1988 Porsche 944 “GTS”

This Porsche 944 sold for $7,800

I don’t often look at plain 944s, especially late examples, for a reason. By the end of the run, the standard 944 was overshadowed by the introduction of the 944S and 944S2 with their twin-cam motors and even a Cabriolet. Of course there was still the 944 Turbo and for 1988, the pumped up Turbo S. Then there was the Special Edition and the 944 2.7. Nevermind that there was also the lightweight 924S Special Edition, too. In short, there aren’t too many reasons to look at a “normal” 944 from the late production run. But with 924 Carrera GT/GTS DNA pumped into it, this particular 944 is anything but normal looking:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Porsche 944 on eBay

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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

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1988 Porsche 924S Special Edition

The last 1988 Porsche 924S Special Edition I wrote up in November was an interesting one, as it languished in a second-hand dealer with low miles and recovered seats with a seller who was apparently unaware exactly what it was but was still asking close to top dollar. Well, the secret is out on that particular example, at least to some extent. Just before Christmas, the listing was updated from around $9,000 to just shy of $19,000 in order to account for the new description which listed the car as one of the 500 “Le Mans” edition cars. While the seller’s claim is semantically incorrect, it appears they finally did some research and figured out that this indeed was one of the Special Edition U.S. spec 924S models (as a reminder to those less versed in the 1988 924S model, the “Le Mans” edition was a European equivalent Club Sport model). While that car isn’t really realistically priced anymore, there’s another of these defacto Club Sport models on eBay right now in the same scenario – at least from the listing, the seller is unaware that it’s the Special Edition model:

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

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1988 Porsche 924SE – REVISIT

As part of a ‘924 Roundup’ back in late September, I included a stealthy 924S Special Edition model with low miles from an unassuming and apparently unaware second-hand dealer. The good news is that the dealer doesn’t follow our page, where they would have learned that their 924S is more than just one of the high compression motors for 1988 but also effectively a lightweight Club Sport model equipped from the factory with the M030 Koni suspension. It seems not many others have caught on, either, as it remains available with a price drop below $9,000. That’s a lot of limited edition performance Porsche for your money! Someone grab this one before anyone gets wiser.

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

The below post originally appeared on our site September 30, 2015:

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1988 Porsche 924SE

As we watch 911 and 928 prices from the 1980s soar and the 944 Turbo, long considered the go-to value of the Porsche world, has started the march up the valuation ladder, where is a budget-minded Porsche enthusiast to turn? Without a doubt, the best place to get your low-cost thrills still is the “poor man’s” 924. Spanning just over a decade in production, values on early 931 Turbo models have also started to creep up, but if you look you can still find a good value on the later and arguably better driving 924S models. Reintroduced in 1987 with the underpinnings of the 944, the 924S was a budget Porsche. While the roughly $23,000 entry price certainly wasn’t cheap in 1987 dollars, it wasn’t much more money than a similarly equipped Audi Coupe GT. Dynamically, there aren’t many differences between the 1987 and 1988 models; ’88s got a few more horsepower than the ’87s thanks to a compression bump, but otherwise they’re the same – that is, except for the limited run “SE” model, perhaps the absolute best value in the Porsche world right now:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Porsche 924SE on Phoenix Craigslist

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1988 Porsche 944 Turbo S Silver Rose with 7,000 Miles

Ultra-low mileage cars always present a bit of a conundrum. Lust worthy? Without a doubt; I certainly look at every car that I have owned and wished that it was effectively in brand-new condition with no prior signs of ownership or the years that have passed. But what’s the cost of having had someone lovingly look after the car you’d desire today? Well, it’s relative in some regards. Let’s look at this 1988 944 Turbo S and break it down – is this mega-priced 944 Turbo S Silver Rose Edition still the giant killer it was 27 years ago?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Porsche 944 Turbo S on Autotrader

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Double Take: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo

While the other day I wrote up two great looking early examples of one of the best performance bargains in classic German motoring, 944 Turbo. Now we’re going to look at the end of the run – the 1989 944 Turbo. Often mistakenly referred to as “S” by even enthusiasts (I’ve been guilty more than once myself), the ’89 did in fact gain all of the upgrades that the 1988 Turbo S received. Today we have two seemingly equal examples – but as we know, not all things are created equal. Which white over black ’89 is the one you’d choose?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

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1989 Porsche 944 Turbo

While yesterday I hinted that the E46 M3 might be the next 944 Turbo, let’s not forget that the original 944 Turbo is still alive and kicking. While generally speaking the 1988 Silver Rose Turbo S cars seem to be the most valuable of the street cars, the 1989 Turbos came in “S” specification, complete with the M030 suspension, more power and those special wheels. I’m lucky enough to have spent a fair amount of time in one of these; my father bought a 1989 just like this, but with white sport seats. It’s an amazing car, capable of effortless acceleration, swallowing huge trips in a single gulp, and yet gets good mileage and is comfortable. It’s one of those strange “fish story” cars; it just shouldn’t be as good as it is, and yet it is still largely overlooked as a performance value. While clean examples of the performance bargains in the 1980s and 1990s have steadily been on the rise, the 944 Turbo remains attainable. Today’s 1989 example is one of the better ones:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

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1997 Porsche 911 Carrera Coupe

