This 1997 Porsche 911 Carrera has been rebuilt into a Safari Rally-style car with new suspension, wheels, and tires. It also now has front and rear bumpers with integrated skid plates, and Recaro Pole Position seats with Sparco harnesses.
Power is provided by the correct 3.6 liter Porsche M64 flat-six, and it’s sent to the rear wheels via a 6-speed manual transaxle. The car maintains its power steering, air conditioning, power windows, but it now also benefits from the addition of a hydraulic handbrake.
Fast Facts – A Safari Rally-Spec Porsche 911 Carrera
- The Porsche 993 was released in 1994 as the replacement for the Porsche 964 variant of the 911. The arrival of the 993 (911) heralded the end of the original Porsche 911 series and it became a link between what would become the new age of liquid-cooled 911s and the earlier air-cooled models.
- When the 993 was released Porsche took great care to explain to the public that it shared just 20% of its parts with its predecessor. It was a substantially redesigned car and the changes weren’t just skin-deep, the suspension, drivetrain, and bodyshell had all been largely reengineered.
- The Porsche 993 would remain in production from 1994 to 1998, a relatively short production run by Porsche standards. It was replaced by the all-new Porsche 996, the controversial new design with a liquid-cooled flat-six and those “fried egg” headlights that strongly divided opinion.
- The car you see here is a 1997 Porsche 993 that has been significantly modified into Safari Rally-specification. The work carried out has been extensive (read more about it below) and it’s now being offered for sale out of Yorba Linda, California on Bring a Trailer.
Porsche Goes Rallying
The long and illustrious racing history of the Porsche 911 began not on the asphalt but on the dirt, in January 1965 (just 16 weeks after it first went on sale) a 911 entered the Rallye Monte Carlo piloted by Herbert Linge and Peter Falk – and it took 5th place.
The rear weight bias of the 911 proved it could be invaluable in the right hands, allowing skilled drivers to almost steer the car with the rear end. In 1967 a Porsche 911 S came 3rd in the Monte Carlo Rally, and a year later in 1968 a 911 won the event for the first time – in fact 911s took the first two places.
This feat was repeated a year later in 1969, then again in 1970, establishing the 911 as a dominant force in the notoriously difficult Monte Carlo event.
Later in 1971 a specially modified Porsche 911 would take a hard-fought fifth place in the East African Safari Rally, a 5,000 km race across Kenya with a famously high rate of attrition. With lessons learned Porsche would return for a 2nd place in 1974, followed by another second in 1978.
Perhaps the most famous of all the rally 911s was the Porsche 953, a car officially named the Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 4×4 Paris-Dakar but now simply referred to by its original internal Porsche number designation.
Above Video: This silent newsreel footage from the 1970 Monte Carlo Rally shows the cars competing, and it shows the victorious Porsche 911 at the end.
The Porsche 953 was a highly modified all-wheel drive version of the 911 that had been developed as the testbed for the then-in-development Porsche 959.
The 953 was built specifically to race in the 1984 Paris–Dakar Rally and remarkably it won the event outright in its first and only outing. It would be followed a year later by the Porsche 959 – it would be the 959 that would win the event in 1986. In fact the 959 would take both first and second place.
The Safari Rally-Spec Porsche 911 Shown Here
The car you see here is one of a modern breed of Porsche 911s that have been modified for rally use off-road. This genre has become so popular that Porsche surprised many in 2023 by releasing the Porsche 911 Dakar – an all-wheel drive off-road variant of the 911.
The car shown in this article started out as a relatively standard 1997 Porsche 911 Carrera, the 993 model with rear-wheel drive.
The list of modifications applied to the car is extensive, the suspension has been uprated by BBI Autosport and it now has custom-built JRZ long-travel adjustable coilovers along with adapted control arms, links, and monoball bearings.
The brake rotors and pads were replaced at the same time that the suspension was being rebuilt, to ensure it was all fresh. The car now rides on Braid 16″ wheels fitted with 215/70 Yokohama Geolander A/T tires, which certainly do a good job of filling those wheel arches.
The original paint is Ocean Blue Metallic (L3AZ) however the car now wears an olive green wrap, likely to help keep stone chips and other damage to a minimum when being driven off road at speed.
The car is fitted with specially fabricated front and rear bumpers with integrated skid plates, and it keeps the original factory-fitted headlight washers, power-adjustable mirrors, speed-activated rear spoiler, sunroof, and dual exhaust outlets.
Power is provided by Porsche’s air-cooled 3.6L M64 flat-six featuring a VarioRam intake, the engine was factory rated at 282 bhp and 250 lb ft of torque when new, and the seller notes that an oil change has been done prior to placing the car up for sale.
Inside the car you’ll find Recaro Pole Position seats trimmed in black leather with houndstooth fabric inserts. A bolt-in harness bar has been installed in place of the rear seats, as they wouldn’t have had a lot of use anyway, and the car is fitted with six-point Sparco harnesses.
It also has a new Momo steering wheel and a hydraulic handbrake to help you get around those hairpin turns.
The car is now being offered for sale on Bring a Trailer out of Yorba Linda, California. If you’d like to read more about it or register to bid you can visit the listing here.
Images courtesy of Bring a Trailer
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