Another week, another G-Wagen. Last week it was the crazy G55 AMG limousine and the week before that it was the short wheelbase G500 for sale in the UK. Today, we have another short wheelbase G but as you might have noticed, this one has a little extra feature. This is a 1999 G500 Cabriolet that was federalized by Europa (read more here about them) for sale in New Jersey with a little over 65,000 miles. It’s a no-frills G outside of that slick power top that will make any Wrangler or Defender owner as jealous as can be. But the price, are you sitting down?
What do we have here? This 911 is really rare and I’ll admit I was a little stumped by the designer until after some searching. This is a Black 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet with a Carat by Duchatelet interior. It’s located in New Jersey and has only 48,000 miles on it thanks to hanging around in storage for more than a decade.
So who is Duchatelet? A company out of Belgium well-known for their Carat by Duchatelet high-end interior work performed principally on Mercedes-Benz and Rolls-Royce cars of the ’80s. Apparently they also worked on Porsches. From the outside their designs are pretty subtle, so much so that when I first was looking through these pictures I couldn’t figure out what was so unique about it. When you get to the interior, it all becomes quite clear!
I’m forcing the issue a little bit here as I will freely admit there aren’t great reasons for lumping these two 911s together. So why? Basically because I think each is worth consideration for those in the market for a 3.2 Carrera, but neither is really distinguished enough that I think one is obviously superior to the other, nor are they distinguished enough to write up separately. So why not look at them both?
These two 911s each present as similar examples of a late classic 911 and since neither is a Coupe they also present the choices for those who prefer a bit of open-top enjoyment. Each comes from the final three model years after Porsche fitted the G50 5-speed manual transmission and I think their condition is pretty comparable. While the mileage of each is a bit different neither is crazy high nor crazy low. Lastly, I think their selling prices should be pretty close. So if you’re in the market for a G50 Carrera and want a little wind in your hair these both should be worth further investigation.
I’ll go chronologically and begin with this Grand Prix White 1987 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet, located in New Jersey, with Dark Blue leather interior and 68,050 miles on it.
In the early 1980s, there were precious few options for open-air German motoring. Sure, there was the tried and true Mercedes-Benz SL; a luxury car aimed more at boulevard cruising and polo club grand-standing than the Sport Licht moniker would indicate. Porsche’s 911 Cabriolet was certainly more sporty, but also too expensive for most to contemplate as a fun second car. BMW and Audi? The latter was over a decade away from having a factory convertible, and the former took until the mid-80s to introduce its drop-top 3-series. For the plebeians, then, the only real option was Volkswagen’s Rabbit convertible.
Rabbit Convertibles were produced by Karmann in Osnabrück, Germany – about a two and a half hour drive west from Volkswagen’s Wolfsburg plant. As they did with the Scirocco, Karmann’s distinctive badge adorned the model, here on the front fenders. The intensive construction process laden with chassis strengthening and bespoke items like the added roll-over bar meant that VW’s normal production line couldn’t handle the task. Although these were the heaviest of the A1 models, compared to today’s metal they were downright lithe; a manual early Convertible like today’s, even with air conditioning optioned in, weighed less than 2,300 lbs. While never the most powerful in the lineup, the light weight and manual transmission made the original Rabbit convertibles one of the more entertaining ways to experience compact German engineering and open-air motoring in the notoriously malaise early 80s.
While the persona surrounding the model, and more generally the people who bought the model new, tends to steer away from the typical ‘enthusiast’, the Rabbit Convertible has nonetheless moved solidly into collector territory. It’s a smart-looking, practically packaged and fun to drive convertible that can be run on a budget, fit four people in relative comfort and generate smiles throughout. In a world of increasingly serious automobiles, the Rabbit Convertible and Cabriolet models were just simple fun.…
Ah the fabled barn find. It’s the stuff of legend in the vintage car world and it seems like no prestigious auction goes by without a car or two crossing the blocks under such a designation. I can’t say they’re necessarily the type of thing I look for – after all these are more or less neglected cars – but I will admit they can make for some very interesting discoveries. Take the 964 3.8 RSR auctioned last May, or the 1973 911 Carrera RSH I opened the year with as examples. Finds like those truly are legendary.
