The following text represents the essence of a deferred book project and results from several years of research by Turbo-Look Register. It includes extensive parts of never published knowledge, its use and publication, also the partial contents or counts, without the prior permission of the author, is strictly prohibited!
© Norbert Franz
Last update: 13.08.2016, 10:26 CET
Porsche 911 Speedster
Table of Contents
At the project number 356/1 the first Porsche car finished 1948 first test journeys in Austrian Gmünd to which it had received a single approval with the licence plate K – 45286. This with tubular frame and middle engine equipped vehicle marked the beginning of the unstoppable rise of the sports-car brand Porsche which sat with all following 356 standard vehicles on a flat steel frame and an engine in the rear and sticks up to the present day with their top-of-the-line models to the rear engine draught of these forefathers.
1949 launched the 356 series production with modified and improved parts of Volkswagen technology, and in 1950 Porsche moved its production to Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen. Now beside the coupé one also offered a cabriolet. This was the more asked model variation for the American market which Porsche absolutely wanted to conquer. By the nearness to Volkswagen it lay near their trader's net also in the USA to be of use and thus Porsche and the Austrian by birth Maximilian Edwin Hoffmann - he americanised his name later and was called from now on Max (Maxie) Hoffman - found together. Hoffman became during the subsequent years by far the mightiest of all Porsche sellers. During young years an eager racing driver, he only knew too well about the wishes of his clientele which favorable cars suited for everyday use and which were usable on the week-end also for applications in racing events taking place everywhere. He demanded a sports-car which should fulfil the following criteria:
- reasonably by leave out
- easily by leave out
- the best handling characteristics (low weight, little forehead surface)
- suitable for sport and club sport
- higher road performance
Porsche was no less interested the the US market - the throughout history should prove the most important market for Porsche itself - to provide them with such vehicles. Promised but especially racing events a prestigious and effective advertising appearance.
First Porsche 1952 brought out the "America Roadster" with his aluminium car body which was made by GLÄSER in Ullersricht with spartan basic equipment. This car was able to do almost everything what Hoffman demanded, but it was too expensive by prevailing manual labour with the production and not was enough available. Porsche could sell only 21 pieces in the USA and thus followed in 1954 the first 356 Speedster which remained loyal in spite of its construction from steel metal to the basic principle with the "America Roadster" of applied lightweight construction, but clearly favorable was to be made. The Speedster was when he came to the traders, only 15 kg heavier than his predecessor who was with 770 kg of unloaded weight for a car suited for everyday use close to what is feasible.
The built there crank windows omitted and replaced with lightweight plug disks, making the vent windows unnecessary. The front seats as well as the back bench were simplified and shed or were cancelled. Also on glove compartment, the filing possibilities in the door boards as well as the front seat passenger's sun screen could be renounced. Particularly with the comfort hood of 356 cabriolets weight was saved and one placed on an all-weather hood absolutely that can be taken apart which promised though no entire rain protection, but could still hold the coarsest adversities of the weather. The advertising copywriters described new Sports-mobile and Fun-mobile self-confidently:
...he is built even lower than the coupé and the cabriolet and has an all-weather hood with lateral blinds: in this manner he is still a little lighter than his brothers and accelerates still an idea better. With a Speedster drive down in the Riviera – today this is a dream one can fulfil.
Porsche could offer the Speedster 1954 for 12200.- Mark and there were in the manufacturing period 4822 pieces 356 Speedster sold. By far the largest part of the Speedster production exported Porsche to the United States of America.
It was fortunate for the Stuttgarter that youth idols like James Dean and accessed other actors and the youth "High Society" enthusiastically promoted the car.
The 356 Speedster but has, unfortunately, burned by the death of James Dean - he died in a Porsche 550 Spyder, which he had a few days earlier exchanged for its 356 Speedster - in the heads of the Porsche enthusiasts and laid a substantial foundation for the Porsche myth.
Heading for the 911 Speedster
1982 about a quarter of a century years after the last 356 Speedster had left the Porsche plant in Stuttgart, the time was ripe to forge plans for a new edition. Finally Porsche engineers was the Porsche 911 SC Cabriolet an adequate basis. The challenge was to adapt the proven concept of a bygone era to the current vehicle generation Porsche 911. The entire development was done largely unnoticed by the public and behind well closed doors. Few employees and the Porsche board members were initiated into the plans.
The photos of the first prototypes or styling models of Anatole Lapine were also issued only after the presentation of a Speedster study at the IAA 1987, to the press.
It arose prior to this, the series production abutting Fair model two Speedster prototype as feasibility studies. First on the basis of the 1983rd 911 SC cabriolets the vehicle which should come as "Bott-Speedster" into the Porsche history. And a good two years later, in the model year 1986, the so after the chairman of the board at that time Peter W. Schutz called "Schutz-Speedster", already going on signs of the later serial production.
