Keith is an all round petrolhead, has spent many years heavily submersed in the air-cooled VW and Porsche scene and has certainly driven/written about more original and modified cars over the years than most.
Taking its inspiration from the original factory-built hot-rod, the sublime 911R of 1967 – considered by many to be the ultimate lightweight dual-purpose 911 – this car left the production line in November 1965 as a four-cylinder 912 ready to begin a new life in California. For the next several years, it passed through the hands of various owners before eventually seeing action on Southern California’s drag strips!
In 2011, the 912 was offered for sale, less engine, at which point it was imported into the UK as the perfect basis for a ‘hot-rod’ Porsche project. Over the next four years, it underwent an extensive rebuild, with an emphasis on creating a real driver’s car. The body was restored in the UK by Graham Kidd, using new panels from Restoration Design where required, along with lightweight front and rear bumpers, before being painted Porsche Gold Metallic with silver racing stripes. Lightweight 911R-style rear light clusters and louvred Plexiglass quarter windows were also fitted.
The interior has been retrimmed in lightweight style, with rear seat delete, a custom-made aluminium rear roll cage, plaid-trimmed sports seats and a set of restored instruments courtesy of Julian Reap. A classic Momo Prototipo steering wheel completes the period look.
The suspension has been upgraded with Bilstein dampers all round, complimented by front and rear anti-roll bars from Weltmeister, and a custom strut brace under the bonnet. The brakes are truly impressive, consisting of Carbon 12 Racing billet aluminium six-pot calipers at the front, with AP Racing vented discs, and matching four-pot calipers at the rear acting on Porsche 944 Turbo discs. Wheels are forged aluminium Porsche ‘space savers’ – among the lightest of all factory rims.
But it’s what’s under the engine lid which makes this hot-rod special: gone is the 912’s traditional 1600cc four cylinder unit, and in its place is a 2.2-litre 911 ‘six’ built by the legendary Bob Watson. It features oversized Wossner forged pistons, WebCam 911S camshafts, ARP fasteners throughout, time-certed and shuffle-pinned crankcases, lightweight flywheel from Patrick Motorsports, all topped off by Jenvey ITB fuel-injection running via a Megasquirt ECU. With a custom-made stainless steel exhaust system by Vintage Speed, the engine produces 205bhp and 165lbft of torque.
This is bolted up to a 901-series five-speed transmission built by Mike Bainbridge, with custom-made heavy-duty Sway-A-Way driveshafts.
This unique car was the subject of a lengthy series of features in both Classic Porsche and 911 & Porsche World magazines, and was christened ‘El Chucho’ by its creator, ‘El Chucho’ being south American slang for a mongrel, or ‘street dog’ – perfect for a car which was built to be driven far and fast on road or track.
Genuine SWB 65/66 911s built to this specification command pretty serious money today, and this little 912/6 gives the thrills together with the appearance of these machines, for a fraction of the outlay. It’s the perfect antidote to the trials and tribulations of modern life. Imagine coming home at the end of a stressful week and heading out to the garage, turning the key in the ignition and revelling in the unique sound of a ‘hot-rod’ flat six prior to a blast along your favourite winding roads. What better way could there be to blow away those cobwebs?
Please note: This car is being sold on behalf of a customer and will be purchased directly from him at point of sale, however any further information, inspection or test drive will be provided by Ignition Classics where the car is available to view today.