This one isn’t properly a barn find since it was sitting in a garage intended for housing the owner’s car collection, but it possesses most of the typical ‘barn find’ attributes, right down to a heavy coating of dust. This is a one-owner 1984 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet, located in Chicago, with a mere 9,373 miles on it. It’s been cleaned up and provided with servicing to refresh a good deal of the neglected materials and now sits looking not too different from how it left the showroom.
It is quite rare to see most any vintage car on the roads. I think that shouldn’t be much of a surprise. It means, of course, when we do see one it can be a nice treat. The Porsche 356 is just such an example and until recently I could not have told you the last time I actually saw one being driven. (I won’t count the dilapidated one I saw in a mechanic’s parking) A few weeks ago it just so happens that one drove right by me. I could hear it coming and as most any car enthusiast does my ears immediately perked up as I knew from the sound that something pretty interesting was approaching. I was delighted to see it was a 356 Coupe, and even better it looked in phenomenal shape. While in pictures the 356 Coupe can look a little bubbly and almost rotund, in person the proportions look perfect with little wasted material.
Since then I’ve been keeping an eye out for a nice 356 to come up for sale. While not a Coupe, I really like this one. This is a Royal Blue 1961 Porsche 356B 1600 S Reutter Cabriolet with Light Grey interior. The condition looks quite good and the exterior color is fantastic. Like a lot of bright colors this one shows wonderfully on the 356.
Model: 356B 1600S Cabriolet
Engine: 1.6 liter flat-4
Transmission: 4-speed manual
Mileage: 46,122 mi
Price: Reserve Auction ($129,995 Buy It Now)
1961 Porsche 356B T5 Reutter Cabriolet with excellent factory Royal Blue/Light Grey color combination: Owned by a retired executive in Santa Rosa for the past 20-plus years. Restored over 10 years ago to COA specifications.
Previously I featured a 930 with a Marine Blue exterior over a Linen interior. Here we’re going to sort of turn that inside out. We now have the Linen on the outside and we have the dark blue serving as accents to the interior and the convertible top. It’s not a full reversal of colors since the primary interior color is light grey. It’d have been fantastic if the interior were all dark blue though. I can imagine that would have provided for a very captivating contrast.
This is a 1990 Porsche 911 Carrera 2 Cabriolet, located in California, with 83,478 miles on it. The color combination isn’t bad, but it is a bit monotone. As we can see, when used as an exterior color Linen isn’t quite silver, nor is it quite white or gold. It’s a little bit of all of them. In the sun it shines really well, but it still looks good in the shade. All together it doesn’t look too bad, though it is very much on the refined/elegant side of the spectrum. There isn’t much that’s aggressive about this 911, but that’s ok.
Model: 911 Carrera 2 Cabriolet
Engine: 3.6 liter flat-6
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 83,478 mi
Price: Reserve Auction ($41,500 Buy It Now)
Chequered Flag International is pleased to offer the 1990 Porsche 964 Cabriolet in Linen Grey with light Grey interior and Dark Blue soft top. 1 owner from new with 83,478 miles, clean Carfax. Mechanically excellent and a delight to drive. Just checked and serviced by us and less than 4k miles ago it had over $10k spent on a full engine reseal that involved disassembly, replacement of all common wear items and reassembly, plus fuel pump, soft top cables, etc.
If yesterday’s beautiful 997 Coupe was a little too bright for you or too closed off, what with it having a fixed roof and whatnot, then perhaps this 911 will be more your speed. Here we have an Arctic Silver 2004 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S Cabriolet, located in Pennsylvania, with 14,598 miles on it. Of even greater import, it’s a 6-speed manual and had the X51 power kit fitted from the factory. I don’t know the specific numbers, but I suspect a Cabriolet equipped like this isn’t all that common. Cabriolets tend more toward the refined luxury side of the Porsche market (unsurprisingly) and we find quite a few with Tiptronic rather than a manual. To have both the manual transmission and the power kit is a nice treat indeed for those hoping to get the most out of their open-topped motoring. At least without going all the way to the Turbo.
