“If you toast it they will come”; the hot and humid, end of summer spectacular held at Cars&Coffee…

A blast of hot,  humid air hit me as I exited my house and walked to the garage on Saturday morning August 27th. How could it already be so hot and humid at only 5:15 AM? Given that this was Labor Day weekend, I wanted to leave even earlier than usual for cars&coffee, especially because of the potential traffic. And sure enough, I encountered quite a bit more traffic than usual for that hour. But not so much that I couldn’t take advantage of my 270 air conditioning (2 windows down at 70 + mph). I hoped that the temperature down in Irvine would be cooler. When I finally arrived at cars&coffee (at 5:50 AM), there were already quite a few cars gathered, and Porsche row was already near full capacity. Much to my surprise, after exiting my car I once again experienced similar heat and humidity that I had left behind at home. While I was standing in the longer than usual line for my weekly donut and orange juice, I noticed the sign posted across the entry to the “featured lot; a clue to the vehicles that would soon occupy the reserved area.

Nissan Heritage Collection/Nissan Design _show card_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

As I inched my way towards the front of the line, a team from Nissan began passing by, escorting a series of unique, classic Datsun vehicles, to be parked across the back row of the featured lot. By the time I finished breakfast, the entire row was filled and the waiting crowd had begun circulating through these unique vehicles. First up was the 1935 Datsun 14 roadster (# 002) in yellow, as seen below. This was the first model off of Datsun’s assembly line…

1935 Datsun 14 roadster (#002)yellow_3/4 side view _Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

The bunny logo, created for the car by one of its designers.

1935 Datsun 14 roadster (#002)yellow_bunny hood emblem _Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Immediately to its right was this red, 2 seat Datsun “Fairlady roadster, which had served as design inspiration back in the 1970s for the 240Z, and also wore the Fairlady name in Japan.

Red Datsun Fairlady roadster_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

Its sparse, simplistic interior…

Red Datsun Fairlady roadster_interior_Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

Positioned to the right was this Ice Green, 1966 right hand drive Silvia coupe (CSP 311). These cars were produced as a custom model in very limited quantities, from 1965 through 1968.

Ice Green 1966 Sylvia (model CSP 311)_3/4 rear view _Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

Ice Green 1966 Sylvia (model CSP 311)_ rear view, badge and taillight  _Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

The cleanly designed interior, focused on providing the driver with access and visibility to all of the vehicle controls.

Ice Green 1966 Sylvia (model CSP 311)_ interior, right hand drive _Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

Located to the right of the Silvia, painted in red and white, was an example of an early Datsun / Nissan race car. In this case, the vehicle in question was a 1967 R380-II (as seen below), one of their record-setting Sports Prototypes. This R380-II helped contribute to a total of 12 world speed records established by Nissan, between October 1965 and October 1967 along with its predecessor, the R380-I.

Red & white 1967 Nissan R380-ii sports prototype_front view_ Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Below, the R380-II badging as found on the front nose.

Red & white 1967 Nissan R380-ii sports prototype_front nose emblem_ Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Red & white 1967 Nissan R380-ii sports prototype_side view_ Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

After doing some research, I learned that the R380-II was powered by a 1996cc, 6 cylinder motor, producing 220 horsepower. Fuel was feed through 3 Weber 45 DOCE carburetors, with final drive delivered by a 5 speed, ZF transmission.

Red & white 1967 Nissan R380-II sports prototype_3/4 rear view_ Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Another of the Nissan Heritage collection show cards, in this case illustrating a Datsun/Nissan sedan competing against a Porsche 904 Carrera GTS…

Nissan Heritage Collection show card with vintage race photos_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

And what car should show up and park next to the R380-II, than a silver,1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS.

Red & white 1967 Nissan R380-ii sports prototype & silver 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_3/4 front view_ Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Parked several cars over to the right was another record-setting vehicle for Datsun; the BRE/Datsun 510 of John Morton which went on to become the 1970-1972,  2.5 liter Trans Am Champion (as seen below).

1970 BRE Datsun 510, John Morton race car_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

The no-frills, BRE / Datsun 510 race car interior, circa 1970…

1970 BRE Datsun 510, John Morton race car_ interior photo_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Parked next to the BRE /Datsun 510, was an example of a 2013 Nissan hot rod; the matte black, Nissan Juke -R.

Matte black 2013 Nissan Juke-R_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Shoe-horned into the engine compartment is a Nissan 3.8 liter, twin turbo charged V-6 motor (sourced from their current GTR model), and putting out 545 HP. These figures translate to a 0-60 time of 3 seconds, with a top speed of 170 MPH.

Matte black 2013 Nissan Juke-R_GTR motor detail_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Matte black 2013 Nissan Juke-R_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Parked perpendicular down the row from the Juke-R was an example of another example of a Nissan cult car; the Skyline GTR, as seen below in silver. This Skyline model line would become a source of corporate DNA from which the designers at Nissan could draw from for use in the creation of their current day Nissan GTR super coupe.

Silver right hand drive Nissan Skyline GTR_ 3/4 front view w/open hood_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Another example of a right hand drive configured interior, and an interesting comparison in design evolution, when compared against the 1966 Datsun Silvia.

Silver right hand drive Nissan Skyline GTR_ interior view_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

The carbon fiber rear wing element and end plate insert…

Silver right hand drive Nissan Skyline GTR_ rear wing detail & endplate_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

and its iconic, rear trunk lid badging.

Silver right hand drive Nissan Skyline GTR_ rear trunk badging detail_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

The view likely seen by its competitors.

Silver right hand drive Nissan Skyline GTR_ rear view_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Parked immediately across from the Nissan display was this pristine black Porsche 993 Carrera coupe, reflecting the morning sky…

Black Porsche 993 Carrera coupe_cloud reflections in hood_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

As I later came to find out, this car actually belonged to one of Nissan’s designers, up from their San Diego Design studio, and on hand for the mornings event.

Black Porsche 993 Carrera coupe_3/4 side view w/ reflections_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

While getting ready to leave the featured lot, I noticed another Porsche parked over in a corner space, several rows behind the black Porsche 993. As I approached, I realized that this particular pale blue 911 was in fact the latest build from Singer Vehicle Design. Finally, my first opportunity to view a Singer 911 in person, rather than online or in the pages of a magazine.

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_3/4 front view w/ reflections_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

I learned that this particular pale blue, was based upon a reinterpretation by Singer Vehicle Design, of the 1970s Porsche 917, John Wyer Gulf blue.

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_3/4 side view w/ reflections_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Cloud reflections in the carbon fiber front fenders and hood, along with its center fill, fuel tank cap…

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_front hood and fender, high cloud reflections_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_3/4 rear view with reflections_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_rear view with reflections_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Rear deck lid grill in brushed nickel, with its Singer signature drilled glass backer.

