1988 Porsche 924S Special Edition

Update 5/25/18: After apparently selling in mid 2016 for $9,500, this rare 1988 924S Special Edition is back on the market with a new seller, 1,400 more miles and a much higher price – now it’s listed for $15,475.

Why the enthusiast world hasn’t thoroughly warmed up to the Porsche 924S is a bit beyond me, and that’s especially true of the 1988 model year. Not only was compression slightly up resulting in 160 horsepower channeled through the rear wheels, but Porsche also signed the model out with a fantastic lightweight special. The 924S Special Edition was also marketed in Europe as the 924S Le Mans; limited to 500 copies in each market, the U.S. models were black only. In classic Porsche “add lightness” style, the 924S SE had manual windows, no air conditioning or sunroof, and they even dropped the passenger mirror off the car. While power didn’t increase, the car did get more suspension in the M030 factory Koni suspension and wider ‘Phone Dials’ in the back with integrated mud flaps. Also lightweight was the interior fabric, which was so thin it doesn’t seem to be able to actually cover the seats even on a low mileage example like this:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Porsche 924S Special Edition on eBay

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Motorsports Monday: 1987 Porsche 962C

When pondering this Porsche 962, I couldn’t help but try to analyze why I romanticize about the Group C era so much. For the best part of a decade, if you wanted to win in Group C, there was really only one car to drive – the Porsche 956/962. Sure, there were inter-team and extra-team battles between full factory and privateer efforts, but let’s just say that the diversity at the end of the race was not particularly staggering. Then there was attrition; both with cars and drivers, as this seriously dangerous time period moving heavily into aerodynamics revealed the fragility of not only the engineering, but the humans that attempted to control it. Yet, combining some great liveries, a swoopy, low-slung body, some gold BBS magnesium wheels (or better yet, the BBS Turbofans!) is still the most iconic period in endurance racing in my mind. This is somewhat ironic, since with the WEC today we’re witnessing what is arguably the best racing the series has ever seen with the fastest endurance cars ever produced; often in the 1980s, it was who made it to the end without breaking, crashing or running out of gas. But today, it’s an all-out 6-24 hour sprint as Porsche, Audi and Toyota take three different ethos of building and designing a “hybrid” car and bring them to fans attention. Spectacular? You sure bet it is, and there’s no guarantee of who will win. Yet, when my eyes flash across a 962, I get a flutter in my heart that I just don’t feel looking at the new generation of cars:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Porsche 962C on eBay

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Rare Wasser Porsches: 1982 924 Turbo and 1988 924SE

If for some time the Porsche 944 is one of the most under appreciated cars in the 1980s German car world, the 924 is even the more red-headed stepchild. But get past the stigma of the 924 as the “poor man’s Porsche”, and the details are quite good. They’re nice looking, aerodynamic coupes that are rear drive for enthusiasts. Like the rest of the Porsche lineup from the late 1970s and 1980s, they had great build quality overall and were solid products. Many of the “big brother” 944 items work on the 924, too – especially true in the later 924S models, so they can be updated and modified just like the 944s. They enjoyed a rich racing history in both naturally aspirated and turbocharged variants, with the first “Carrera GT” being a 924 model. Plus, the 924 was the development model which resulted in the much more prized 944 and 944 Turbo. And within the lineup, there are really some great hidden gems of classic cars that can be had on a budget. Today I have two nice examples of some of the rarer models of the 924; a late run 924 Turbo and a last of the breed 924S Special Edition:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1982 Porsche 924 Turbo on eBay

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1981 Porsche 924 GTR Tribute

For some times, I had grandiose plans for a derelict 924S that my father had. Source a 931 bell housing, mate it up to a spare Audi 4.2 V8 I had, slap on a Carrera GT body kit, strip it out and stiffen it up and Viola! Instant track weapon on a budget. I had planned it out pretty well, but the timing just never came together quite right, so eventually it went by the wayside. I’ve since seen a few tribute Carrera GTs pop up and even a GTR over in Europe, and every time it makes me think “what if…”; today is no exception. As I came upon this posting, a sly smile crept across my face and thought about it all over again. Today’s example doesn’t follow the plan I had though; it takes an early European-spec 924 2.0 and swaps on the super-wide GTR panels with some crazy Compomotive wheels:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1981 Porsche 924 GTR Tribute on eBay

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1988 Porsche 924S “Le Mans” Special Edition

Porsche must be the king of obscure special models; it seems nearly every week there’s some limited edition model virtually no one has heard of comes up for sale, generally with some premium attached to the asking price because of their rarity. But while many of these limited edition cars didn’t make it to the United States, one that did was the special edition of the 924S. Sure, the 924S wasn’t the most popular car in the Porsche lineup and still isn’t, but it was a competent performer and sold reasonably well. 1988 saw the 924S bump up compression with a touch more horsepower, so if you’re in the market look for one of the already more rare to find 1988 editions. But if you want really rare, to celebrate its Le Mans victories Porsche launched a special edition of the 1988 model; dubbed the “924S SE” in the U.S. and “924S Le Mans” everywhere else, these were effectively 924S Club Sports:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Porsche 924S Le Mans on eBay

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