The Story of the Very First Porsche 911

There is something absolutely fascinating about old cars. That fascination stems from the story they seem to tell. You look at the vehicle and simply know that its old metallic bodywork and slightly worn out upholstery have seen their fair share of stories in their day. That is why we love watching vintage car parades, reality TV shows about refurbishing used cars and pictures from long ago featuring beautiful old cars. If you dream of Prince Charming coming to sweep you off your feet, forget about him riding in on a white horse. White horses are so passé. A vintage Porsche 911, on the other hand, is a whole story altogether. If you want to learn more about this extraordinary vehicle, read on. And if you’re willing to do some research in order to find out about used car prices, you might just find yourself with a precious gem of a vintage Porsche 911 on your hands. The Porsche 911 is a fascinating tale of yore and passion for technology that has changed the way we look at luxury cars for good.

Auspicious Beginnings

The Porsche 911, initially developed under the name of Porsche 901, was the lovechild of Ferdinand “Butzi” Porsche, the son of the founder of the German auto giant. As he sketched the first projects for the car, he was aiming to create a more powerful, larger and more comfortable version of the Porsche 356. What he did end up creating (and unveiled at the Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung in Frankfurt, in 1963, with a mock-up, non-functional engine), was a car that left everyone mouth agape. The 1960s, the apex of the sexual revolution, shorter skirts and Martinis was the decade that was fully ready and willing to embrace the spunky, powerful and sleek sports car.

Controversy and Scandal

As previously mentioned, the Porsche 911 was supposed to go down in history as the “Porsche 901”. It was not meant to be, and the reason has everything to do with brand identity and brand propriety—but in a way that will strike many as arbitrary and odd to say the least. As Porsche started mass production on their new make of car in early 1964, French automaker Peugeot started protesting that the 82 cars made thus far would not be available for sale in France. Why? Simply enough, because Peugeot had exclusive rights to selling cars whose names were formed by three numbers with a zero in the middle in France. The German giant conceded and changed the name to 911, yet, internally, the cars still carried the 901 prefix, and would continue to do so for years.

Technical Specs

Production of the rambunctious little car started in September 1964 with the final product hitting the American market in February 1965. The very fist version of the 911 was equipped with a 30 ps (96 kW, or 128 horse-power) flat six engine. The engine featured the “boxer” configuration, just like the Porsche 356 before it. The engine was air-cooled and rear mounted and the car had two normally sized front seats, plus two smaller seats in the back. The car was almost entirely designed by Ferdinand “Butzi” Porsche, the son of the company’s founder, Ferdinand “Ferry” Porsche. Additional design work was put in by Erwin Komenda, the head of the Porsche car body construction department. In 1965, production of the Porsche 356 drew to a close, and the company’s first model of car made room on the scene for the vehicle that was about to change the world…

Time Goes By

The years went by and the car’s increasing popularity prompted a series of upgrades and updates. 1966 saw the introduction of a more powerful 911S, with an more powerful 158 horse power engine. The 1967 Porsche 911 Targa also proved a showstopper. Named after the Targa Florio sports car road race in Sicily, the car actually won the company a couple more wins until 1973. The car’s wheelbase was widened for the 1969 upgrade, fuel injection was added and the lightweight car also gained a discreet spoiler. With the advent of the 1973 Porsce 911 Carrera RS, the story of the classic Porsche 911 was officially over and out. But the legend lived on and continues to do so to this day. So don’t be surprised if the first thing you do, now that you’re done reading, is to head out and go looking for a used Porsche 911. This car is, indeed, the stuff dreams are made on.