Zagato’s, Spyder’s, Daytona’s, a Classic Alfa, one Porsche 911R Tribute and some 911 friends…

Saturday morning turned out to be one of those mornings destined for celebrating the classics. Scattered throughout the parking lot were a number of vintage, automotive treasures awaiting discovery by an unsuspecting visitor. In fact, we even had the first classic of the morning roll up and park right next to where we were standing, and stop just behind my friend Dave’s Porsche 930 turbo. The Ferrari 365 GTB/4 , also known as the Daytona coupe was produced from 1968 through 1973 in limited quantities (only 1284 Coupes were built). The Fly Yellow, Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona coupe (as seen below), equipped with pop up headlights, establishes its vintage as falling within the three-year period from 1971 thru 1973.

(1971-1973) Fly Yellow Ferrari 365GTB/4 "Daytona Coupe"_3/4 angled view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

Ferrari introduced their pop up headlight detail on the 365 GTB/4 beginning with the 1971 model year, due to their previous design (headlights set behind a fixed glass lens, utilized from 1968 -1970) becoming illegal due to new safety regulations established within the United States for 1971.

(1971-1973) Fly yellow Ferrari 365 GTB/4 Daytona Coupe_ 3/4 rear view _Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

(1971-1973) Fly yellow Ferrari 365 GTB/4 "Daytona Coupe"_ 12 cylinder Dual DOHC motor _Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

A glimpse of 365 GTB/4’s 12 cylinder, 352 HP motor up front…

1984 Slate Gray Porsche 930 turbo_Polished intercooler with Fly yellow Ferrari 365 GTB/4 reflections_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

The Fly Yellow Ferrari and its opened hood reflected in Dave’s Porsche 930 turbo’s polished intercooler (above), and the parked 1984 930 turbo and Ferrari Daytona Coupe (below).

1984 Slate Gray Porsche 930 turbo & 1971-1973 Fly yellow Ferrari 365 GTB/4 "Daytona coupe_3/4 side views_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

On this morning, Dave decided to shadow me as I explored and collected my weekly photos.  Our first stop would be over at the featured lot, but on the way we came across one of the events hidden gems. And in this case, a truly rare find; a 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2600 race car (below).

Red 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2600 race car_side view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

Red 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2600 race car_rear view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

Red 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2600 race car_Interior shot_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

Red 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2600 race car_supercharged straight 8 motor_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

One of the very unique aspects of this car; its supercharged, dual DOHC straight 8 motor, displacing 2.6 liters. This supercharged configured motor powered this race car back in the day, while being campaigned under the Scuderia Ferrari banner (thus the Ferrari badging displayed on the sides of the cowl).

Red 1933 Alfa Romeo 8C 2600 race car_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

So after checking out the Alfa Romeo, we continued our trek towards the featured lot, where we encountered a pair of classics parked side by side. First up was the charcoal gray and red striped, 1955 Zagato Fiat 8V “double bubble” coupe.

1955 charcoal gray and red striped Zagato Fiat 8V /double bubble coupe_3/4 top front view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

1955 charcoal gray and red striped Zagato Fiat 8V /double bubble coupe_ front view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

The Zagato bodied, Fiat 8V (which in Italian translates to “Otto Vu”), was created as a two-liter, V8 powered sports car, for the sole purpose of competing against Lancia, Maserati and Ferrari,who already had two liter race cars. Fiat needed to produce 200 examples of the 8V model in order to qualify for homologation, but unfortunately were faced with insufficient demand for their 8V. As a result, Fiat offered up chassis for these cars to the coach builders of the day. Due to their participation in a joint venture, Zagato ended up purchasing a total of 32 chassis. And of those 32 examples, four were delivered from Fiat with partial bodywork already installed. These four cars received further modifications by Zagato, creating what came to be known as the aluminum “double bubble” roof, including  further modifications to the vehicles windows to integrate all of the elements together.

