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Total 911’s top five Porsche 964s

Billed at its release as “the 911 for the next 25 years,” the 964 generation of Porsche 911 has enjoyed a particularly potted history. Unloved for years, only since 2012 has the 964 truly won universal acclaim among enthusiasts as a classic 911 to have. Values have rocketed immeasurably in that amount of time and interest remains very high among collectors even for Carrera Cabriolet and Targa examples – unthinkable as recently as 2011. However, which of the fourteen 964 models can claim to be the greatest? Here’s our top five:

 

5) Porsche 964 Turbo 3.6

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The 3.3-litre 964 Turbo may have brought forced induction into the new new generation of 911, but under that revised body shell was essentially the same unit as found in the venerable 930. It wasn’t until near the end of 964 production in 1993 that Porsche finally updated the Turbo engine with an increased capacity, helping to raise power by 40bhp over the 3.3-litre Turbo. The new Turbo package was resplendent in a wide body, which was lowered by 20 millimetres and sitting over 18-inch Speedline wheels.

 

4) Porsche 964 C2 Speedster

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As we’ve discovered in the latest issue of Total 911, a Speedster makes for a delightful twist to the 911 driver experience, enlightening the senses with the purest from of al-fresco driving. Though performance isn’t central to the 964 Speedster it’s still lavished with an RS-spec interior, while the chopped windscreen and double-bubble glass fibre panel are perhaps the only acceptable deviation from the 911’s conventional silhouette. If you can unearth a rare wide-bodied example then you’ve a very sought-after 911 on your hands.

 

3) Porsche 964 Turbo S

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Built by Porsche’s Exclusive department, the 964 Turbo S is the fastest single-turbo production 911 ever made. Colloquially labelled as a “Turbocharged Rennsport”, the car mated a 381bhp turbocharged flat six engine (the extra 61bhp came as a result of a new turbo and more boost) to a chassis that enjoyed substantial weight saving for a final kerb weight of 1,290kg. A mere 81 examples were built, making this a very rare classic Porsche.

 

2) Porsche 964 3.8 RS

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Our drive of the Carrera RS in issue 128 highlighted just how much we adore this exquisite driver’s car in 3.6-litre form (though we wouldn’t pay £200,000 for one). In 3.8-litre guise you’re guaranteed extra power (up 40 to 300bhp over the 3.6) and infinitely more exclusivity: only 55 were made. If you can get your hands on one of these lightweight Turbo-bodied Rennsports you’ll have one of the most exhilarating Porsche 911s in your stable.

 

1) Porsche 964 Carrera 4 Lightweight

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No 964 is as hardcore as the 964 Carrera 4 Leichtbau. Created by 911 competition supremo Jurgen Barth, the car is stripped back to the bones and features the manually adjustable all-wheel-drive from the Paris-Dakar 953 no less, plus a short-ratio five-speed gearbox also derived from the 953. Its lightweight name was secured after managing to shed 350 kilograms over a 964 C4, weighing in at just 1,100kg. The ultimate 964 is also one of the rarest: just 22 were made.

Do you agree with our choices? Which model of Porsche 964 is your favourite? Join the debate in the comments below or head over to our Facebook and Twitter pages now.

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Why you really need to try one of Porsche’s Speedsters

As you may have guessed from the cover, the latest issue of Total 911 (released yesterday) is dedicated to Porsche’s four generations of Speedster, the iconic open-top sports car that helped cement the company’s legend in the United States of America.

I will admit however, that before our four-way mega test was arranged, the Speedster concept left me completely nonplussed. Sure the original 356 was as cool as an Eskimo’s icebox but I thought the 911’s the followed were mere pastiches of the initial concept.

What’s more, on paper, the 3.2, 964 and 997 iterations of the Speedster looked, to my eye, ungainly, with the double-hump cover lending too much visual weight to the 911’s already plump rear end. If you wanted an open-top Porsche, you’d just buy a Cabriolet or Targa, wouldn’t you?

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Yet, it didn’t take long to change my mind. First off, from Max Hoffmann badgering Porsche for a cut-price 356, to Exclusive’s anniversary celebrations with the 997 version, researching the Speedster’s history threw up many intriguing tales and titbits.

Of course, incredible backstories are almost par for the course with many of Porsche’s sports cars (especially their more limited edition examples) so the quartet of Speedsters still had to prove themselves on the road, something I was adamant they would struggle to do.

From first stepping foot inside the 3.2 Speedster though – my first ever taste of this iconic model – I knew I was onto something special. Seeing it the metal, the 3.2’s curves are truly done justice, while peering out of that lowered windscreen is a surreal experience.

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From my first mile behind the wheel, I simply couldn’t contain the smile on my face. I don’t think any 911 has given me more immediate joy than the 3.2 Speedster. I certainly didn’t think I’d be writing that sentence when the plan to get all four generations together was first formulated.

Undeniably, the 356 is the crème de la crème of the Speedster world, but the 911s that have followed are remarkably entertaining, not just as pieces of history but as actual automotive engineering.

Driving them unlocks a cavernous wealth of character; despite appearing to wear their hearts on their sleeves, the Speedster quartet need to be experienced first-hand to be truly understood. So if you get the chance, jump behind the wheel. You won’t regret it.

If you want to read more about the Speedster’s lineage and find out what all four generations are like to drive, pick up Total 911 issue 129 in store now. Alternatively, order your copy online, or download it straight to your digital device. 

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For Sale: 1992 Porsche 964 3.3 Turbo S Leichtbau

Here’s an interesting car that is currently for sale in Germany for an undisclosed amount: It’s a 1992 Porsche 964 3.3 Turbo S Leichtbau with only 114 kilometers that has never even been registered. Only 86 of these factory “M720″ package lightweights were ever built and only 12 in this Polaris Silver. None of them were allowed into the good ‘ol U.S. of A. and we are still a few years out on exemption from the 25 year rule, so whether this is just an exercise in futility or not, apparently we still get our thrills out of daydreaming about raced out factory lightweights for the street. Call us juvenile if you want, we don’t give a shit. Hey, you called us juvenile after all, what did you expect?… What these cars are were basically turbocharged versions of the Carrera RS, built featuring all of the trick seam welding, thinner glass and options delete of that model along with asymmetrical LSDs, manual steering racks, 18″ Speedlines and a suspension designed by Bilstein. It wouldn’t be too far of a stretch to label it a leather clad, wide body, forced induction Cup car for the street, if you will. And we will, […]

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Ultraviolet, couleur caméléon de la GT3 RS

Temps de lecture: 1’40 Rarement une couleur aura suscité autant de réactions. On se souvient aisément du plébiscite qui avait accompagné l’Orange Signal et le Vert Vipère des 997 GT3 RS Phase 1, et un nuancier plus timoré sur les Phase 2. Mais avec la 991, en dépit d’un supplément de coût discutable, Porsche a … Lire la suite Ultraviolet, couleur caméléon de la GT3 RS

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Avec Toronto, Singer repousse encore les limites de l’exclusivité!

Temps de lecture estimé: 1’30 Cela faisait presque longtemps que nous n’avions pas parlé de Singer Vehicle Design! Malheureusement, bien que le petit atelier soit plus occupé que jamais, toutes les réalisations ne sont pas aussi éblouissantes les unes que les autres. Il nous faut donc procéder à des choix au moment de vous dévoiler ces … Lire la suite Avec Toronto, Singer repousse encore les limites de l’exclusivité!

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