Previously Porsche had little experience with the construction of small series and the unusually plans around the 911 Speedster, where much sight differed from the otherwise tightly by the planned manufacturing process of the Porsche 911, made the development more complicated than planned. Temporarily one felt so far from the aim distant that one considered a realisation only with the new model generation, the Porsche 964.
When, for commercial reasons from the Porsche board shortly the decision was made to present the 911 Speedster as a design study at IAA 1987, the staff required within a short time were to provide a presentable prototype, which showed all the nuances the first since the plans in the idea "911 Speedster" were incorporated. The predetermined time frame became actually so short that the IAA car was only completed on Sunday before the opening of the exhibition.
Helmuth Bott began his career with Porsche as operations assistant. As one of his first duties he had to solve the gearbox problems – the VW gear box did not take the higher engine power of the Porsche engine - and had to develop a testing method for the new gear offered by GETRAG. His field of application soon increased with the production of the first technical manuals and the coordination of training and training of the specialist staff. Already three years later he climbed up in the rapidly growing enterprise to the responsible test engineer. Of course he was entrusted before and in this function also with the development of 356 Speedsters in whose load notebook Maximilian (Max) Hoffman had written:
- reasonably by leave out
- easily by leave out
- the best handling characteristics (low weight, little forehead surface)
- suitable for sport and club sport
- higher road performance
Helmuth Bott became one of the most glowing advocates of this draught, nevertheless, he was found in his view about the concept of a right sports-car more than encourages:
"For the construction of real sports-cars one must always follow a basic principle: Without taking into consideration costs, comfort default and noise regulations and in the shortest time a competitive car must be built which fulfils the rules and offers with as low as possible weight and volume optimum performance and road holding".
First, however, standing developing centre originated under his aegis during the subsequent years also under his management in Weissach, linked with the construction of own test track. Helmuth Bott was at first natural there for the development of the successor of Porsche 356, test bearer's Porsche 901 responsibly. A traditional, entertaining anecdote is his emotional outburst after one of the first exits in one of the 901-prototypes after which he erupted with his whole frustration:
"Dreadful road holding, no brakes, too much play in the steering system, excessive rolling inclination and I can see to the back generally nothing. Catastrophically!
What also became with his help from the "project 901", today is known in general. Caused by his nearness to the motor sport department which was attached to the developing centre of Weissach the Speedster idea let never again go him also during the subsequent years properly.
Many years later, walking along with far-reaching changes in the enterprise structure, continual changes of the enterprise guidance and some Up and Down in the business development, one only remembered too with pleasure the sales success of 356 Speedsters from the 50-s, and the image profit from this time. Over and over again voices were expressed which demanded that this proven draught should become adapt, nevertheless, once again, with Porsche 911 as a base vehicle, in the modern times. Herbert Linge remembered that also from Max Hoffman - although he acted as a general importer, in the meantime, for BMW, still good contacts with Ferry maintained Porsche - with opportunity over and over again the proposal came the successful Speedster draught to revive once again as 911th. He did not experience the realisation of his wish any more. He passed away in 1981 at the age of 77 years. The call for a 911 Speedster was a thoroughly precarious demand, because it is said that the then Executive Ernst Fuhrmann the 1978 ascended to research and development head of Porsche AG Helmuth Bott had repeatedly threatened the dismissal of the case, he should at a 911 Speedster evolve.
If it had gone by the will of Ernst Fuhrmann, the production of Porsche 911 - aged in his eyes - would have already been stopped at that time. There were some good, reasonable grounds for the envisaged strategic path that has proven to be from today's perspective but as a miscalculation that could have cost the autonomy and possibly even the existence of the company. Übersetzung für So kostete sie im Endeffekt nur Ernst Fuhrmann selber einen Vorstandsposten, den er von 1972 bis 1980 bekleidet hatte. Stattdessen übersetzen mit So kostete sie im Endeffekt nur Ernst Fuhrmann selber seinen Vorstandsposten, den er von 1972 bis 1980 bekleidet hatte. So it cost in the end only Ernst Fuhrmann himself a board post he had held from 1972 to 1980. Under the new Executive Peter Schutz, who came from the Cologne engine manufacturer Klöckner-Humboldt-Deutz AG 1981 Porsche sat back on the air-cooled six-cylinder rear engine concept and promoted the development of the 911. In the summer of 1982 (model year 1983) was presented with the 911 SC Cabriolet, as a completely new vehicle category, a first peak. One such open Porsche it had not seen since the 365. Outstanding sales figures - the 911 SC Cabriolet was immediately hotcakes and had a very short time a delivery time of less than six months - confirmed in the future the decision to progress through continuity and awakened desire to more open driving pleasure.
