When searching for value among 911s I typically turn to the usual suspects of the 996 or, when I want to turn the clock back a bit, the 911SC. Where I rarely look is the 997 and I think that’s probably been a mistake. Naturally prices will tend to be a little higher for one relative to its earlier peers, but you are getting more car for that money. And while some buyers might still prefer a 911SC or 3.2 Carrera for the simple fact that they come from the 911’s air-cooled years, many are happy to have a modern Porsche with all of the refinement (and extra performance!) that comes with it.
Here we have one that’s fairly standard as 911s go, but which does come in a nice specification and should come in at a fairly good price: a Black 2006 Porsche 911 Carrera S Coupe, located in Northern Virginia, with Camel leather interior, a 6-speed manual transmission, and a fairly reasonable 54,400 miles on it.
I think most of us by now are familiar with Riviera Blue. Though only available since the introduction of the 993 it has become perhaps the most iconic of all the Porsche colors. Among Porsche’s deeply vibrant non-metallic blues it only is rivaled by Mexico Blue, which has a full twenty years longer existence than Riviera. When it comes up as a PTS option Riviera always attracts notice. And very high prices.
So when I came across two pretty similar PTS 997s in the color I figured I’d throw them together for a post. I’ve come across a decent number of 991s in Riviera Blue, but if we go back just one model they become far more rare. I can’t say I know how many exist, but it doesn’t appear to be very many. At the very least, opportunities to purchase one are fleeting. Here are two such opportunities: a 2010 Porsche 911 GT3 and a 2011 Porsche 911 GT3 RS. For me these are two of the best looking 911s produced and especially in the case of the GT3 RS I tend to prefer their looks over those of their successor. In Riviera Blue both look phenomenal.
Let’s look at the GT3 first:
I’m going to be upfront here, I don’t really like Sepia Brown on modern Porsches. So this paint-to-sample 2008 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe, located in Pennsylvania, isn’t the car for me. However, Sepia Brown is a historic Porsche color and I have seen a variety of examples from the early years where it did look quite good. It is a color that has its fans. I just don’t find there to be enough areas of accent or trim on something like the 997 to help break things up. Being a non-metallic color it all ends up looking a little too flat and a little too brown. Perhaps on a GT2 or GT3 RS, with their various vents, wings, and strakes along with ample black trim, it would look quite good. In fact, thinking about it, that just might work.
Nonetheless, this particular 911 Turbo does look in remarkably good condition and with only 10,870 miles on it the mileage is quite reasonable as well. So don’t worry about whether I like it. It’s a good one.
Update 10/15/18: This 911 GT3 sold for $135,000.
In truth I wasn’t sure I should post this Speed Yellow 2010 Porsche 911 GT3. I just posted a Speed Yellow GT3 a couple days ago so this is a little redundant. However, that was a 996, while this is a 997 and this one just looks so good that I was finding it hard to move on to other options. I figured if I was this interested, then others might be as well.
The other reason I ultimately chose to feature this one was in terms of market. As we’ve seen prices for the 996 have moved up. In some cases those prices even eclipse what you’d be asked to pay for a 997. So anyone looking at a GT3 would do well to consider both options. This is up for auction without reserve so it should give us a nice window into where the market stands. (We also don’t have to worry about an ultra-high reserve, more on that below.)
The 996 still is reputed to be the more pure of these two models, while the 997 is undeniably the better looking car. I like the 996 GT3’s looks, but there is a way in which that is relative to other 996 models. The 997 GT3 and especially the 997.2 like we see here is on another level. This particular example shows off its good looks incredibly well.
In my post a few days back looking at an alternative to the current 911 GT2 RS there was a conspicuous absence: the original GT2 RS. In that post I was struck mostly by the significant price difference of the 2008 GT2 and was thinking about options for those who weren’t interested in jumping into the hyper-inflated market for the current car. So the 2011 GT2 RS didn’t really make sense within that comparison, but it was something I was thinking about.
If the RS is the model you must have, then the original GT2 RS does jump right into the fray. Pricing between the two cars is pretty similar. With the new GT2 RS now available, I have been wondering whether those prices will stay similar and I guess I’m using this post as a means to think out loud. The one we see here is one of quite a few for sale at the moment. I chose it for its somewhat unique interior, interestingly an interior that is akin to what you can get on the current GT2 RS. It’s also a reserve auction, which could shed some light on my question about value though the current auction appears to be going nowhere.
