There is always something fascinating about “time capsule” cars, even on stuff that isn’t all that old. I know the car I’m talking is far from new, but it is hard to believe the newest Porsche 996 Turbos are 14 years-old now. These cars were incredibly tough and more than reasonable to use as a daily driver, so that is what people did. I think from the 993 and prior, if you bought a 911 Turbo, that was a car that wasn’t leaving the garage on a Tuesday morning in November to drive to work when it was raining. In the 996 Turbo, go for it. And people did, lots of these have a healthy amount of miles and them and honestly, good for them. However, it looks like one example was spared to rain, along with basically everything else.
This 2003 up for sale in Florida has just 963 miles on it. Thats it, 963. How and why? No idea. If you want, bring a check with six-figures on it.
Last week Porsche announced the new 992 Turbo S and of course, the stats were bonkers. All you really need to know is that it does 0-60 mph in 2.5 seconds and will top out a little north of 200 mph. Much to no one’s surprise, it will be an 8-speed PDK gearbox with almost zero chance of a 6 or 7-speed manual gearbox given that the entire 991 Turbo generation did not offer a true manual gearbox. I totally get why, and you can’t blame Porsche for not offering it. First, the majority of 911 Turbo buyers don’t want a three pedal car, and if they did, as soon as they smashed the throttle in first gear, they’d be banging it off the redline. As much as we like to think we are all amazing drivers, your dentist Gary is not. That means if you do want a 911 Turbo with a 6-speed manual gearbox, you have to venture all the way back to the 997 generation.
This 2012 911 Turbo up for sale in New York is just 1 of 163 examples produced for the North American market with the 6-speed compared to the significantly more PDK cars. That means finding one is very a tough task to say the least. Finding one in Carrera White with a Carrera Red interior and just 6,000 miles? Bring your checkbook.
This S6 Avant sold for $8,182.52.
If you want in on the zenith of the BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Porsche production – what many argue are the late 80s to mid 90s cars – you’re going to pay a lot of money for a prime example. But turn to Volkswagen and corporate partner Audi, and you’ll still be able to get into a legend for pennies on the dollar. Witness, the Audi S6 Avant.
I’ve previously covered just how special these cars are and to say that they’ve got a cult following is an Internet-breaking understatement. Seriously, tell an owner of one of these that he’s got just another car and you’re likely to end up with a bloody nose and an earfull of Ingolstadt. Yet prime condition S6 Avants are surprisingly hard to come by, in part because they were used heavily and more notably because so few came here originally. Here’s a great-looking black on black ‘95.5 to consider, though, and it’s no reserve to boot:
About a month ago, I came across a really nice 2002 Porsche 911 Turbo painted in Orient Red Metallic with just 9,900 miles on the odometer. Of course, it looks like it sold for $55,100, which I thought was a good buy, but then was relisted shortly after and was only bid to $44,000. Such is life trying to sell an expensive car on your own in 2020. As luck would have it another 996 Turbo in Orient Red popped up for sale, although this one has 72,000 miles and is a 5-speed Tiptronic, not the the 6-speed manual transaxle. What does that do for the price? Not much it seems.
Today’s post is not about how revolutionary the Quattro was. I’ve written plenty of those and I’m sure you’re tired of hearing about it. So instead, today’s post is more of a philosophical question.
At what point do modifications become sacrilegious?
There seem to be several camps of automotive enthusiasts; one seems to always be wrapped up in the biggest, brightest, and fastest things to come out. Another group embraces the history of automobiles and celebrates most who love the cars. And then there are the preservation people. They’re a very special group who deem it necessary to fault someone’s vision or personal preference in their expression of automotive enthusiasm.
Perhaps we transit through these groups as we age. I can certainly remember a point in my life where I was part of the newest and fastest group. I can remember moving into the second group as I attempted to modify my car to be a personal expression. And, more recently, I’ve found the appeal of originality much greater. I’ve certainly even poked fun at or criticized my fair share of cars. Which brings us to today’s example of a 1983 Quattro.
After looking at a very shiny, and very expensive, S6 last month, two more very nice examples have popped up for sale with a few less questions – and a lot less in terms of asking price. What attracted them both to me, besides the more approachable asks, was that they represent opposites in many ways. We have a Pearlescent White Metallic with Black leather 95.5 equipped with Speedline Avus wheels, and a Black over Ecru 95 wearing Fuchs. It’s interesting to see them both appear at the same time – so which represents the better deal? Let’s start with the 95.5 first:
I suppose you find what you look for, but it seems like I’ve been finding a whole slew of interesting 996 Porsche 911 Turbos of late. Case in point, this 2002 up for sale outside of Boston is finished in the not-so common Orient Red Metallic paint. Inside, it’s equally not as common with Natural Brown leather and the Light Wood trim package. Yes, it is a 6-speed manual gearbox car thankfully, and the best part? Just 9,800 miles. Now we are talking.
Rather unceremoniously, 2020 marks the death of an automotive icon. The very last Volkswagen Beetle rolled from the third generation production line in Puebla, Mexico in July and while you can log in to VW’s website and still see the model listed, existing stock is all that’s left. The two most recent Beetles never really achieved the notoriety of the original, but nonetheless they offered a welcome break from the standard three-box design and were decidedly anti-SUV. You don’t have to like them, but you can respect that they were different.
In the case of the third-generation Beetle, I think they were actually pretty good looking, too. Spacious, economical, and good-to-drive thanks to a shared Golf MQB platform, several special models graced dealerships in an attempt to sway buyers. Here’s one – the ‘Dune’. More a fashion statement than an actual Baja Bug, the Dune added .2″ of ground clearance and a half an inch of plastic moldings all around. Faux skid plates, special decals, a huge spoiler and polished door sills rounded out the exterior trim additions. Power came from the familiar 1.8T shared with the Passat, Golf and Jetta models (among others worldwide), and gave you 170 horsepower channeled only through a 6-speed automatic:
The Audi and Volkswagen crowds can be pretty finicky. Instead of cheering on high sales of models similar to their cars, they instead tend to resort to denigrating lofty asking prices. Truth told, I’ve been guilty of it myself – but, then, there are owner’s who “know what they’ve got” and it’s easy to point towards another example that is equivalent for a better deal.
Then there’s this S6.
Look, far be it from me to say that the S6 isn’t a very special car. It is. And I certainly feel that it should be held in equal esteem to its contemporaries, the M5 and ‘E500E’. I’ve said as much many times. But here we have a very clean-looking example of a 95.5 S6…and, well, the elephant in the room has to be not the condition, not that the C4 is overlooked, not that the mods can make crazy power; no, the headline here is the $32,900 asking price:
Continuing on my run of interesting 996 Porsche 911 Turbo cars, I came across a very nice example up for sale in New York finished in Carrara White. Not only is it in a desirable color in my eyes, but of course it has a bunch of extra goodies like the aero kit, sport seats, matching center console and gauges, and the always desirable X50 powerkit. However, there is one big problem for some. The same problem as the Miami Blue 997 I looked out last week.