„Let us once again make a Speedster!“
As the Head of Research and Development Helmuth Bott in September 1982 with a newsletter heralded a new Speedster era, the enthusiasm of all employees was unlimited. One new requirement specification for the Speedster was not needed. Easily, openly, with prominent road performance. Also here should find continuously developed, proven use. The „Bott Speedster“ went through all stations of a typical prototype. From the idea on the drawing board had given to the design, from the model up to the implementation in which project manager Friedrich Bezner allowed to so change a 911 SC cabriolet as it the styling department under Anatole Lapine had pretended in a 1:1 Plastilin model in November 1982.
As of spring 1983, the Speedster working group worked under Bezners line so to rebuild from the production being operated 911 SC Cabriolet becoming a showcase piece for the Porsche board members. The production car have been important parts such as the windshield and the hood removed. Also one renounced the windshield wiper arrangement, the window lifters, the armrests, the fresh air nozzles and the jump seats completely. Instead of rear seats is equipped the car with a body-colored fiberglass cover with a scoop behind the driver's seat, under which one could hide a potential top. Unlike the later IAA model of 1987, the GRP cover was applied asymmetrically and has only a bump on behind the driver, who finished with the flat, integrated in the driver's seat headrest of the 911 SC seats in height.
One the whole cockpit up to the end of the doors spanning Plexi glass was barely a few inches high and their mere consideration suggested that it is advisable the appear at speeds above 50 km/h to wear safety goggles and a helmet, because the heads of the driver and front passenger towered over them with ease. Especially it gives the study its radical touch. Like most studies, the "Bott Speedster" was not a serious pre-series car, but rather a legal regulations and issues of practicality entirely carefree reminiscence of the 356 Speedster and the time of the purist, original driving.
A breach in the thoughts of all "Porscheaner" beat is Helmuth Bott thus undoubtedly succeeded and that he has as for its merits as a man of the first hour, companion and guide of Ferry and "Butzi" Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, Ferdinand Piech and Hans Mezger and mentor of many other significant employees a monument has been connected to this exhibit set, after the little glorious farewell to Porsche, which was given him in the era Wiedeking, more than deserved.
For some years the "Bott Speedster" in Weissach in garage no. 26 took his resting place. Today he can be seen with some luck at the Porsche Museum and remains like its namesake an important part of Porsche history.
Schutz - Speedster
After the highly successful launch of the 911 Carrera 3.2 from model year 1984 (late summer 1983), with many technical improvements and a completely new - enhanced in the power to 231 hp - six-cylinder equipped with spontaneous and confirmed in subsequent years excellent sales figures that attended, the Speedster theme moved again in the spotlight. In September, 1986 given technology board of directors professor Helmuth Bott a predeveloping order for 911 Speedster to project manager Friedrich Bezner. There originated another prototype which received the name "Schutz-Speedster" in the course of the history. The „Schutz Speedster“ differs from the first prototype in essential points and emerged in a country equipment for the US market. Factory photos show him with Sealed Beam headlamps, with integrated into the front bumper side markers and the US-compliant impact dampers on the rear bumper. Based on developed 3.2 Carreras Cabriolet one uses one in the model year 1985 for the first time in the official order list of the Porsche AG orderable M491 – Turbo-Look cabriolet from model year 1985 with chassis number: WP0EB0915FS170993, a guars red M491 US-Cabriolet with black interior. It was equipped with the option I470 for elimination of the front and rear spoiler and the Porsche development department was billed on 02.09.1985.
The essential difference to the Bott-Speedster lay in the use of car body and technology parts of the 911 Turbo what led combined with a windscreen reduced once again to a dramatic change of the silhouette. The wide and extremely level active line of the Schutz-Speedster met big approval. It is indisputably that this has decisively influenced the preference of the Turbo-Look as the coming standard equipment for the US markets.
The "Schutz-Speedster" study was primarily used to check the licensing-technical default for the American market and to adapt, and to check the realisation of a Speedster quantity production under juridical aspects. In particular the default specific for country in least heights for windscreen and cultivation parts had to be investigated. Then in October, 1986 the Porsche board of directors decided an official developing order for a „Speedster street version with emergency hood and Blinds. Then in the brief year up to the presentation on the International Motor Show in 1987 windowpanes were created in special Speedster design.
The design study IAA 1987
At the International Motor Show in Frankfurt in September 1987 experienced a first, the public presented design study of a Porsche 911 Speedster its world premiere. A really unusual exhibit was issued in the iridescent outside colour "Mother-of-pearl-white" and with pearly white full leather interior. The narrow car body form and the classical FUCHS rims varnished in carriage colour fitted as perfectly to the new interpretation of the legend Speedster, how to the spirit of the times of the outgoing 80s years. She presented herself to the being astonished audience in an implementation with a solo seat to be supposed at first sight which frames from a roll bar became and the driver seat leaving blank GRP cover however spanning the remaining interior which was presented on inquiries to the being astonished fair audience as "a club sport bonnet". She allowed an easy rebuilding of the "civil" open car in a racer usable in sports events without street licensing.
