That’s the minimum outlay required to get your hands on one of the few remaining original Porsche 911 2.8 RSRs that were built in 1973 for the sole purpose of competing in the 1974 International Race of Champions. Just 49 were built, and so even finding the opportunity to buy one today is incredibly rare. Most were delivered directly to racing teams to compete in other prestigious races such as the Le Mans 24hrs and World Manufacturers Championship race at the Nürburgring, and so now reside in private collections across the world.
Fast forward to the early 1980s and – after 22 years of production – Zuffenhausen considered ending production of the 911 in favour of boxier, newer models such as the 944. Thankfully common sense prevailed and instead of killing off Porsche’s iconic 911, a thorough and far-reaching development programme continued the legacy of these iconic automobiles. This program reached a new pinnacle in 1993 with a limited production of the 964 3.8RSR. Just 51 of the new breed of RSRs were made, and a barely-driven example recently sold for a cool £1.7 million.
Whilst it’s near-impossible to find one of the original RSRs for sale, a number of Porsche 911 RSR reproductions have been built by enthusiast engineers that evoke the spirit of one of the most desirable Porsches ever built. The 1984 variant of Porsche’s 911 is the perfect base on which to create homage to the original RSR, as it revived the Carrera name for the first time since 1977 whilst retaining the original body styling and incorporating new brakes, suspension and electronics.
The Classic Motor Hub recently took stock of a Porsche 911 RSR recreation based on the 1985 Carrera 3.2, which was the subject of a meticulous overhaul in 2011 by a British Porsche engineer. He set out to recreate the look and feel of one of the most desirable Porsches ever, without shelling-out the eye-watering amounts that original 1973 RSRs now command.
Featuring the 3.2 litre Carrera flat-six, this Porsche 911 RSR Recreation would not have originally been quite as pokey as the 300 horses delivered by the Turbocharged version, but does instead feature a much more useable five-speed gearbox that delivers a smooth power spread from a relatively modest 2,000 rpm to well over 5,000 rpm, making it less thirsty and temperamental than the turbo unit.
Underneath the Porsche Red exterior an upgraded ignition system, brakes, suspension and a full stain-less steel exhaust system give this 911 a brilliant soundtrack, whilst regaining some of the power deficit to turbo models. To complement the racy looks, many other parts have been replaced with components from RS-Teknik – a highly-regarded subsidiary of Porsche dealer and restorer, Paul Stephens.
Having digested everything there was to know about the history of this recreation of a racing legend, it was onto the driving, and after spending time to salivate over the car’s sweeping lines, getting behind the wheel didn’t disappoint.
On the drying, sun-soaked Cotswold roads (that only hours earlier had experienced a brief but torrential September downpour), I was perhaps a little more apprehensive of exploring the full range of this 911’s power than I might have otherwise been. Still, on our chosen route of winding Gloucestershire B-roads, I managed to find a handful of opportunities to be pinned into the seat whilst avoiding the perilous pot-holes that the Highways Agency seems so deter-mined to preserve.
Though older Porsches can suffer from lazy gear shifting (thanks to a deteriorating synchromesh), changing up through the five gears was shotgun sharp, and never for a moment did I get any reminders that the original 911 this RSR recreation is based upon was some 32 years old – as old as I.
With the red Momo wheel firmly in my grip, handling was nothing short of precise and poised, no doubt thanks in part to the Michelin TB road/race tyres fitted to the stunning Fuchs alloys. Whilst early Porsches are famous for their oversteer, there was not a hint of the tail-happy tales I’d heard from other Porsche driving experiences, thanks – I suspect – to the stiffened and uprated suspension.
Despite the lumps and bumps of the typical British tarmac, I was kept comfortable and well-seated by the re-trimmed bucket seats and Willans racing harness, which I opted for over the original 2-point belt that remains in place.
Desperately looking for a place to stop and photograph this beautiful machine, I came across a piece of disused road that provided a perfect backdrop on which to position the car before the light faded too significantly. As I took more photos, I began to further appreciate more of the fantastic attention to detail that had gone into making this replica.
From the front-mounted petrol tank cap popping up through the bonnet, to the bonnet straps and period-correct number plate, there’s little to split this Porsche 911 RSR Recreation from the near-priceless machines it pays homage to.
Unlike many earlier reproductions, a lot of effort has gone into this example to make it visually authentic both inside and out, whilst maintaining the drivability and usability that 911s based upon the 3.2 normally aspirated engines have become so famous for.
With only a little over 8,500 miles on the clock since the rebuild, this RSR recreation is offered for sale on our sister site: Cotswold Collectors Cars, for a shade under £60,000; it’s a truly accessible avenue into ownership of classic Porsches, whilst offering the unmistakable visual appeal of a classic worth more than ten times that amount.
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