Porsche enthusiasts are a strange breed. I should know- I am one. We look at the various Porsche designs and obsess about very specific models, often letting others slip by the wayside.
The common perspective amongst our clan is that performance is everything: Turbo, GT2, GT3 and Clubsport variants traditionally attract a great deal more money than their lowly Carrera brothers.
I don’t entirely subscribe to this view though. When I bought my Porsche 944, I intentionally chose a standard 8-valve Lux model over the more complex Turbo. It was a great deal cheaper to buy, more economical to maintain, and still gave me more than enough power for a car of that age. Similarly, I bought a Porsche 912 rather than one of its 6-cylinder 911 siblings, and saved myself tens of thousands of pounds.
More recent ‘standard’ models also offer a great deal of value for money, and are often much more forgiving than their super- high performance stablemates. Take the Porsche 911 (997) Gen II C4S that I took out for a drive last week. For a performance car, this has a lot to offer: 385bhp and 0-62 in 4.7 seconds is more than enough for most situations, and the combination of the Sport Chrono Pack Plus and a manual gearbox make this a true driver’s car.
Out on the road, the car is a delight to drive. I had just stepped out of my Alfa Romeo GT 3.2 V6, and even with a Quaife differential its Busso engine delivers power like a Guy Ritchie gangster- all noise and lots of violence. By contrast, at low speed the Porsche is quiet, refined and massively stable. The hydraulic steering of the 997 is sharp but also gives you that analogue feel of the road- think vinyl rather than digital.
Push your foot to the floor though, and the Porsche instantly awakes. The noise ramps up, all four wheels grip the road, and that familiar feel of Zuffenhausen power kicks you in the small of the back.
It is no wonder that 996 and 997 Porsche 911s are already gaining in value and are considered as some of the most upwardly mobile modern classics by the Hagerty Price Guide. From my perspective, the 997 has it all- it mates superb performance with probably the purest 911 profile since the old long-bonnet pre-1973 models. This one is being offered by The Classic Motor Hub for £42,500- a price that is very good value for such a car, and one that could prove to be an investment too.
With thanks to The Classic Motor Hub, Bibury, 01242 384092.