The hood was front fixed to the receiving holes of the dispensable become wiper with a specially designed holder, connected to a large lever which marked the opening mechanism of the hood in the interior. he driver was protected only by a small and flat Plexiglas plate, replacing the side window in one piece, from the wind. Because the fair vehicle, originated as said in all haste, one had not dismantled the obsolete disc washing nozzles. One also left the front passenger seat not usable by the bonnet in the vehicle.
However, he had to be brought in a couch position to be able to close the bonnet. The elegant side mirrors which let assume a later cup used design in Porsche 964 substituted for the rectangular implementation of 911 Carreras like before with the Schutz-Speedster seen. Finally, Porsche with 911 Speedster had conceived a pure fair-weather vehicle again.
The imagination of the "Porscheaner" was stimulated more than and some fair visitor may have dreamt himself in thoughts on an exit on his house distance with this special Porsche. Already in the first fair day orders came and to know the actual appearance of a standard car and without knowing any retail price as well. Really the reactions to 911 Speedster study were so immense in following and press that Porsche nothing else was left, than to realise the vehicle as fast as possible as a standard model.
Porsche 911 Speedster 1989 - The legend is alive
- reasonably by leave out
- easily by leave out
- the best handling characteristics (low weight, little forehead surface)
- suitable for sport and club sport
- higher road performance
That which was then presented as a production model in a Stuttgart hotel to the stunned press and from September 1988 saw to the dealers was a very free interpretation of this basic idea.
- Cheaper was the car with 110.000 DM base price at most compared to the Porsche 911 Cabriolet Turbo-Look (Code I491), for to the regular narrow cabriolet in 1989 a surcharge of 27790 - DM became due. Compared to the regular, narrow Cabriolet, which was offered at DM 94200.- base price, the Speedster was significantly more expensive.
- Lighter he had become, however by far not to such an extent which would have been possible, one would have renounced the Turbo-Look. At the end one at least even saved about 70 kilogrammes in comparison to regular, narrow 911 cabriolets.
- Openly – yes, and how. The level very crooked disc provided for an indescribable open driving experience. As with the 356 Speedster the closed driving was rather problematic.
- The handling characteristics are breathtaking with the Speedster by the special scope of supply of the M491 of package and the lower main focus of the construction. However, one had completely renounced increases in output engine-sided and had increased the forehead surface design-partly considerably.
- Convertibility remained as basic idea - with a few simple steps, it was even possible the windscreen to completely remove.
- Though one could have attested higher road performance to 1989 Speedster by the reduction of the weight, the enlarged forehead surface and with it the attack region of the air, ruined the weight advantage, however, again. However, all testers confirmed raised agility in her press releases.
Why the turning away from the Speedster basic idea?
One must look only once and it requires no other explanation. What an appearance, like differently, like unconventionally, how testosterone steered, like sexually engagingly, how one to one according to the spirit of the times of the outgoing 80th. The English language area uses a concept on account of for example this unusual appearance must have been stamped: „pure car porn“.
Already the fair vehicle was smashed like a bomb, and when three "prestandard models" were presented there was (one for the US market and two next for German / rest of the world market) finally to no more holds. After already in 1987 on the fair the first firm orders, even without knowledge about the actual later appearance of the new Speedster had been effected, the whole planned and possible production was sold off already in early autumn, 1988. Though the press release of the Porsche AG from the late autumn, 1988 described another two other coming variations of 911 Speedster – consequently a version suited for winter with firmly installed hard top and a club sport not admitted on public streets version – but both versions had to be never again realised. The then planned hard top for the winter use was never realised by Porsche. Vitorio Strosek with his fa Strosek Design GmbH & Co. KG offered such during the subsequent years as "an own development" into the purchase.
At this point it is to be looked sensibly a little about the edge of the plate and to outline the situation of the world economy, as well as the economic overall situation of the house Porsche in 1988 briefly.
The boss of the Hamburg state bank Richard Fahning stated in the end of 1987:
„We approach a recession. I assume from the fact that the economic growth weakens in 1988 substantially. In the end of 1988 we will have at least 2.5 million unemployed people. At the time we are absolutely with zero growth.“
Also Porsche was strongly concerned by the general economic situation and particularly by the weakness of the dollar. The supporter and rescuer of the 911-idea Peter W. Schutz had to take in the end of 1987 also for this reason his hat and was substituted with Heinz Branitzki. The United States of America were and are the Porsche most important outlet and thus the presentation and the immediate sales of the whole production of 911 Speedsters suited the enterprise in an once again difficult economic sphere more than.