Fiat officially ended production of their 8V model in 1954, having begun building 8V’s in 1952, culminating in a total of 114 vehicles being produced. However, it took an additional  two years to complete production on all of the remaining vehicles. But it was during 1955 that the 8V really made its mark. As raced by Elio Zagato (the Coach Builders son), he and the 8V became the winners of the 1955  Italian two-liter championship, and continued their winning ways together through 1959. (The 1955 Zagato 8V, Double Bubble Coupe shown here is chassis # 084).
1955 charcoal gray and red striped Zagato Fiat 8V /double bubble coupe_ 3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

Parked immediately to the left of the Zagato, was the 1955 Porsche 550 Spyder, painted in a brilliant blue, and complete with a hard tonneau cover (below)…

Blue 1955 Porsche 550 Spyder_3/4 rear view _Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

Blue 1955 Porsche 550 Spyder_ rear deck details _Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

Blue 1955 Porsche 550 Spyder_ rear view with hard tonneau cover _Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

Blue 1955 Porsche 550 Spyder_ steering wheel & dash detail _Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

And yes, it’s the real deal; an honest, factory built Porsche 550 Spyder race car…

Blue 1955 Porsche 550 Spyder_ 3/4 front viewl _Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

Heading back towards Porsche Row, I noticed an early white 911 with a single orange racing stripe and gathering a crowd, so off we went to check out the car.

White with orange stripe 1967 Porsche 911R recreation_front view_Cars&Coffee/irvine_February 16, 2013

As I walked around the car, I could hear the owner discussing some of the features found on his car. I learned that the car had been built using the 1967 Porsche 911R as a template, and that the owner actually fabricated the fiberglass front fenders, hood and rear decklid himself, maintaining the original visual aesthetic, as well as the lightweight performance theme of the original 911R.

White with orange stripe 1967 Porsche 911R recreation_3/4 side view_Cars&Coffee/irvine_February 16, 2013

White with orange stripe 1967 Porsche 911R recreation_3/4 rear view_Cars&Coffee/irvine_February 16, 2013

White with orange stripe 1967 Porsche 911R recreation_detail shot of fiberglass rear deck lid_Cars&Coffee/irvine_February 16, 2013

The custom fabricated, 911R inspired, lightweight fiberglass rear deck lid with the underside left raw and unpainted, revealing the true nature of the substrate (above).

White with orange stripe 1967 Porsche 911R recreation_detail shot of motor & fiberglass intake stacks and water shields_Cars&Coffee/irvine_February 16, 2013

A glimpse of the high output, Weber carburetted boxer flat six residing out back, and according to the owner, a motor delivering approximately 300 HP; well in excess of the original 1991 cc, 210+HP produced by the original 911R back in 1967.

Early Porsche 911's on Porsche row_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

A collection of early 911’s on Porsche Row (above and below)…

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A pair of Porsche 911S models reflecting on the morning…

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Nick’s beautifully prepared silver European spec, 1970’s vintage 911S…

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and its beautifully detailed and potent, 2.7 Carrera RS spec motor.

2011 Gray Porsche 911 GT3RS with red accents & red 911 in the background_Cars&Coffee/Irvine_February 16, 2013

And parked over on the opposite side of the parking lot, was one of Porsches more recent  classics;  the 2011 911 GT3 RS in gray with red accents, graphics and wheels…

So regardless of your preferences for the Classics, rest assured that on any given Saturday morning, you too can come face to face with the rare and previously unseen examples of your favorite classic…

(All photos by the author)

“When everything is art, you’ve gotta take it in”…

On Saturday November 3,  those of us here in Southern California experienced another weekend of extended summer like weather. As a result, those in attendance at Cars&Coffee were treated to a truly eclectic gathering of automobiles.

With such a diverse cross-section of vehicles represented, I really felt as if I were walking through an outdoor art gallery, experiencing row after row of 4 wheeled art and sculpture. And with each new row, the experience resembled that of entering a new and different wing within a museum, and discovering the treasures within. And that was exactly the type of experience that would unfold before me that morning.

My first stop of the morning, with illumination courtesy of the rising sun, was with these two examples of classic, post WWII automotive art; in this case a pair of 1930’s vintage, American bred hot rods…

A pair of custom 1930s vintage hot rods_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

 1930s Custom hot rod pickup truck_engine detail_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

The 5 window coupe’s motor (as seen below).

 1930s vintage Hot Rod custom 5 window coupe_engine detail_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

The pickup truck even displayed what appeared to be a flying eyeball hood ornament, perhaps influenced by the famous flying eyeball logo /graphic created by California pin striping legend Von Dutch (below)…

Custom 1930s hot rod pickup truck_flying eyeball hood ornament _Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Over at the featured lot, I encountered this beautiful British Racing Green Jaguar, with its sculpted curves being accentuated by some amazing reflections, courtesy of the early morning light.

