*This is a translation done by a machine.
Dr. Ferdinand Porshe designed the VW Type 1 and its components were also used in the Porsche 356. Both companies were closely related from the start of the brand's history, and it can be said that the two companies, Porsche and VW, which still thrive as a group, are a community of destiny.
In the late 1960s, both companies were facing the same challenge. VW was faced with the task of developing a successor to the Karmann Ghia coupe, the brand's top model. Porsche had an urgent need to develop a successor to the 912, a lower-end model of the popular and expensive 911 series with a four-cylinder engine like the 356.
Interestingly, at this time, both companies were said to be separately considering a midship engine model. In the mid-1960s, the Matra jet, the world's first road car with a midship layout, was born, followed by the Lotus, De Tomaso, and Dino (Ferrari), which all debuted midship road cars one after another. The rear midship layout was the perfect material for brands that wanted to project a sporting image.
As mentioned earlier, VW and Porsche, which had a close engineering relationship at that time, decided to jointly develop and produce the product. It was designed and designed by Porsche using VW's resources and sold by both sides.
During the planning process, it was considered that VW would handle the flat-4 model with the VW engine and Porsche would handle the flat-6 model with the Porsche engine in their respective sales networks. In fact, the latter was actually designed in the Porsche tradition, with the key cylinder on the left side of the steering wheel and a five-hole wheel.
However, before the completion of the project, a "political" issue arose between VW and Porsche regarding the cost burden of development and production. As a result, procurement costs rose, and when it became clear that the car would not sell at the planned price, Porsche decided to sell both models as Porsches in order to avoid damaging its image by selling them together in North America, its largest market.
Thus, in 1969, a midship sports car with a completely new design was born, the Porsche 914. Production began in MY1970. As planned, there were two grades available. The basic 914 was powered by an 80hp 1.7-liter VW flat-4, while the higher grade 914/6 was powered by a 110hp 2-liter Porsche flat-6. Both were equipped with a Porsche 5-speed manual transmission, with the option of a Sportomatic.
With its unique styling of wide treads, short overhangs, long wheelbase, and targa top with FRP roof panels, it had a very clever packaging concept that Porsche had thought through to make it acceptable in the North American market without giving up its sporting performance.
The 914 was, quite simply, the result of superior engineering and was not a cheap Porsche. Incidentally, the price of the 914/6 with the flat-six was almost the same as the 911T with the same base engine in Germany, due to the aforementioned cost increase. While the 914 was assembled by Karmann, 914/6 of the 6 cylinder model was assembled by Zuffenhausen of Porsche. The top speed of the 914/6 is 201km/h compared to the 914's 177km/h. The difference in performance is obvious.
Although the price is higher than expected, the 914 will be popular mainly in North America as expected. In 1972, the model with the Porsche flat-six engine disappeared and was replaced by the 2-liter 914 2.0 (and 914S). The 914 1.7 was replaced by the 914 2.0 (and 914S). The 914 1.7 evolved into the 914 1.8, and more than 110,000 units were produced until the end of its model life in 1976.
|Jun Nishikawa's Highlights!|
This 914/6 is the most collectible item in the Porsche 914 series except for the extremely rare 916. From 1970 to 72, it produced only 3351 units, which is only about 3% of the total 914.
The vehicle for sale has chassis number 9140430164, which suggests that it is a very early production 1970 model. 914s sold up to 1972 were equipped with the distinctive chrome bumpers.
The current owner went to LA to find this car about 30 years ago, and imported it personally. After bringing it home, he enjoyed it for about ten years, but unfortunately, the repair shop where he left it broke the engine. The repair shop was unable to fix it, so the owner gave up and took it back to the garage, where it remained for more than 15 years as an immobile car.
In the meantime, the owner has been enjoying midship cars such as Tommykaira ZZ, MR2, and Radical, but three years ago, he decided to fully restore his 914/6. The restoration was done by HRS (Hasuike Racing Service) in Sakai City, which is famous in the world of classic cars, super cars and racing cars. It took more than 10 million yen and 1.5 years to restore the car including about 2 million yen for parts.
The original color is yellow, but it had already been repainted black when the current owner bought it in the U.S. There was a lot of damage to the body when it was restored by HRS. The current color is blue to match the owner's preference, and he used the genuine Alfa Romeo color as a sample.
The problem was the engine. The repair shop had done too much high pressure washing and water had gotten inside the engine, making it useless. So HRS decided to replace the engine with a complete 911T engine that they found in Europe. Therefore, it is not an engine matching vehicle. Instead, it is more likely to get the specs for the 911T. I actually test drove the car for a bit, and the 911T engine was powerful enough for a car weighing less than a ton, and it had a thick exhaust note (the muffler end was also non-original).
In addition, the inched up tires and wheels, lowered suspension, smaller diameter steering wheel, and body-colored side pillars are different from the original condition.
A new high-performance model is coming to the current owner, so he decided to sell it. The condition of the whole interior and exterior is good, and the engine is also in good condition as it is 5000 kilometers only 1.5 years after the restoration. This is a great chance to enjoy the precious 914 with Porsche flat 6.
Originally written by Jun Nishikawa
Photo by Yukio Yoshimi
Published on January 2022
|Year of Purchase||May 1990|