And still a specific feature made the temporal sphere of the presentation of the Speedsters so interesting. Because by the first right stock market crash after 1929 in 1987 also institutional investors had lost the trust in the markets, the immense sums of money were in the circulation which waited only for yield-laden objects. In 1988, discovered professional investors and also small investors suddenly the vintage car market. At the same time a legend of the Italian automobile industry died with Enzo Ferrari. Subsequently there exploded the prices of new and used Ferrari. Brand-new Ferrari Testarossa cost at the private market suddenly with 650,000 Deutsche Marks a multiple of their list price.
Also classical and new Porsche vehicles were carried away by the general trend. What led in Porsche 959 in the model year 1987 for Porsche already to problems, should also happen with the Speedster. Speculators rushed in the sure faith at the quick profit on the cars. The same Scenario, which, even if should be observed in weakened form, with 959, recurred after the presentation of 911 Speedster. This stood for 110,000 DM in the price-lists, nevertheless, as soon as became known that the production was made a mistake, shot up the price of the call option on a vehicle on more than 150,000 DM and doubled at times even.
Car lovers is painfully familiar to the story progression. The bubble burst so fast as it had ballooned. It has destroyed a lot of money and many owners parted disillusioned with harsh financial losses from their garage gold which had anyway never means something to them. Many also held their "loss" almost motionless in the collections in the hope of a new "bubble". Alarmingly as become conscious by a parallel at the today's time (2016). In the beginning of the 2000s the very good more used 89th Speedster cost less than half of his original price about the 50,000 DM, so. Today are called for mediocre copies already more than 200,000 euros. In the point the achieved auction prices clearly move more than 300,000 euros, so currency-adjusted around to the sixfold one of the original price. And one is not surprised: since end of the quantity production, so many Speedster at the market never were like currently.
The pre-production models
Back to the late summer of 1988 and the preproduction Speedster Turbo-Look. The exhibition vehicle at the IAA in 1987 was based on the narrow 911 Carrera 3.2 Cabriolet. As the decision of the board was known to take the concept car as a standard product in the Porsche model range, the world assumed that it would correspond to a few, the registration requirements for public roads payable detail changes, the exhibition model. The fact that the persons responsible decided the standard model considerably changes in the appearance, in the Turbo-Look to offer - so with the option M491 - surprises till this day.
Responsible and involved contemporary witnesses like Herbert Linge remember the vehement demand of the US importers for the Turbo-Look which already the „Schutz Speedster" had shown. The former Porsche development manager Bernd Kahnau remembers that first an optional design was intended as a narrow and a broad Speedster and the first on the press presentation in a hotel in Stuttgart from board side, the final decision in favor of the Turbo-Look as standard equipment – at least for the US market - was taken. For the rest of the world (RoW) markets = all markets without America, the narrow model should be available, but without being advertised vigorously. Thus we find in the prospectus of 1989, although a picture of the narrow version, in the description and in the price and equipment list, but there is no mention.
Again and again expressed in the literature and in press releases theses that there had been by slump in sales of Turbo Cabriolets solved wide bodies, which had to be brought to the man, must be clearly contradicted at this point again. D930 Turbo cabriolet was never planned as a volume model. Porsche had rather turned back in amazement from the good sales figures of a charged cabriolet. Throughout the construction of model year 1987 to 1989 was caused in at least 1648 units of which alone 1200 vehicles went to North America. There has been a utilisation crisis for turbo-cabriolet car bodies or for car bodies of every adjustment in Porsche really at no time, because to be able to react the car body work, like in every modern vehicle enterprise since Henry Ford, „precisely in time“ produced around to sales variations any time. At no time there was a Porsche storage of bodies, since neither a deposit nor the money would have been available for pre-financing of a merchandise stock.
The reasons to choose the Turbo-Look as priority technical and body-side variant should have primarily based on the positioning of the new model in the model range of an expiring Production Line and their compatibility with the general sports car market in addition to the persuasive appearance. With the Speedster the regular cabriolet production should be on no account dried up. Too alike the cars should not themselves and might be. The Cabriolet Turbo-Look, which should also remain available in the program still was no significant competition for the Speedster. Worldwide, there were still 122 buyers for a WTL Cabriolet model year 1989th. Then came on top of that that one wanted to offer the Speedster also more expensive than the regular cabriolet to be able to tax away also the profits which very probably seemed attainable in the period of bloom of the 80th prize bubble. Nearly 20,000 DM to justify additional cost to the 911 Cabriolet with the elimination of parts, a fiberglass hump and a smaller windshield would not arrive favorably even with the generally sentient enthusiasts.
Thus one obstructed the popular and prestigious Turbo-Look and achieved alone with it, measured in the whole production of 911 Speedster, an additional turnover of about 38 million DM!