British Racing Green 1957 Jaguar D type, XKSS roadster_front view_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

There was no mistaking the origins of this particular model due to its unique design, and the badge on the front hood only reinforced the fact that parked before me was one of the very rare,1957 Jaguar D-type XKSS roadsters.

British Racing Green 1957 Jaguar D type, XKSS roadster_hood emblem_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

With the sunrise and reflections both working their magic, the shapes and contours of the front hood and fenders were beautifully displayed, and further illustrated the sculptural impact to the styling of this car.

British Racing Green 1957 Jaguar D type, XKSS roadster_early morning reflections across hood_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012 British Racing Green 1957 Jaguar D type, XKSS roadster_wheel and center knock-off detail_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Even when viewed from behind, the subtle contours of the body along with the angular, almost pinched profile of the side windows were further revealed and accentuated by the early morning sunrise.

British Racing Green 1957 Jaguar D type, XKSS roadster_early morning reflections/rear view_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Seeing this car in person brought to mind a magazine article I remembered reading years ago about Steve McQueen, in which the author described his ownership of a 1957 Jaguar XKSS. The article had mentioned several specific modifications that McQueen had made to his car. The first was to repaint the car a proper British Racing Green. The second was to add a locking door to the glove box cubby in the dashboard ( the cars were delivered without glove box doors). McQueen turned to one of his friends (Pin striper Von Dutch) for the fabrication of a locking glove box door, to correct the oversight by Jaguar. The third modification made was to have the original interior kept stock, but to have the upholstery  redone in black leather, by none other than the Southern California-based drag racer turned custom car upholsterer Tony Nancy.  This particular car parked in front of me possessed all of the aforementioned details, so the question remained; could this car be the ex-Steve McQueen Jaguar XKSS?

(Postscript: After publishing this post, I received an email from the owner of the XKSS one week later, wanting to clarify the origins of his car. I learned that it is in fact an XKSS re-creation, and not an original model. The amazing fiberglass body was created by Realm Engineering, located in the U.K., and is mounted to a Reynard Racing chassis, specified with Jaguar running gear. Power is produced by a 4.2 liter Jaguar motor, pumping out 300 horsepower, and is transferred to the rear wheels via a Tremec 5 speed transmission. Seeing this car in person puts the automotive re-creation industry in a whole new light).

British Racing Green 1957 Jaguar D type, XKSS roadster_steering wheel and dash detail_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

My next stop would be to Porsche row, for my weekly visit.

Vintage Porsches all in a row_1970 914-6 and early 911s_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

A trio of early Porsche 911s, with the outer two displaying the optional Lietz roof racks…

1970s model Porsche 911s with classic roof racks_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Caught in the middle; the white, 1972 911 RGruppe GT 2.7 coupe, complete with its unique, rear quarter window graphic.

Grand Prix white, 1972 Porsche 911 RGruppe GT 2.7_oil filler door & side reflections_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Grand Prix white, 1972 Porsche 911 RGruppe GT 2.7_green hell window sticker_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

The early 911 triplets as seen below (foreground to background)- 1969 911E, 1972 911 GT, and 1973 911E.

A trio of Porsche 911s- 1969 E, 1972 GT, 1973 E_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Located several rows over to the East, and down the aisle from the weekly Mercedes-Benz 190SL enclave, I discovered this trio of classic Mercedes-Benz vehicles. The first example (as seen below), in red and black, turned out to be a pre-war 1936 Mercedes-Benz 230 W-143 Cabriolet B; a spectacular and beautifully restored, touring car.

Red & Black 1936 Mercedes Benz 230 W-143 Cabriolet B_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Red & Black 1936 Mercedes Benz 230 W-143 Cabriolet B_headlight & grill reflections_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Red & Black 1936 Mercedes Benz 230 W-143 Cabriolet B_headlight & fender reflections_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Sandwiched in-between the other two Mercedes-Benz vehicles, was this Ivory colored, 1930s vintage two-seat roadster with red interior, also appearing to have been restored.

Ivory colored, 1930s vintage Mercedes Benz roadster_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Parked immediately to the right was what appeared to be a model 260D, W-138 series sedan, also sporting a two toned paint finish, in green with black fenders.