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_rear decklid grill detail_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_rear decklid Singer badging_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_rear decklid Singer badging_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

The 1967 Porsche 911R inspired, rear fender oil filler, but with a custom designed cap, complete with its etched and paint filled graphic.

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_right side rear fender reflections and oil filler cap_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

A peek inside the fully customized Singer 911 interior. Having had the opportunity to finally view one of these cars in person, and study the collective package, the Singer 911 definitely lives up to its reputation. The attention to detail found throughout the car, along with the many unique design features incorporated were truly amazing, while still retaining the core attributes established and refined over the past 50 years of Porsche 911 evolution.

Pale blue Singer Porsche 911_interior detail_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

My next stop after an extensive examination of the Singer 911, was over to Porsche row, to check on the mornings participants. With 2013 being the 50th Anniversary of the Porsche 911, there have been a number of early 911s making an appearance at cars&coffee, and this morning was no exception. What initially appeared to be a beautifully detailed black 1966 Porsche 911, revealed itself instead to be a very dark blue (Dunkelblau), perfect for showcasing some amazing reflections; across its front hood…

1966 DunkelBlau 911 coupe_ front view w/ reflections_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

and rear decklid.

1966 DunkelBlau 911 coupe_ rear view w/ reflections_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Leaving Porsche row, I decided to see what other cars had shown up on this incredible morning. Three rows over, and parked out towards the end of the row was another spectacular Porsche; a lowered, Mint Green Porsche 964 C2, rolling on a set of blacked -out, modified BBS modular wheels, apparently the handiwork of the firm Rotiform.

Lowered Mint Green Porsche 964 Carrera 2 coupe_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Lowered Mint Green Porsche 964 Carrera 2 coupe_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Lowered Mint Green Porsche 964 Carrera 2 coupe_rotiform modified black BBS rear wheel_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Parked just one row off and to the right, was another beautifully detailed and lowered, Porsche 964 Carrera 2 in Grand Prix White. It also wore a set of modified BBS modular wheels. However, this owner opted for the stock gold centers, but added custom profiled inner and outer wheel halves. These too appeared to be the work of the firm Rotiform.

Lowered White Porsche 964 Carrera 2 coupe_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Lowered White Porsche 964 Carrera 2 coupe_rotiform modified gold center BBS rear wheel_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

Lowered White Porsche 964 Carrera 2 coupe_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_August 31, 2013

However, the icing on the proverbial Porsche cake for me on this Saturday morning was my encounter with the two vehicles seen below…

Red Porsche 917 recreation with team VW support van_ 3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

This photographic pairing had been something the owner of the VW  bus had been trying to coordinate with the owner of the Red Porsche 917 recreation for months.

Red Porsche 917 recreation with team VW support van_ side view_Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

And with the opening of the VW’s side door, treasures were revealed.

Red Porsche 917 recreation with team VW support van_ spare 917 door panel in open van_Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

A quartet of iconic Porsche 917 doors. For information on these doors, please use the following link to access the race car fine art website (www.CDAutomobilia.com).

Red & white Porsche team VW support van_ spare 917 door panels_Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

Red & white Porsche team VW support van_ spare 917 door panels, # 3, #23_Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013 My friend Claude, displaying his van and the 917 #23 door to several videographers present that morning.

1970 Porsche 917 recreation and team VW support van_studying spare 917 door panel_Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

Red 1970 Porsche 917 recreation and team VW support van_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_ August 31, 2013

This is but one of the many aspects of what makes cars&coffee weekly shows so unique. Where else could you find a photographic recreation, similar to what occurred back in 1970 at the 24 Hours of Le Mans…

(All photos by the author)

The hidden spectator at this years 356 Club of California, Dana Point Concours

Sunday morning July 21 dawned cool and gray. Would this be another year for the 356 Club of California, Dana Point Concours to be the victim of rain? This was a question discussed by my son and I as we cruised down the 5 freeway on our way to this years Dana Point Concours. As we turned off Pacific Coast Highway and approached the access road to Lantern Bay, we could already see a line of Porsches snaking up the hill leading to the Marriott hotel where the event is held each year on the lawn, overlooked by the hotel. We followed a Porsche 356 part way up the hill and then pulled off at the first turnout and tucked in line behind the other cars already waiting. As it neared 8 AM, the line finally began moving, and we all began inching up the hill. This proved to be a test of mettle for each car and its driver; nothing like a test of ones hand brake, clutch and throttle skills for ascending a steep hill under bumper to bumper traffic with a Porsche directly ahead and behind…

Our Carrera performed flawlessly and in short order we were at the top of the hill and following the other Porsches onto the grassy grounds of the Concours. The organizers were busy directing all Porsche 356 models to park with their brethren already aligned in neat rows. All of the remaining Porsche models were directed over to the opposite side of the show grounds, to be grouped with the 912, 911 and 914s already present. As we pulled in next to a Grand Prix White, 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS, we watched as the members of the RGruppe arrived, and were directed to park in the middle of the grassy area reserved for their club. So with our camera gear assembled, fresh battery packs installed, and a “thumbs-up” from my son, we headed off to begin our respective photographic quests.

Thumbs up from my son_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Standing among the parked RGruppe cars, a distinct un-muffled exhaust note could be heard approaching from behind. As we turned around, we watched as a blue 1973 911 RSR approached, blipped its throttle several times and then came to a stop.

Blue 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RSR_ 3/4 front view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Blue 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RSR_ 3/4 side view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Parked to its immediate left was a pristine example of a 1973 911 Carrera RS; the ideal car  for providing a visual comparisons between the two models.

Blue 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RSR_ rear view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

As we walked through the RGruppe parking area, the unmistakable smell of burned clutch wafted through the morning air. After a brief search, we located the 911 with the overworked clutch. It turned out that the car in questions had an inoperative hand brake, so scaling the hill up to the parking area in bumper to bumper traffic became an exercise in balancing brakes, throttle and clutch. Unfortunately in this case, the clutch was the loser.

A gathering of the RGruppe faithful…

RGruppe parking area_ Early 911s w/ Green 1966 911 in foreground_ 3/4 rear view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

RGruppe parking area_ White 1972 911 GT in foreground_ 3/4 front view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

RGruppe parking area_ White 1972 911 GT_ 3/4 side view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

A trio of 1970s vintage Porsche 911S models (below), all members of RGruppe.

RGruppe parking area_ a trio of 911S models_ 3/4 side view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

RGruppe parking area_ Silver euro spec 911S _ 3/4 side view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

RGruppe parking area_ 911 noses _ side view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Two more beautiful and rare Porsches seen below, bridging the gap between the 911 parking and the 356 Concours area. The red model as seen below, a 1964 Porsche 901, and to its right, a 1968 911L in pale yellow.

