Porsche 964 Turbo: The Last Samurai


An addiction

"Do not run" Javier tells me from the Polo that he will serve as a support car. I start the engine and look at him in a no doubt malicious way - "With this sound, what do you want me to do?" This thing already has 1.200 kilometers and I am not going to burn it, but I have to allow myself some joy, and more so by going up to Puerto de Morcuera.

We take the M-50, the car is very noble and stable. At legal speeds you are literally standing still; It doesn't sound like anything, and the last section of the exhaust has been modified with a “Cup” elbow that gives it an incredibly nice sound. Although a priori it might seem like it will bother you on the road, the truth is that once you put in fifth gear at 120 you don't even hear it, largely thanks to the low rpm level at that speed.

Porsche 911 964 Turbo
On fast roads, if you don't want to, you don't even know

The 965 has plenty of power. On the highway, and if you are not nervous, with the fifth you have plenty, from 70-80 you can put it in and the car will recover with dignity. Of course, this thing is not made for this, so let's stop the nonsense. At 70 it is preferable to put third or fourth, wait for the "lag" of the turbo until they reach 3000-3200 rpm and hold the steering wheel tightly.

Few people are qualified then to keep the right foot thoroughly in this huge animal; the most common reaction is to immediately lift the foot to see out of the corner of the eye how far we are already from the legal limits.

In fifth gear and with his foot fully, he accelerates forcefully above 250 km / h, stretching beyond the 280 mark. You cannot prove this on the day of the test for obvious reasons, but believe me it is.

Acceleration without aid or concessions. Ready to take off.

At the height of Madrileño Pantano del Vellón I decide to take the secondary road that runs alongside it and which was one of the usual sections of TRECE rallies. Paco and Javier are in a suitable curve, preparing to take a batch of and photo and video while I take a couple of passes. Once the work is done, Javi climbs next to me to feel the Turbo.

On these winding routes, the low wheelbase and the firm damping are the best allies to enjoy. With the turbo charged the acceleration is just stratospheric and you have to be careful when entering the curves with the right support if you do not want to do a rectum. The same thing happens at the exit: if we do not dose the right pedal we will find a terrible oversteer very difficult to digest due to the very wide tires.

Without a doubt, the stability and steering are top-notch. For my taste the shock absorbers are very hard and filter the terrain too little, something that the standard power steering does not help either.

The 965 is more neutral than its predecessors thanks to a better weight distribution

In the 964 you can see how the Sttugart engineers had worked beautifully to distribute the masses between the two axles in a ratio of 40/60 (Del / Tras), and although the model is a true all back, it behaves a lot more neutral than its predecessors. There is hardly any buoyancy in the front end and in curves it is really delicious, especially if we take them in support and with the turbo charged modulating a small slip at each exit. Mmmmm, how beautiful it can be, but beware, it's also dangerous.

The truth is that these are all technicalities; Really, the important thing about these Turbos is just that, the TURBO. The sensations of catapult that it momentarily brings cannot be experienced with any atmospheric car even with much more power. These turbos with "Lag" or delay are something that creates addiction; my father says they should be forbidden and he is right. Their brutality in inexperienced hands, or rather feet dependent on unseated heads, will result in a spin, a road exit, or possibly worse.

Let's not be fooled, this 911 is a perfectly affordable vehicle for any driver. My mother with her 66 years and dozens of diotrías has led it. The problem is getting on the right foot; under normal circumstances the car is docile and easy to drive, too hard and low damping, yes, since this unit mounts the Porsche sports suspension option.

Despite its appearance the 911 Turbo is a versatile machine

Thus, little by little and without realizing it, we are leaving Miraflores towards Puerto de Morcuera. Good firm, winding path between deciduous trees first and pine trees later. On this route and with the heating on full blast, the windows down and the sunroof open, your hair stands on end every time you come out of a curve and step on the accelerator in second gear. I'm going with some caution, since our friend is capable of making the rear wheels skid up to third if you step on him.

The hoarse sound fills everything and the echo of the mechanics is perceived in the bottom of the valley.

Javier is delighted, "I did not imagine it", "how well it is going", "what brutality", are some of their expressions. Without realizing it we are at the top of the port; from behind Paco recognizes that he has enjoyed the sound almost as much as we do racing and the stamp of the "pot".

The truth is that this pre-classic can give many satisfactions

How could it be otherwise, the test in Bustarviejo ends with some cocacolates. I recognize that during the engine rebuilding process at many times we thought of getting rid of the car, largely due to the danger we saw when we heated up and turned on the gas. But now, with the Turbito between my feet again, it is impossible for me to consider selling it. Like I said, it creates addiction.

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Any classic 911 Turbo will always be a car of high economic value, which can sometimes greatly condition its acquisition. The question for many is whether it is really worth it… In this case my answer is overwhelming: YES.

I already know that the price of an 911 85 turbo is double or triple that of its atmospheric brother, and that the equation is identical for our guest, but the sensations behind the wheel of both are not comparable. Be careful, I'm not talking about efficiency in a specific section, or dynamism, but the feeling of brutal acceleration without concessions or help; only the 965 had ABS, but no traction controls or 4-wheel drive.

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The 964 Turbo is the «last samurai» with classic lines

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The 965 is not a sports classic by definition, it still has at least a couple of years to go. If it is, instead, one of the best "Youngtimer" or pre-classics that we can buy. The only problem is that everyone already knows that, and for a couple of years they have been at really high prices.

The basic maintenance, without being cheap, is not a heart attack and we can go to different parallel workshops that at somewhat more contained prices than the officers will be able to do it. Of course, restorations such as the one described will be paid with invoices of several tens of thousands of euros in specialists.

The 964 turbo is for me the "last Samurai" of the 911 saga of classic lines, due to its all rear-wheel drive, its 3.3 engine, etc ... It is not, however, the last aircooled Turbo. That privilege belongs to the next saga, 993, but that's another story that I look forward to telling you in a few years.

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Read the first and second part of this trilogy →

What do you think?

Antonio Silva

Written by Antonio Silva

My name is Antonio Silva, I was born in Madrid in 1973. Thanks to my company I have been able to know first-hand all the national vehicle factories and a few of the European ones, as well as many of the component factories, this being nothing but an incentive more for my hobby ... View all


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