Since its debut in 1954, the Porsche Speedster has always remained an exciting and exclusive
celebration of open-top performance.
First envisioned by the American Importer Max Hoffman, who played a significant role with Porsche developing for other markets, the original 356-based Speedster was a success with its removable windscreen and minimalist folding top.
Today, these early variants are some of the most coveted and prized models within any Porsche collection, and although the Speedster has evolved considerably since then, the tradition continues with new Speedsters being launched periodically to this day.
It took 35 years for Porsche to revive the charismatic nameplate from its past, but it did so in style, performance and weight saving with the introduction of the 911 Speedster in January 1989. Based on the 911 Turbo Cabriolet of the G Series, it was the last of its kind before the introduction of the “new technology” 964 911 that was waiting in the wings.
Enveloping the performance chassis was a design worthy of its elegant ancestor. Chief Designer Anatole Lapin massaged a previous design he created for Porsche’s head of research and development, Helmuth Bott. Based on the wider body of the 930 Turbo but without the “whale tail” spoiler, Lapine’s work featured an evocative twin-hump fiberglass tonneau that covered the folded top and precluded rear seats, as well as an aluminum-framed windshield three inches lower and raked five degrees more than its Cabriolet sibling. The “camel hump” tonneau concealed a bare-bones manual convertible top which, in keeping with the Speedster essence, Porsche described as being only for “temporary” use.
Powered by the normally aspirated 3.2-litre, flat-six 911 powerplant, it also had reduced electrics, removal of rear seats and other creature comforts but combined a spirit for racing. Offered later in production with the option of “narrow-body”, the 1989 Speedster production reached 2,065 units, with 40 units making their way to Australia (31 Turbo Body and 9 Narrow Body)
1990 saw a major turning point at Porsche. In the midst of a global financial crisis, the company was faced with some hard decisions. Sales had been declining and production costs were excessively high, largely due to the company’s four technically independent production lines. Nevertheless, the path to success would lie in the introduction of a new generation of 911’s – the Type 964.
Their arrival represented a major leap forward in the development of Porsche’s perennial 911. Face-lifted whilst retaining the familiar shape, the newcomers had been given more extensive workover mechanically, with 87% of cars parts being entirely new. It also marked the first time that four-wheel drive had been seen on a series-production model, a technology derived from off road racing and one that would be a permanent feature for the 911 range moving forward.
A new engine family saw a 3.6 litre flat-six engine, while power steering (another first), ABS, integrated air-conditioning, new 5-speed transmission and the optional 4-speed Tiptronic added to the new equipment levels allowing it raise the bar from its predecessor in both comfort and performance.
Models that aided in the success included the 911 Carrera 2 & Carrera 4 available in Coupe, Cabriolet and Targa, in standard and turbo bodies as well as the mighty 911 Turbo itself and the homologation 911 Carrera RS. And whiles sales figures were still slow, it set the tone and technology for the next generation 911’s to follow.
It took Porsche until 1993 to re-introduce the Speedster to the new generation 911 line-up. Based on the 911 Carrera 2, it split the difference between it and the more hardcore Carrera RS, combining the new technology of the 964 with reduced weight, performance, interior and colour schemes of the RS. A quirky production spin saw the cars being build with “R” chassis numbers (reserved for the incoming 993) however with “P” designated engine numbers, similar to that of the 964 Carrera RS.
Launched for 1993, once again signaling the end of the generation, the Speedster’s muscular stance, raked windscreen and racing seats delivered a no-nonsense approach to driving performance and the newly revamped “Exclusive Department” provided additional styling elements not previously offered.
The result was a truly remarkable and focused 911, redefining the pure fun of driving a high-spirited sportscar and one we are proud to make available.
With just 7 original Australian deliveries, we are pleased to bring to market this stunning 911 Speedster finished in Guards Red with Black Clubsport Tri-Colour Interior. With its first owner taking delivery from Hamiltons in June 1993, it was factory specified with Air-Conditioning and “Symphony” Radio Cassette.
Opening the door to this Speedster in an event in itself. The striking Porsche Pole Position Seats trimmed in Black, Grey and Linen are complimented by the red leather highlights including dashboard, handbrake and gearshift lever and rear painted buckets. Lightweight RS door trims and clubsport steering wheel (without airbag) also feature in this all leather interior, so well preserved.
Peel back and stow the manual cabriolet roof in its bubble back, the light in and your back in the 1950’s with a true understanding of what a Porsche Speedster means to an owner and makes it so special. While the roar of the air-cooled 3.6 flat-six burbles its subdued mechanical dance, settle into the bucket seats, select the perfect music and take off…the sensations through the steering wheel are lucid and the driving experience is immense.
Having registered just 94,433 kms and complete with two keys and a full service history, the most recent being completed just prior to bringing to market, this collectable part of Porsche history is ready for its next owner to enjoy.
This remarkable and rarely-driven 911 Speedster presents as exciting an ownership proposition today as it did in 1993 — perhaps more so to diehard enthusiasts of air-cooled Porsches. Its average 3,000 km per years, factory options, and classic Porsche colour scheme all add to the inherent desirability, making it a truly rare and extremely appealing opportunity for marque enthusiasts to own one of the most sought-after 964 series Porsche of all time.