It was the perfect manoeuvre at the right time, because concerning the curtailment of the sales figures of the cabriolet by the Speedster, one should keep right. If another 4026 cabriolets were sold in the model year 1987 worldwide, the sales figures sank in the model year 1988 already on 3520 piece. Not unusually if a new vehicle generation stands in the start holes. By the Speedster one succeeded in increasing the production of open Porsche 911 in the last model year in setting down with 2104 Speedster and 2740 cabriolets once again 4844 open Porsche 911 with suction engine.
The stunning appearance of the "pre-production" must the decision-makers at Porsche also made easy to follow these economic considerations.
After initially an "Guards Red" (color number: L80K) copy with black multicolor fabric interior and the vehicle identification number: WP0ZZZ91ZKS150062, approved with the license plate BB-PW 307 on the Porsche AG and one in "White Gold Metallic" (color number: L550) coated specimen with maroon special-leather upholstery (YR) VIN: WP0ZZZ91ZKS150063 had been completed and presented, made sure the development team and at board level for sure: that is the new interpretation of the speedsters.
For the US market was pushed by another pre-series car. Instead of the more powerful "White Gold Metallic" came a gentle "linen grey Metallic" paint as used and tey chosed the interior trim level (AU) = black and gray fabric with Porsche logo and black beltline. This vehicle is the only US vehicle that can not be found in the, sole U.S. Speedster reserved VIN range. It was build before this was fixed as standard.
It was delivered as follows:
- FIN: WP0EB0918KS170061
- Model year : 1989
- Car type : 911740 = Speedster USA/CAN
- Country : C02 = country equipment-Amerika
- Colour code : W5V9 = linen-metallic 1988-1994 - Dach schwarz
- Paint code : L550 = linene-metallic 1988-1994
- Interior : AU = seat center sections in black-gray fabric with Porsche lettering - black beltlinie
- Carpets : 5FV = carpets black
- Engine type : 930,25
- Engine-Nr. : 64K00064
- Gear type : G50.01
- Gear-Nr. : 1K00501
- Delivery.-PZ : 1001030 = Werksauslieferung - Porsche AG - 70435 Stuttgart
|M243||shortened gear shifter|
|M419||Luggage rack instead of the rear seats (with lockable boxes)|
|M470||without front and rear spoilers, in conjunction with Turbo-Look|
To all three prestandard cars it is common that all parts are not identical with the later standard implementation and one finds partially still experimental crops. With the white gold-metallic-coloured prestandard car the wipers were even otherwise injured and one had it, despite countries Equipment Germany equipped to illustrate for the US market with the wide safety impact absorber on the rear bumper of the US 911 models. One sees just in such unusual, non-serial parts clear that these cars must have originated in the period between the International Motor Show presentation and the official production beginning, so before one had resolved to the Speedster own type number (911730 for the LHD and 911731 for the vehicles guided on the right RHD) and to give the US-Speedster (911740) even an own chassis number area, besides. Because of these three cars is striking that they are still with the type designation 911 630 (for USA 911 640) of the 911 convertibles were referred to their identification adhesives (hood Options adhesives and the counterpart in the service booklet). Only later they were internally - also in the Porsche database - rededicated and in the model number of the Speedster added and referred to again. The unique made option stickers could not be adapted any more. On this the prestandard vehicle for the USA, how his counterparts for the „rest of the world“ also carries the m codes M491 and M470 (491=Turbo-look and 470=Entfall of the front spoiler and back spoiler) just as in his internal documents. Then with all following US vehicles these both options belonged to the extent of the standard equipment with delivery and were not noted consequently any more on the option glues or inside than extra equipment.
The Speedster Series-Production
After the ceremonious inauguration August, 1988 Porsche took up the production in the new car body work 5 in Zuffenhausen. The old halls of the former car body work Reuter had retired. However, they still got a meaning the last time while manufacturing Porsche 911 Speedsters. From the flood of the orders in amazement the responsible thoughts about the possible manufacturing capacities had to come along for the Speedster. Easily could have been set down in 3000 and more cars, but the conversion of production to the completely new Porsche model series with the name 964, which continues to run production of all models of the folding bellows era and specifically necessary manufacturing steps for the Speedster production, limited the possible vehicle output.
After three prestandard vehicles originated first a renewed small series of four other vehicles with which everybody was submitted with the prestandard vehicles won knowledge to a practise test and a final build plan was fixed. Were the first pre-production vehicles still permitted on Porsche and were taken later in the private sale, so these vehicles are the first customer vehicles that came to delivery.
