I often wonder if you need the real article, especially when discussing rare automobiles. I can think of a few cases where having the replica wouldn’t bother me very much; generally, they’re replicas of rare cars that are just hard or very expensive to come by. For example, I’d love to own a 917K or LH, but first off it will never happen due to monetary considerations, and secondly if I did own it, I’d be afraid to take it anywhere and drive it in anger. But Race Car Replicas make a pretty convincing replica of the 917 that can be had for around $60,000, and to me the look is good enough that I can deal with it not being the real item. The same goes for Daytona Coupes, some rare Ferraris and even some factory-built replicas; Audi’s Auto Union Type C streamliner comes to mind. But what about road cars? If they’re rare, difficult to come by or expensive to keep running, I think the case can be made that a replica is just fine, especially when executed well:
All posts tagged Turbo
Welcome back to Week in Review. We apologize for not getting this out sooner, but with GCFSB staff on the move with summer travels and your managing editor dealing with a move, we were a bit tied up. But let’s take this chance to recap the last month of vehicles we have featured:
Having just embarked on a summer road trip, my thoughts wandered while driving towards fuel economy. My MINI Cooper S certainly does well enough, but sometimes you want something a bit more suited for cruising. Which is where this Mercedes-Benz 300TD comes in. It’s not the fastest car out there, but once up to cruising speed, it’s a capable motor with the range and reliability of diesel power and a good amount of carrying capacity. This particular 300TD for sale in California has been converted to run on biodiesel and is a two owner car, having lived its live out in the western US.
Click for more details: 1982 Mercedes-Benz 300TD on eBay
I suppose it’s beating a dead horse just a bit, but it’s astounding what a good deal the overlooked 944 Turbo is these days. You can get a very clean early 86 944 Turbo for around $10,000 – significantly less than what an equivilant E30 M3, Quattro or 190E 16V will cost you. Performance from the turbocharged inline-4 will surprise the other three legends, too. Even in early 220 horsepower specification, the 944 Turbo will easily out accelerate, out turn and out brake the other three. The most aerodynamic of the three, it will also return the best fuel economy on a long trip. The only downside is that, unlike the others, the rear seats are mostly useless to anyone who has legs; but they’re there in a pinch, and the versatility of the hatch in part makes up for some of the downside. But for Porsche, it wasn’t quite enough to have a car capable of besting its contemporaries, so in 1988 Porsche upped the ante with the “S”; an additional 30 horsepower, trick M030 Koni suspension, limited slip differential and forged Fuchs wheels led the list of changes that were carried over into 1989:
CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 944 Turbo on eBay
It probably sounds crazy, but I find the 924 Turbo pretty fascinating. Born at a time when smaller displacement turbocharged engines were the wave of the future and the rage in motorsport, the 924 is still one of the most aerodynamic cars to make it to the public. This resulted in good fuel economy, which combined with hatchback practicality meant it was a reasonable daily driver. But the weight distribution and turbocharged power plant meant it was at home on the track, too – in turned up Carrera GT, GTS and GTR versions it was a hugely successful race car. It was good looking, too – subtle curves, great ATS wheels and just enough vents and ducts to hint at performance potential. Really, it’s a great package – but in spite of this 924s in general remain one of the cheapest Porsches available. That means you can get into one for quite a deal these days while the rest of the market continues to pull out of reach: