1990 Porsche 944S2 Cabriolet

Like the Volkswagen Cabrio, the 944S2 Cabriolet isn’t a car that gets a lot of press on these pages. But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have the makings of a classic. Like the Cabrio, it sold in small numbers in the tight times of the early 1990s; Porsche claims it sold only 2,386 in the United States. And it has a potent power plant in the revised 3.0 16V inline-4; pushing 207 horsepower and 208 lb.ft of torque, it was nearly as potent as the first generation Turbo without the inherent lag or accompanying bills. Yet it shared the same perfect weight balance with the rear-mounted transaxle, Turbo brakes and larger roll bars along with the integrated Turbo-look nose and tail. The S2 also received the new “Design 90” wheels that helped to bring it in line with late 928S4 and 964 models.

However, the 944S2 Cabriolet has always been overshadowed. First, for the sporting drivers out there, most will be seeking the clean lines of the S2 Coupe. Then there is always the more popular 911 Cabriolet, but it’s real competition is the later 968 Cabriolet. With more power, revised looks and a 6-speed manual, those late 968s are by most accounts the ones to get. But to me, that means that a clean 944S2 is a better value while offering you most of the experience of the VarioCam. Let’s consider this beautiful LM3U Velvet Red Metallic example:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1990 Porsche 944S2 Cabriolet on eBay

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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

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Motorsports Monday Budget Racers: 944 v. 325is

Let’s be honest; going to the track is a bit of an addiction. Few make it out the other side without having at least contemplated heavy and expensive upgrades to their cars. The symptoms of the illness vary from patient to patient, but most exhibit similar characteristics; starting with a somewhat sporty road car, the owners quickly engage in a series of modifications that will make them “faster”. These modifications nearly always degrade the everyday usefulness of your road-going machine, and ultimately no matter how much you modify a street car, it will still be a compromised design. You simply can’t create a track weapon that is road-legal without some compromise. The result, then, is bobble-headed enthusiasts driving their barely-suspended, over cambered and too loud cars around looking – let’s be truthful – a bit of a fool. What’s a smarter option? Well, if you really want to drive faster on track, you find a slow car that someone has already made into a racer. First off, you’re getting into a more pure track car. They’re not road legal generally, so all of the goodies that make life bearable on the street are gone making them lighter. If the build was done right and well, you’re probably saving a lot of money, too. But the real benefit of getting a slower car is that you’re doing more of the driving – ask any racer, and most will say that extracting maximum performance from a slow car is more rewarding than allowing the computers in your GT-R to obliterate the pavement for you. Two of the most popular German cars to hit the track in are here today – the venerable E30 in 325is form, and the iconic Porsche 944. Which will hit the finish line first?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 BMW 325is on eBay

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To Force or Not to Force? 1987 944 Turbo v. 1989 944 S2

For some time, there has been an ongoing conflict in my head. All of me agrees that the Porsche 944 is a pretty awesome car; great looks, handling and performance in a bargain package with classic Porsche reliability and build quality. But I fight with myself over just which of the Porsche 944s I prefer. Some days, the forced induction Turbo captures my imagination; there’s been a 1989 Turbo in my family now for two decades and it’s a wonderful car. But I have to admit that it’s not been without its problems, and while it’s a cool package it seems almost too predictable as the “go to” “cheap” Porsche. Should it be criticized for being a spectacular performance bargain? That may not be fair, but just like the BMW E30 represents a good balance of performance and practicality, it’s sometimes just too popular for me. What’s the alternative? Well, the 944 has its own answer: the 944S2. Visually, the two are nearly indistinguishable to most non-enthusiasts. But the driving experience is quite different; the M44/51 turbo motor is legendary as a tuning platform and offers typical ’80s lag-prone explosive launches, while the M44/41 big 3.0 16V motor has seemingly effortless torque at your disposal but loves to run up the tach as well. Stand on it in a drag race, and the Turbo will win – nearly a second faster to 60 miles per an hour and 5 m.p.h. faster on the top end. But if you’re a clever S2 driver and catch the Turbo slightly off-guard, you’ll be right with them – and the S2 isn’t about drag racing, it’s about making a better all-around driver. So the S2 is the better choice? Well, perhaps – but then there’s the mystique of the Turbo model. Who doesn’t want to say they own a Porsche Turbo, really? Today I have an example of each – which will be the winner?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

