Looking for a subtle performance sedan? Today’s not your day.
You probably haven’t heard of iDing Power, because odds are that if you’re reading this you don’t live in Japan. And even if you’re an afficiando of M3s, you’d probably dismiss this particular car as a M3 GTR replica for the street like I did. But this car is far more than that, and much more interesting.
The M3 GTR launched in 1994, and the United States did (technically) see it in the form of the Prototype Technology Group-run team in IMSA race series. The same year in Japan, iDing Power revealed the plans for their turned-up E36 M3. They had acquired an early production second generation model; production started for the E36 M3 in February, 1992 – and the particular example you see here was produced on February 3, 1993. iDing then added a plethora of unique touches, from upgraded suspension, wheels and brakes, special interior items, and some body modifications. By “some”, of course it’s hard to look past the W201 190E-Evo inspired rear wing and massive tacked-on flares. iDing also took the S50B30 European motor, rated at 286 horsepower stock, and modified it to a claimed 330 horsepower. iDing widebodies are pretty rare finds, but even among them this one is particularly special. With only 7,600 miles on the odometer, this example appears to be the original prototype and test car:
I’ll say straightaway that I have a couple questions about this 1993 Porsche 911 RS America. I also think it’s priced a good bit too high, though that’s a problem with a lot of RS Americas we see come up for sale. We’ll get to those questions though. First, the good stuff.
As you can probably see this one has received a full wrap in Martini Racing livery. If you were to imagine what a 964 wearing such livery at the track would look like this is probably it. And it looks great! The Martini striping really works well over the curves of the rear quarters. I’d want to remove the stickers for the dealer, but otherwise I think this conveys its intent well. This RS America also is one of the low-option examples. There were only four options available (A/C, sunroof, radio, and limited-slip differential) so none of them have lots of options, but still for a car that’s supposed to be stripped down a lot of them seem to have those things added back. This one clearly does not have the radio or sunroof. We don’t get a clear look at the option sticker and the ad leaves us blind, but I think the only option chosen was the LSD. For those in search of the sportiest RSA out there this one checks those boxes.
I can never really begrudge sellers who are overly effusive about the cars they are selling, but sometimes it does frustrate me. In most cases, this applies to cars I really like, but which I feel are being presented in the wrong way. (I have a similar frustration whenever I see an ad from Toyota talking about how sporty the new Camry feels.) But I do get it, they’re trying to sell something and appeal to certain emotions.
This 964, a Midnight Blue 1993 Porsche 911 Carrera 2 Coupe, falls into this category. I really like this 911; it looks great, the color combination is one that I really enjoy, and with a fairly recent engine rebuild we would hope it’s ready to roll and provide many more miles of excellent motoring. But it also has almost 150K miles on it so why should I care about collector appeal?
While usually our ‘Double Take’ features look at one model, today I’m going to look at two cars that share a brand, and idea, and a price point. Both of these Audis represent a huge leap forward from their predecessors; versus the front-drive Type 81, the Type 85 B2 was much more modern-feeling, refined and introduced all-wheel drive to the mass market (excusing its bigger brother, and twice as expensive and exotically flared Quattro brethren, of which only 664 sold here) and the C4 S4 introduced the U.S. market to S-cars and merged the 200 20V’s setup with a modern body and more sporty interior along with even a bit more power. Both are legendary in the 4-ringed circles for their longevity. Both have cadres of fans who seek each model out. And both are hard to find in good condition.
So here we go, Alice – red or green pill? For your $6,000 investment, which of these inline-5 all-wheel drive legends would be your choice?
Gosh it feels like forever since I featured a 928. I think I actually started off my last 928 post in the same way. Perhaps I should feature them more often. I really do like these cars. The look is beautiful and timeless and it’s hard to believe it’s been almost 25 years since the last one was produced. Even more hard to believe is how good the original design – with almost 40 years on it! – still looks today. But this isn’t about an early 928, but rather one from near the end of their production.