Some steps of the Speedster production had to be carried out in manual labour, because a computer-controlled production proved no sense for only just about 2000 units. Since the old former manufacturing plant Reuter was not dismantled, use was made of this resource to the manufacturing problem to solve. The manual disposal still usual there of manufacturing point to manufacturing point met the necessary manual labour in the Speedster car body. First of all, however, had to be formed within a short time a production team that should do the construction of special parts and then formed a flexible young team, led by the team leader Mr. Wald. It was held a proper training camp, where the team was prepared for the construction of the 911 Speedster. In the future this team originated up to 48 Speedster per working day.
The especially contrived Speedster hood was made completely in the Zuffenhausener saddlery in four construction goats they simulated the disc frame and the interior opening. In parallel in addition the assembly of the hood linkage also occurred in manual labour.
Also the manufacturing of the Speedster bonnet of GRP composite material with both succinct humps occurred extensively in manual labour.
After the completion of the raw car body and their hauling over the street to the „new shell“ – the car body assembly, the special treatment of the Speedster began in Zuffenhausen. After the car body and installing the windshield design that further production of the 911 Speedster was again carried out in parallel to the normal fluctuation of the normal models. The disposal occurred first in the paint shop and afterwards to the final assembly. One final followed any improvements and the test drive over some 32 kilometers. Each Speedster was also as Cabriolet and Targa, a leak test subject in a sprinkler system. Thereafter, the finished Speedster for pickup at the plant or shipment to the delivery companies were ready.
What was special about the construction of the Speedster and what are the key structural differences from the 911 Cabriolet:
- Raw car body (front end, admissions of the windshield
- Panel shell
- Wheel arches front and side rail between wheel arches
- Hinge pillar (lower A-pillar)
- Guide tube front and rear
- Fond inner wall
- Cowl below
- Mounting frame
- Front apron (special corners and on WTL. Speedster WTL (M470))
- Door shell
- Door check
- Lower sealing, side window
- Door weather strip
- safety button
- Pushbutton rod
- Cover strip outside
- Cross arm (window mechanism)
- Window crank 911 Carrera CS
- Window guide rail ront and rear
- Glazing complete
- Parts of the adhesive carpet back (seat pan, wheel arches)
- Sidewall trim
- Door panel
- Amping mat behind (it needs to be processed the Carrera mat)
- Sun visor
- Rear View mirror
- Back space cover (cusp)
- Actuation by cable
- Air distribution front ventilation
- Wiper motor, and wiper blades
- Door loudspeaker (shallow)
- Antenna (half length)
Base price without catalyst: netto 96.491,23 DM – incl. 14% German VAT: 110.000 DM Base price without catalyst: netto 97.872,81 DM – incl. 14% German VAT: 111.575 DM
Ratio 9:31 Z / i = 3,444
Speedster in the narrow design
Not all customers were enthusiastic, like the majority of the prospective customers, about the wide Turbo-Look implementation and wished the original and more discreet appearance of the narrow Speedsters which had been presented in 1987 on the International Motor Show. Because from technical view nothing spoke against such an implementation, Porsche did not close mind to these wishes. The official vehicle catalogue with attached price-list showed even a narrow Speedster, however, closer information to equipment and price of such a version was not called. The question whether the vehicle shown there with the official sign S-JN 7392 an unknown copy of a preseries or a copy from the running production shows, could not be answered by the mother's house. Mr. Bezner remembered no such prestandard copy. With the chassis number WP0ZZZ91ZKS150856 the first narrow Speedster on incentive of the French general importer SONAUTO was originated for the French market. This car is the eighth built Speedster generally and shows the real beginning of the Speedster serial production. This was based here as well as the 911 Cabriolet from which all technical parts were taken. The narrow Speedster has not, as is often claimed, the braking system of the Turbo, since that would have been possible from a technical point of view not without requiring adapters and the processing at the rear wheel, accompanied by a necessary renewed type test. By dispensing the Turbo-Look with all its components, the DIN-weight reduced again by 80 kilograms to 1210kg. Everything that lay at the Ur-Speedster, found only in this, almost incidentally produced variant, his legitimate successors, because the purchase price for the narrow version reduced Porsche opposite the Turbo-Look Speedster around 22.000.- DM to 88,000 DM, remaining below the basic price of the 911 Cabriolet, that, based on the base price of a vehicle without a catalytic converter, with 94.200.- DM in the price lists of 7.1988 and 4.1989 has been listed. For all models, if you chose the environmental friendly catalyst, a surcharge of 1575.- DM.
There originated in the course of the Speedster production 161 narrow Speedster. 151 pieces as link driver (LHD) and 10 pieces with the steering wheel on the right side (RHD).
The latter have been produced with one exception all of the Australian market (C23).