Green & Black (1936-1940),Mercedes Benz 260 D, W-138 series sedan_hood, grill and badging reflections_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

What made the 260 D model unique was that the D designation represented a diesel engined vehicle, and made this particular model the first diesel engined, series produced passenger car. And according to the Mercedes-Benz records, only 2000 of these vehicles were built between 1936 and 1940, at which time their production was stopped due to the war. All three of these cars literally looked like they had just rolled off of a Mercedes-Benz showroom floor.

Green & Black (1936-1940), Mercedes Benz 260 D, W-138 series sedan_hood and side mirror reflections_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

As I continued my trek through the “gallery”, a white, early model Porsche 911 caught my eye, so I walked over to get a closer look ( see below). I had seen this car arrive earlier that morning, and remembered a comment made by a friend standing over on Porsche Row regarding its exhaust note. He stated that this particular car sounded exactly how a Porsche 911 engine should sound; Tight and clear with a smooth idle, and without any extraneous noise or valve clatter. And anyone who has been around or is familiar with Porsche 911s, will know the specific sound I’ve described.

I soon realized that there was something familiar about this car; I had seen it before, but could not remember where. It was then that the owner came over and introduced himself, as I was photographing the motor. I quickly learned that this car had been previously owned by one of the two founding members of the Porsche car club “RGruppe”, and after being shown an article written years ago in Excellence magazine about this very car and two other 911s, it hit me. That was where I has seen this car before, having read the same article, and obviously it had made an impression.

As a result of this cars previous ownership, this car was equipted with many of the cool, go fast Motorsports purposed, Porsche factory parts. This car would become a visual blueprint used by many a Porsche owner who aspired to building their own unique version of an RGruppe inspired, pre 1974 Porsche 911.

White 1969 Porsche 911S_ founding member of RGruppe car club's personal car_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Up front, an example of the custom finished, Porsche factory, 911R inspired “Deep 6” Fuchs alloy wheel.

White 1969 Porsche 911S_ founding member of RGruppe car club's personal car_custom finished deep 6 Fuchs alloy wheel_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Race inspired, door mounted Talbot mirror…

White 1969 Porsche 911S_ founding member of RGruppe car club's personal car_reflection in Talbot racing side mirror_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Shown below is the performance inspired interior; from the 911R styled, light weight door panels and pulls, to the Recaro sports seats for the driver and passenger, a Prototipo racing steering wheel (complete with the proper patina), and the removal of the radio, with a filler panel added and the void covered over. Even the speedometer and tachometer have been rotated to the left, to allow for the monitoring of critical vehicle speed and engine RPM at a glance; each gauge had been set in order to peg its orange needle at the twelve o’clock position).

White 1969 Porsche 911S_ founding member of RGruppe car club's personal car_interior_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012A 1969 Porsche 911S, 2.2 liter motor with mechanical fuel injection (as seen below)…

White 1969 Porsche 911S_ founding member of RGruppe car club's personal car_engine detail_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Even the rear deck lid was given the RGruppe treatment. The stock, factory dimensional rear badging was removed, and replaced by adhesive backed vinyl graphics, once again taking inspiration from the early Porsche 911 race cars…

White 1969 Porsche 911S_ founding member of RGruppe car club's personal car_rear deck lid with applied graphics_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

My last stop of the morning was to check out this stunning Orange, 2007 Porsche GT3RS.  With the crowds and cars having thinned, I was able to move around and photograph the GT3RS without interference.

Orange 2007 Porsche GT3RS_3/4 front view_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

The lighting by mid morning created some incredible highlights, reflections and shadows, and created the visual impression of an airbrushed rendering.

Orange 2007 Porsche GT3RS_rear fender, partial wheel & cast shadow_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012A study of light; Ground plane shadows, highlights to define shape and contour, and an ultra reflective carbon fiber rear wing…

Orange 2007 Porsche GT3RS_rear wing reflections & shadow_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

Form follows function; the GT3RS rear wing.  Purpose built for speed, generating downforce and capturing hidden reflections (see below)…

Orange 2007 Porsche GT3RS_rear wing with underside reflections _Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

My last shot of the morning and one of my favorite from the November 3rd event. The sunlight really brought this color to life, and showcased the collective styling cues unique to the GT3RS, re-stating the obvious: There is no substitute.

