Irish Green 1989 Porsche 911 Club Sport

With a few of the most prestigious auctions of the year coming up this weekend it seemed worthwhile to see what sort of interesting vehicles would be crossing the auction block this season. I encourage anyone curious about these things to peruse the listings. There are quite a few of the typically fantastic vintage machines and racers from various periods. The car we see here may not immediately attract as much notice since compared with other options it looks quite subdued, but a closer appraisal reveals it is quite special. The 3.2 Carrera Club Sport remains for many the best of the ’80s 911s Porsche produced. As with most companies whose pride of place stems from its racing history, the competition variants tend to attract greatest notice. The Club Sport is no different as it follows in the footsteps of the Carrera RS showcasing both a lighter overall weight and improved performance to provide the ultimate 911 package. The particular Club Sport we see here further distinguishes itself from other examples in that it is said to be the only one produced in Irish Green. I’m not sure if this would be the ultimate paint-to-sample option one could choose for attracting collector notice, but it surely would exist on a short list of very desirable exterior colors.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: Irish Green 1989 Porsche 911 Club Sport at Gooding & Company Pebble Beach

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1988 Porsche 911 Carrera Club Sport

Some cars manage to stop me dead in my tracks. That can be for a couple of reasons. Most commonly it occurs with something amazing that you simply can’t pass by. But other times I pause out of confusion. This 911 is a little bit of both. At first glance with just a thumbnail and the brief description this seemed like any other black 911 Carrera, except it had a $265K price tag. My first impression was that this was just another extremely ambitious seller that threw a car on eBay hoping to attract some attention. So I wanted to see what was so special to even bother with this kind of price. Now I see. The subheading reveals to us everything we need to know: this is a Club Sport and as such the high price is very much warranted. The last Club Sport I featured was so heavily modified that its designation as a Club Sport model was no longer of huge significance. The example here looks to be a full 180 degree turn as it sits in completely original condition and with very low miles. With only 28 sold in the US these are about as rare as they come for a 911 Carrera and in typical Porsche Club Sport fashion they bring serious performance pretensions a la the RS models that both preceded and followed them. Naturally we almost never see them, but when we do we stop.

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Porsche 911 Carrera Club Sport on eBay

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1989 Porsche 944 Turbo with 37,000 Miles

Kicking and screaming, enthusiasts are watching super heros from the 1980s slowly (or not so slowly, depending on the model) move firmly out of affordable price ranges. The last bastion of performance to rise is one of the best available, proving that the market doesn’t always recognize what theoretically should be the best cars. 944 Turbos, just as they did when new, have been rapidly accelerating in value and the top of the heap for road models are the ’88 Turbo S and the S-spec ’89 Turbos (properly, without S – more later). In my time writing for GCFSB, I’ve watched nice examples move from mid-teens to firmly into the 20K range. But Hagerty currently values them even higher, with a sharp spike in 2015. 2016 forecasts have the market cooling slightly, but it’s still at record highs for several models. The current top value on a 1989, at least according to Hagerty, is $36,400. Today’s car is priced at $39,000. Is it better than perfect?

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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Motorsports Monday: 1988 Porsche 944 Turbo S

For those that haven’t had the pleasure of driving a 944 Turbo S, allow me to describe the sensation. If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to be the stone in a sling shot, it’s a pretty good analogy. My first drive in a S saw me pull up to a merge onto a secondary highway. The slightest gap opened in traffic, and since I was in a Porsche I naturally thought that half a car length with the closing traffic at 65 m.p.h. seemed doable. Clutch out, foot on the floor, and….nothing. I thought I stalled the car. I had just enough time to look down in disbelief, feel the blood draining from my head and look into the mirror, uttering “Oh…shi” when BAM – the car came on boost. Like the intro to Star Trek – The Next Generation, the front of the car stretched towards the sky and elongated as I rocketed forwards. How that manifests itself on track leads towards a very odd driving style. At my favorite track, Lime Rock Park, for example, in the Turbo S you need to be on throttle when you should be off throttle. Otherwise, if you wait for the car to be where you would normally hit the throttle, you’re halfway down the straight. The best example of where this odd throttle usage comes into play is in “Big Bend”. A decreasing radius corner, if you nail the throttle after the first apex, normally you’d spear straight off the road. The last thing you want to do when those front tires need to bite in a car with 250 horsepower is lift the nose up. But when you nail the throttle in the 944 Turbo, it doesn’t have 250 horsepower. It has 10. Maybe 12. So, you plant the throttle, turn in and as you’re about to hit the apex BAM, the boost comes on, helping to rotate the rear end and you can throttle out of the corner. Perhaps it was Porsche’s way of imparting 911 “don’t lift” DNA into the front engine turbocharged wonder! Regardless of how you drive it, though, these 944 Turbos make great friends for track adventures:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Porsche 944 Turbo S 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 911 Carrera Club Sport – REVISIT

