74 Carrera @ RM London

Description from the auction company:
  • One of 1,036 European-specification 1974 Carrera Coupés
  • Factory-fitted sunroof
  • Fastidiously maintained and never fully restored; retains its original interior and engine
  • An Italian car from new; same Italian owner for over 25 years
  • Matching-numbers example
While these new 911s gained the new-for-1974 U.S.-specification bumpers, the European-specification 1974 Carrera retained the fantastic 210 brake horsepower, type 911/83, 2.7-litre mechanically fuel injected engine from the 1973 Carrera RS. This was a huge difference from the engines in the U.S.-specification cars, which were fitted with the 2.7-litre flat-six found in the 911 S. The fenders and rear quarters in the new Carrera 2.7 “MFI” were tastefully flared to accept seven- and eight-inch-wide Fuchs forged alloy wheels. Underneath, there were new forged aluminium rear trailing arms, and the Carreras were fitted with 20-millimetre front and 18-millimetre rear anti-roll bars, Bilstein sport shock absorbers and struts, and, of course, large ventilated disc brakes at all four corners. Power was delivered through a Type 915/06 five-speed manual transaxle.

Delivered new to Auto Germana in Verona, Italy, in November 1973, this Carrera 2.7 was first registered in Modena in 1974. Finished in light yellow and fitted with an electric sunroof, it passed through the hands of five Italian owners up until June 1988, when it was acquired by the present custodian, and has remained in Italy ever since. Today, the car remains in largely original condition and has never been fully restored, as it has always been well cared for and subject to regular maintenance, as necessary, throughout its life. Upon careful inspection, it is clear that the car has never been in an accident, as evidenced from correct and original welding on the bodywork. While the outer panels have been repainted in its original light yellow in 1989, the original paint remains in excellent condition under the bonnet and in the engine compartment. The interior remains completely original and in exceptional condition, while the headliner has been renewed. The Porsche’s original Fuchs wheels still maintain their original, semi-matte finish.

Continuing the brilliant performance of the iconic Carrera RS, the 1974 Carrera 2.7 MFI is a wonderful automobile in its own right, providing the performance of the RS for a fraction of its price. Rarer than their older sibling, with only 1,036 examples produced, finding a well-maintained example can often be difficult. Having remained in Italy its entire life, this example remains largely original and presents exceptionally well. Boasting its original interior and complemented by its original light-yellow paint colour, this would be an ideal example for the individual looking to drive and enjoy one of the most exciting 911s ever built.

Summary: 210 bhp, 2,687 cc Type 911/83 air-cooled horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine with Bosch mechanical fuel injection; five-speed manual transmission; independent front suspension with torsion bars, McPherson struts, and an anti-roll bar; independent rear suspension with torsion bars, trailing arms, tubular dampers, and an anti-roll bar; and four-wheel disc brakes. Wheelbase: 2,271 mm Porsche’s 1973 Carrera RS was a runaway success for the company, and it was clear that they wanted to continue its success into 1974. However, newly enacted crash safety standards in the United States mandated the end of the “long-hood” chassis. This brought about the advent of the new G-series of 911, introducing shock-mounted bumpers, a stronger floor pan, revised lighting, and other new features.

The Car That Inspired a Book

The following was originally published as "The Car That Inspired a Book: Ryan Snodgrass’ 1976 Carrera 2.7 MFI" by Randy Wells in the February 2016 issue of Road Scholars magazine:

“To whom much is given, much is expected.”
This might seem like an unusual quote to open an automotive story, but it happens to fit. Ryan Snodgrass of Washington state has made a lot of good decisions in his life, including his choice of career and family. It’s also allowed him to take on the monumental task of researching an underappreciated Porsche that uses the same engine as the legendary 1973 Carrera 2.7 RS.

Road Scholars Magazine last visited with Ryan in December 2015 when editor Randy Leffingwell extolled the virtues of Ryan’s soon to be released book, Carrera 2.7. The 7.5-pound, 406 page reference features 830 beautifully reproduced high-resolution photos, more than half of which have never been seen. It also contains a lot of new information on the ‘74-76 G-series Euro Carrera 2.7, including obscure celebrity cars, racecars, and rare accessories.

So, what is it that motivates someone to take time away from a lucrative career to produce a “bible” on a car that was built for only three years in the mid ‘70s? Well, it might only take one drive in a Porsche 2.7-liter MFI powered 911 to appreciate what propelled Ryan to publish his book using the best paper, inks, and printing presses available.

“I was compelled to do it as a lifelong lover of car books,” explains Ryan. “I had amassed a small library of automotive specialty books and appreciated how the best ones had complementary photos and text that increased one’s connection with a particular car.”

