The classic Porsche sports cars that rolled into Winner’s Circle at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) did not have the horsepower to match the 911 GT3 Cup race cars attacking the track over the weekend, but the trophies handed out were earned with just as much dedication and sweat as it takes to see a checkered flag.
Three regional finalists in the 2022 Porsche Classic Restoration Challenge went through an ultimate evaluation during the three-day Sports Car Together Fest hosted by Porsche Cars North America, Inc. (PCNA), September 2 to 4, to determine an overall winner of the second annual competition. Final judging was conducted by PCNA’s Joe Lawrence, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Glenn Garde, Vice President After Sales, and Doug House, Manager Technical Support, with the winner announced Saturday afternoon. Fans in attendance were also able to vote for their favorite restoration with a winner being announced on Sunday.
After months of diligent work, documentation and check-ins, the 1989 911 Turbo Type 930 restored by Champion Porsche won top honors over the 1996 911 Carrera 4S Type 993 from Porsche Exchange and 1982 911 SC G-Model from Porsche Palm Springs.
“This was our first time taking part in the competition, and in typical Champion Porsche fashion, we gave it our all - and then some - in every step of the restoration project,” said representatives from Champion Porsche. “We saw some of the restorations from the previous year and knew that we had to do our best to step things up this year with our restoration. Not a single bolt was left unturned, and every single part was either replaced with new genuine parts from Porsche Classic or restored. Our mission was to restore our 1989 911 Turbo to exactly what the original factory build sheet called for, resulting in a true factory restoration. The competition this year was definitely stiff and there were some amazing builds out there. The cars that made it to Sports Car Together Fest was proof of that. It was great to talk Porsche with all the fellow competitors and to even feel a comradery amongst everyone.”
Judging panels throughout the competition have included Porsche Classic and PCNA area managers and experts. Scoring was based on criteria that include not only restoration – such as engine, suspension and interior – but also creativity, authenticity and craftsmanship are all taken into account. In the end, the Dark Blue Turbo from Champion marked every box and impressed the PCNA reps and fans.
“Taking a vehicle missing parts when the project began, Champion Porsche’s efforts to restore a well-appreciated and worn 930 Turbo exemplify our goal at Porsche Classic - keeping all classic Porsche models on the road,” said Jonathan Sieber, Manager Porsche Classic with PCNA. “The margins were incredibly thin. Our biggest takeaway from all three finalists, and every entry in the competition, was how the Restoration Challenge brought people together. Teams bonded over these vehicles while working on them and the dealerships were able to share their passion for classic sports cars with enthusiastic customers.”
The U.S. is home to more classic Porsche sports cars than any other market in the world. After decades on the road, some will inevitably be in need of a little extra care. Enter the 2022 Porsche Classic Restoration Challenge which saw more than 60 dealerships from around the country take part. Teams of certified Porsche Technicians and the official catalog of 60,000 unique Porsche Classic Genuine Parts were enlisted to return the cars to their former glory. Represented in the competition were Porsche 356 and 914 models, five generations of the 911, transaxle models like the 944 and 928, as well as modern classics such as the first-generation Boxster and Cayenne, and Carrera GT.
In addition to the three finalists, other Porsche Classic Restoration Challenge vehicles on display at Sports Car Together Fest will include projects from Porsche Warrington (1996 911 Safari Type 993), Porsche Silver Spring (1994 968), Porsche Ontario (1993 911 RS America Type 964), Porsche Louisville (1982 911 SC G-Model), Porsche Hickory (1989 911 Turbo "Slant Nose" Targa Type 930) and Gaudin Porsche of Las Vegas (1974 914 LE). Porsche Louisville won the popular choice award at Sports Car Together Fest.
Background information on each of the finalists
Area South/Central - Champion Porsche
1989 Porsche 911 Turbo Type 930
The 1989 911 Turbo was selected for its significance as the last year of the G-body 911 and for its well-known G50 5-speed gearbox. Upon the vehicle’s arrival and inspection, Champion Porsche discovered a few aftermarket parts and the decision was made for a full factory restoration reflecting the original build sheet. A full tear down of the car to its bare shell commenced and it was discovered that the engine itself had been modified to a 3.4-liter. Not being factory spec, the engine was torn down completely to be rebuilt from the ground up to the factory 3.3-liter specs with all new factory parts. At the body shop, the shell and all its painted components were sanded and reworked to get everything smooth for primer before the full repaint of the K5 Dark Blue color.