Again and again, the total number of these rare cars is incorrectly specified - the ten RHD mostly double added or forgotten entirely. They are also often the most indicated falsely with 2103 units total number of Speedster production added. Again and again we read that there had also been no narrow Speedster for the German market, or specific markets were exclusively supplied with narrow vehicles. All said needs, as demonstrated below, be contradicted. No matter which source you look at, also details of Porsche itself - no is complete and correct. Today particularly the narrow cars are collector's items in request and is offered in the market with clear surcharges to the turbo-look Speedster if they are generally available then in rare cases. Hardly a copy has been traveling in normal everyday traffic. In fact, these rarities are usually gone directly to collections and have at best completed short motion rides.
The Speedster in the everyday life
What was mentioned before already with the narrow Speedster, is valid concerning the use basically for the large part all 1989th Speedster. Bought from many buyers already as a yield object, an enormously high number of the cars disappeared in collections. From no Porschemodell there are in relation to the whole number of pieces so many untouched cars which has less than 1000 km on the speedometer since first licensing and over and over again there appear the cars which have put back no 400 km per year.
It should the Speedster - would be gone by the will of the builder - be a real driving machine and entice even more for open-air driving pleasure in comparison to the Cabriolet. As already with his historical model the Porsche engineers had succeeded in making 911 Speedster lighter than his base vehicle. With the 1989th model these were at least 70 kg. To reach this one had renounced particularly comfort details. So for example, were eliminated the power windows, the wiring harness has been relieved and the rear seats were missing. Strictly as a two-seater laid out and typed, the space freely become here could be used, elegantly to covered by the GRP - cover with two humps, under use of a specially developed optional filing box for putting away and fastening of luggage pieces. This box covering the gear tunnel with two lockers allowed, besides, to enclose also objects certainly before looks and access. For the USA, incl. California, belonged this filing boxing to the standard equipment. All together 1142 customers chose worldwide this option. As the Cabriolet on the parcel shelf resting, housed the GFK cover also the light and unexpectedly weatherproof "emergency folding roof". Already this name indicated to the user that a challenge was waiting for him with the complex operation of the convertible top design. Porsche explained this with an own, renunciation demanding definition of the concept Speedster:
"A cabriolet is a closed car which one can drive with open roof. A Speedster is an open car which one can drive with closed roof. "
The wind from the sail was taken from the front in from every "sceptic". Before the pleasure of the first open exit on the country road at warm temperatures and sunshine a study of the „appendix was to the manual – one added to the manual of 911 cabriolets some additional sheets – to release indispensably around the vehicle properly from his emergency hood and to stow away this under the GRP cover with two striking humps. It will have certainly caused quite a lot of bruise and light bruises, but the real Speedster driver created this hurdle after some exercises also without help of a front seat passenger.
In spite of the low height of the front and side discs also for the largely grown Speedster driver a journey more or less relieved by annoying train was allowed, the Porsche engineers wanted to reach first with the sinking of the whole seat arrangement by the more level seat rail admissions which were welded together on the vehicle ground. The additional expenditure to be expected thereby in the quantity production prevented this especially for the Speedster to developed components at the end which were a good 1 cm more level than obstructed in the other standard vehicles. In the Speedster prototypes they found use and by the deeper seat position allowed with it in the carriage grown pilots also have largely no touch problems with the hood in the closed state. In fact, the door closes at the shoulder and into the lock from the outside is usually to recognize only the head of the occupant, which based on the driver's belt line of the 911 Speedster acts increased significantly, without actually being changed. Over and over again is from seats the speech whose seats were conceived level upholstered especially for the Speedster and also from shortened seat back armrests, but both has been never planned. In the standard equipment (base seat) became, like already with the Carrera 3. 2 CS (club sport), the seats of the base seats which are built up in themselves already a little more level than which of the comfort seats, with the back armrests the high side hold to promissory sports seats combines. In the end this was the universal solution to a minimal lower seating position, as described in the press release to realize. This speedster base seat there was an additional charge also electrically adjustable or with seat heating. As an optional extra but both partially and fully electric comfort seats, as well as electrically adjustable sport seats were available for purchase. Worldwide, the comfort seats (M437 + M438) 381 times and the sport seats (M383 + M387) were ordered 818 times.
To drive a 1989 Speedster is already a special experience. It succeeds as in almost any other almost 30 year old car swim along in today's traffic.
A traffic obstruction is the Speedster at most in such a way that it still manages to looks of young and old to get noticed. The driver inspires of the Speedster particularly by the pure unfiltered and not by electronic driving facilities influenced kind of the locomotion which allows to become one with the street and the flying past environment during the elemental powers of the wind and noise in one tug. Thus the pioneers of the strength journey must have felt. None of the round-sucked and replaceable vehicles of our time is able to wake up such feelings which the Speedster releases even with the most stoic user unavoidably.
One of the first customers of 911 Speedster is cited:
„The Speedster is in such a way as a woman should not be: broadly and level“.
To this I allow myself to add:
„…and it is the same as a woman should be: always exciting and valuable.“