Tuner Tuesday: 2006 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S Ruf Kompressor

Tuned cars from the 1980s were never particularly discrete, nor were they cheap or easy to come by. Tuners like Treser, in an effort to get more power out of the notoriously non-tunable CIS injection system that adorned nearly all German cars in the 1980s, got creative by taking a 928 fuel distributor for the V8 motor and sticking it on the inline-5 turbo unit. Others, like AMG, took the biggest motor they could build and stuck that into a bunch of different cars. Ruf turned up the boost on the 911 range by moving the turbocharged flat-6 into narrow-body cars. But none of this came cheaply, nor were these tuned cars always the most reliable. When it came to the period of electronic fuel injection, though, things started to change. The first chip-tuned cars also had some bad habits; my father’s chipping 944 Turbo, for example, runs quite rich and if you engage the cruise control, the computer believes you want to go 170 m.p.h. and plants the throttle wide open. But they’ve become increasingly reliable and almost a given; plus they’re cheap. On a car like my 1.8T Passat, you can get a reflash of the ECU with programmable modes for around $500; it can be done in just a few moments, and adds somewhere in the vicinity of 50 horsepower and 80 lb.ft of torque. As such, if you really want to go wild in a tuned car these days, simply changing the ECU to a hotter map isn’t enough. No, if you’re someone like Ruf, you’re still pushing the bounds – or, perhaps, compressing them:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2006 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S Ruf Kompressor on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 2002 Ruf R Turbo Cabriolet

If you want to understand why Ruf managed to achieve its own status as a manufacturer in Germany, it can at least partly be explained by considering the R Turbo. Not satisfied with Porsche’s own twin-turbocharged variant of the 996, Ruf made their own. They completely disassembled the 3.6 liter flat-6, reworked a fair amount of the internals including the Variocam system and turbochargers, then revised the electronics by remapping the Bosch ECU. Then they fit this upgraded engine, in keeping with their history, into the narrow-body of the normal 911 Carrera. In order to do this, it required utilizing both GT2 and GT3 parts to make the package come together. You could opt for different states of tune starting with 520 horsepower – some 100 more than the standard Turbo, making the R Turbo one of the fastest cars on the planet. Take a look at the speedometer, for example, which sweeps well past 200 m.p.h.. Yes, the R Turbo could get there, too – with a reported 217 m.p.h. terminal velocity. 0-60 was achieved in under 4 seconds and in between, very little could stay with the thin Ruf. To deal with all of this speed, of course Ruf fit their own suspension coupled with bespoke Speedline wheels and some pretty giant Brembo brakes. On top of all that, you could select new R Turbo as a Cabriolet – something Porsche themselves wouldn’t offer until 2004. And as they always have, the modifications Ruf made were as seamless as the factory bits with accompanying reliability. It made for one quite special package:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2002 Ruf R Turbo Cabriolet on eBay

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1986 Ruf BTR Cabriolet – REVISIT

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The RUF BTR Cabriolet we featured back in December 2013 has come up for sale again, this time with a much higher price! The original auction, which did not sell, had an asking price of $199,500. The car then was relisted at $149,500 and still failed to sell. The current listing has it at $285,000, which is a lot. These are amazing machines with a fantastic pedigree and they have tended to do well on the market, a point which should continue to hold true in the future. But this is asking too much, especially given the previous auctions.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 Ruf BTR Cabriolet on eBay

The below post originally appeared on our site December 26, 2013:

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Tuner Tuesday: 1986 Ruf BTR Slantnose

One of the great things about this blog is that we keep a pretty good inventory of rare cars written up, so that when one looks familiar we can go back and check it out. This doesn’t always work, as occasionally we forget that we’ve written one up, such as the S6 Avant I managed to write up twice. However, both of today’s tuner cars appeared on these pages before in one form or another, and I managed to track both down. Later we’ll look at an Alpina B11 3.5 that was seen here five years ago, but with 332 made it was still a bit surprising that the same one popped up for sale. When it came to today’s Ruf BTR Slantnose – one of only five made – I was sure we’d seen it before, and I was somewhat right…

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 Ruf BTR Slantnose on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 1995 Ruf BTR – REVISIT

The 993 market is red hot right now, and few cars stir the emotions of enthusiasts quite like the Turbo models. Of course, this car wasn’t originally a Turbo, but the nameplate on the front and rear more than makes up for that shortcoming – it is the 1995 Ruf BTR press car for the U.S.. Converted originally by Ruf Auto Center, this car has continually risen in price over the past few years. Since November, it has moved from Texas and it’s original $129,000 asking price to Missouri – an expensive move, apparently, since the asking price is now $149,888. Now, I haven’t shipped a car between states, but knowing some people that have (and the type of cars they ship…) I’m pretty certain that’s not a $21,000 trip. It equates to $29 a mile, if you’re counting. Does $150,000 sound like too much for a non-original, but documented history converted Ruf car?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995 Ruf BTR on eBay

