Convertible Week: 2011 Porsche 911 Speedster

As a brand new Porsche 911 passed me by the other day, I thought to myself “my this car got fat.” Sure, the new 911 is a perfectly capable and desirable sports car which is (thankfully) still offered with a manual gearbox. Years before the 911, Porsche introduced the Speedster moniker on the 356, a lower cost, simpler option for those seeking drop top thrills. The Speedster name would carry on through several iterations of the 911, up to the latest example we see here, the 997-based 911 Speedster. While many of the 997 Speedsters you see are painted in Pure Blue, this 911 Speedster for sale in Connecticut wears the more classic Carrera White.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 Porsche 911 Speedster on JamesEdition

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Motorsports Monday: 2008 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

There are few marques in the automotive industry whose name is as synonymous with road racing as that of Porsche. While Porsche’s reputation has been built largely through their racing success it also comes through their continued desire to make available to their customers lightened or more powerful variants of their road cars. Or in the case of the car we see here, a 2008 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, a full on racer. The homologation requirements of many of the road-racing series that Porsche competes in do make this somewhat of a necessity, but that still doesn’t change the fact that for a (considerable) sum of money interested buyers can live out their dreams to take part in semi-professional racing behind the wheel one of the most renowned road-racing machines in its class.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2008 Porsche 911GT3 Cup on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday Super Trio: Three Generations of Supercharged 911s

Oh, how I do love the comparos! Today I’ve worked up a third tuner comparison, because frankly this interesting trio was just a bit too good to pass up – as were the other BMWs! But unlike the factory sourced Dinan and Alpina modded cars from earlier, this comparison focuses on some unusual Porsches. Supercharging isn’t the typical choice for the flat-6, but the bolt-on horsepower results are undeniable, bringing the normal flat-6 quickly up to Turbo levels of power. I have three generations compiled here, all popular in their own right but for different reasons. Which is the winner?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1989 Porsche 911 Carrera 4 on eBay

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2011 Porsche 911 GT2 RS

As most automotive enthusiasts are aware Porsche made a fairly significant change to their 911 Turbo beginning with the edition produced as part of the 993 line. It would now be equipped with all-wheel drive. Every subsequent iteration of the car has remained in this configuration. Much of this decision has to do with Porsche’s mission for the Turbo itself: it is a model intended to showcase both the high performance and luxury end of the 911 line. The 993 model also brought with it a second option – an option for 911 Turbo fans who wanted the highest performance, but without the luxury – the GT2. With each new 911 model there has been a concurrent model of the GT2 – a lightened, high-strung, rear-engined, rear-drive, row your own gears, no regard for your sanity, performance monster. Extremely rare and always at the top end of the 911 food chain the GT2 reduced the 911 Turbo to its purest form (at least for a street car). As the 997 model began to near the end of its life Porsche decided to take the GT2 one step further and released the GT2 RS, which had more power and was lighter than the already spectacular GT2. The GT2 RS, essentially, is Porsche’s attempt to see just how extreme they can push the 911. A serious car for the serious motorist.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2011 Porsche 911 GT2 RS on eBay

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Motorsports Monday: Porsche 911 GT3 Cup v. Cayman S

For German car fans who love racing, it doesn’t get much more exciting than Porsche’s long history of endurance racing. Indeed, Porsche’s venerable 911 seems intrinsically linked with racing – undoubtedly, part of its mystique. However, true factory racing Porsches have always been pretty expensive when new and still are so. Watching yesterday’s coverage of the 24 Hours of Daytona had me cringing as the multi-hundred thousand dollar Le Mans class 991 Porsches took each other out, attacked Opossums and exploded crankcases. It wasn’t a great day for Porsche at a track where the company has had an impressive string of successes. So, today I decided to take a look at two racing Porsches as an homage to their first rate engineering, their enduring appeal and incredible performance:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2014 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup on eBay

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2006 Porsche 911 Carrera S w/ X51 package

