Year: 1994
Model: 911 Speedster
Engine: 3.6 liter flat-6
Transmission: 6-speed manual
Mileage: 2,300 km (~ 1429 mi) since restoration
Price: Inquire

Great condition – fully restored

Date of first registration: January 1993
Mileage after restoration: ca. 2.300 km
3,6 Liter 6-Cylinder Boxerengine
184 kW (250 HP) at 6.100 rpm
310 Nm at 4.800 rpm

Manual 6-Speed Transmission
Rear wheel drive

Exteriorcolour: Ferrari Rosso Mugello red
Interiorcolour/-material: Black leather, red stitching
Black roof top
Red CarpetHeadlight washing system
Climate control
Lightweight door covers
Radio incl. navigation system
Sport suspension
Sport bucket seats
Sport steering wheel
Seat back painted in exterior colour
RUF 18“ Classic Aluminium wheels

For sale on behalf of customer

Please contact us at 0049 (0) 8265-911 911 or info@ruf-automobile.de

While I wouldn’t say I’ve done an exhaustive search, my searching has come up with little information about this Speedster other than the basic details seen in the ad text here. Aesthetically, it’s received a full interior treatment that looks fantastic alongside its Rosso Mugello exterior and sports 18″ Ruf wheels. Mechanically, the standard 5-speed has been swapped for a 6-speed manual transmission and it now has a sport suspension, presumably developed by Ruf. It also seems clear that there hasn’t been much engine work beyond mechanical refreshing. Horsepower and torque remain those of the standard Speedster. A lack of additional power isn’t unheard of in a Ruf automobile, but it’s not generally how we think of them. This isn’t a Speedster that has undergone a significant transformation, but rather most everything has been improved by a matter of degree. As a sum, it comes together quite well. I’m sure we’d all like to see it with a little more power, but I guess nothing is perfect.

We aren’t told the asking price for this Speedster here, but in a previous listing the asking price was €295K (~ $315K). That’s a lot of money and certainly much more than what even some of the best 964 Speedsters sell for, but it’s not unheard of for a true Ruf car to achieve such high values. I don’t know whether other Speedsters like this exist; this is the only one I’ve seen and as noted above even with regard to this one there isn’t much information available. I would definitely love to know more as this is one of the most unique 964s out there.

-Rob

Tuner Tuesday – Values in the RUF: 2002 Porsche 911 Ruf 550s

RUF is a name which is among the most highly respected tuners in the world, creating legendary power, looks and speed among a series of cars that was already quite potent. But they’re very expensive cars, too – fully spec one out from Ruf, and you can easily double the price of your Porsche, sometimes more. These are not machines for mere mortals.

Yet value can still be found in, and today I’ve got 1,100 horsepower to prove it. This Double Take looks at two 2002 911 Turbos, both of which have been upgraded with the RUF 550 kit. Which is the winner?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2002 Porsche 911 Turbo Ruf 550 on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 1987 Porsche 930 Coupe

Modified cars from the 1980s enjoy are and interesting exercise in dichotomy. Take AMG, for example – add the flares, wide wheels, hunkered down suspension and turned up engine to a W126 and the asking price increases from a standard model by a factor of ten. What is strange about the AMG model, though, is that enthusiasts of the Affalterbach company accept licensed installers as proper original builds. Such is not the case when it comes to tuners like Alpina, Hartge and Ruf; generally speaking, in those cases the only “true” original examples came from the manufacturer’s facilities in Germany. In these cases, examples that are properly sorted and original can be worth double, triple or even quadruple what an identically modified car from a licensed installer in the U.S. would be worth. On top of that, AMG continues to be a bit of an aberration in the tuner realm since most other period modified examples of Porsches, BMWs, and Audis are worth less than a pristine stock example. It’s a bit of a head scratcher, since generally speaking, companies such as Alpina and Ruf put out equally good looking products when compared to AMG, and properly modified were just as luxurious and just as fast. Nevertheless, a tastefully modified example like this period Ruf-modified 1987 Porsche 930 just doesn’t seem to draw the same attention as a AMG 560SEC Widebody 6.0 would, for example. Let’s take a look at what a reported $75,000 in mods got you in the late 1980s:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Porsche 930 on eBay

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