Georg Konradsheim’s Carrera RS was one of those books. Coincidentally, at the same time Ryan was first considering authoring a book, Georg was updating his. After contacting Georg for guidance, Ryan was introduced to his designer, Christoph Mäder. “The two men became good mentors, advisors, and friends, and they supported me throughout the project,” Ryan notes. But perhaps we’re getting a little ahead of ourselves. Let’s look at the car that inspired Ryan’s book.

There is one thing to know about the Euro 1976 Carrera 2.7. It is remarkably similar to the ‘73 Carrera 2.7 RS of Georg’s book. The difference is the ‘74-76 Carrera 2.7 was built on an impact bumper body and interior, instead of the earlier long hood form. The weight and horsepower output of the later Carreras 2.7 is virtually identical, and, as expected, the driving experience is very much the same also. That’s not surprising given the legendary Typ 911/83 2.7-liter RS-spec MFI engine was used in all of these cars.

“I started looking for a ‘74-76 Carrera 2.7 MFI in 2009,” Ryan recalls. “I was surprised by the lack of information available on these models, even on the Internet. In the United States, the model was largely unknown at the time, even to real Porsche enthusiasts, as we never received them as exports because they were non-compliance to emissions standards.”

After a year of searching, Ryan finally found a 1975 Light Yellow Euro Carrera 2.7 stateside. This particular Porsche had been featured on the cover of a magazine and was one of the best-sorted 911s he’d ever driven. Shortly after that purchase, the owner of a ‘76 Silver Carrera called and asked if Ryan wanted to take on a disassembled project. It was Ryan’s complete restoration of this car back to original factory specs that inspired his book.

Undoubtedly, every rest-of-the-world Carrera is a special car. At about 1,635 coupes and 630 Targas, the Carrera 2.7 of 1974-1976 is of limited production, unique character, and historical significance. Total production compares closely to the roughly 1,590 1973 Carrera RSs built. The silver ‘76 911 that Ryan purchased in late 2011 is an especially rare car. It’s a Carrera 2.7 MFI “Sondermodell,” a “special edition” variation of the ‘76 911 with VIN #911 660 9050 (the 40th produced out of 113).

Ryan reports, “The Sondermodell coupes were not standard production 911s. They never appeared in factory brochures, and most Porsche books don’t even reference them. They were only sold in Germany, basically through the backdoor, during the last two months of the 1976 model year. They were the last model-year street Porsche with MFI.”

The Sondermodell has the option code M405. For 1976, that meant several performance items were added, including SC style rear flares, Bilstein shocks, limited-slip differential, 18mm rear anti-roll bar, 6 and 7×15-inch Fuchs, and most importantly the 911/83 RS MFI engine. Weight was trimmed by eliminating the heavy bumper crush absorbers, electric windows, rubber-lined carpet, and carpeting on the door pockets.

There are other unique features original to this ’76 Sondermodell, like the lack of a badge on the rear deck lid, a blue Perma-Tune Ignition box, orange “Langzeit Garantie” galvanized decal, front spoiler, and the attractive early rear whale tail.

Ryan remembers, “911 660 9050 had been sitting in the back of a San Diego body shop in primer for the better part of twelve years. Eventually the owner decided to sell it because he realized he wasn’t going to complete the project anytime soon. When I went to inspect it, parts were strewn in the rafters, storage closets, and in piles around the shop. The chassis had been completely stripped and was just a bare roller covered in layers of dust.”

With the coupe’s cabin jammed full of parts, it was shipped to Tim Morris at German Master Tech in Bend, Oregon. There, an 18-month ground-up bare metal restoration was undertaken. “We were very careful to ensure that every part was original or correctly date coded. We wanted it to look exactly as it left the factory,” says Ryan. “I did the part sourcing, research and planning, including traveling to multiple private collections and visiting the factory archives in Stuttgart on four separate occasions. The process of going through this restoration proved critical in understanding these cars from the perspective of producing a book.”

In 1976 Porsche switched from doing a partial galvanization to a new process of dipping the entire body of each 911. Thankfully, when Ryan’s ‘76 Carrera was previously painted, the shop didn’t take the paint down to bare metal, which ensured that the original galvanized coating remained on the car. The tub was also very original and rust free except for the battery box and lower windowsills.

Since the Carrera 2.7L MFI motor had not be run for over a decade, it was completely torn down and rebuilt. The final reassembly and tuning was done at Rothsport Racing in Oregon. PMB Performance in Utah restored the stock brakes, and Harvey Weidman of California refinished the date matching Fuchs.

Ryan managed to source all the needed parts including an original black 1976 dash without A/C vents or speaker grills. The interior was then delivered to Tony Garcia at Autobahn Interiors in San Diego. Luckily, Tony found just enough NOS MacLachlan red tartan material to finish the seat inlays. “There is a big difference in the feel, color vibrancy, and crispness of OEM tartan fabric that you don’t get with today’s reproduction,” Ryan states.