Orange 2007 Porsche GT3RS_3/4 rear view with reflections_Cars&Coffee_November 3, 2012

So should you find yourself in need of some artistic inspiration on a Saturday morning, come take a stroll through the automotive galley known locally as Cars&Coffee. You won’t be disappointed…

(All photos by the author)

From the outside looking in; Observations from the 2012 RGruppe Solvang Treffen

As noted in my last post, I had been invited by one of the members from the RGruppe (Porsche car club) to drive up to Solvang on Saturday May 5, spend the afternoon hanging out with the group, shoot some photos, and experience Porsche 911 overload as only the RGruppe can deliver.

The club’s home base for the weekend would be in Beulton California, specifically at the Santa Ynez Valley Marriott Hotel, located just off of the 101 freeway. The Marriott’s proximity to the 101 freeway as well as highways 246 and 154, afforded the members easy access to a wide variety of back roads to explore, and on which to gauge the latest modifications made to their 911s. The hotel also offered up a secluded, secure parking lot out back, and which was large enough to contain the 100+ Porsches that turned out for the event. And turn out they did, from club chapters across the United States and even Mexico.

So Saturday morning May 5 saw my wife and I pack up the Carrera, and head North on the 101 freeway to Solvang. When we arrived at the Marriott around noon, the parking lot was bare, with only a handful of Porsches present.

Green Porsche 911 Carrera RS clone_3/4 front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Apparently the majority of cars were still out on their morning tours, enjoying the warm, sunny spring weather, clear blue skies and twisty roads. Instead of waiting at the hotel for the cars to return, my wife suggested we drive into Solvang and grab some lunch. So we fired up the Carrera, and headed off to explore the town. After a short 3 mile run down highway 246, we found ourselves right in the middle of Solvang, and looking for a place to grab some lunch. After parking the car and a short walk, we found a restaurant (The Mustard Seed) situated right off of the town’s main street (highway 246). They even had a patio out front, so we took advantage of the weather and sat outside. Halfway through our lunch, I heard the unmistakable rasp of a Porsche sport exhaust, and looked up just in time to see a trio of Porsche 911s exploring the rpm range of second gear. Unfortunately, several of the patrons at the restaurant (obviously Solvang locals) took exception to the drivers exuberance, and began yelling and waving at the cars as they passed. We even heard the guy at the table next to ours tell his friends the joke about the difference between a Porsche owner and a porcupine. His friends thought it funny; I found it in poor taste and rather judgemental.

My eldest son and his girlfriend were supposed to have met us for lunch, but because they were running late, my wife decided she would stay behind in Solvang to wait for them.  Their delay allowed me to head back to the hotel a bit sooner than planned, but with hopes of finding a good selection of RGruppe Porsches on site, ready to be photographed.

I knew as soon as I pulled into the parking lot that the afternoon was going to be amazing…

Silver Porsche 911 w/flowerbed and reserved parking sign_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Silver Porsche 911_side view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Black Porsche 911S_with flowerbed_3/4 front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

White 1970's Porsche 911ST clone_3/4 side view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

White 1970's Porsche 911ST clone_ front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

White 1970's Porsche 911ST clone_ oblique front view with flag shadow_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Jade Green 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Just one of the several, real 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS models in attendance…

Jade Green 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS_Ducktail reflections_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Silver Porsche 911 Carrera_blue wheels_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Orange 1972 Porsche 911T_3/4 front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Orange 1972 Porsche 911T_rear deck view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Orange 1972 Porsche 911T_rear grill detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Black 1973 Carrera RS_ducktail reflections_right hand drive model_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Gulf Blue Porsche 911S_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

White 1972 911GT_3/4 front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

White 1972 911GT_with GT rendering_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

White 1972 911GT_3/4 rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Blue 1970 Porsche 911T_hood graphics_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Porsche 911 rows_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

White Porsche 911_Martini Rally car_front hood detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

White Porsche 911_Martini Rally car_3/4 side view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

White early Porsche 911R clone w/ red stripe_3/4 front view w flowers_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Silver 1968 Porsche 911L and 911s in row_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Parked amongst the other RGruppe 911s, was this beautiful silver 1968 911L coupe. I recognized this car immediately, having seen it in person at Porsches Rennsport Reunion IV in October 2011, and from photos posted on the owners blog  -www.werkcrew.com

Silver 1968 Porsche 911L _side view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

The owner (Bob Tilton) has written about a variety of his Porsche projects on his blog, and includes some very creative photographs to document his process and progress, most recently his extensive cockpit renovation efforts, in preparation for the RGruppe’s Solvang Treffen. Bob’s posts afford the reader an insight into the thought process and attention to detail that he applies to each and every one of his projects.

