Time to Blu tack your posters to the wall. Where do you stand on the 80s Athena supercar poster wars? Porsche 911 Turbo, Lamborghini Countach or Ferrari Testarossa? No surprises here at Paul Stephens. You can keep your raging bulls and your prancing horses: For us it’s the 911 Turbo every time.
Previewed at the Paris Motor Show in Autumn 1973 and officially launched a year later in Oct 1974, the 911 Turbo (or 930, to give it its in-house designation) boosted Porsche firmly into supercar territory, alongside the Lamborghini Countach and Ferrari 512 BB. The difference being, though, while the Italian’s were rather highly strung, the 911 Turbo was typically Germanic, mixing its huge performance with surprising usability. The everyday supercar, was born and it’s been the double-edged sword under which the 911 Turbo has lived ever since. To those that understood, the Turbo was the discerning choice. Indeed for anyone that’s ever tried a Countach, 512 BB or Testarossa, it’s the only choice!
Early cars pumped out 260bhp and used the weight of the rear-mounted engine and traction from the fat rear tyres to hit 0-60mph in under 6 secs and 155mph, more than enough to get the motoring press in to a right old frenzy. Such was the power and torque available, Porsche saw fit to equip the 911 Turbo with just four gears, with second good for well over 70mph.
In developing the Turbo, Porsche used knowledge gained from turbocharging the 917’s flat-12 of Can Am use. The 911 Turbo would itself become a formidable competition car, from the track to even anything goes Rallycross.
Production and development continued through to 1989. Engine capacity was increased to 3.3-litres and power to 300bhp in 1978, which is where it stayed. Surprisingly, perhaps, Porsche finally fitted a 5-speed gearbox in 1989, the Turbo’s final year of production.
Call us shy and retiring if you like, but there are occasions when a Guards Red 911 Turbo may be too shouty for some. If you agree, then this Platinum Metallic 930 could be the 911 Turbo for you. It positively oozes class and visual restraint, but with the promise of that killer Turbo blow, to those in the know.
First registered in March 1983, to Porsche Cars Great Britain, it is said that this car was specced as a demo machine, to promote and showcase Porsche’s Special Wishes build dept, hence the rather rarefied colour, enhanced by the dark brown leather interior. Talking of which – and in keeping with the Special Wishes spec – just check out the seats! We can’t remember the last time we saw a pair of Recaro Ideal ‘C’ seats, complete with defining seat squab mounted control panels for lumbar pumps and electrical adjustment. Not a seat as such, more a throne! Also present and correct is the optional and period Blaupunkt Koln SQR 22 head unit, from a time when ‘Dolby’ really meant something and Apple car play, would be just that – someone playing with apples, in a car… Further spec delights include air conditioning and a limited-slip differential.
We love a good history file, turning the parchment like pages for nuggets of info and receipts long paid. There’s many a well-known name here, with Autofarm being early custodians, even valuing this Turbo a couple of times at £18,000 to £20,000 between 1995 and 1998. That’s almost as amusing as the wonderful ‘Porsche Possessions’ catalogue still in the burgundy service folder and featuring Derek Bell and companion, modelling 80s style Porsche leisure wear and accessories. Porsche jump suit in ‘cotton/polyacryl material’ anyone? Just don’t get too close to the Titanium Porsche lighter…
But we digress. More recently the object of our desire has been looked after by our friends at Parr and there are some reassuringly large invoices, most notably for a full engine and gearbox rebuild, plus glass out, bare metal respray, work that was carried out between 2021 and 2022.
The Turbo Fuchs are in excellent standard condition and wrapped with correct N-rated Michel Pilot Sport 4 tyres. The pictures surely speak for themselves and we can assure that this 911 Turbo presents equally well in the metal, if not better.
Unlike the Italian competition, you can jump into the 911 Turbo and just drive. And we’re delighted to report that those Recaros are every bit as comfy and special, as they look.
Being of 1983 vintage, cog-swapping is taken care of by a 4-speed, 915 ‘box. With its own character, it suits the Turbo well, but perhaps takes a bit of a different mindset. Fourth is for the motorway and A road cruising, while second and third are for B roads, the latter extending well into 3 figure speeds.
It’s all about boost and torque. Yes, it takes a while to build, compared to modern turbos, but when it does it’s with a solid rush and a positive shove and not having to race through the gears, makes it almost relaxing, if that’s possible in a 911 Turbo. It’s all part of the Turbo dichotomy and legendary usability.