Red 1964 Porsche 901 &  pale yellow 1968 Porsche 911L _ 3/4 rear view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Red 1964 Porsche 901 _ hubcap reflections_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Red 1964 Porsche 901 & pale yellow 1968 911L_3/4 front view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

This particular car was recently restored in Germany by the firm RUF…

Red 1964 Porsche 901_ front view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Red 1964 Porsche 901_ front bumper reflections_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

It even included a vintage brochure (in German), advertising Porsches new for 1964 model, the 901. It’s believed that this particular car is the very same one as represented on the brochure.

Red 1964 Porsche 901_ with brochure on dashboard_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Red 1964 Porsche 901_ rear view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Another of Porsches milestone cars, the 904 Carrera GTS, as seen below, and one of several Porsche race cars on display from the Ingram Collection.

Silver 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_ front view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Silver 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_ 3/4 rear view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

This is also one of the few Porsche 904s that I’ve seen that has the small Porsche letters placed across the rear deck, in addition to the standard Carrera GTS rear fender badging….

Silver 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_ rear view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Silver 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_ 3/4 rear view with 911R in background_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

With the rear deck opened, a view of the 2.0 liter, four cam four-cylinder motor…

Silver 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_ 2.0 liter 4 cam four_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

The writing on the wall, or in this case on the transaxle; gear ratios recorded for future reference (see below).

Silver 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_ transaxle with painted gear ratios spec_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Parked immediately to the right of the Porsche 904, was an example of Porsches first 911 based race car (and one of my all time favorites); a true 1967 Porsche 911R, model #17 of only 20 models produced by the Factory, and another Porsche from the Ingram Collection on display.

White 1967 Porsche 911R_3/4 front view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

White 1967 Porsche 911R_ front view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

White 1967 Porsche 911R_ headlight and driving light details_side view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

The first of Porsches many explorations into fender flare profiles (circa 1967) as seen below…

White 1967 Porsche 911R_front fender flare and wheel detai_3/4 side view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Porsche 911R # 17s Biography…

White 1967 Porsche 911R_#17 biography_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

White 1967 Porsche 911R_3/4 rear view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

The quintessential 911R tail lights; the original source of all present day derivatives, and inspiration for all subsequent copies…

White 1967 Porsche 911R_the original 911R taillights_3/4 rear view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Below, the potent 1991 cc, 2.0 liter race motor. And in this case, one featuring a rare and unique option found on this car; a slide valve fuel injection system (normally reserved for Porsche’s 910 race cars), but in this case one sourced from the parts department back in the day at Vasek Polak’s Porsche dealership, while #17 was undergoing a rebuild for a celebrity client.

White 1967 Porsche 911R_2.0 liter race motor w/ 910 slide valve fuel injection_3/4 rear view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

This back story was shared by none other than Dieter Inzenhofer (of Andial fame and as seen in the photo below), upon viewing #17′s motor. He immediately recognized it as one of his early rebuilds, in particular due to the 910 slide valve fuel injection system as installed. Dieter noted that he had personally sourced and installed this very system onto the motor for this car while he was employed by Vasek Polak. This information was also shared with Kevin Watts of Road Scholars (seen in the yellow shirt), and who just happens to manage the Ingram Collection. This new information can now be used to bridge some of the gaps in #17s past history, prior to its acquisition by the Ingram Collection.

White 1967 Porsche 911R_Dieter Inzenhofer inspecting 2.0 liter race motor w/ 910 fuel injection_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

White 1967 Porsche 911R_Detail_ 2.0 liter race motor w/ 910 slide valve fuel injection_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

White 1967 Porsche 911R_Rear view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Open for business; 911R #17s spartan, race prepared interior.

White 1967 Porsche 911R_interior shot_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

White 1967 Porsche 911R_interior shot_dash & steering wheel detail_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

White 1967 Porsche 911R_interior shot_rear jump seat details_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

And now for something completely different… row after row of Porsche 356 models, cleaned, polished and aligned for this years featured event; the 356 Club of California, Dana Point Concours.

Blue Porsche 356 continental coupe_3/4 side view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Blue Porsche 356 continental coupe_rear view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Blue Porsche 356 continental coupe_rear grill badge_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Tan speedster with green top_356 row_side view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

356 row_side view/rear ends_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

A stunning example of a fully restored, Azure Blue 356 Speedster…

Azure Blue Porsche 356 speedster_3/4 side view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Azure Blue Porsche 356 speedster_3/4 rear view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Azure Blue Porsche 356 speedster_rear license plate detail_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Azure Blue Porsche 356 speedster_rear fender reflections_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

seen wearing a set of rare, Rudge knock-off wheels, and in this case body color matched.

Azure Blue Porsche 356 speedster_painted Rudge knock off wheel_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Azure Blue Porsche 356 speedster_front fender reflections and badge_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

A line up of Dolphin Gray and Silver Porsche coupe and cabriolet models below;

Dolphin Gray 356 row_Coupes and Cabriolets_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

perfect for providing inspiration and producing magic moments.

Dolphin Gray 356 row_Coupes and Cabriolets_magical moment_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Let the judging begin. Parked several rows back, a Porsche 356 coupe undergoing scrutiny by one of the multiple, blue – shirt adorned Concours judging teams.

White Porsche 356 coupe_ being judging_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Ankle height perspective of the neighborhood and ones immediate neighbors…

Blue 356 roadster with whitewalls _ hubcap reflection_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

356 nipple hubcap_ close up reflections_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

and recording 911s arriving for a visit (below).

356 nipple hubcap_ close up of 911 reflection_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Another of the beautifully prepared 356 Speedsters, positioned along the front row, awaiting its turn for judging.

Medium blue 356 speedster with tan top_3/4 front view_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Medium blue 356 speedster with tan top_drivers door reflections_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Next up was a visit to the trophy table, where this years design was themed to surfboards. And what better location than Lantern Bay, overlooking Dana Point, to employ a surfboard styled trophy to commemorate this years 356 Concours, especially since Dana Point has a long history as one of Southern California’s classic surf spots.

Trophy table with surfboard styled trophies_ 356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

And with the unveiling of the trophies, the Concours results soon followed. One by one, the various trophy winners from each respective class were announced. Each of the winners was required to drive their cars up to the presentation area, in order to accept their trophies.

I learned that the car seen below had just undergone a  2+ year restoration, and had just been completed the day prior to the Concours, thus making this show its debut.

Porsche 356A coupe with front bumper overrider__trophy winner_front view_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Porsche 356A coupe with front bumper overrider__trophy winner_3/4 rear view with reflections_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

The happy owner and a class winning trophy; the perfect way to celebrate a Concours debut.

