Classic Investments recently began this restoration for a returning client. While performing another major restoration for their collection, they noticed this car available among our inventory and inquired. Being a car of some sentimental value, a high-end streetable restoration (with some performance enhancements) was set about immediately following the sale.
914’s were known for many things – rust being a significant one. Having been raced by a previous owner, the monocoque construction would be another heavily scrutinized aspect. Some early repairs had been noted, but the extent of possible damage would not be completely clear until the car had been media blasted. Many original parts were in need of a refurbishment and the previous owner had deviated from original in the interior and suspension. A complete disassembly would be required.
We set to work dismantling the car, carefully itemizing every part that came off and checking for originality. In no time, the car was a bare shell waiting to be scoured with soda. With a significant portion of the parts being reusable, parts orders were made and plating orders created. Soon enough the 914 was bare steel and our metal fabricator was able to carefully estimate the work needed. The car was fitted with new floor sections, some small patches in deep corners and new sections to the longitudinal members. A dry fit ensured factory fitment of all panels and exterior parts and the car was off to be painted an original Porsche 914 color: Ravenna Green.
The engine was torn down and machine work completed. The owner wanted a bit more performance than the factory “6,” which shared the 2.0L 911T engine specification – rated at 110bhp and 156lb/ft of torque. Large bore pistons and cylinders were ordered along with the crankshaft from a 2.7L engine, bumping displacement up around 2.3L. Cam selection and head/valve changes will also create some “oomph” and our engine builder expects to realize around 200bhp from the enhancements.
Many small components have already been tested and refurbished or completely overhauled and sit ready for installation. One of the first components to be restored were the original Fuchs wheels.
Our expectation is that 100% of all parts will be tested and ready for installation when the paint work is complete. With our recent Aston Martin build, this preparation allowed us complete assembly of a concours winning car in only 12 weeks!
Check back regularly as work continues…
Paintwork complete, the car has been staged on the lift and ready for installation of the restored suspension components. A plan was achieved for the exact process in which the car will be assembled, including the careful layout of parts for each of the car’s systems alongside the Porsche 914 factory parts manual to ensure completeness. With each system carefully inventoried and triple checked for function and accuracy, the technicians can easily set about loading them into the car. This process, while labor intensive during the initial stages, will actually save significantly on the labor required for the tech’s to assemble the car.
The suspension, brakes, wiring harness and engine/transmission package have all been installed now and the car will soon be holding her own weight, ready to roll off the lift and into a ground location for the assembly of all interior, electrical and trim components. We are thrilled to watch this car come together so neatly and so rapidly!
All of the electrics have been installed and tested and the dash is now nearly complete. The windshields are in place and the bumpers are on, with lamps on all four corners – this is the exciting time in a build where it all starts to come together.
A restored Blaupunkt Frankfurt radio (an original option on the 914-6) was ordered for this car and has been upgraded with an auxiliary jack for use with an mp3 player or other media device. Speakers were not such an easy upgrade: the low profile required is almost non-existent today due to the large and powerful magnets used to produce modern sound quality. With limited space, and the need for a high-quality sound, a speaker was sourced from a company that produces units specifically for vintage automobiles.
Seats, windows, door panels, carpets and other trim pieces (inside and out) will be installed soon!
Following the remaining assembly of the interior, the car was thoroughly driven to identify and isolate any issues, no matter how small. Our lead technician commenced repair on these areas of concern and even a small drop of oil was addressed. The car has had a final buff and detail and we anticipate a delivery to the client in the coming week.
Due to the 914’s popularity when released, one would think that parts would be easily sourced; in fact, that has not been the case. There are many places offering reproductions of original parts, though quality is dicey at best and they often don’t fit properly when installed. Many of the parts for this car were found in excellent used condition and refurbished by us or, due to the commonality with both the 911 chassis and VW body components, we had to cross reference and compare a number of parts for the final build. We were VERY lucky to have an individual loan their all original 914 to us for reference while assembling this car! While theirs was a later model of the “4,” many of the components are the same or very similar and offered us priceless information during our assembly.
We believe that our client will be extremely happy with this car! Having built and tuned the engine for its now 2.7L configuration, we estimate that power output has nearly doubled over the stock “6.” Even the owner here at Classic Investments has expressed his pleasure in driving this car. Possibly the finest 914-6 restoration in the region (if not further), we look forward to hearing our clients’ comments on the quality and performance of this brand new, 47 year old Porsche!