I can’t remember the last time I wrote up a 997, and like with the 996TT, which I have written about frequently, the 997 provides us with a nice value comparison for those interested in a 911, but for whom performance might trump long term value. As we will see with the car here, since these cars already have passed through their significant depreciation from new they can be had for reasonable cost while retaining some of that cost for any future sale. For those who can’t get past the 996’s styling a car like this one, a Black 2006 Porsche 911 Carrera S with the X51 performance package and just 28,500 miles might be just the sort of thing to look for. Added to the power increase of the Carrera S over the standard Carrera, the X51 package raises horsepower to 381 and torque to 306 lb-ft appearing to push the limits of just how much Porsche can extract from the car’s 3.8 liter flat-six while remaining fairly comfortable and without reverting to forced induction.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2006 Porsche 911 Carrera S on eBay

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Motorsports Monday: Porsche 911 Twin Turbo Cup Conversion

I’ve certainly been a big fan of the Porsche 911 Cup; today, it strikes me as not only one of the best deals going in racing Porsches, but perhaps the best all-around deal in the Motorsports world. The success of the 996 and 997 Cup chassis has to come close to the E30 M3 as one of the most raced and most winning German designs in history. They were so successful that they built a lot of them, making them today slightly devalued in the world of track cars. We’ve even seen full-blood, turn key factory race 911s up for auction below $50,000; simply staggering when you consider the original purchase price. Of course, also staggering are the running costs of the Cup cars; 40 hour engines are the max, and Porsche Motorsports recommends transmission refreshes as 20 hours. The costs add up; rebuilding your 996 or 997 Cup running gear will cost you between $15,000 and $30,000 – presuming nothing big is broken. Okay, so the purchase price is only the tip of the iceberg. But what if you took some of the aspects of the Cup design and incorporated them into the even faster and cheaper to run Turbo model?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: Porsche 911 Twin Turbo Cup Conversion on eBay

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Motorsports Monday: 2007 Porsche 911GT3 RS

One of my favorite aspects about the Porsche brand is they have never been timid with color. Even to this day, you are able to tailor your Porsche specifically to your preferences via the Porsche Exclusive program, giving you the option of having one special Porsche. This orange 911GT3 RS is not the result of a Porsche Exclusive order, but is fetching nonetheless. This example for sale has over $60,000 in upgrades and while it appears to be a dedicated race machine, it is still street legal. It comes with a lot of extras, including a custom trailer, representing quite a deal for the next owner, especially if you consider what the entry cost is to a new 911 these days.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2007 Porsche 911GT3 RS on Rennlist

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2010 Porsche 911 GT3

Porsche’s announcement that their most track-focused, but road-going, homologation vehicles, the GT3 and GT3RS, would no longer be available with a traditional manual transmission was met with a fair degree of consternation among Porsche enthusiasts. Porsche’s reasons were straightforward: around a track, the natural habitat of these cars, a PDK-equipped 911 is faster than a traditional manual. That is all well and good and not an insignificant point for as track-focused a machine as these cars aspire to be. But it still leaves us cold. Rowing your own gears is part and parcel of the driving experience from which so many of us derive our enjoyment. That makes the 997-derived GT3 and GT3RS the last of the breed. Or at least for now. Here we have a Black 2010 Porsche 911 GT3, located in Ohio, with just 4,525 miles on it. First released as a variant of the 996, the 997 GT3 began as a 3.6 liter flat-six sending 415 hp toward the rear wheels before receiving a small bump to 3.8 liters and 435 hp all transmitted via a 6-speed manual transmission. These remain some of the absolute best performance vehicles Porsche has produced and are sure to have a long and devoted following.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2010 Porsche 911 GT3 on eBay

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Motorsports Monday: 2006 Porsche 911 Carrera Koni Challenge

Looking for a budget track ride? There are plenty of options out there for you, but in terms of sheer performance for value the Porsche 911 in 996/997 guise is still quite hard to beat. Especially when talking about the 997, the refinement Porsche had managed to build into the chassis is simply remarkable; 911s have a reputation as widow-makers, but the reality is that the 996 and 997 are very well balanced, easy to drive fast cars. They’re also long-lived when properly maintained and offer a driving experience that few sports cars match. They’re just good cars for the track – and quite fast. But are you really going to drop $90,000 plus modifications to alter a brand new 991 to be a track car? Not likely – a much better bet would be to check out some used examples, such as this perfectly liveried 997 from the 2006 Koni Challenge:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2006 Porsche 911 Carrera Koni Challenge on eBay

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