Porsche 356A coupe with front bumper overrider__trophy winner_rear view with reflections_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

The gathering of the other happy Concours award winners…

Ivory white with red interior Porsche 356 Cabriolet__trophy winner_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Dark Blue Porsche 356A coupe__trophy winner_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Azure Blue Porsche 356 speedster__trophy winner_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Class winner; The beautiful Signal Red 1964 356C 2000GS Carrera 2 coupe.

Signal Red 1964 Porsche 356 Carrera 2 coupe_class winner & best of show winner_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Concours trophy winners_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Line up of Concours trophy winners_blue 356 cabriolet w/ red top in foreground_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Ironically, the Signal Red 1964 356C Carrera 2 (below), in addition to winning its class was also awarded “Best of Show”, having registered a score of 298 out of a possible 300 points.

1964 Signal Red Porsche 356 Carrera 2_ 3/4 side view opened up_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

1964 Signal Red Porsche 356 Carrera 2_ 3/4 rear view and Motor_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Freshly restored, and now the award-winning Porsche proudly displaying its four cam motor (seen below)…

1964 Signal Red 356 Carrera 2_ four cam motor detail_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Collateral material and accessories as displayed across the cars rear jump seats…

1964 Signal Red 356 Carrera 2_accessories on display across rear jump seats_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Carrera specific; the lower rear apron masking the cars dual outlet muffler. Even the fit and finish and detail observed on this small area were amazing, and reflected the same care and overall level of fit and finish found throughout this entire car.

1964 Signal Red 356 Carrera 2_rear apron detail w/ dual exhaust_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

While I was in the process of writing this blog post, the latest issue or Excellence magazine (October 2013) arrived in the mail.  Imagine my surprise when I came across an article on John Willhoit, and a companion article about a certain Signal Red 1964 Porsche 356C Carrera 2 2000 GS coupe, restored by non other than John’s Willhoit Auto Restoration shop. To read the full article on the 356 Carrera 2 as found in Excellence, please refer to this link.

Some of you may be asking what happened to the “hidden spectator” reference as noted in the title of this post?  After returning home, and reviewing my photos from the events, I noticed after studying one particular image, that there was in fact a hidden spectator observing the Concours and who had gone undetected.

A pair of 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera's_RS and RSR_ with hidden spectator_356 Club of California Dana Point Concours_ July 21, 2013

Can you find the “hidden spectator” in the photo above?

And who knows, perhaps there will be even more “hidden spectators” present for next years 356 Club of California, Dana Point Concours.

(All photos by the author)

If you host it, they will come…

On Sunday March 3, 2013 the Porsche community once again rallied at the Phoenix Club in Anaheim, California, for the 356 Club of Southern California’s, 4th Annual All Porsche Swap and Car Display.

And what a turnout; with models ranging from the Porsche 356, 912, early 911′s, 914′s & 914/6, and 911 turbos. There was also the debut of a recently completed 911ST recreation, and the showcasing of a lone Porsche 904 GTS, and one brand new Red Porsche 991 Carrera S coupe.

The following images represent but a small cross-section of the incredible Porsches that came out for this years event…

Red 1965 Porsche 356SC_front view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Red Porsche 356 reflection in door of black 356 coupe_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Blue and Red Porsche 356 reflections in hubcap of 356_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Blue Porsche 356 cabriolet with red top_3/4 front view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Champagne yellow 1964 Porsche 356C _3/4 front view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

 Porsche 356 barn find _side view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13
Porsche 356 barn find _interior view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

 Red Porsche 356 w/ 5 spoke fuchs alloy wheels  _side view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Signal Yellow 1969 Porsche 912 w/ side stripes  _side view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Irish Green Porsche 912 _3/4 rear view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Green Porsche 912  _ rear view  of concours level motor _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

And under the tents, was just one of several fresh restorations from the folks at CPR Classics (California Porsche Restoration) below. Their website offers up an insiders look at the many phases of their meticulous 911 restorations, and is a great visual tool for learning about Porsche 911s from the inside out. So should you be in the market for an early 911,  check out their website for some very cool 911s using this link

Aubergine 1973 Porsche 911 RS_CPR Classics_ reflections under the tent _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Aubergine 1973 Porsche 911  RS_ CPR Classics_2.7 RS motor _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13
Another of the amazing restorations (in Viper Green) from CPR Classics…

Viper Green 1973 Porsche 911 RS tribute_ CPR Classics_side view  _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

1971 Porsche 911T in custom color with friends  _ side view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

1971 Porsche 911T in custom color  _ door handle reflections _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13Grand Prix white1972 Porsche 911GT  _ side view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Metallic Blue 1973 Porsche 911S  _ 3/4 front view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Gulf Blue 1972 Porsche 911S  _ 3/4 front view w/reflections _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Gulf Blue 1972 Porsche 911S  _ Rear deck grill John Wyer badging _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

1970 Tangerine Porsche 914/6 and friend _ 3/4 rear view _Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Black 1987 Porsche 930 turbo_3/4 front view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

One very cool 1972 Porsche 911ST recreation making its debut (below)…

Grand prix white w/gray stripes_1972 Porsche 911 ST recreation_3/4 front view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Grand prix white w/gray stripes_1972 Porsche 911 ST recreation_front wheel detail_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Another example of the current trend in lightweight fiberglass hoods; correct right down to the unpainted underside, revealing the glassed-in balsa wood battens to add rigidity…

Grand prix white w/gray stripes_1972 Porsche  911 ST recreation_underside of fiberglass front hood_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Grand prix white w/gray stripes_1972 Porsche  911 ST recreation_front trunk detail_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Grand prix white w/gray stripes_1972 Porsche  911 ST recreation_front fender w/ 911R turn signal and grill detail_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Grand prix white w/gray stripes_1972 Porsche  911 ST recreation_drivers side view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Grand prix white w/gray stripes_1972 Porsche  911 ST recreation_rear deck detail_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Grand prix white w/gray stripes_1972 Porsche  911 ST recreation_rear view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

The sole Porsche 904 Carrera GTS in attendance; Butzi’s original blue 904-002 prototype below. (For additional images of this 904, please refer to this  link to one of my previous posts).

