#Dastreffen – Part 2
#Dastreffen, held last December by GT Porsche Thailand as a major gathering of Porsche owners and enthusiasts, comprised a healthy mixture of air-cooled variants that can be found in Thailand. Here we look back on that day again to highlight a few interesting notables that caught our attention.
PORSCHE 964 SPEEDSTER “Clubsport” (ABOVE)
A very rare 964 Speedster, in that it is one of only fourteen ever made back in 1994 that was in Right Hand Drive for the non-U.S. and European markets. Unlike the Speedster that preceded it, which was based more on the 930 (or even the 997 that came after it), this version retained the standard body rather than the “Turbo Look” which had a wider stance and wheel arches. The term “Clubsport” is used to denote the 964 Speedster as markedly different from a standard Carrera 2 and with more leaning toward “strip them all out” RS specs. That meant that the creature comforts that you would find in a Carrera 2 or the Carrera 2 Cabriolet (such as air conditioning, radio, etc.) became options—although Porsche was still civilised enough to give you power windows as standard. This white Speedster was one of the firsts to be on the cover of GT Porsche magazine.
PORSCHE 964 CARRERA 4“Leichtbau” #9 BUILT
This may look like a mild-mannered 964 that you would often see at many Porsche meetings anywhere. But upon a closer inspection, the presence of the factory-fitted Recaro bucket seats, racing harnesses, and built in roll-cage gave away to the fact that this is an ultra-rare Carrera 4 “Leichtbau” or Lightweight version. Unseen underneath, both the doors and the front panel were made of aluminium and all the windows were Plexiglass. The interior was kept to a bare minimum as there were no insulation or carpets like a standard car to speak of. The Lightweight has adjustable suspension and racing exhausts (lacking silencer). The engine is the same as that of the RS version but I have found that the gearbox is a closer ratio five-speed and with a manually controlled all-wheel drive system (same system from the Porsche 953 Paris-Dakar rally car). As the name suggested, this Carrera 4 is close to 150 kilograms lighter than a standard car. With all the intents and purposes the “Leichtbau” was supposedly destined to go racing of some sort—but it baffled me why it did not.
Digging further, I found that there are only twenty Carrera 4 Lightweight that exist in the world (this particular one was the ninth made). It was not supposed to be only that much but nevertheless represented a unique chapter in Porsche 911 history. For the Carrera 4 Lightweight (similar to that of the Ferrari 288 GTO that was made for Group B racing but never did—but a lot rarer) was a “what could have been” car. Meaning that only twenty were made with the purpose of developing it for a Porsche one-make racing series, specifically for the American market,. In 1991, the development was led by Jurgen Barth, the former Porsche Factory racing driver during the Seventies and Eighties, for it was he who specified all the changes made above. However, as much as tantalising the project it was to have an all-wheel-drive racing Porsche (like that of the 959), the program was abruptly scrapped in favor of the 964 RS rear-wheel-drive-only being produced instead —which we now know as the Porsche Cup series.
PORSCHE 356 C Coupé
I took delight in seeing this particular 356 C and it proved to be quite popular among many of those who attended #Dastreffen as well. A very well presented final year car of the 356 series that went through a full nut-and bolt restoration which was completed not too long before the event. The 1.6L engine had nice detailing and would give any marque expert a run for the money if there was any fault in the detailing. It is interesting to note that historically the 356 C was the favoured choice over the newly introduced 911 back in 1965. U.S. buyers continued to buy them as they found it as a more “refined” Porsche than the 911. Hey, that was how people think fifty years ago…
PORSCHE RWB “SPEEDY”
The 23rd Rauh Welt Begriff project made by legendary Japanese customiser, Nakai-san, for the Thai market was this car, nicknamed “Speedy”. Based on the 964 C2, it has a wider RWB-signature style stitched wheel arches and slightly pronounced front spoiler or “full version”. This RWB still retained the standard 3.6L engine. But while most 964 RWBs maintain the standard or duck tail, the owner opted for the whale tail look. This may suggest the possibility of a turbocharged powerplant to be installed later on.