Porsche’s top-of-the-line front-engine GT was with us for 17 years and over that time followed the typical Porsche path of subtle evolutionary changes to its design and mechanical layout. Always a V8, displacement would gradually be increased from 4.5 liters to 5.4 liters with associated increases in power as well. In its final GTS form that meant 350 hp with either a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic transmission. The automatic was popular and for some actually more desirable, but the manual-equipped cars command the most money. The last one I featured was pretty low mileage and came with a very high price tag; relatively speaking this one is neither of those things.
Here we have a Black 1993 Porsche 928 GTS, located in Georgia, with Cashmere interior, the 5-speed manual transmission, and 69,673 miles on it.
Last week I looked at the legendary E500 that seemed like a really good deal considering the market for these beasts. Today is another W124.036 that also presents good value for the condition this 500E is in. Sporting the lovely Spruce Green Metallic with creme leather like the 600SL I checked out back in the spring, this car just reaffirms why it is one of my favorite colors on 90s Mercedes. Unlike the E500 last week, this one has about 50,000 more miles on it. But taking a quick glance, you could never tell. So how much of a price difference will there?
Engine: 5.0 liter V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Mileage: 152,696 mi
Price: $19,900 Buy It Now
Extremely Rare and iconic “Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing” 1993 Mercedes-Benz 500E Sedan with 152k..Finished in rare Spruce Green over Cream-Beige Leather interior for a stunning color combination…These rare 500E Models were was hand-built in close cooperation with Porsche Engineering Team that modified the engines for this model…With the 500E’s aggressive stance featuring 1.5 inches wider track 0.9 inch lower profile flared fenders side skirts front air-dam and wide tires and over 325hp the 500E sets itself apart from other E-Models. These models were built only from 91′-94′ and only have production numbers just over 10000 units making these extremely desirable on the market. This particular 500E has been extremely well maintained throughout it’s life and has an accident free history and clear Title. This was primarily a Pennsylvania Car for it’s entire life and shows no rust anywhere on the vehicle…Please give us a call for more information or to schedule a test drive or showing…978-631-1968..
Our friends on the 500E Board have a nice paper trail of how many times this car has been sale in the last couple years — which is a few.…
Gemballa has been around for quite a while. Since the early 80’s they’ve been creating designs for a wide variety of Porsches with a few Mercedes and Ferraris thrown in as well. Honestly, most of their designs I haven’t much liked. I like over the top – I mean I’m a fan of RWB – but Gemballa has always seemed over the top in a way that I found unappealing. It’s a fine line for tuners to walk and built entirely upon subjectivity; some find the right balance, some miss the mark.
Here we have one that I do like. At least for the most part. Based off the 911 RS America, this Gemballa build was to serve as a showcase car and, if we’re to believe the ad, demonstrate the more refined style they were hoping to put forth once the excesses of the ’80s were behind them. It’s still fairly over the top, but not too crazy and its likeness to the Flatnose Turbo S makes it look like something the factory may have even produced. It’s sort of a melding of the Turbo S and the 3.8 Carrera RSR, both highly sought after machines that turn the heads of just about anyone who sees one. I imagine this Gemballa will do the same.
Model: 911 RS America
Engine: 3.8 liter flat-6
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 16,937 mi
Price: $99,500 Buy It Now
Before Singer’s amazing creations, before RWB’s wide bodies, before Magnus Walker officially made it cool to NOT be a typical Porsche guy, before TechArt, there was Uwe Gemballa.
The Gemballa’s of the 80’s were radical creations with massive body kits and interior customization. As Gemballa moved into the 90’s they evolved into a more performance focused company with more subtle streamlined body work.
My first thought when I saw this car was literally “Holy Crap. A reasonably priced Corrado!”
And then I saw the salvage title.