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS prototype_Butzi 904-002_3/4 front view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS prototype_Butzi 904-002_fender mounted mirror reflections_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Red 2013 Porsche 991 Carrera S_3/4 rear view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

And representing  Porsche race cars was the Texaco / Havoline 962C, courtesy of the folks at Pelican Parts (as seen below)…

White Texaco /Havoline Porsche 962C_ 3/4 front view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

White Texaco /Havoline Porsche 962C_ cockpit detail_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

White Texaco /Havoline Porsche 962C_ engine detail,rear view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

White Texaco /Havoline Porsche 962C_ motor, frame,intercooler and exhaust detail,side view_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

White Texaco /Havoline Porsche 962C_ motor, turbocharger and exhaust detail_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

And last but not least, was one of the hidden treasures found out in the vendor swap area; a two toned VW bus, wrapped in Porsche factory graphics, and showcasing a pair of Porsche 917 autographed drivers side doors. One representing the Gulf Blue John Wyer #20 917, and the second, the #3 Martini Racing 917…

Red & white VW bus with Porsche factory graphics_917 doors  on display_Phoenix club all Porsche Swap & Display_3/03/13

Given the amazing collection of Porsches, parts, vendors and people who came together for this years show, the 356 Club of Southern California can rest assured that if they host it for 2014, we will return…

(All photos by the author)

Like a deer in the headlights…

In sharp contrast to last weeks cool, gray and wet Saturday morning, this past Saturday morning dawned clear and crisp. And with the improvement in the weather came an abundance of amazing cars.

Driving through Porsche row I was greeted by a diverse collection of models already assembled and in place. As my headlights swept over the cars, I caught a flash of color,  graphics and a collection of driving lights to my right. As I passed, I realized that parked side by side were a pair of Porsche 914-6; one a Tangerine colored street car, while the other in Signal Orange, was a purpose-built, Porsche Factory 914-6 GT race car, complete with hood and bumper mounted driving lights, Motorsports inspired graphics, and an ultra – trick motor. After parking and quickly consuming my breakfast, I grabbed my camera and headed to Porsche row to check out the pair of 914-6  I had seen earlier.

 Tangerine colored 1970 Porsche 914-6 and a Signal orange 1971 914-6 GT factory race car_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

With the sun yet to reveal itself, and with one single pop of my camera flash, these car lit up like glowing embers in the darkness (as seen above).

Lime green 1970 Porsche 911E_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Further down the row and illuminated by the early morning light, was this beautiful 1970 Lime green Porsche 911E complete with vintage roof rack…

One of my friends happened to walk by while I was looking at this Porsche, and asked if I had seen the white, right hand drive, Shelby 427 Cobra parked over in the Featured lot. I replied that I had not, so off I went in search of the mystery Cobra, especially since I had never seen one configured for right hand drive. As I approached, I could make out a Wimbledon white car gathering a crowd, and sure enough, here was the Cobra. As I moved closer, the owner and his son opened up the cars gloss black hood, to reveal an immaculate, big block Ford 427.

Wimbledon White, 1964 right hand drive Shelby 427 Cobra_with raised, gloss black hood_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Wimbledon white, right hand drive Shelby 427 Cobra_427 big block detail_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Obviously, with the car being configured for right hand drive, and based upon the graphic  on the nose (LOV I), as well as the pair of amber-colored headlight lenses, my assumption was that this must be an English model. This seemed like a correct assumption, given that the nose graphic seen on this car is the English equivalent of a U.S. license plate. As I rounded the back of the car and approached the driver’s side, I noticed a magazine opened and resting on the rear fender.  There on the pages, were photos of this very car (with the same LOV I ID), being driven in competition.

Wimbledon white, right hand drive Shelby 427 Cobra_magazine on fender detail_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Wimbledon White, 1964 right hand drive Shelby 427 Cobra_Interior detail_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

As my friend Dave and I stood looking at the car, we overheard a discussion regarding the car’s history, and learned that it had been successfully raced by the team of Bob Bondurant and David Piper in England back in 1966 at Brands Hatch, where the pair finished in first place.

Wimbledon white, 1964 right hand drive Shelby 427 Cobra_side view_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Wimbledon white, right hand drive Shelby 427 Cobra_front end view with amber colored headlight lenses__Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

As the morning progressed, the Cobra drew not only people but a trio of 1950′s and 1960′s vintage Porsches, as witnessed by the photos below.

A trio of 50s & 60s classic sports cars_ Blue 1957 Porsche 356A, Wimbledon White 1964 Shelby 427 Cobra, and the blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

To the Cobra’s left, a blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS, and to its right, a blue 1957  Porsche 356A coupe, and just out of frame, a departing Red 1957 356A Speedster with a rare black, hard top option.

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_ side mirror reflection_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012Wimbledon White 1964 427 Cobra reflection in blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS side mirror_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012Red 1957 Porsche 356A speedster w/ optional black hard top, and blue 356A Coupe_ 3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

 Blue 1957 Porsche 356A coupe_headlight & driving light detail_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012Red 1957 356A Porsche speedster reflection in blue 356A coupe hubcap_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

After leaving the Featured lot, I headed back to the main lot to look for new photographic subjects…

Mercedes Benz hood emblem_ silver 300S Cabriolet_Cars& Coffee_October 27, 2012

Black Porsche 997 Cabriolet and silver 2008 GT3_3/4 rear w/ reflections_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Black Porsche 997 Cabriolet _with silver 997 GT3 reflection_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Silver 2008 Porsche GT3_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Silver 2008 Porsche GT3_Silver wheel and Yellow caliper / PCCB brakes_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Red Ferrari F430 spyder_rear deck reflections_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Grand Prix white Porsche 993 Turbo_rear wing & badge detail_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012Grand Prix white Porsche 993 Turbo_turbo tail detail_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012Porsche row_911 headlights & reflections_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012 One of the hidden treasures relegated to the overflow lot, due to Saturday mornings overflow crowd, was this beautiful two toned, red & white 1958 corvette convertible…

Red & white 1958 corvette roadster_front view_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Red & white 1958 corvette roadster_white side scallop detail_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012 Red & white 1958 corvette roadster_headlight & trim reflections_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Red & white 1958 corvette roadster_side mirror reflections_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Since the event was now bathed in full sunlight, I decided to return to Porsche row and take a second look at the pair of Porsche 914-6 that I had seen under darkness several hours earlier.

Signal orange 1971 Porsche 914-6 GT factory race car_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

From all outward appearances, the black colored headlight bezel would lead one to believe that this race car could be a 1973 model, since Porsche installed white bezels on the 914 models from 1970 -1972. However, because this is actually a 1971 914-6 GT factory race car, maybe they used the black bezel for the sake of aesthetics (to match the black trim of the driving lights and front bumper)?  For a brief back story on Porsche 914 headlights, please use this link, for details from one of my previous posts.

