1997 Porsche 911 Turbo
Story and History
This spectacular 993 Twin Turbo is one of the best 15,000-mile cars we’ve seen in a very long time. Looking grand in its original Arctic Silver paint and with its interior next to perfection, one would be proud to be the next caretaker and driver of this Turbo.
The 993 brought huge advances over its 964 predecessor. Engineers and stylists within the company thought the 964 had gone a little bit the wrong direction for a Porsche; chief of vehicle testing Peter Falk felt that “agility” was missing. Visually the 964 looked too much like the earliest 911s. It was time for change. New design chief Harm Lagaay assigned Tony Hatter to make it new. Hatter’s design introduced wider, flatter front and rear fenders, which began with raked-back elliptical headlights and subsided into the trailing edge of the roofline, which then angled downward into the rear bumper. The new body abandoned the angularity of the 964 for a more organic form.
Engineers throughout Weissach strived to address complaints about 964 handling. Racing against time and budget constraints to complete the 964 had to attach the rear suspension directly to the car body, transferring road and suspension noise directly into the interior. For the 993, they adopted the front-engine 928’s revolutionary “Weissach” multi-link rear suspension. These components were mounted on an independent sub-frame that tamed handling issues and isolated noise and harshness.
Where chief engineer Helmuth Bott’s goal with the 964 C4 had been all-wheel traction, his successor Horst Marchart pursued superior handling. His engineers greatly revised the front-wheel drive system and reduced its weight by half.
Engineers added a sixth gear to help the car meet or exceed U.S. or rest-of-world fuel economy and noise standards. They also improved the software, steering wheel controls, and shifting characteristics in the upgraded Tiptronic S.
The 993 represented a new philosophy at Porsche towards it Turbos: Any model offering more than 400 horsepower (in this case 408) was to be all-wheel drive for stability, safety, and agility. The 993 Turbo instantly became the “affordable” Typ 959, and one legal in all countries.
Overall, the 993 Turbo provided a better experience with less cockpit noise and much smoother ride than its predecessor. To this day, what is an older Porsche at this point and time? It has to be a nice mixture of vintage and new.
We have experienced a big fluctuation in the market place when it comes to Porsche Turbos. Prices soared to all time highs across the board a few years back, and then underwent a pretty severe correction in 930s throughout the Turbo line up. Now we see some resurgence. Of course, the first and last year of the 930, and the rare Typ 964 and ’ 97 Turbo S models always get the attention they deserve. But when it comes down to the 993s, the last of the air-cooled Turbos are very drivable and hard to beat!