1986 Porsche 944 Turbo

1986 Porsche 944 Turbo

The market rage surrounding BMW’s M products and their lesser stablemates and all things Porsche air-cooled continues to mask one of the best all-around performers of the period – the Porsche 944 Turbo. This was the car which brought supercar performance to the masses in a package that was both reliable and practical. Perfect balance meant you could approach the limits of the chassis, and it rewarded you for doing so. Over 200 horsepower gave you super-human acceleration normally reserved for small-batch thoroughbreds. And there was even a race series to give the 944 Turbo the credentials to back up the Stuttgart crest on the hood. They were exceptionally well built using high quality materials, and quite a few people who owned them treasured their foray into the exclusive world of pioneering Porsche forced-induction. The original purchaser and steward of this 951 appears to have done just that:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

Ending Soon: What We’re Watching

Ending Soon: What We’re Watching

Occasionally we don’t have the time to get to all the auctions that catch our eye. With that in mind, we’re going to be putting together some auctions that are interesting and may offer you a good value – or we’re just curious where they’ll end up!

Click for Details: 2000 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG

This 2000 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG looks great with only 93,000 miles on the clock. Condition throughout seems to be very good and records are present, as well as a clean bill of health on the CarFax. But the real draw is the no reserve auction format – at time of writing, the car sits under $6,000!

Click for Details: 1987 Porsche 944 Turbo

The 1987 Porsche 944 Turbo isn’t the most desirable model year, but this one looks nice in Guards Red over Linen leather. While it’s a TMU car, there’s a healthy bit of recent service history and the overall presentation looks like a nice driver. The TMU and 1987 build status should keep bids down, but the auction is no reserve. It will be interesting to see where a 944 Turbo driver ends up!

Click for Details: 1992 Porsche 911 Turbo

It’s a strange world we live in when you can ask close to MSRP for a 25 year old car and it suddenly seems reasonable. But that’s the case with this 1992 911 Turbo. Technically, it’s a no reserve auction with a $95,000 Buy It Now, but a single $85,000 bid would win it unless the seller ends the auction early.

Click for Details: 1992 Mercedes-Benz 300E

We looked at this Glacier Green 1992 Mercedes-Benz 300E before, but it’s back on a no reserve auction with a starting bid below $2,000. Though it’s got a lot of miles and isn’t 100% original, it still seems like a nice driver with a lot of work done.…

1989 Porsche 944S2

1989 Porsche 944S2

The Porsche 944S2 took the twin-cam out which had debuted in the short-lived 944S for the 1987 model year to the next level. Bumped from 2.5 liters out to 3.0, the new motor crested 200 horsepower, producing nearly as much twist as the standard 944 Turbo had only a few years before but with no turbo lag. Beefed up too were the looks, which mimicked the Turbo’s design with smoothly integrated bumpers, brake ducts and fog lights as well as a rear diffuser. Wheels looked visually like the Club Sport, but were a different offset. The new “Design 90” style was also seen on the 928 and 911 model and became the signature Porsche look for a half decade. Though many point to the 968 as the ultimate development of the transaxle 4-cylinder, the 944S2 offers most of that package with the chunkier looks of the 951. Few come to market looking as nice as this example does:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944S2 on eBay

1989 Porsche 944 Turbo with 43,000 Miles

1989 Porsche 944 Turbo with 43,000 Miles

Here’s a listing I am genuinely interested in seeing end in a few days. Why? Well, I’ve covered a string of 944 Turbos recently, and we’ve seen some very nice examples trade for quite reasonable amounts. But today’s 944 Turbo is special for a few reasons. First, it is one of the last of the run, S-spec 1989 models. Properly, they’re not called “Turbo S” models, but only because all of the 1989 models came equipped with option code M030 – the Club Sport Package, featuring adjustable Koni suspension, forged Club Sport wheels, upgraded 928 brakes, and 30mm/25.5mm swaybars. It also meant by default you needed to select option code M220 – the 40% limited slip differential. Coupled with the upgraded M44/51 turbo motor producing nearly 250 horsepower, these are the Ninjas of the Porsche lineup in the 1980s – silent supercar killers. Today’s example is especially desirable since it comes from a single owner, is claimed all original, and has only covered 43,000 miles:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

Summer Dreaming: 1987 Porsche 944 Turbo

Summer Dreaming: 1987 Porsche 944 Turbo

I’m guessing that if you’re a fan of the 944 Turbo, you’re reading this with a slight tinge of regret that you didn’t bid on the two no reserve 944 Turbos I posted the other day. Both were unique in their own ways, but the condition and pricing made them compelling options. The Nougat Brown car traded for a staggeringly low, “why the hell didn’t I jump in on that auction” $8,100. The Alpine White car, with a bit better presentation and neat options, has just broken $10,000 with a few hours remaining. The 944 Turbo is one of those cars that keeps me thinking, wondering when they too will be out of reach for most enthusiasts. Today I have another interesting configuration, low mile Turbo to consider – is this one worth the plunge?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