Signal Orange 1971 Porsche 914-6 GT factory race car_headlight detail_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Signal Orange 1971 Porsche 914-6 GT factory race car_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_October 27, 2012

Looking back on the mornings encounters, I realized that an underlying theme to this post and to a majority of my photos had been car headlights. And all it took was this signal orange Porsche 914-6,  and its abundance of illumination to set the stage…

(All photos by the author)

A decidedly 1960′s themed morning…

Saturday morning saw Porsche row at Cars&Coffee filled shortly after 6 AM. By the time I pulled in at around 6 AM, there were only a half-dozen spaces remaining, scattered throughout the row. And as I was making my way over to the catering table for my weekly donut and OJ, those remaining space were reduced down to just two.  By 6:15, the entire row had been filled, but not entirely by Porsches. The last two cars were a Mini Cooper and a sunbeam tiger, both friends of the owner of the Mini that was already parked when I arrived.  While finishing my donut and talking with several friends, we noticed a red sports prototype pass behind Porsche row and come to a halt on the outside end of our row. From what I could see of the car under the early morning darkness, it looked to be a mid 60′s vintage Ferrari race car (perhaps a P3 / P4 model), so the next question was what is it, and is it the real deal?

The middle of Porsche row was occupied by several very cool, mid sixties vintage Porsches; one a pristine red,1966 911, and immediately to its left, a white, 1966 Porsche 906 Carrera race car, both frequent visitors to this event.

White 1966 Porsche 906, red 1966 911_Porsche row_side view_Cars&Coffee_September 29,2012

White 1966 Porsche 906, red 1966 911_Porsche row_3/4 side view_Cars&Coffee_September 29,2012

And surrounding these cars on both side were a mix of early 1970s vintage 911s , Porsche 356 and one spectacular 1970 914-6.

Porsche row_Orange 914-6 in foreground_Cars&Coffee_September 29,2012

Hidden away towards the west end of the row was yet another surprise; a blue, 1950′s vintage Porsche 550 Spyder, one of several late arrivals to Porsche row…

Blue Porsche 550 Spyder_Porsche row_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_September 29,2012

Blue Porsche 550 Spyder_Porsche row_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_September 29,2012Blue Porsche 550 Spyder_Porsche row_rear deck badging_Cars&Coffee_September 29,2012

Blue Porsche 550 Spyder_Porsche row_rear view w/lit tailights_Cars&Coffee_September 29,2012

Another of the late arrivals, but relegated to parking out on the last row of the lot, was another rare, 1960′s vintage Porsche; the green 356 Carrera 2 as seen below…

Green Porsche 356 Carrera 2_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Green Porsche 356 Carrera 2_ front end detail_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Green Porsche 356 Carrera 2_ rear view ,badging_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

And rounding out the assemblage of late arrivals, was this always impressive and historically significant, blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS as seen below…

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_side view_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

For those unfamiliar with this particular car, this is 904-002, a car not only designed by Ferdinand Alexander “Butzi” Porsche, but the one that served as his personal car, with many unique design features found only on this car.

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_3/4 left rear view& reflections_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_3/4 right rear view& reflections_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_ rear fender badge & reflections_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_ front fender mirror & reflections_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Now back to the mystery Ferrari; while still under the cover of darkness, I made my way towards where it had been parked.

Red 1967 Ferrari 330 P4 recreation_front view_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Walking around the car, it sure looked like the Ferrari Prototype race cars I had seen in magazines from back in the 1960′s.

Red 1967 Ferrari 330 P4 recreation_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Red 1967 Ferrari 330 P4 recreation_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

It had the Ferrari badging, gold Campagnolo wheels, and a weber carburetted Ferrari motor with racing exhaust feeding into dual mufflers, all visible through the rear window.

Red 1967 Ferrari 330 P4 recreation_ view of motor thru rear window_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012 Red 1967 Ferrari 330 P4 recreation_interior_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Purpose built interior with a gated shifter (above and below)

Ferrari 330 P4 recreation_interior /drivers side_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012Red 1967 Ferrari 330 P4 recreation_rear deck& window view_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Another somewhat deceptive clue was the license plate; 67 330 P4. So the question still remained: was it really a 1967 Ferrari 330 P4? So off I went in search of an answer. After talking with several people knowledgeable about Ferrari’s, I learned the following: No, it was not an actual Ferrari 330 P4 race car, but a really cool re-creation, apparently using all Ferrari parts from a donor street car. An ideal alternative to owning a six figure, Ferrari race car, but one with the ability to be driven on the street. Kind of like the ultimate Ferrari project car…

Red 1967 Ferrari 330 P4 recreation_rear view_Cars&Coffee_September 29, 2012

Seeing just one of these 1960′s classics is a treat, be it Porsche or Ferrari, but leave it to Cars&Coffee to deliver automotive diversity in quantity each and every Saturday morning, and for me that is what keeps me returning each week.

(All photos by the author)

“I Keep Holdin’ on to Yesterday”…

My title for this post came from what I perceived as the theme for last weeks gathering at Cars&Coffee, and reinforced after recently hearing the song with the same title by the 1970s group Ambrosia. Saturday morning May 26th definitely had a nostalgic feel to it, given the sheer number of vintage cars that were in attendance.

This was especially true regarding the first pair of vehicles I encountered that morning; a Dove Blue Volkswagen type II transporter, parked alongside a pale yellow Porsche 356 A coupe. This setting looked like a scene straight out of the 1950s…

Dove blue VW type II transporter and pale yellow Porsche 356 A coupe_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Dove blue VW type II transporter _rear view_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Dove blue VW type II transporter _rear view details_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

And just two cars to the west of this pairing sat another classic; a black, 1950s vintage Porsche 356 A coupe. In addition to having a flawless paint finish, the car possessed a very interesting  interior; one that was finished and detailed in green leather. Combined with its charcoal gray carpet, it made for a very interesting color combination. The green leather actually worked quite well with the black exterior, though not a color combination one normally associates with a black car.

Black Porsche 356A coupe w/green interior_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Black Porsche 356A coupe w/green interior_interior shot-drivers side_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

From the outside, it was obvious that a lot of time had been spent on body work; addressing panel gaps, hours of block sanding and the laying down of a mirror like paint finish. The reflections alone were incredible, with body panels as smooth as glass, another testament to the amount of care given to the prep work. And the chrome trim installed was just as pristine as the rest of the car.

Black Porsche 356A coupe w/green interior_front fender reflections_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Black Porsche 356A coupe w/green interior_front view with reflections_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

And out back, the reflections were just as amazing.

Black Porsche 356A coupe w/green interior_3/4 rear view with reflections_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Black Porsche 356A coupe w/green interior_3/4 side view with reflections_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

My next stop was just across the aisle at Porsche row, to check out the mornings assembled participants.

Orange 1970 Porsche 914-6_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

My first subject on Porsche row was this beautifully restored, orange 1970 Porsche 914-6. While I was standing at the back of the car, studying the reflections and colors visible across the rear decklid and bumper, the owner approached and suggested I take a look up front, as he had an interesting detail to share.