Silver 1968 Porsche 911L _ rear deck detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Silver 1968 Porsche 911L _side mirror detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

I have long admired Bob’s blog  for its content and his photographic skills, and had the pleasure of meeting him in person on this particular Saturday afternoon. Ironically, my introduction occurred as a result of my friend Dave and I walking into a low perspective shot that Bob was composing from behind of one of the many 911s assembled. After apologizing for our misstep, and a formal introduction made by Dave, I spent the next 40 minutes talking with Bob about Porsches, graphic design, creative influences, writing a blog and photography. I was also able to share with him that my reading of his blog was what had inspired me to create a blog of my own. After thanking him for taking the time to talk with me, we both returned to our individual photographic explorations.

Yellow 1967 911R clone_front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Yellow 1967 911R clone_3/4 front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Yellow 1967 911R clone_3/4 rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Ivory white with gray hood Porsche 911_ Rally lights_3/4 front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Ivory white with gray hood Porsche 911_ Rally lights_3/4 rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Orange 1974 Porsche 911 Carrera_3/4 front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

As the car below pulled into the parking lot, I watched as a crowd gathered, and immediately began looking at the back of this red 911. Out of curiosity, I went over to see what was happening. As I approached the back of the car, I couldn’t believe my eyes. Did this rear deck lid actually have dual grills? Was this a long-lost prototype deck lid developed by Porsche, as a variation on the dual grill deck lid theme as produced for the 1965 Porsche 356 C models, but adapted for an early Porsche 911?

Red 1966 Porsche 911_dual rear grill deck lid_3/4 rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

It turns out that this dual grill rear deck had its origins from the parts inventory out of the Vasek Polak Porsche dealership some time ago, and had been in the possession of a gentleman who had been very active in the Porsche community back in the day. The current owner encountered the rear decklid and had the chance to purchase it, which obviously he did. And what better event to choose for showcasing a one of a kind, custom early 911 rear decklid…

Red 1966 Porsche 911_dual rear grill deck lid_rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012 Located on the opposite side of the parking lot was this Mexico blue, ultra rare European only model, 1996 Porsche 993 Carrera RS as seen below.

Mexico Blue 1996 Porsche 993 Carrera RS_front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Mexico Blue 1996 Porsche 993 Carrera RS_3/4 rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Mexico Blue 1996 Porsche 993 Carrera RS_ rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Mexico Blue 1996 Porsche 993 Carrera RS_ rear badge detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Mexico Blue 1996 Porsche 993 Carrera RS_ rear end_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Orange Porsche 911 Carrera RSR_gulf blue stripes_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Four Porsche 911s from Mexico_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

I had mentioned that there were even participants who had traveled from Mexico to participate in the weekends event. The four Porsches seen above (the red 911 in the foreground, the yellow Carrera RS, the black Carrera RSR clone and the Salmon colored Carrera RS) along with their owners had traveled all the way from Monterrey, Mexico to participate. And once again the event was a showcase for rare models; both of the Carrera RS models were the real thing and not clones…

1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS_3/4 front view with red 911 in bkgd._RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Black Porsche 911 RSR clone_with yellow Carrera RS reflections_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Black Porsche 911 RSR clone_with yellow Carrera RS reflections_rear fender and wheel_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Black Porsche 911 RSR clone_with yellow Carrera RS reflections_motor detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Salmon colored 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS_3/4 rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Salmon colored 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS_ducktail detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Gold Porsche 911 Carrera RS clone_side view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Gold Porsche 911 Carrera RS clone_rear spoiler detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Aubergine 1973 Porsche 911T_side view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Another of the rare Porsches in attendance was this yellow Porsche 356 super 90 as seen below. Rumor has it that this is one of only six built…

Yellow Porsche 356 super 90_3/4 front view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Yellow Porsche 356 super 90_3/4 rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Yellow Porsche 356 super 90_rear badge detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

The last car shown is a 1970’s vintage, factory built rally /race car, complete with twin, triple throat weber carburetors and twin plug ignition…

Gulf blue 1970's vintage Porsche factory built 911 Rally car_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Gulf blue 1970's vintage Porsche factory built 911 Rally car_headlight detail_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Gulf blue 1970's vintage Porsche factory built 911 Rally car_fender graphics_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Gulf blue 1970's vintage Porsche factory built 911 Rally car_twin plug motor_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

Gulf blue 1970's vintage Porsche factory built 911 Rally car_3/4 rear view_RGruppe Solvang Treffen _May 5, 2012

I’d like to thank Dave Eck for the invitation to experience their event firsthand this past Saturday, along with the other members of the RGruppe for the opportunity to hang out with you, photograph your cars and experience your Treffen as a friend of the RGruppe.