At Master Tech, everything, including the wiring harness, was removed before the most methodical final metal finishing, painting and reassembly.

Complete and underway, this Carrera with its MFI induction rewards with a glorious sound and instantaneous throttle response. It has a remarkable feel compared to the US version of the Carrera of 1974-1975, which used the less powerful 2.7 CIS (K-Jetronic) injected engines that meet the California and US emission standards.

Being from the Pacific Northwest, Ryan’s not afraid to drive his Sondermodell anywhere, even in the rain. Along the way he’s won “Best in Class” at the Concours on the Avenue event during the 2013 Monterey Historics week.

Serious automotive collectors consider Porsche’s Carrera 2.7 RS to be the archetypical iconic long hood 911, and deservedly so. For the short hood 911s, the Euro Carrera 2.7 has the same soul and is equally captivating. Ryan knows this and his book portrays the complete story of these remarkable, unheralded sports cars.

Profiled: 1976 Carrera 2.7 Sondermodell

The latest Excellence magazine issue #239 for September 2016 includes the article "Das Sondermodell: A German-market-only 1976 Carrera 2.7 MFI coupe makes its way Stateside" by Doug Neilson. The article profiles the journey of the special 1976 Carrera 2.7 MFI Sondermodells from new in Germany, through the hands of an enthusiast who sold her VW Beetle and dreamed of a 911, through a few owners to the present caretaker.

A few excerpts:

In the early 1980s, Vien Wheeler was going to school to become a pharmacist and driving a powder blue Volkswagen Beetle that was mechanically sound, but structurally not so good. Although her Bug had seen better days, her love of it led her to take an interest in another rear- engined, air-cooled German car: the Porsche 911. Upon graduation, however, Wheeler opted to loan her sister money to assist in the start-up of a business, rather than spend her paychecks on a sports car.

Wheeler's investment in her sister only temporarily delayed her ownership of a Porsche, though. The company Wheeler loaned money to help launch became successful. When it came time for reimbursement, Wheeler said she didn't want money, but she'd happily accept a 911- as long as it was something really special. Since her sister's husband worked as a mechanical engineer in Germany, this turned out to be a relatively straightforward request. After doing a little searching, Wheeler's brother-in-law found the car you see here.  After Wheeler's brother-in-law purchased the car from a German seller, it was shipped to the Port of Houston. After her 911 was unloaded off the boat, Wheeler drove her new wheels 243 miles home to Shreveport, Louisiana where she registered it on November 18, 1986.

Another story from a later owner of the Sondermodell:

One day while working at Ruf, Glenn remembers seeing a very interesting customer car-an inconspicuous G-bodied 911 with an RS-spec 2.7-1iter MFI engine. Glenn pointed the car out to Alois, who happened to be walking by, and commented that someone had put an RS motor in the car. "That 'someone' was the Porsche factory," Ruf responded. "If you ever have a chance to buy one of these cars, do so. One day they will be very valuable."

'74 Carrera 2.7 MFI @ Monterey Auctions

Description from the auction:

  • Matching-Numbers Original 2.7 MFI Engine
  • One of Only 1,036 “Euro Carrera” MFI Coupes Produced in 1974
  • Offered with Books, Tool Kit, Jack, and COA
  • Attractive Color Combination
  • Mechanically Similar to the Legendary 1973 Carrera RS
New safety and emissions standards in the US, Porsche’s largest market, heralded the end of the road for the 911 “long-hood” chassis in 1974. The new “G-prefix” series of that year would bring a shortened hood, crash-resistant impact bumpers, revised lighting, and a plethora of other changes and upgrades. From 1974 to 1976, a limited number of high-performance models were made available in European markets. Keeping the same Type 911/83 2.7-liter, 210 hp engine with Bosch mechanical fuel injection (MFI), as well as most of the same fundamental qualities in overall feel and driving enjoyment as the Carrera RS, these “Euro Carreras” were an RS in all but name, although never branded as such by Porsche’s marketing department.

This particular 911 Carrera MFI is one of 1,036 produced for the 1974 model year and was completed in Stuttgart in November 1973. A very original, matching-numbers example displaying less than 125,000 km, it presents very well with one repaint in Grand Prix White (Code 124124), with complementing blue/black leatherette upholstery as originally delivered, and it comes complete with its owner’s manuals, tool kit, jack, and COA.

Following in the footsteps of its iconic predecessor was always going to be tough. Today, a renewed appreciation of the model has brought a corresponding rise in demand, and this beautiful Carrera would be a fine addition to any collection of rare Porsches, as it is suitable for both shows and touring.

All images copyright and courtesy of Gooding & Company. Photos by Mike Maez.

Auction house estimates $225,000 – 275,000 (approx. €202,000 – €246,000).