Certain cars have the ability to attract our attention more than others with a presentation that invites us to explore them more fully. In some cases those cars end up being fairly standard while others possess extra details that make them more interesting, more appealing, or both. Such is the case with the car featured here: a Glacier White 1997 Porsche 911 Carrera Coupe, located in Illinois. Generally, I am not a huge fan of white cars, but the lines of the 993 seem to work very well with that color and we don’t see a lot of them. Added to that are some interesting options – sunroof delete, sport suspension, limited-slip, aero kit (which I know is very love/hate) – that take this from your everyday 993 to a 993 that stands apart both in appearance and in performance. Cars like these will never appeal to everyone, but it’s still nice to come across factory-optioned variants of what were already great cars.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1997 Porsche 911 Carrera Coupe on eBay

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Double Take: Blower v. Displacement – 1989 944 Turbo v. 1991 944 S2

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Recent technology, engineering and computers have challenged the age-old automotive adage: “There’s no replacement for displacement”. The other day I caught an article claiming the new twin-turbo Audi S8 and S7 can be beefed up and are running sub-4 second runs to 60mph. Not bad for only 4 liters; that would best any muscle car from the 1960s without too much trouble. That, coupled with the Porsche 968 I wrote up the other day got me wondering; given about the same money, would I choose a 944 Turbo or a 944 S2? Well, lucky for us I found two good examples at right around the same miles and price; let’s start with the Turbo:

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Year: 1989
Model: 944 Turbo
Engine: 2.5 liter turbocharged inline-4
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 102,073 mi
Price: $13,000 Buy It Now

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay

Maintenance:

-Clutch kit replacement and re-surface of flywheel (2006, 62,751 mi)

-Timing belt and water pump replacement (2009, 85,347 mi)

-Alternator replacement (2009, 89,378 mi)

-New tires (2011, approx. 2000 mi driven on them)

-New battery (2013, 102,073 mi)

History:

I’m the third owner. Originally purchased in Germany (Canadian Military Car Sales, Nurnberg). Second owner had it for approx. six years / 8000 miles when I purchased it in 2011. I have the original paperwork and still in contact with the second owner. I drove it (approx. 59,000 mi)so it has normal wear and tear on it but mechanically it is in excellent shape and runs quite good.

This car seems to have an interesting history, matched by it’s interesting color combination. The white interior includes the more rare sport seats with tremendous bolsters; those bolsters show wear (as does the white) which is inevitable if you want to drive the car. The exterior shade is one I’ve only seen on later 944S2s interestingly, and for a Turbo is pretty unique. Some mechanical history is included, which is nice, and while this car isn’t pristine I’d classify it as a very nice driver example. There is some light wear showing outside, the wheels don’t shine as they originally did and the dash is cracked. Great, now stop worrying about those things and just drive it. The 1989s – though not termed “S” – got all of the S upgrades including the M030 suspension and uprated 250hp motor. These are great driving cars, well balanced and fairly bulletproof as long as you don’t turn the boost up too much. Older turbo technology a little too scary for you? How about jumping up a bunch of valves and half a liter to the 944 S2:

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Year: 1991
Model: 944 S2
Engine: 3.0 inline-4
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Mileage: 106,000 mi
Price: No Reserve Auction, $13,000 opening bid

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1991 Porsche 944 S2 on eBay

I have a much loved 1991 Porsche 944s2 with rare options. It is the last year produced and has the one year only options that became the 968. Red with Gray and black interior. Everything works flawlessly and has been maintained to an incredible standard by one of the renowned 944/928 specialist shops. It has new leather because I wanted it not because it needed it. It has 968 matte black cupII wheels with new tires but I have like new original wheels and tires with it. It has ice cold air, Power windows and mirrors, Sunroof, new Porsche drilled rotors and pads. Dash is perfect, no cracks. I just did the full service cam tensioner / timing belt etc. I spent some money on this because my mechanic is the best. Just powder coated to factory specs the valve cover. This car needs nothing. The underside you can eat off of and I just installed a Alpine unit with Bluetooth and audio streaming of IPOD or Pandora radio with out the need to plug anything in but it has a USB plug to charge. Voice dialing and music is amazing. 5speed with limited slip differential(ultra Rare) and the 10 speaker sound system from the factory another rare option code, 968 spoiler. Original working Porsche stereo. 105k miles. All compression is like new and near even. $13500. You wont find many cars as nice and unmolested as this example. I spent years searching for this car. Never tracked adult owner.

David 949 232 8200. Car is a southern California car.

The 944 S2 was indeed the prototype for the 968, only missing it’s 6-speed option and some minor exterior refreshing. To some, the earlier “chunky” looks of the 944 are preferable. Guards Red is a safe bet on these cars and generally always looks great. As usual, I wish the Cup wheels were silver rather than Matte Black, but the sale seems to include the original Design 90s that should be on there. Like the Turbo, some maintenance is done so that’s a plus, and the interior has been refreshed “just because”. Although this car doesn’t have the sport seats of the Turbo it does carry the limited-slip rear end, making it a bit more fun in the twisties.

So, for around $13,000, which is a better deal? Well, both are pretty solid looking cars; ultimately, I think it comes down to what you want to do. Day to day, I’d have to argue the S2 is probably a better choice – they’re easier to drive around town, and because of the linear power delivery they’re actually a tad bit quicker around a track than a stock Turbo in my experience. However, “stock” and “944 Turbo” seldom go together, so if you’re inclined to have an occasional car with more scoot, the Turbo is capable of that in strides. It wouldn’t be hard to push 100 hp more than the S2 out of the 2.5, and then it would be no contest of which would be faster. I do like the rarity of the S2, but that pretty Turbo seems to be calling my name this time around…

Which would you choose?

-Carter