(All photos by the author)

All this and heaven too… Porsche Rennsport Reunion IV, Part 3

DHL_Porsche RS Spyder_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

Musclemilk _Porsche RS Spyder_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11After returning to the paddock, my son and I came across one of Porsche’s racing displays highlighting Porsche Motorsports. The two cars showcased raced in the ALMS series, and were competitors in the LMP2 class; the RS Spyder. The yellow RS Spyder was campaigned by the Penske / DHL team, and the second, white RS Spyder sponsored by MuscleMIlk.

Immediately to the right of the Porsche Motorsports display was a series of open paddock bays, which revealed a second display, this one a showcase of 911 based race cars. The display featured a range of competition models from the earliest (a 1964 911), to the latest, the 2011 GT3R hybrid.

1964 Porsche 911 race car_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111964 Porsche 911 race car_Interior_ Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111964 Porsche 911 race car_ Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111967 Porsche 911R race car_ Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11After shooting this image above ( a 1967 911 R), I was passed by a group of people all moving towards the car for a photo opportunity. I overheard a man ask if he should stand by the door, and when I turned to see what was happening, I realized the man standing by the door of car #181 was in fact Dr. Wolfgang Porsche. What better indication of the significance of this event, than to have a member of the Porsche family in attendance, and obviously enjoying himself. (This would not be the last time that we would encounter Dr. Porsche at Rennsport).

Dr. Wolfgang Porsche at Rennsport Reunion _10/15/11

Dr. Wolfgang Porsche at Rennsport Reunion _10/15/11

1971 911 STR / East Africa Rally car_Porsche Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1971 911 STR East Africa Rally car, owned by photographer and race driver Jeff Zwart.

1973 Carrera RS_Martini Racing graphics_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1973 911 Carrera RSR, and the winner of the 68th (and last) Targa Florio road race.

1974 Porsche 911 RSR_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1974 Porsche 911 RSR_Interior shot_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111974 Porsche 911 RSR_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111974 Porsche 911 RSR

1976 Porsche 934 Turbo_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1976 Porsche 934 Turbo

1977 Porsche 934 1/2_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1977 Porsche 934 1/2, from the Bruce Canepa collection

1980 Porsche 935K3 _Interscope Racing_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1978 Interscope Porsche 935 K3

1986 Rothmans Porsche 961_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1986 Rothmans Porsche 961_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111986 all wheel drive Rothmans Porsche type 961, as raced at Le Mans. (As noted in its bio, this is the only type 961 in existence).

1995 Porsche 911 GT2 EVO_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1995 Porsche 911 GT2 EVO_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111995 Porsche 911 GT2 Evo

(Below) 1998 GT1 LM (Le Mans). This was the car that scored the outright victory for Porsche at Le Mans back in 1998, which was added to the ongoing celebration of the company’s 50th anniversary.

Porsche 98GT1 LM -Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

Porsche 98GT1 LM -Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11Porsche 98GT1 LM -Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11Porsche 98GT1 LM -Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

2004 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR

2004  911 GT3 RSR.

(Below)  2007 GT3 Cup car – Pikes Peak class winner and record holder, driven by Jeff Zwart

2007 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup_pikes peak class winner_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

2011 Porsche GT3R hybrid2011 Porsche GT3R hybrid2011 GT3R hybrid, still wearing the track fallout from its last race.

Now it was time to begin exploring the open paddock area, to look for other hidden Porsche treasures…

1966 Porsche 911 #901_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1966 Porsche 911 #901_Interior_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111966 Porsche 911 #901_Motor_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11914-6 T_Gunnar Racing_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11914-6 T_Gunnar Racing_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11914-6 T_Gunnar Racing_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11Gunnar Racing’s 914-6 T (www.gunnarracing.com)

1967 911S_#91_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

1967 911S_#91_ front trunk_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111967 911S

356's in paddock_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11

Porsche 911's in the paddock_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11Paddock  mirror reflection_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/111968 911L in paddock_reflections_Rennsport Reunion 4_10/15/11Porsche Rennsport Reunion IV, Part 4 coverage to follow…

(All photos by the author)

Porsche de- ja vu…

I received the latest issue of Excellence magazine in the mail late last week, and after taking it out of its plastic wrapper, I began skimming through it as I usually do from the back to the front (to preview the contents). As I got towards the middle, I noticed several photos of a car that looked familiar. So I stopped and opened up the magazine to get a better look at the article. That’s when it hit me, I had seen this same Porsche at Cars & Coffee in Irvine, California.