Model: 911 Carrera 4S
Engine: 3.6 liter flat-6
Transmission: 6-speed manual
Mileage: 14,598 mi
Price: $44,900 Buy It Now
Highlights include: $113,945 ORIGINAL MSRP!! AWD C4S CABRIOLET WITH JUST 14,598 1-OWNER MILES!! $13,990 X51 CARERRA 345HP FACTORY POWER KIT: UPGRADED INTAKE MANIFOLD-INTAKE PIPE SUPPORTS-EXHAUST MANIFOLDS-CYLINDER HEADS-CAMSHAFT-VALVE SPRINGS-PARTITION BOX IN OIL PAN-DME MAPPING!! 6-SPEED MANUAL, FULL LEATHER, NAVIGATION, PCM II, POWER HEATED FRONT SEATS WITH LUMBAR SUPPORT AND DRIVER SIDE MEMORY, BOSE HIGH-END SOUND & CD CHANGER, SELF DIMMING MIRRORS, ADVANCED TECHNIC PACKAGE, AUTO CLIMATE CONTROL, WINDSCREEN, PSM, XENON HEADLAMP PACKAGE, PAINTED WHEEL CRESTS, CLEAN CARFAX, WARRANTY!! This vehicle will be reviewed by an independent certified mechanic in accordance with PA state inspection regulations. If for any reason this vehicle does not pass inspection it will be noted. !!PLEASE CONTACT OUR SALES TEAM AT 610-844-0831 WITH ANY QUESTIONS!!
Saying that you like the Audi Cabriolet is like saying you thought Jar Jar Binks was the best developed character in the Star Wars pre-boot.
Put aside the typical top-down motoring bias and stereotype. There were more reasons to single out the Cabriolet. They were soft. They came to the U.S. in automatic only. They were powered exclusively by the yawn-a-minute 2.8 V6. Inherently it’s not a bad motor, and it had more punch than the inline-5s did (barely). But inspired it’s not. And to top it all off? Perhaps that could have been remedied if they were available with quattro, right? No, FrontTrak only. That was Audi’s lame attempt to make the basic front-drivers sound like they had some cool system. Nope, this was a one-wheel drive wonder. So that’s lame-on-lame action when you’re considering an Audi.
So this is Rocky V, or The Sum of All Fears, or that horrible ninth season of the X-Files. But I have a guilty pleasure. No, I still haven’t watched ‘X-hibit C’ above because why on Earth would I do that? But I do really like the Audi Cabriolet. I can logically admit its many shortcomings, and yet every time I see one I’m drawn to the shape. To me, it’s just a pretty car, even if I can’t fully describe why it’s a pretty car. But above and beyond my visual stimulation, this particular listing has some fun stuff to go along with it and is worth the click alone:
At the end of my post yesterday of a Carrera Targa Supersport I mentioned that the asking price was such that you could pretty easily find yourself an actual Porsche 930 in very nice condition for less money. Lo and behold we just so happened to receive this 930 for a feature and I think it does a pretty good job of demonstrating what I discussed with the Targa Supersport. I fully admit it’s an apples to oranges comparison (different market, different model, different mileage, etc.), it just struck me as nice and timely.
Anyway, let’s get to it:
Here we have a Grand Prix White 1989 Porsche 930 Cabriolet with 64,500 miles on it. An ’89 930 always gets our attention. As the only year the 930 came equipped with a 5-speed manual transmission these are incredibly desirable and when one is in good condition it’s always worth further investigation. This one even has a very subtle and unique attribute: Porsche script cloth seat inserts. The first I’ve seen!
Model: 911 Turbo Cabriolet
Engine: 3.3 liter turbocharged flat-6
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 64,500 mi
1989 Porsche 930 911 Turbo Cabriolet
G50/50 5-Speed Gearbox/Limited Slip Diff.
1 of 600 Built for North America
Past PCA President Owner
1-Owner for 23-Years
ENG# 68K00178 (930/68)
64,500 Original Miles
Grand Prix White on Blue Leather & Porsche Cloth with Dark Blue Top
5-speed G50/50 Manual Transmission
Clean and Clear Arizona Title
No Accidents/Mostly Original Paint
2-Southwest Owners from New
Past PCA President Owned
Clean AutoCheck Background Report
Porsche Certificate of Authenticity (COA)
Offered at $124,990
More and more enthusiasts are beginning to see not only what wonderful cars the 930s are to drive, but also how important they are to the history of the 911.