But let’s not dwell on that yet. Let’s consider what we have here first. The photos paint the picture of a pretty nice, mostly original Flash Red Corrado SLC. It retains the original Speedline wheels and Baja-1000 ride height. It’s got leather inside, the big complaint of comments on the the last Corrado SLC I looked at. But the big draw must be the price, which at $6,500 is just very reasonably priced in my mind. The last Corrado SLC I considered? Same color, cloth interior, near same miles – $18,995. It’s like the ‘Cult of Corrado’ have decided “Hey, this is basically the same recipe as the E36 M3, and they’re increasing in value, so my car must be worth a lot.” Logical? Well, no one ever said passionate car enthusiasts were logical. In fact the whole idea of sitting around, pontificating about theoretical car values seems inherently illogical. When someone buys it, obviously that’s the price it’s worth, right?
But I digress.
Perhaps the asking prices for Corrados are more in line with their premium stature. Since new, they have demanded a premium; the SLC hit the market in 1992 at $22,000, and tick a few option boxes and you were quickly in Audi money. But you could look at this car as an expensive Volkswagen, or (as magazines did at the time) as a budget Porsche. Instead of the E36, the natural comparison to this car probably should be the Porsche 968. And you can’t get a decent one of those for $6,500…
Edit 7/28/2017: This ’93 has reappeared with the same plates (so I presume the same seller) from December 2015 in a no reserve auction. It no longer has black wheels but only a few more miles on the clock. Finding clean late model V8s is pretty rare and this one generally looks nice! Cleverly the seller stuck in the listing that the car’s odometer is broken, though you have to look. The original ask price was $5,000, so it will be interesting to see where the strong bidding ends.
Sometimes it’s something small on a car you’re looking at that brings up a great memory. In the case of this 1993 V8 quattro, if my emotions weren’t already stirred by the sight of another late 4.2 model like my beloved and maligned example from a decade ago, it was the wheels that really did it for me. You see, for a few winters I ran A4-spec 15×6 steel wheels with Michelin Artic Alpins on my Ragusa Green monster. Already small, the A4 offset is higher than the V8s, leaving the impression – especially head on – that the car was floating. The awesome flares that were the signature of the V8 hung out in mid air, the antithesis of today’s trend of fitting the widest wheel as close to the fender as possible. But the result in the snow was undeniable. The V8 on skinny rubber was virtually unstoppable, hugely controllable and a riot to drive. Pulling in from runs at a Tim O’Neils rally school, the rumbling eight would erupt in clouds of smoke, as if Vesuvius was on the verge of claiming Pompeii. Crowds would gather to look in wonder and slight bemusement at the smelly, crusty and leaking old Audi which so thoroughly trounced the newer models around the circuit.…
I am a fan of the RS America. I feel like I need to say this because I know sometimes the car is criticized for being somewhat half-hearted. Meaning: it isn’t really that close to the Carrera RS that it serves to replace for the US market. I understand those criticisms; they are certainly valid. I like it anyway. I like the look, I especially like the whale tail on a 964, and I like that it’s a bit paired down from the standard Carrera 2. I don’t like the current prices and I know a hefty amount of the current criticism of the model stems from those prices and whether those prices make sense. That’s a different conversation.
I also like yellow cars, especially bright yellow cars. So as you can imagine I really like this Ferrari Yellow 1993 Porsche 911 RS America. It is one of only four produced in this color and given the limited colors available as standard that makes this one stand apart even more. It was spec’d with three of the four available options: radio, A/C, and sunroof. Interestingly, we’ve featured one of the other three existing cars before. Only two more for the whole set!
Model: 911 RS America
Engine: 3.6 liter flat-6
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 30,873 mi
Price: Reserve Auction ($299,500 Buy It Now)
This 1993 Porsche FLY RS America up for auction comes from a distinguished collector’s stable and is in superb condition. This is one (1) of Four (4) Ferrari Light Yellow RS Americas produced by Porsche in M.Y.1993. This is the ACTUAL car that was on display at the 1993 New York Autoshow (this car was specifically ordered for the show).