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Mart Fresh: Here's to four-, six-, and eight-cylinder Porsches

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Photos by the sellers except where noted

A popular PCA member benefit is The Mart, the club’s classifieds section online and in each issue of Porsche Panorama. Mart Fresh is a bi-weekly column in which PCA media staff and guest contributors pick what they think are the "freshest" Porsches currently available, and then attempt to explain their reasoning. Only PCA members and Test Drive program participants have access to seller contact information. Always invest in a pre-purchase inspection for any Porsche you may consider, as seller descriptions and pictures don’t always tell the full story.

2003 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S - $31,500

Of the 996-generation Porsche 911 Carreras, my two favorites are the 1999 Carrera and the Carrera 4S (C4S) like the 2003 model seen here. Whereas I consider the 1999 car special because it’s the only 996 to have a throttle cable rather than an electronic throttle, the C4S turned preconceptions about all-wheel-drive sports cars on their heads with agile handling paired with the wide body, brakes, and suspension from the more expensive Turbo. A member of my local Chesapeake Region autocrosses one with his son and turns in extremely quick times, and at the same time it can be used with confidence in almost any type of weather. In fact, auto journalists from virtually every publication heaped praise on the car in their road tests, many even going as far to say it was more fun to drive than the standard Carreras and the Turbo. When the C4S was introduced for model year 2002, Motor Trend stated in its review, “The '02 Porsche C4S may be the best Porsche 911 of the current crop of eight variants, which would then suggest that it's the best 911 in almost 40 years of 911s.” My Mart Fresh pick is a six-speed manual C4S wearing beautiful (and protected) Cobalt Blue paint, is lowered, and has a great-sounding aftermarket exhaust. The mileage is fairly low for its age at 74,000 miles, and has had a lot of the preventive maintenance we want to see in the past 20,000 or so miles, such as a new clutch and flywheel, water pump, spark plugs, and battery. And the best part? A later flat-six from 2006 installed at 40,000 miles, which is equipped with the larger, stouter intermediate shaft (IMS) bearing that’s less prone to fail than those in the 2003 motors (my guess is that the original motor’s IMS bearing failed). Be sure to get a pre-purchase inspection and ask to see all documents on hand, especially any paperwork regarding the newer motor. — Damon Lowney, Digital Media Coordinator, Porsche Club of America

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1977 Porsche 911 Turbo - $125,000

The air-cooled 911 Turbo market has seen its share of ups and downs since 2014 or so. At the height of the market, the ask on this car may well have been over $200,000. Kudos to the owner for pricing it realistically for today's market. The car itself could scarcely be more appealing. A black early Turbo has a Darth Vader appeal that few cars can match. The blue California plates are cool and the miles (if the documentation is there) give confidence — Turbos don't have the 200,000-miles-plus-between-overhauls capability of a SC or a 3.2-liter Carrera. A clean PPI
is also a must here. — Rob Sass, Editor in Chief and Director of Content, Porsche Panorama and

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1992 Porsche 968 Cabriolet - $29,900

We have been doing a lot of seminars on Porsche values lately, and there is growing and serious interest in the transaxle cars. You could argue that this would be the apogee of the run that began with the 924. This 968 has great colors, a manual transmission, and low miles, and looks to be in fantastic condition, minus the floor mats that could use replacing. The seller has gone all the way with a refresh on the mechanicals, so this cabriolet looks ready for fun in the sun for a good while without any of those needs. Personally, I'd fly down to Tennessee and pick this up in person, and road trip home through the Smoky Mountains with the top down. This is a rare car that is sure to appreciate in value. — Brad Phillips, Business Development, Hagerty

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1979 Porsche 928 - $17,500

Have yourself a V8
Perhaps it’s my muscle-car/5.0 Mustang background, or maybe that I admired the automotive star from the movie Risky Business, but I’m really attracted to the Porsche 928. If you’ve never been behind one when the driver stomps on the gas pedal, you owe it to yourself to experience the rumble of the Porsche V8 motor. This example has fairly low mileage and a manual gearbox — more common than the automatic in the early days of the 928, but much scarcer from midway through its life cycle. Unlike most American muscle cars, the 928 is probably most at home cruising highways at warp (but legal) speed while occupants relax in a luxurious interior. I love the Hellblau color and original look of the whole car. The refreshed leather interior looks well appointed. It’s good to see all service records are available and that some significant maintenance items have recently been completed: Timing belt, water pump, chain tensioner, belts, hoses, and brakes/rotors/pads. The engine bay looks tidy in the photo. Potential buyers should opt for a comprehensive PPI as these cars do tend to have electrical glitches and other unique traits that need to be checked out by a 928 expert. All this for $17,500? Need I say more? — Vu Nguyen, Executive Director, Porsche Club of America

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