The arrival of the 3.0-litre 911 SC in the 1978 model line-up brought some semblance of order to the Porsche range after the mid-seventies. The middle of this decade was a period epitomised by the once-maligned “impact or big bumper’ models, and when launched, the SC looked modern, clean and fresh in comparison to the dated overall appearance of the original 911, now over a decade old. With new and innovative design features like the reflective red strip between the tail-lights with PORSCHE capitalised across it, the ’78 cars looked altogether sharper.
According to Porsche Club GB, the 911 SC is a “landmark 911” because it was the first Porsche model developed to appeal to a wider market than just existing 911 enthusiasts. It is the 911 that launched the 911’s reputation for excellent durability and build quality. Two factors above all else contributed to that reputation – the use from 1976 of a fully zinc coated steel bodyshell and the adoption of a normally aspirated version of the Turbo’s more robust 3.0-litre aluminium engine.
The earlier 2.7-litre unit had been recognised as being at the limit of its development and the new Type 930 engine reset the design parameters for the flat-6’s development potential. The move to an aluminium engine was to regain case reliability, something missing for many years with magnesium. Combined with the well-proven Bosch K-Jetronic fuel injection and a 5-speed 915 gearbox it became a very flexible, torquey powerplant. Originally power output was 180bhp, later 188bhp and then by MY 1980 it was increased to 204bhp (with improvements in economy), good for 146 mph. The SC also introduced the 911 to the brake servo, but this is still a physically demanding car. The pedal has lost its previous wooden feel to be replaced with a softer touch but needing care to prevent front wheel lock-up.
In 1984, due to enduring demand for the 911 (the 928 still having made no impact on 911 sales) the SC’s replacement, the 911 3.2 Carrera, was introduced, but not before SC sales totalled a remarkable 58,914 cars.
The car presented here is a UK-supplied RHD 1980 Porsche 911 SC Coupe. It is understood to be a UK ‘Sport’ model, being the most sought-after variant with the larger Fuchs alloys, front lip spoiler, ‘whale-tail’ rear spoiler, Bilstein Sport shock absorbers and Sports seats. This particular car was also spec’d with the options of a sunroof, rear windscreen wiper and passenger wing mirror.
According to our vendor, the car has had just two owners in the last 27 years, being bought by David Ham in 2012; and knowing good cars like he did, this example is likely to have many redeeming qualities. It’s benefited from a top-end rebuild and there is lots of evidence of servicing/maintenance over the years. There are some small areas of minor corrosion (below o/s headlight, along seam between scuttle and o/s front wing and small bits in door shuts) but the important areas, we are told, are all sound.
Frequently offered at a tempting guide price, the SC model has been somewhat of a ‘sleeper’ 911 but is now tipped by many to gain the recognition it deserves, particularly the well-specified ‘Sport’. This classic 911 would benefit from some light cosmetics to take it to the next level or, it could be enjoyed as is with many years of classic 911 motoring ahead of it.