Cars & Coffee, 1970 Porsche 911 gray RSR

I remember the buzz it created the first time it showed up back in April. One of my friends had chased me down, and said I had to go check out the really cool, gray Porsche 911 RSR parked out on the back row. That was enough to get my attention, so I headed off towards the crowd gathered around what I assumed to be the mysterious gray 911 RSR. And I was correct; there in the middle of this sea of people was this amazing Porsche. I stood back and waited for the crowd to thin, and when it did, I moved in for a closer look. I walked around the car a couple of times, taking in the details and shooting pictures as I went. I then circled several more times, quietly studying the RSR flares, the 17″ alloy wheels, the ducktail spoiler, and admiring its beautiful gray paint job. I then focused in closer on other subtle details; the lack of a hood emblem, the shaved cowl (no windshield wipers or washer nozzles), the LARGE red brembo brakes, and the dual, highly customized exhaust system.

Car&Coffee, Porsche 911, 1970 gray RSR exhaust systemThat was when the owner walked over and lifted up the duck tail spoiler, revealing a motor that would be right at home in any purpose-built Porsche 911 race car.  Rumor was that the motor was a 3.8 liter, built up from a 997 RSR core, for street and track use. The amber-colored, fiberglass fan shroud and light golden fan, red anodized intake trumpets, combined with the black anodized, slide valve fuel injection, and braided stainless fuel lines, all combined to create the visually stunning impact delivered by this motor.

Cars&Coffee,1970 Porsche 911 gray RSR

But the payoff came when the owner climbed into the car and fired it up to leave.  The motor settled into a quick idle, with an occasional blip of the throttle used to get the car rolling. The sound was incredible; if you closed your eyes it sounded like being in the pits at Laguna Seca, listening to the exhaust note from the latest 911GT3 RSR.

The car returned again several weeks later, with a few subtle changes. It now sported a rather telling custom license plate, and with its windows lowered, offered up a view of its stunning interior, with red leather clad RSR racing bucket seats, 380 mm RSR steering wheel, and a pair of dual, vintage dash mounted chronographs. Centered between the seats and topping off the gear shift lever, was a Porsche 917 inspired, balsa shift knob. The front trunk was also opened to reveal the purpose-built front strut brace, RSR carpet, and two remote, front shock reservoirs.

Cars&Coffee, Porsche 911RSR ,license plate _engine shot

Porsche 911 RSR _interior photo_cars&coffeePorsche 911 RSR, cars&coffee_front trunk detailCars&Coffee,Porsche 911 RSR interior Porsche 911 RSR, 17" wheels at cars & coffee

Upon its next Saturday morning return, the Porsche wore racer taped- over headlights, apparently from a recent track day event. I once again had to wait for the crowds to thin, so I could gain clear access to photograph the car. The weather that morning also cooperated, producing some very interesting lighting and reflections, which magnified and accentuated the contours and lines of the car.

Cars & Coffee, gray Porsche 911 RSR, racer taped headlights

3/4 rear shot, cars & coffee, gray Porsche 911 RSR

reflections, gray Porsche 911RSR, cars & coffeeThe Porsche RSR’s most recent appearance showcased further visual modifications that had been made; yellow european (French) glass headlight lenses had been added, and the red leather RSR seats had made way for a set of carbon fiber racing seats. I guess this speaks to the serious nature of the owner and his focus on performance at the track.

This is an absolutely amazing car, and one that should be seen and heard in person, to fully appreciate its impact on the early  Porsche 911 community.

gray Porsche 911RSR,  cars&coffee, yellow glass headlights

Porsche 911RSR, headlight shot, Cars & CoffeePorsche 911 RSR, carbon fiber seats, cars&coffeePorsche 911 RSR front shot, cars & coffee, yellow headlightsI received the latest issue of Excellence magazine in the mail late last week… whoa, de-ja vu…

(All photos by the author)