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1989 Porsche 944S2 with 27,000 miles

What has the world come to? Are the days of the cheap 1980s cars dead? We’re in the days of $50,000 BMW M3s, $30,000 Audi Quattros, $20,000 Volkswagen GTis and $10,000 Sciroccos! And yet, there are still deals to be had, if you’re willing to look – and act, quickly. Because while the 944 Turbo and S2 have been on the “down low” for a few years, we’ve been watching clean examples rapidly appreciate, pulled up by their more expensive cousins. That’s as it should be, because frankly, of the lot, arguably the 944 Turbo is the best performance value of the 1980s, and the 944 S2 is perhaps the best all-arounder that Porsche has ever made. Those S2s are better balanced than all the previously listed cars, quicker than all of them, get better fuel mileage than all of them, and – arguably, I agree – look the best of the 944 production line. Yet the S2 has continuously been overlooked, almost taken for granted. Those days are going away, and opportunities to get a 944 S2 like today’s are going to be increasingly difficult:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944S2 on eBay

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Stunning Twos – 1989 and 1991 Porsche 944 S2s

Yesterday, Paul wrote up a nice looking 968 with lower miles. The problem with these low mile 968s seems to be that people ask a lot of money for them. Now granted, comparing the money that E30 M3s command compared to the 968 asking prices puts them in a less outrageous context, but compared to the prices 944 Turbo Ss or 944S2s command, they do seem out of line. Case in point is todays two stunning examples of the 968 prototype, the 944S2. Effectively the 968 was this car, restyled and with an extra cog in the gearbox. If you can deal with only 5 speeds and prefer the boxier styling of the 944s, these 944S2s are a screaming deal – for now. Let’s look at a black early example first:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944 S2 on Cleveland Craigslist

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1987 Porsche 944S

There’s no easy way to slice it; Porsches are expensive cars to own. Without a doubt the best way to get into a Porsche is to buy one that someone has already gone through and fixed, and even though 944s are some of the cheapest Porsches to own the same holds true for them. While most enthusiasts really lust after a well documented and maintained Turbo or late S2, buying into that market is going to set up back well over $10,000 – for some, out of their budget for an occasional car. How about the rest of the 944 line then? Well, if the early 944’s performance is a little too pedestrian for you, a simple solution is to look for one of the rare 1987 or 1988 944S models. With a 16 valve development of the already torquey 2.5 liter inline-4, drivers got the best of both worlds in a model that bridged well the gap in between the stock 944 and the gutsy turbo model. Today’s example is presented in classic Guards Red over tan:

Year: 1987
Model: 944S
Engine: 2.5 liter inline-4
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 89,113 mi
Price: $8,500 Buy It Now

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Porsche 944S on eBay

1987 Porsche 944 S

RAC Performance is proud to present this pristine 1987 Porsche 944 “S” that has just arrived here at our facility!

Owned by a local RAC customer & collector, he had purchased this car with the intention of converting it to a turbo or track car. Upon further research and investigation he made the costly decision to take it back to its original form with a freshly rebuilt motor by “Istook’s Motorsports” of Fort Worth, TX who is infamous for 944 motor work since the 70’s! Many additional cosmetic items have also been addressed to bring this car to its most pristine and original form possible!

Notable Engine Rebuild Details:

– Main Bearings

– New Belts

– New Tensioners

– New Water Pump

– New Oil Pressure Valve

– New Valves & Valve Springs

– New Head (Original was cracked)

– White Powder-Coated Intake and Valve Cover

– New Motor Mounts

– New Guide Seals

– Valve Cover Gaskets

– Replaced Fuel Lines

– And Much More..

Additional Maintenance Performed:

– New Clutch

– New Struts and Springs

Notable restoration efforts include:

– 4 Brand New tires

– Front & Rear Hood Struts Replaced

– All Power Window Switches Replaced

– New Porsche Black Mats W/ Red Stitching

– New Leather Shift Boot

– New Center Console Hinge

– Upgraded Stereo W/ 4 New Speakers

– New Sun-Visor Clips

– And Much More…

NOTE: NAM, branded title issued on this 1987 Porsche 944. CarFax shows a mileage discrepancy, as well as documented light damage over the years. That being said, we offer this car with no reservation based on the mild restoration efforts. Overall, simply a beautiful and solid 944.