1982 Porsche 944 Euro-spec

1982 Porsche 944 Euro-spec

First year model. Undiluted European specification. Rare non-sunroof. Rare air condition delete as well. Paint to sample. Pascha interior. Clean history. Under 100,000 miles. Overall great condition. Were these the statistics for a model named “911”, the price would be through the roof already. Yet while enthusiasts bemoan the increasingly unreachable air-cooled variety of Porsches, their water-cooled brethren remain steadfastly affordable – at least, for the time being. Let’s take a look at this 1982 European-specification 944:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1982 Porsche 944 on eBay

1985 Porsche 944 with 40,000 Miles

1985 Porsche 944 with 40,000 Miles

While Porsche 944s are no stranger to these pages, early models rarely appear here. There were many variants of the 944 over its life cycle, and in many ways the improvements over that time make the 1982-early 1985 models the least appealing. Launched in early 1982, the 944 sported essentially most of a 924 with Carrera GT-inspired flares and half of a 928 motor. In mid 1985, Porsche heavily revised the model with a refreshed interior, air condition system, larger fuel tank, relocated windshield antenna, and new cast aluminum control arms among a host of other small changes. 928-esque “Phone Dial” wheels replaced the original “Cookie Cutter” alloys, though Fuchs forged alloys remained an option. Obviously, there were then the multitude of upgraded models that followed; the 944S, the 2.7, the S2, and of course the Turbo. The result is that it has to be a pretty special early 944 to draw much attention, and today’s early 1985 is just such a car:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1985 Porsche 944 on eBay

Impossibly Clean: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo with 283,459 Miles

Impossibly Clean: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo with 283,459 Miles

It’s easy to become obsessed with low mileage, absolutely pristine museum pieces. Walk up to one at a show and it’s like stepping into the DeLorean with Doc Brown, because apparently wherever that owner’s car is going they don’t need roads. On the other end of the spectrum are cars that have accrued countless miles; an old, torn pair of jeans that has more stories behind it than threads in its behind. Occasionally, though, a car pops up that is a testament to careful enthusiast ownership while still having been used for its original intent and purposes. Wearing mileage as a badge of honor rather than, as many do, acting like it is a death sentence, they are impressive cars without consideration of mileage but moreso when one does. Generally these high mileage heros turn up as Audis or Mercedes-Benz products that have rolled odometers into the stratosphere. More than occasionally we’ll come across an E28 BMW nearing a quarter million. Porsches, however, usually don’t see those types of numbers – especially highly prized turbocharged models. But though today’s 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo is pushing 300,000 miles, it looks like it has only seen a fraction of that number:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

Feature Listing: 1986 Porsche 944 Turbo

Feature Listing: 1986 Porsche 944 Turbo

We’ve often lamented on these pages about when enthusiast cars used to be more affordable. Pick your poison; there were days you could buy a pretty sorted E30 M3 for under $10,000, a clean 911 in the teens, a pristine W113 Pagoda for under $20,000. At least for the foreseeable future, those days have left us, and enthusiasts on a modest budget need to pick and choose between the few remnants of a once vibrant sub-$10,000 market. I’ve spent a fair amount of time predicting and watching the ascension of the 944 turbo – the understated, underrated giant killer from Porsche. It’s been no surprise to see soaring values on clean 944 turbos, so you’d be forgiven for thinking that once again another classic has been priced out of sight. But if you’re willing to prioritize driving over shows, there are still some great deals to be had out there:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1985 Porsche 944 Turbo on Omaha Craigslist

Motorsports Monday: 1988 Porsche 944 “S2”

Motorsports Monday: 1988 Porsche 944 “S2”

Building a track car can be a dirty business. You can start with a branded title car or one with a ton of miles, one in poor shape or maybe just a car that needs a ton of mechanical work. The results aren’t always Roger Penske perfection, but that certainly doesn’t mean you can’t have a lot of fun. Indeed, there’s a certain freedom to having a less than perfect, not hugely valuable track-focused weapon. It allows you to head to the circuit without the emotional baggage of what would happen if midway through turn two something let loose. Take today’s 1988 Porsche 944, for example. Thorough upgraded and ready to head to the track, this S2-spec 944 may not be a lot to look at, but the entry price is less than a new set of BBS centerlock wheels for a GT3. No, I’m not joking. I just checked, and it’s $9,800 for a set of BBS FI-R wheels from Tire Rack – without tires, or shipping mind you. See, you could have a whole track car instead and still have $300 left to pay for a track day!