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It’s back. The 1988 Porsche 911 Carrera Club Sport we featured in August is still up for sale and the asking price has come down some though not significantly (the starting bid on this no reserve auction is set at $85,000). The Club Sport commands tremendous value, but this particular example has seen so many modifications that it is almost a Club Sport in name only. We must wonder whether the owner would be far better suited returning the car as close to stock form as possible. Will this auction find any interested parties for what is a very special model?

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1988 Porsche 911 Carrera Club Sport on eBay

The below post originally appeared on our site August 17, 2015:

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Porsche 924 Roundup

The Porsche 924 represents some of the best aspects of automobile enthusiasts, while simultaneously embodying two distinct and very different decades. From the 1970s comes the upright, modernist and simple dashboard, but while it nods to the decade that bore it, the exterior is immediately identifiable as the 1980s signature silhouette with a low-slung, long hood, pronounced bumpers and flip-up headlights. Quite a few cars in the late 1970s and 1980s attempted to mimic the design of the 924, including the notable RX-7 and you could even argue the 280/300ZX. You can even see influence of the groundbreaking 924 design in the Miata of the late 1980s as well as such modern GT cars at the AMG GT-S. For enthusiasts, though, it was the near perfect weight distribution, the torquey inline-4, the manual gearbox and the all-important Porsche badge of engineering and build quality that led to the 924 being a hit. It didn’t hurt that it was the most affordable Porsche, either, and arguably still is so today. I’ve rounded up a group of 3 distinct and neat 924S models from late in the run to see which offers the most bang for your buck:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1987 Porsche 924S “GT” on eBay

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Tuner Tuesday: 1995 BMW 318ti Club Sport Supercharged

What’s the perfect commuter car? Well, that varies by your definition of commuter, how far you need to drive and how much traffic you encounter, and what your goal is – do you want high mileage, or perhaps you want extreme comfort and isolation. But I’d like to think that a fair amount of our readership would love to have a dual purpose car. It would be something that wouldn’t be a collector-status car, but yet one that was unique and not often seen. It would combine comfort and affordability. While some would opt for automatics, I’m sure a larger percentage would choose to row-their-own boat. Fuel mileage, while gas is cheap now, would probably still be a consideration, as would maintenance. And finally, when the traffic cleared and there was a empty bit of road, most of us like to squeeze the pedal down that bit further and be rewarded by and entertaining push in the back. That’s a difficult grouping of characteristics to achieve in one package, but I’d like to suggest that this 318ti might just be the car.

The Club Sport was the answer to the question that effectively no one was asking in 1995; depending on the source, BMW sold a reported 200-300 of them in 1995 only. What the option 9530 got you was a 318ti hatchback that had been breathed upon by BMW Individual. Added were 16″ sport wheels, M3 front bumper, rocker trim and mirrors and a special rear bumper. But it was more than an appearance package, because it also received a M-tuned suspension, special steering wheel and shift knob and uniquely trimmed Millpoint M-cloth sport seats. The seller of this car has brought the performance up to M levels, though, with the addition of a PSS9 coilover suspension, double spoke M3 wheels and supercharger to the M42 inline-4:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1995 BMW 318ti Club Sport on eBay

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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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