The Champion team sorted through all the new parts from Porsche Classic and prepped any original parts that were going to be restored. All hardware (nuts, bolts, clamps, etc.) were stripped and prepped for new zinc coating. The brake system is completely new, other than the restored calipers. The suspension system is completely new, minus the restored parts, with all new bearings, seals, and hardware. The steering rack and all components completely restored with new parts. Up front, the brand-new fuel tank was installed with brand new lines throughout the car, as well as all the new climate control and electrical components. Restored and new interior items such as pedal assembly, shifter mechanism, and internal door components were all installed. Upon installation of the engine and gearbox, the vehicle went to the interior shop.
The concept for interior remained the same, a full factory spec restoration. All new parts were installed, and other items were restored with brand new materials, such as the Linen leather on the seats, interior trim pieces, and steering wheel. The new Marine Blue headliner went in, with the new Linen carpet throughout the car. After vehicle return, the team performed final adjustments to the car, and installed the last few parts, such as the new PCCM from Porsche Classic and the newly restored gauges. The car was then taken over to another facility within the group to use the in-ground chassis dyno, to properly tune the engine. The car was then brought back over to an in-house paint correction specialist for a final paint polish, as well as a final cleaning of the new Linen / Marine Blue interior.
Area East - Porsche Exchange
1996 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S Type 993
The Porsche Exchange team started this challenge with a collaboration of their employees and three items of importance.
First: Use only Factory parts to stay true to the brand and take advantage of their own parts department.
Second: To be original! It is said that Porsche doesn’t make the same car twice. This was not to be a cookie-cutter restoration as the team used genuine Porsche parts from a variety of 911 model years, along with Classic and Tequipment parts. Their parts department sourced the parts from the rare x51 option that allowed them to make the engine a factory 3.8 RS engine. A factory Turbo S strut tower bar was installed, along with Classic reintroduction Sport shock units, which have modern day technology and secret material composition. Porsche Exchange also sourced something never available here in the states, m033 springs off a m491 widebody, making this car handle like a new GT3 RS. The fog lights and brake ducts were painted to match the rare Paint to Sample Modena Yellow, giving the front a refined appearance. The finishing touch, are the iconic 964 Turbo S wheels that were built for Porsche by Speedline.
The final and most difficult: They wanted their car to have soul! Listen to the purr from the RS mufflers and the lope of the RS cams. Blip the throttle and feel how fast the car revs and take it all in with your senses! Like your favorite pair of jeans, that perfect bite of food, the spring sun on your skin, and a twisty road full of beautiful scenery – this car evokes it all.
Area West - Porsche Palm Springs
1982 Porsche 911 SC G-Model
Originally purchased in San Diego, this 1982 Porsche 911 SC was procured by Porsche Palm Springs from a used car dealer in Georgia after stints in Michigan and Ohio. The vehicle was in fairly good condition upon initial purchase inspection for being 40 years old, however it was equipped with several aftermarket parts and the blue leather interior was well worn. The paintwork was a bit faded but in decent condition.
The SC drove okay but felt tired and slow. Steering was sloppy and the ride was bouncy. The drive axles were heavily worn and coming apart, the transmission was full of water with worn support bearings spinning in the main housing and the engine camshafts heavily pitted and damaged. Luckily, the engine crankshaft spec’d out as standard and required no machine work.
The body of this SC was stripped of all mechanical components and paint was stripped to bare metal and evaluated. Rust damage was repaired and the SC was eventually finished in its original color of Platinum Metallic. The interior was upgraded to a modern style two tone cocoa brown with black accents, closely matching available options in the Type 992 model 911.
The engine was assembled using new Porsche pistons, cylinders, and bearings. All new engine camshafts and rocker arms were installed utilizing RS seals. New seals, gaskets, and sensors installed. New Porsche heat exchangers and muffler were installed, and fuel lines were rebuilt with fuel distributor and all new injectors. The transmission was disassembled and machined for oversized support bearings and the transmission housing was vapor honed before new bearings and synchronizer assemblies were installed and adjusted. Lastly, all new hydraulics, brake calipers, and suspension components were replaced new from Porsche.
Today, this 1982 911 SC celebrates its 40th anniversary ready to drive like the day it was born.