Porsche’s focus on the future is matched only by its passion for the past. Which is why, all across Canada, Porsche Centres have spent the last year ensconced in the second consecutive Porsche Classic Restoration Competition. Once again, the challenge was to restore any Porsche model classified as a classic, with the objective of returning it to factory condition throughout. The competition serves to showcase every centre’s expertise and dedication while uniting both individual teams and Canada’s wider Porsche family.
Twelve Canadian Centres took part in the latest event, restoring both 356 Coupes and Cabriolets alongside a wide variety of air-cooled 911 models. They were tasked not only with sourcing their cars and returning them to their former glory, but also with carefully documenting the process and sharing it through various media channels as part of the overall competition.
At the end of the allotted time frame, all entries were sent to Porsche’s Parts and Distribution Centre in Mississauga, Ontario, which also serves as a training centre for Porsche technicians. Here, a panel of expert judges drawn from the Porsche Club of America’s Canada Region and from Porsche Cars Canada, including President and CEO Marc Ouayoun, assessed the entries based upon their technical restoration, vehicle condition and supporting marketing and communication.
“The objective of this project is to showcase the classic know-how and restoration ability of our excellent Porsche Centres across Canada,” explains Porsche Cars Canada’s National After Sales Business Manager Rajat Thukral, who oversaw the competition. “It also allows the teams to get passionate about the brand and its deep, rich heritage.”
Classic know-how and restoration ability
The competition saw numerous different approaches, from the fastidious restoration of a 1964 356B Coupe by Porsche Centre Oakville to Pfaff Porsche’s decision to breathe new life into a high mileage 993. This Polar Silver 911 Carrera had been sold originally by Pfaff in the mid-1990s and by the time of its restoration was proudly wearing more than 200,000 kilometres on its odometer.
Other unique cars included a 930 Turbo finished in a daring Paint To Sample blue by Porsche Centre London, a ‘long hood’ 1969 911 E that Mark Motors Porsche had dedicated over 2,200 hours to rebuilding by the time the competition closed and a homage to the factory’s mid-1980s rallying endeavours with Porsche Centre Vancouver’s head-turning 911 Safari, complete with mighty suspension lift and Porsche Exclusive tartan interior.
An incredibly difficult judging process assessed every element of the car, from engine and gearbox rebuilds to exhaust systems, wiring, lighting brakes and bodywork. The competition was split into two categories, judging the 356 restorations separately from the 911 cars, with awards available for both model series. Recognition was also given to the Centre that had best communicated the message of the Classic Restoration project and a ‘Passion Award’ for the team who had revealed the greatest level of dedication to their build.
Three 356 models as part of the competition
“It was a thrill to have three 356 models as part of the competition,” says Alexander Pretsch, After Sales Director at Porsche Cars Canada. “It’s never an easy job to restore an older vehicle and the older they are the more challenging it can be. Once you start digging, you never know what you are going to find. I was amazed by what our Porsche Centres were able to achieve.”
In the end, Porsche Centre Saskatchewan was recognised for its outstanding efforts in restoring a matching numbers 1960 356 B cabriolet with rare matching hard top, while in the 911 category, top honours went to Porsche Centre Lauzon for its stunning work on a similarly unusual 1986 911 Targa CE, or Commemorative Edition, built to mark the moment 911 production reached 250,000 cars. “This car feels almost brand new and it drives like a dream,” says Thukral of the limited edition G-Series. “The attention to detail both inside and out is unbelievable.”
With Porsche Centre North Toronto honoured for its efforts in the Marketing and Communication category and Vancouver’s remarkable Safari tribute earning the Passion Award, all that was left was to crown an overall winner. After hours of painstaking deliberation, and with Lauzon’s Targa hailed as runner up, the competition was won by Porsche Centre Saskatchewan for their extraordinary efforts on the 356 B, a car that Ouayoun describes as “an impeccable time capsule”.
“This contest is really a way for us to show the skills, the quality and the know-how of our craftsmen and our technicians, who put a lot of energy and passion into these projects,” Ouayoun continues. “When we see the results, we can only be proud of the incredible skills we have in the Porsche network. Thank you to all of our Porsche Centres for recreating history with these cars.”