If you are looking for that stud of a high-quality driver, that has had excess of $15,000 + spent in services just this year, your search ends here!

Please contact Jared Orem at (214) 435-2917 for further details on this beautiful, Guards Red 944 “S”

The car carries a branded title for minor damage, which may explain in some part why the original side trim and ”
16 Ventiler” badges appear to be gone. However, outside of that, the car has gone through a major mechanical restoration including all of the hard and expensive bits on the 944 – notably, the clutch has been replaced and the engine refreshed. Anyone who has owned a 944 will tell you that neither of these services are cheap or easy, making the $15,000 worth of recent mechanical bills believable. Additionally, the car has new tires and suspension pieces, all of which should make this car a near-perfect driver candidate. The work appears to have been performed at the Ruf Auto Center, a notable enthusiast dealer. At $8,500 Buy It Now, if you’re not terribly concerned with having a branded title due to accident or mileage issues and do some diligence in making sure the pretty exterior isn’t covering up some serious demons, this might just be a stellar deal!

-Carter

1988 Porsche 924S Special Edition

There were two main complaints about the 1987 Porsche 924S I wrote up last week – it was too expensive, and it was an automatic. In response to both points, I’d like to revisit a car we featured back in May that remains for sale on eBay. With a more reasonable entry price, the desired 5-speed, and more stylish although not original Design 90 wheels, this 1988 Porsche 924S Special Edition ticks the right boxes if you prefer to fly low on the Porsche ownership radar. This car also epitomizes how the 924S is misunderstood and unappreciated – were they to change the name from “Special Edition” to “Club Sport” (which it effectively is) I really think it would be priced higher and snapped up more quickly. As a friend once told me, it’s not really a special edition unless someone knows why it’s special! As it sits, though, it remains a performance bargain that will provide lots of driving enjoyment for not much investment, especially with the opening bid now below $6,000.

– Carter

1988 Porsche 924S Special Edition – REVISIT

The below post originally appeared on our site May 8, 2013:

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One of the great things about writing for German Cars for Sale is learning about the myriad esoteric special editions produced by our beloved German manufacturers. From the relatively-mundane (Audi Allroad US Ski Team edition, anyone?) to the extreme (How about the E30 M3 Cecotto?), they are the funny bits that keep us car nerds hunting for more. Today we have a special edition of one of the most unloved Porsches ever produced. The 924 came in to provide a basement for the company line as the 914 and 912 were phased out. Using the front-engine platform that led to the 944, the 924 earned its derision by offering just 95hp at the outset. Even if it was 30 years ago, the ongoing horsepower wars make this number seem unbelievable.

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Luckily, today’s 924 is not one of the first models. In fact it is from the final year of the 924 which brought the 944’s full 160hp and is the most special US production code M756, indicating the 924S Special Edition. Following Porsche’s ingenious recipe of removing content (they even deleted the passenger side mirror, huge weight savings), improving suspension and upping the price, the SE was the hottest version of the least-cool Porsche. While the 924 may not be loved in general, the SE is an interesting piece of obscure Porsche knowledge that is most likely a blast to drive.

Year: 1988
Model: 924SE
Engine: 2.5 liter inline-4, 160hp
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 72,000
Price: $8,000 starting bid, no reserve

Click for Details: 1988 Porsche 924SE for sale on eBay

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25 year old classic Porsche

1 of 500

Unique and rare for the true collector, Porsche 1988 924S Special Edition.

Produced to celebrate the 250000th Porsche 911 produced.

In 1988 Porsche reached a big milestone by building its 250,000th 911. For this occasion a limited edition of no more than 500 special edition “924 S-SE” for USA

– Original mileage / only 72,000 miles

– M030 sport suspension package with commemorative plaque and interior Ferry Porsche autograph.

– Garaged all its life in California with excellent service and inside smoke-free.

– Full documentation and Porsche specialist books.

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“For the true collector” indeed – once you’ve collected every other Porsche, try the 924SE! In all seriousness, with 72k miles and bidding starting at $8k, you could do a hell of a lot worse. The lack of interior shots leads me to believe this SE suffers from the worn-cloth issues common on these, so I wouldn’t buy it sight-unseen. No reserve means this could potentially be had for less than $10k though, which makes it a very interesting value proposition over a good 944 and scores a few extra rarity points.

-NR