Orange 1970 Porsche 914-6_front view with raised headlights_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Once I was positioned up front, and with a twist of the key, the owner powered up the electrical system and up popped the headlights. It turned out that the mystery detail was the white headlight trim bezels (as seen above and below), which are incredibly rare, and as I came to learn, were only sourced from 1970 through 1972. By 1973, Porsche switched over to using only black trim bezels.  These were the first white bezels I think I had ever seen on a Porsche 914, let alone on a 914-6, but because of the meticulous concours preparation that this car has undergone, I would expect nothing less than absolute period-correctness. I also received some additional design insight into the origins of the pop-up headlights as used on the 914. Apparently Porsches original design for the 914 had the headlights located just below the bumper (where the fog lights wound up being located), but because of the United States headlight height laws, it became apparent that the original location would not work. Porsche returned to the drawing board and came up with an ingenious solution; pop up headlights. By positioning them above the bumper, at the corners of the front hood, once raised their centerline height was almost identical to that of the 1970 model year Porsche 911s. They now had a design which would be in compliance with the U.S. headlight height law.

(This same design concept would reappear, repurposed for 1977, incorporated into the design of the brand new Porsche 928).

Orange 1970 Porsche 914-6_front headlight with white trim bezel_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

My next stop was over at the “Featured lot”, which on this morning hosted an eclectic mix of automobiles. Tucked away in a corner parking spot, sat this burgundy over tan, “coffin nosed” 1937 Cord 812 convertible, as seen below.

From a historical standpoint, the Cord was the first American front wheel drive vehicle produced, which also included the use of an independent front suspension. Cord produced two different models over a two-year period; the model 810 in 1936, powered by a 289 cubic inch motor.

Burgundy 1937 Cord 812 convertible with tan interior_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Burgundy 1937 Cord 812 convertible with tan interior_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Burgundy 1937 Cord 812 convertible with tan interior_interior view_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

For 1937, the model 812 was built, which added a supercharger to the base 289 motor, bumping up the horsepower figure to 170, well over the stock motors rating of 125 hp.

Burgundy 1937 Cord 812 convertible_side view of pontoon fender_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Burgundy 1937 Cord 812 convertible_detail of pontoon fender, exhaust pipes and reflections_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

The key design feature used to identify a Cord 812 from an 810 model were the external, dual chrome plated exhaust pipes that exited out the sides of the front cowl, merging into the cars pontoon front fenders (as seen above and below).

Burgundy 1937 Cord 812 convertible_detail of pontoon fender, engine, exhaust pipes and reflections_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

British Racing Green Jaguar E Type roadster race car_front view_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Parked just across the row and facing towards the Cord, was this beautifully prepared British Racing Green Jaguar E Type roadster, one of several Jaguars on display. This car is still campaigned in vintage racing events, and on this morning was being displayed complete with a drivers helmet resting in the interior.

British Racing Green Jaguar E Type roadster race car_cockpit view_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

British Racing Green Jaguar E Type roadster race car_cockpit view with F 1 helmet detail_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

I immediately recognized this helmet design as being from Formula 1, but could not remember which driver had this as his personal design. After doing some research when I returned home, I was able to confirm that this was in fact the helmet design as worn by Eddie Irvine during his career with the Jaguar Formula 1 Racing team, during the 2002 F1 season. It was also the same helmet design Eddie Irvine wore during his participation in the 2002 United States Grand Prix.

British Racing Green Jaguar E Type roadster race car_rear view with reflections _Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

And parked just one row behind the Jaguar, as seen below, was this beautifully restored yet slightly modified, early 1970′s vintage Datsun 240 Z (produced well before the rebranding of the marque, which saw the name change to Nissan).

Restored early 1970's orange Datsun 240 Z_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

Back over at the main lot, cars had already begun leaving, but were quickly being replaced by cars that had been queued up and waiting to enter the event. I had observed  these changes first hand, especially since the pale yellow Porsche 356 A coupe that had been parked next to the Dove blue VW Type II transporter was now gone. However, in its place was a black Porsche 997 turbo cabriolet.

Dove blue VW type II transporter and Black Porsche 997 turbo cabriolet_3/4 rear view with reflections_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

This also presented another interesting visual comparison; old and new models displayed side by side, providing a clear example of  changes in automotive design philosophy, technology and vehicle evolution.

 Black Porsche 997 turbo cabriolet_3/4 rear view with VW type II bus reflections_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

This pairing also made for some very interesting visual imagery: reflections cast across the flanks of the turbo Porsches bodywork…

 Black Porsche 997 turbo cabriolet_rear view with VW type II bus and green porsche 911 reflections_Cars&Coffee_May 26, 2012

As I was getting ready to leave the event, I hard a rumor that the following weekends event (on Saturday June 2), would be a tribute to Mercedes-Benz. My immediate thoughts raced at the possibility of another gathering of 300SL gullwings, SL’s, SLR’s and more. Little did I know the surprises that awaited… Please stay tuned for my next post with coverage from another truly amazing event.

(All photos by the author)

A tribute to Ferdinand Alexander Porsche at Cars&Coffee/Irvine…

Saturday morning, April 7th saw the coming together of the Porsche faithful at Cars&Coffee/Irvine, as a tribute to the recent passing of Ferdinand Alexander (Butzi) Porsche. An email was circulated on Friday April 6, and forwarded to many within the Porsche community about a plan to pay tribute to and honor the memory of F.A.”Butzi” Porsche. The intent was to gather up as many Porsche 911′s as possible, to represent the model range from 1965 up to the latest 2012 iteration. Also hoped for was participation by any of the local Porsche 904 owners. The destination Saturday morning would be the “featured” parking lot area at Cars&Coffee. To further this cause, I forwarded the email to my friends Gene and Dave, both owners of  Porsche 930 turbos, in hope of their participation come Saturday morning.

For a change, the early morning skies Saturday morning were clear and dry. As I pulled into the parking lot still cloaked in darkness, I was waved into the “featured” lot, to join the already present assortment of rainbow-hued Porsche 911′s. As I rounded the parking median, I encountered my friend Gene backing his black 930 turbo into a corner parking spot, and after he was settled in, I grabbed the space immediately to his right. As the lot continued to fill with even more 911′s, my friend Dave arrived in his 1984 Slate Gray 930 Turbo, debuting a brand new, upgraded turbo motor. By the time the sun had risen, the lot was filled with an even greater variety of Porsches, and what an amazing, colorful collection it was…

Porsche 911's_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Porsche 911's_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Porsche 911 rear spoilers_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Early Porsche 911's _F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Early Porsche 911's _F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Blue Porsche 911T & Orange 914-6_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Slate Gray 1984 Porsche 930 turbo_motor detail_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Dave’s slate gray 1984 930 turbo, and the first photos of his brand new turbo motor with mirror polished intercooler…

White 1981 924 Carrera GTS club sport & Porsche 911's_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