The below post originally appeared on our site November 25, 2014:

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1986 RUF BTR II – REVISIT

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The RUF BTR we recently featured is still up for auction, this time with the starting bid placed in more reasonable territory at $69,900. As noted below there are details needing some attention, particularly with regard to the engine, but as this seller continues to seek out a buyer, and the price perhaps creeps ever lower, an interested party willing to put the time in may come away with a fantastic performance machine. It’ll never have the value of a fully stock RUF built BTR, but it should still be capable of providing its owner a significant amount joy.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 RUF BTR II on eBay

The below post originally appeared on our site January 23, 2015:

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Tuner Tuesday: 2005 Porsche Boxster Ruf 3800S

It seems like I’m often talking about what the best performance deal going in German cars is. That’s partially because I’m not partial to paying the “what’s new” tax on the biggest and baddest new car. Personally, I’d prefer to let someone else take the substantial depreciation hit and when it’s no longer new, swoop in for what’s still (to me) a pretty new car in good shape. The other part, though, is that I’m not flush with cash; perhaps if I had limitless resources I’d be at the Porsche or Audi dealership every other year signing on a new car. Regardless, there’s a huge contingent of our readership that I believe is in a similar situation to me – hence why we tend to look at older, more affordable (most of the time) models that represent good value, performance or collectability for a more modest investment. That brings us to the car at hand; in this post’s case, a 2005 Porsche Boxster. 2005 was early into the 987 production, having replaced the 986 in 2004. By most peoples’ measure, the 987 was a better looking car, mimicking many of the styling cues of the 997 as the 986 had mimicked the 996. Performance was also improved from some new motors, including an upgraded 3.4 liter engine in the S producing nearly 300 horsepower. That motor, however, did not appear until 2007 – meaning the top-tier S model in 2005 still had the 3.2 from the 986 sitting in the middle of the car. That motor was good for 276 horsepower, which by no means was a small amount. For some people it simply wasn’t enough though, and as expected German super-tuner Ruf offered the solution. The modified Boxsters went by the names of their engine displacement; in the 986, there was the 3400S, which was replaced by the 3600S. When Porsche introduced the 987, Ruf responded with the limited run RK Spyder and Coupe with a supercharged 3.8 liter flat six good for an astonishing 440 horsepower. That was in turn replaced by the 3800S, which it still available. With the newest edition of the 3.8 flat six producing over 400 horsepower (more than double what the Boxster had at launch), Ruf turned the entry level Porsche into a supercar killer:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2005 Porsche Boxster Ruf 3800S on eBay

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1986 Ruf BTR II

In the world of Porsche tuners, Ruf may be the name that is most hallowed. The company made its name long ago by taking cars with already excellent performance and turning everything up, in some cases way up. While they have begun to branch out their early work began with the 911 and here we have the model that began the madness: the Ruf BTR. Using Porsche’s already prodigiously powered 930, Ruf bored the engine to raise displacement to 3.4 liters and then raised the turbo pressure to increase output to 374 hp. But these were never intended to be cars simply producing more power. The braking and suspension setups were improved, aerodynamic aids fitted, and the interior outfitted to meet a customer’s specifications. All together you had a car instantly recognizable as a 911, but with enough visual cues to make clear it was not any old model. These were special. The example here is a 1986 Ruf BTR II, located in Ohio, with 67,200 miles on it.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1986 Ruf BTR II on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 1996 Porsche 911 Turbo

It is not hugely surprising that the RWB 993 was a bit polarizing; understandable given the now near cult-status of the 993 and the extreme crafting of the body. Today I have a different modified 993 to look at; this time, instead of a Carrera 2 we’re looking at a 911 Turbo that has been externally modified to look like a Ruf but it’s no poser with a claimed 659 rear wheel horsepower. Is this sacrilegious too, or are the modifications just right here?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1996 Porsche 911 Turbo on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday Ruf-off: 1978 Porsche 930 Slantnose v. 1987 930

Just as AMG is synonymous with early tuned Mercedes-Benz models, Ruf seems to be inseparable from the Porsche 930. It’s almost cliche to upgrade the 911 Turbo to Ruf specs; but they’re the go-to tuner for all things air-cooled. But for every Yellowbird that an enthusiast wishes they had created, there are many more pretenders that bolt on some Ruf parts and claim they’re Ruf-converted cars. Does that make them more valuable? Probably not, in general – faster, yes, but as we saw with last week’s 1979 930, although well executed more people are looking for either real Ruf cars or all-original examples. Today I have another two “Ruf” cars to face off – which wears the mods better and which is a better deal?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1978 Porsche 930 Slantnose on eBay

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