Sold for $1,250,000
- 2,849-cc, 450-hp flat six-cylinder with twin turbos & intercoolers
- Six-speed manual gearbox
- Street legal to California specifications
- Two owner car with 7,500 original kilometers
- Very rare, only 292 similar cars built
- Well documented service and ownership
- 'Komfort' version with leather, climate control, ride height adjust & more
- Recent full service at authorized Porsche dealer
- Approval paperwork from various U.S. governmental agencies
In November 1987, Car & Driver got their skilled hands on a Porsche 959 for the first time and they were impressed to say the least: “We hesitate to call any car perfect. The absence of flaws in any product of human endeavor is extraordinarily rare. But we have just returned from West Germany, where we finally got a chance to drive a Porsche 959 on the street, and the word ‘perfect’ is difficult to avoid. What single word more accurately describes a car that combines racecar performance with luxury-sedan comfort, that is equally adept at commuting through rush-hour traffic, profiling in jet-set locales, negotiating blizzard-swept mountain passes, and outrunning light airplanes? The Porsche 959 can accomplish almost any automotive mission so well that to call it perfect is the mildest of overstatements.”
At the 1983 Frankfurt International Auto Show, Porsche displayed its Group B design study intended for racing competition in FIA Group B. Homologation rules required the production of at least 200 examples. The high-end 959 sports car could be driven on public roads, yet could also be entered in racing events. The design incorporated a multitude of extraordinary engineering solutions to the complex art of going fast properly.
Originally developed for the short-lived Group B rally program, the 959 boasted space shuttle levels of technological sophistication never before seen on a racing car. The 1986 Paris/Dakar Rally would be won by Le Mans winner and 1960s and ‘70s Grand Prix star Jacky Ickx, as he led the 959’s first and second place finishes in this grueling test.
The body construction incorporated DuPont Kevlar aramid fibers, a polyurethane nose cap, and aluminum doors and front lid, for Formula One-like toughness and lightness. The suspension boasted three adjustable ride-height settings, as well as three dampening settings for the shock absorbers. The sophisticated antilock four-wheel disc braking system was controlled by high-speed microprocessors, augmented by run-flat Bridgestone tires. The dry sump engine featured six individually water-cooled cylinder heads, twin sequential turbochargers, and intercooling, sending 450 brake horsepower at 6,500-rpm to all four wheels through an electronically-controlled all-wheel drive system; a six-speed gearbox is also in the platform. All of this resulted in performance that, as the old saying goes, shocked friends and terrified enemies.
First, though, one had to acquire a 959, which was not easy. Even at $300,000 each, the factory had a waiting list and lost money on every one of the 283s built, earning the model its nickname of “Porsche’s gift to its favorite customers.” It was such a desirable acquisition that even United States collectors, who could not legally import the cars, sought to do so anyway, leading to a “gray market” for 959s in the United States. The Show and Display law of 1999, championed by Porsche legend Bruce Canepa and others of prominent wealth, finally allowed 959s to be legally imported.
While the Porsche 959 ‘Komfort’ being offered was one of the first legally imported into the United States via San Francisco in February 2001 under the Show and Display provision; this one is truly set apart by having been made legal to California guidelines by G&K Automotive Conversion in Santa Ana, California. Statements and various invoices and approvals accompany the car from the Department of Treasury, EPA, U.S. Department of Transportation, “Gas Guzzler” tax paperwork and statements from G&K when the car was completed and approved to be on the public roads like few others of this type have the opportunity to explore.
This original, two owner 959 is reported to have 7,500 original kilometers; it is a German delivery car that was originally owned by Max Moritz, a quite well-known Porsche driver and engineer who has his own line of branded parts designs. It was serviced regularly while in Germany at various Porsche dealerships and the 959 is accompanied by the owner’s manual which has these Porsche service stamps exhibited within. They range from Max Moritz in Reutlingen with 2,689-km in May 1988 to various Stuttgart Porsche dealerships and last displays a December 8, 1999 service with 6,852 kilometers at one of these Stuttgart locales.
With most sources citing only 292 examples of this supercar being built from May 1987 to May 1988; this 959 is reported as the 117th built. The Porsche 959 was built in two equipment levels; a comfort (‘Komfort’) version was offered alongside the sports version. The Komfort variant added a second electrically-adjustable outside mirror, electric windows, automatic climate control, full leather upholstery, power seats and central locking. Ride-height adjustment was only offered with the Komfort; this one also has an optional alarm system.
Along with the full set of original books; this exhilarating and rare Porsche 959 is joined by the tool roll, belt set and inflation pump, plus import and federalization paperwork. The Porsche has been most sparingly driven since its import and conversion; it has recently experienced a full service at an authorized Porsche dealership.
With a reputation as somewhat dark and menacing in nature, the Porsche 959 is capable beyond belief, and 25 years later, it is more than ready to show any modern pretender to its throne, exactly what it can do. A 959 is a rare sight in the United States, as they were never originally offered for sale here, and the availability of a properly imported and well-sorted example is all the more uncommon. More than merely break the mold, it utterly shattered it, and in so doing, it has secured a place in the history books as one of the most sought-after cars in the world.