And parked shoulder to shoulder with the Porsche 911′s was this ultra rare, Grand Prix white, 1981 Porsche 924 Carrera GTS Club Sport. According to Porsche, a total of fifty-nine GTS Carreras were built (50 to meet the Group 4 homologation requirements back in the day, plus an additional nine for good measure). And of the fifty-nine total cars built, only 15 were further modified to Club Sport specifications…

White 1981 924 Carrera GTS club sport_3/4 front view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

White 1981 924 Carrera GTS club sport_motor_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

White 1981 924 Carrera GTS club sport_rear view/badge_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

In fact, this is the only GTS identification displayed on the entire car, and almost invisible due to its monochromatic design…

Black & orange Porsche GT3 RS_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Black & orange Porsche GT3RS_Dan Gurney & wife in background on left_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

From week to week, one never knows who might be seen strolling through the parking lot at Cars&Coffee. On this morning, local resident and American racing legend Dan Gurney (in the white jacket and blue sweater) and his wife were present (see photo above), taking in the sights and examining the mornings diverse gathering of Porsches…

 Orange Porsche Type 996 GT3RS_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Martini Porsche 911 recreation_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Black on black Porsche 997 GT3RS _F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

1973 Porsche 911E with roof rack & luggage_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

And obviously, the tribute email reached the owner of this beautiful Porsche 904 Carrera GTS as witnessed below. A fitting tribute, since the Porsche 904 was the second milestone car penned by F.A. Porsche, shortly after his completion of the design for the 911…

Silver Porsche 904 GTS_ 3/4 front view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Silver Porsche 904 GTS_ front view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Silver Porsche 904 GTS_rear view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Silver Porsche 904 GTS_3/4 rear view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Several other rare and unique Porsche models were also represented Saturday morning, and ironically were each parked in close proximity to one another.

The first was the pristine white, 1962 Porsche 356 Carrera 2, powered by the model specific, Carrera 4 cam motor as seen below…

356 Carrera 2_front view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

White 1962 Porsche 356 Carrera 2_3/4 front view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

White 1962 Porsche 356 Carrera 2_driving light and chrome bumper guard_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

White 1962 Porsche 356 Carrera 2_rear view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

White 1962 Porsche 356 Carrera 2_4 cam motor_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

The second model was a silver,1961 Porsche Carrera Abarth GTL (shown below), also sporting a 4 cam motor, and backed by a freestanding display that chronicled the cars racing history. This particular Abarth GTL is another example of a very rare Porsche, being part of the initial, limited production run of 21 GTL’s from back in 1960. This particular car (serial #1015), was the fifteenth of only 21 produced during that time frame.

Silver 1961 Porsche Carrera Abarth GTL_3/4 front view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

  1961 Porsche Carrera Abarth GTL_vehicle history_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Silver 1961 Porsche Carrera Abarth GTL_3/4 rear view_4 cam motor_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Silver 1961 Porsche Carrera Abarth GTL_rear view_4 cam motor_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Silver 1961 Porsche Carrera Abarth GTL_side view_4 cam motor_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

And last but not least was the second Porsche 904 in attendance ( the blue model shown below), and the only 904 model to possess a very special connection to Ferdinand Alexander Porsche…

Blue 1964 Porsche 904-002_Butzi's car_3/4 front view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

This particular car, a 1964 904 Carrera GTS, serial # 904-002 (of which I have written about previously), is not only historically significant because of its status as one of the surviving  pre-production prototype models created, but also because of the unique design features unique to this car only. And no less important is the fact that this is the single 904 Carrera GTS to have been owned and routinely driven by the designer himself (Ferdinand Alexander “Butzi” Porsche).

Blue 1964 Porsche 904-002_Butzi's car_mirror reflection_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Porsche 904's _F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Blue 1964 Porsche 904-002 _Carrera GTS_Rear view_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

Thus the personalized California license plate that adorns the rear of the car; a clue to the cars historic significance, and reference to the identity of 904-002′s original owner.

Red 1966 Porsche 911 __with displayed "F.A. "Butzi"Porsche & the 911" press photo_F.A. Porsche Tribute_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_4/7/12

As the morning came to a close, and the sound of Porsche boxer / flat six motors coming to life echoed throughout the parking lot, it was time to reflect on the event that had brought us all together that morning. And what better tribute and reminder to all present, than the photo of a young Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, photographed sitting on the fender of his design come to life, the Porsche 911. One only had to look at the Porsche participants that Saturday morning, or recall the Porsche 911 parking corrals at Porsches Rennsport Reunion IV, filled to capacity with 911′s from every model year and color as far as the eye could see, to understand the impact of this designers creative genius. And hopefully, the DNA from his original 911 design will continue to thrive, for future generations of aspiring Porsche 911 owners to experience and enjoy…

(All photos by the author)

Remembering Ferdinand Alexander (Butzi) Porsche…

It was with great sadness that I read the news today announcing the passing of Ferdinand Alexander Porsche. His passing is not only a terrible loss for the Porsche family, but a sad day for the global Automotive and Design community.

His automotive design and styling influences will be forever linked to the company  founded by his grandfather and father, and by two of his penned automotive masterpieces; the iconic Porsche 911, and shortly after, the fiberglass bodied 904 Carrera GTS as seen below.

Red 1966 Porsche 911_front view_Porsche Rennsport Reunion IV_ October 2011

A beautifully restored example of a 1966 Porsche 911…

Red 1966 Porsche 911_side view_Porsche Rennsport Reunion IV_ October 2011

Red 1966 Porsche 911_3/4 rear view_Porsche Rennsport Reunion IV_ October 2011

…And the historically significant 1964 Porsche 904 GTS (shown below), ironically with special ties to F.A. Porsche. This particular car is serial number 904-002, a pre production model possessing many one-off, custom features, and a car actually owned by its designer, Ferdinand Alexander Porsche. Thus the “Butzi S” reference on its license plate…

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_rear view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_Feb. 2012

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_side view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_Feb. 2012

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_front view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_Feb. 2012

Blue 1964 Porsche 904 Carrera GTS_headlight & fender detail_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_Feb. 2012

Then in 1972, Ferdinand Alexander Porsche shifted his design focus, and created the product design firm that came to be known as Porsche Design.  His innovative designs for the satin black, chronograph watch with a face inspired by the gauges found within the 911, and the satin black framed, aviator style sunglasses with interchangeable lenses, both went on to become instant classics, and established Porsche Design as a force to be reckoned with. As a testament to his sense of design and creative vision, the original Porsche Design chronograph has become a highly sought after collectible watch, and their aviator styled sunglasses are still being produced to this day.

So thank you Professor Porsche, for elevating the art of Automotive and Product Design, and for giving life to the Porsche 911 and 904.  Godspeed…