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Porsche 944 “S2” on eBay

1989 Porsche 944 Turbo with 37,000 Miles

1989 Porsche 944 Turbo with 37,000 Miles

Kicking and screaming, enthusiasts are watching super heros from the 1980s slowly (or not so slowly, depending on the model) move firmly out of affordable price ranges. The last bastion of performance to rise is one of the best available, proving that the market doesn’t always recognize what theoretically should be the best cars. 944 Turbos, just as they did when new, have been rapidly accelerating in value and the top of the heap for road models are the ’88 Turbo S and the S-spec ’89 Turbos (properly, without S – more later). In my time writing for GCFSB, I’ve watched nice examples move from mid-teens to firmly into the 20K range. But Hagerty currently values them even higher, with a sharp spike in 2015. 2016 forecasts have the market cooling slightly, but it’s still at record highs for several models. The current top value on a 1989, at least according to Hagerty, is $36,400. Today’s car is priced at $39,000. Is it better than perfect?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

1990 Porsche 944S2 Cabriolet

1990 Porsche 944S2 Cabriolet

I can remember vividly when the Porsche 944 Cabriolet first debuted. As a young child, I would eagerly await those car magazines arriving by post each month, giving me the opportunity to set eyes on concepts, spy shots, prototypes and all the newest models. When the first images of the 944 Cabriolet appeared, I felt like something was missing. The proportions somehow didn’t seem right, as I had been used to seeing this transaxle Porsche design in fixed roof form for years. The folding roof and rounded off rear end seemed a world apart. However, I think time has been kind to this design and it’s a very unique model that appeared at the dawn of a decade that would bring about some of the most drastic changes in Porsche history. This 944 Cabriolet for sale in California has a mere 12,000 miles on the clock and while the Linen Gray Metallic isn’t necessarily suited to this sports car, it doesn’t offend either, looking sharp sitting on those Gullideckel alloys.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1990 Porsche 944S2 Cabriolet on eBay

Feature Listing – 1987 Porsche 944

Feature Listing – 1987 Porsche 944

Many will correctly credit cars like the Boxster and Cayenne for giving us the solvency of Porsche and the more exotic models we love to look at daily. But back up to the 1980s, and while SUVs were popular unless you bought a Geländewagen your 4-wheel drive truck wasn’t coming from the Vaterland. The 1980s were just seeing the reemergence of the convertible, too, and the popular roadster concepts from BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Porsche were still a decade off (excusing the Z1, that is…). So how did Porsche manage to survive the 1980s? Well, they had some star power with the 928 and the 911 and 911 Turbo models were still popular, even if at the time everyone admitted they felt pretty ancient compared to the competition or even Porsche’s own lineup. No, what made Porsche successful in the 1980s was the 944. It’s hard to conceptualize how relatively successful it was, but especially considering the relatively high entry price and exclusivity of Porsche cars in general, it was positively a blockbuster. Porsche shifted a total of just over 113,000 944 models between 1982 and 1989, and nearly exactly half of them sold here in the United States. Today it’s not unusual to find a 944 still kicking around as a daily driver; solid build quality, reasonable fuel economy and relatively inexpensive repairs thanks to the more pedestrian inline-4 means that quite a few are still living today. Let’s also not forget that these were expensive and treasured items for many. Even so, few examples turn up for sale today in anywhere near the shape of this 1987 example at Sun Valley Autos:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Porsche 944 at Sun Valley Autos

1989 Porsche 944 Turbo with 28,500 Miles

1989 Porsche 944 Turbo with 28,500 Miles

It should come as no surprise that Porsche 944 Turbo prices are on the rise. In fact, in atypical Porsche form it’s quite late to the party. Considering the stratospheric rise of its ostensible competition from BMW and Audi, the 944 Turbo has remained quite affordable for a very long time. That has resulted in a glut of mediocre to poor condition examples; let’s not forget, after all, that this is a Porsche, and servicing a complicated 30 year old example can be beyond the budget of some available to leap over the entry price hurdle. However, one of the Turbo models that have traditionally retained greater value is the later run 1988 S models and 1989 S-spec models. Properly, 1989 models are not referred to as S models, but as they carry all of the same upgrades as the 1988 model many add the suffix to the name. Considering how limited they were in the U.S., at only a reported 1,874 1988s and 1,385 1989s with a handful of 89 spec cars shifted in 1990, it’s not as much of a surprise that they’re prized possessions for many and generally speaking they come to the market in better condition than the earlier ’86/87 models. But not many these days come to market having traveled only 28,500 miles since new:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

Motorsports Monday – Worth Finishing: 1982 Porsche 924 Carrera GTS/R Replica

Motorsports Monday – Worth Finishing: 1982 Porsche 924 Carrera GTS/R Replica

As a habit, we try not to write up project cars. There are other sites that do that and a project car takes a specific subset of fanatics to be really interested. Most will turn their heads, unwilling to front the cash to complete the build. Some might be interested but have neither the skills, the resources, the time or the space to undertake the project. And, to be honest, most project cars are complete headaches – basket cases that were hastily thrown together or require enough reverse engineering that you’re better off starting from scratch. But once in a while one comes along that is both so cool and unique that it justifies a second look and disregarding the angels of our better nature who chant not-so-softly into our ears “DON’T DO IT!“:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1982 Porsche 924 Carrera GTS/R Replica on eBay