A guy is coming to look at my 944 tonight. I’ve had lots of passing interest in it and just about 0 people take a look(I say “about 0" because one guy went to my address but in a different city so it’s kind of like he showed). But if it sells, then I start engine shopping with actual money. And if I start engine shopping with actual money, then the project gets very close to being a reality.
Tonight could be “good bye”:
One of the cool things about having a 911 with a worth judged by its piecemeal value is that any idea doesn’t have to be automatically confronted with “you’ll ruin its value.” Obviously, as long as I’m posting about this car on the internet, there will inevitably be people who like ideas I have and don’t like them. And especially since it’s the Internet, the people who don’t like them will be loud and critical. And since it’s got Oppo connections, I want to post about it here.
So if anything I write really riles you up take a big deep breath and type with ferocity, I really don’t mind hearing how wrong I am.
My driveway consisted of a trusty but imperfect E34 automatic 535i, and a slightly less imperfect manual 944 when i received my newest addition. My funds were pretty diminished from shipping charges, and I have no intention of having 3 vehicles in my name. Inevitably some funding will come from a car sale.
I think in an ideal world I’d sell the 944, and then manual swap the E34 down the line. I’ve always liked the 944 but never quite had the same admiration for it as I do my 535i. So far 944 demand has been low. I guess, a part of me kind of wants two P-cars in my driveway, but for now I’m going to stick with trying to sell the 944.
If you missed my earlier posts, my intention all along has mostly been to find a Porsche Boxster engine and turn it around and put it in. One or two 911 owners have done this; but lots and lots of Boxster owners have gone the other way around, putting a 3.4 in their car. The wiring harness for a 911 pretty much goes right on to a Boxster engine, and the transmission and engine mounts pretty much bolt right up. So some engine options with my own self created Porsche designations.
2.7L Boxster engine - Boxsterrera (4)* in Porsche speak. 220hp. hmm. *Naming could also be Carboxsterrera.
3.2L Boxster engine- Boxsterrera (4) S in Porsche speak. +250hp, better.
2.7L Boxster engine with twin turbos set at low PSI - Boxsterrera Turbo 4. +300hp
Audi variant. 2.7TT; 1.8T. Of course, this guy is still working on his ECU tuning if I remember the thread right... so no. But the thought of having a really light 4 cylinder turbo seems cool, so sometimes I look at the 1.8T bolt pattern and wonder.
LS? Not now, maybe later. There is a guy in my home town selling a bunch of renegade parts for a 964 LS swap; if those could have been used, then I’d be considering it. I do want to keep this car for a long time, and an LS at some future time would probably make sense.
3.4 Engine - Again, not now, maybe later. Originality just isn’t a big deal with the 996, so I don’t know why I’d bother.
SIMPLIFY AND ADD LIGHTNESS?
The Carrera 4 Cabriolet is a heavy-ish version of a lightish car. The Carrera 2, in versions probably no one ordered, start around 3000 pounds dry, and if you figure 120 for the front drive, and 200 for the softtop and chassis enforcements, well it’s still not bad, probably under 3400 pounds. But if you look at my engine options, you’ll note, many of them leave something on the table for power, so losing weight might be a way to even the tables. I still haven’t done a track day in my 944 (and now it may be too late) but someday I want to do some track or autocross but I don’t need a Racecar by any means. But anyway, because we all like to go faster, simplifying and adding lightness could include:
1. Remove FWD torque tube, differential and half shafts - 80ish pounds(you don’t remove all the weight so to speak because the transmission retains its little built in torque converter ). No effect on engine management, or stability control, or anything else. Takes about 3 hours to take off/ put on. There is the upside that lots of people prefer RWD only 911s but it certainly makes more sense to start with the front stuff attached I think.
2. Softtop removal - I’m probably going to use the car with the hardtop most of the time; because Oregon and rain. I’ve heard of other similarly inclined owners just removing the whole softtop mechanism. I’d be curious to know if you can then use the space as storage, or if it has an effect on the rear seats, and if my mom(sewer extraordinaire who has equipment and some experience with outdoor fabrics) could help me create some sort of occasional use, lightweight top like was used on Boxster spyders. I have no idea about weight savings but probably substantial. This is a long shot but again, it’s doable and reversible so who knows.
3. Wheels -
Whisper “I like 17inch wheels.” I even like them on 996s. I think they help the 996 look more traditional. And given the chance for some of the nicer Boxster rims, I may make the swap. That’d be another 30-40 lbs. But they would have to fall into my lap, as right now, the 18" wheels have wonderful rubber on them.
Stock, or stripes, or headlight covers, or IdK. I haven’t taken anything off the table, except paisley, paisley is officially off the table.
No One is the Wiser -I sell the 944, save a few extra pennies, and I have enough to drop a 3.2 in it and never say a word about the .2 liters to anyone. If I really go all out and repurpose the 3.4 intake and exhaust, after a tune, it should be close to 240hp to the wheels. Unexciting in its plainnness compared to my other half cocked ideas below. But exciting in its ability to mimic a 911 - rear engin-ness, over 250hp, manual, top down. I leave everything intact.
The Boxsterrera Turbo 4 - this would probably happen in two stages. First swap in the 2.7. Try out a local Porsche tuner with the NA build. Hang onto the 3.4 exhaust manifolds, drill holes for the 2.7, and have td04 flanges welded on. And then piecemeal a kit together in my garage, install it, get it tuned, and pray that my 11:1 compression engine stays in one piece with some turbos pushing 4ish PSI(yes folks, even the aftermarket kits stay under 5 psi but get about 80hp doing it). This is my leading contender. It would be fun to experiment with the turbo, and down the line I could potentially play with reducing compression or water/meth injection. And I really want to mock up a Boxsterrera Turbo 4 badge for the back.
Basic - 2.7 with the softtop removed, 17" lightweight rims, and no front wheel drive. It could probably be in spitting distance of 3100 pounds and making 200hp at the wheels.
Beyond Me and Probably Not Worth It - Audi 1.8T/2.7TT turned up to 11. A lot of customization and engine management that I don’t have the know how to do and no one has done before. But I still think it sounds funky, and he 1.8T would mean lots of weight loss. And 1.8T engines are literally everywhere... Oh there’s one now for a pack of gum.