I’ve had my eye on the 911 GT2 a lot lately. Mostly that’s because we’re seeing the GT2 RS hit our shores. There are a lot of those for sale and you probably shouldn’t buy one. With very few exceptions, they’re all kind of the same too. As I was looking at those and their insane prices I came across this 2008 Porsche 911 GT2 with 18,511 miles on it and an asking price less than half what sellers are asking for the current GT2 RS. Don’t get me wrong – the GT2 RS is the better car. It has 700 hp, all kinds of crazy aero, a boatload of lightweight materials, and plenty of tech to help you get around a track as quickly as possible. It laps the Nürburgring around 45 seconds faster than the GT2 we see here. That is not an insignificant difference and the sort of thing we probably should expect with a full decade of continued development under its wings.
But I look at this GT2 and realize that it’s a much better looking car. It has a manual transmission. With 523 hp on tap it isn’t exactly suffering for power and with that power being channeled entirely to the rear wheels the driving experience surely will hold your attention and be plenty exhilarating. It’s a phenomenal car that very few are capable of fully exploiting and I wonder if maybe I’m spending too much time looking at the wrong thing.
This is a Speed Yellow 2007 Porsche 911 GT3, located in North Carolina, with 53,500 miles on it. As you can see, like the very wonderful GT3 RS I wrote up a few days ago it has a few miles on it. Not a ton, but enough that we know its owners have derived some joy out of it. As they should.
However, it’s not quite as perfect and worry-free as that RS. There are some flaws and those raise questions. The uncertainty they create will scare away many potential buyers. They’ve also brought with them a lower price; the lowest price I believe I’ve seen for a 997 GT3. I won’t call this post a “roll of the dice” because I’m not sure you roll the dice on a car costing more than $80K, or at least not one without deep six-figure upside, but can you live with a little less certainty?
This is pretty much my favorite 911. I can’t say there is any particularly great reason it’s my favorite since there are probably more rare, more iconic, and better performing 911s in existence, but since the day I first saw one I’ve been in love. Some of the appeal for me is timing and because the 997 was the first GT3 RS sold in the US. Though it obviously was not the first RS entirely. There also is something about the 997 GT3 RS’s looks that I really like and prefer over newer models and, probably not surprisingly, over the 996 GT3 RS. And it’s Orange. When I say this is my favorite 911 I don’t just mean the 997 GT3 RS in general, but specifically the Orange over Black option that we see here. I have a model of one that my wife begrudgingly allows me to display on our bookshelf. I love it.
Here we have what happens to be a really nice looking example of these great cars and to make things even better it’s an example an owner actually has driven. Imagine that!
I have no idea what the production numbers are, but I rarely see a Speed Yellow 997 let alone a Speed Yellow 997TT. Whether all of the owners simply refuse to sell or whether there weren’t many produced to begin with (and I suspect it is the latter), opportunities to get one of these brightly colored 997s do not come around often. If you’re a fan, it might be time to pounce.
This is a 2007 Porsche 911 Turbo Coupe, located in Miami, with that lovely Speed Yellow exterior and Cocoa leather interior. Cocoa is not an interior color we see all that often either, but it seems even more rare to pair it with an exterior color like Speed Yellow. It’s an atypical contrast and I think I’d have to see it in person to know if I’d like it. I suppose it isn’t too far from the much more traditional pairing of a black interior and that slight change in color might appeal to many. But really this is about the exterior. Yellow cars are very love hate. Count me in the group that loves them!
Rare color or undesirable color? It is a question that presents itself pretty much any time I come across a Porsche in one of the many less common colors Porsche has produced. Of course, in some cases a color may be undesirable during its period of production and then become more desirable years later as preferences shift. Yellows and greens kind of come in and out of favor in this way, likewise the many variants of brown from the late-70s and early-80s suffer under a reversal in popularity.
In the case of the car here, an Ipanema Blue Metallic 2012 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 GTS, located in Washington, we may have one of those situations. Available in the final years of 997 production, we see very few 911s painted in this color. Anecdotally it isn’t difficult to find stories of buyers getting nice discounts to take them off of a dealer’s hands after sitting on the lot for too long. Though a standard color offering its rarity does seem related to its desirability, or lack thereof. We haven’t moved far from its original production date so I’m not sure enough time will have passed for preferences to have changed. However, Ipanema Blue isn’t too far removed from a variety of lighter blues Porsche produced in the ’80s and those cars don’t seem to elicit much derision. So is it a color that might become more desirable or one that, like quite a few colors over the years, will fade away to be forgotten?