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Gunther Werks builds a 993-generation Porsche 911 Speedster

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Gunther Werks Porsche 911 Speedster

California-based Gunther Werks has chosen the 993-generation Porsche 911 as its canvas for customization. Its latest remix of the last air-cooled 911 is a retro-looking 993 Speedster.

Gunther Werks followed the Porsche template for a speedster by chopping off the roof and adding fairings behind the rear seats, along with a cut-down windshield (which can be deleted at the buyer’s request). Extra bracing beneath the bodywork helps make up for the structural rigidity lost when removing the roof, and a roll cage and roll hoops were installed to protect the occupants. A fabric roof stows underneath the rear fairing.

Other modifications include flared fenders, a rear ducktail spoiler, a redesigned front bumper (in carbon fiber), aluminum mirrors and door handles, and 3D-printed Inconel exhaust tips. The car rides on center-lock Fuchs-style alloy wheels.

Like Gunther Werks’ 993 coupe, the Speedster is powered by a 4.0-liter flat-6 supplied by Rothsport Racing. The company hasn’t released specifications, but that engine makes 435 hp and 335 lb-ft of torque in the Gunther Werks coupe.

Gunther Werks Porsche 911 Speedster

The interior features a gauge cluster made from a single piece of aluminum, housed in a carbon-fiber dashboard. The seats are carbon fiber as well, and Gunther Werks also repositioned the pedals for better ergonomics.

Gunther Werks only plans to build 25 Speedsters, with production scheduled to start in 2022. The company hasn’t discussed pricing, but the Speedster could command a premium over the coupe, which was priced around $525,000.

Still, this is probably the best opportunity to own a 993 Speedster. Porsche only built two official 993 Speedsters—one for Jerry Seinfeld, and one for Ferdinand “Butzi” Porsche, son of company founder Ferry Porsche. The automaker has perennially revived the Speedster as a special edition for various 911 generations, most recently with the 991 generation.

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Autos

2022 Volvo C40 Recharge, 2021 Porsche Taycan, 2021 Honda Legend: This Week’s Top Photos

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2021 Aston Martin AMR21 Formula One race car

By 2030, Volvo will have a fully electric lineup and an online sales model just like Tesla. However, we won’t have to wait until then for new electric vehicles from the Swedish brand as it will already have seven available by the middle of the decade. One of the seven was revealed this week in the form of the 2022 C40 Recharge.

2021 Aston Martin AMR21 Formula One race car

Aston Martin is returning to Formula One for the first time since 1960 and has a multiple world champion signed as a driver. We’re talking about Sebastian Vettel, who will be driving the new Aston Martin AMR21 together with Lance Stroll.

2021 Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo

2021 Porsche Taycan Cross Turismo

Porsche this week launched its first soft-roader wagon in the form of the 2021 Taycan Cross Turismo. It reaches dealerships this summer and will cost you only about $1,500 more than the equivalent Taycan sedan.

Ferrari Special Series test mule spy shots - Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

Ferrari Special Series test mule spy shots – Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

One of the cars we spied this week is likely to be the successor to the LaFerrari. It’s also likely to be the car Ferrari enters in the new Le Mans Hypercar class of the World Endurance Championship in 2023.

2023 Maserati GranTurismo test mule spy shots - Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

2023 Maserati GranTurismo test mule spy shots – Photo credit: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien

Another upcoming vehicle we spied this week was the next-generation Maserati GranTurismo due on sale next year. Maserati is testing the new mechanical package under the makeshift body of an Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio to keep prying eyes away.

2021 Honda Legend (Japanese spec)

2021 Honda Legend (Japanese spec)

This week we learned that the Acura RLX is alive and well in Japan, only it’s known as a Honda Legend over there. The latest version sports some new electronic driver-assist features rated at Level 3 on the SAE scale of self-driving capability.

Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus 008 “Mini Boot”

Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus 008 “Mini Boot”

America’s Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus provided an update on its 008. The 008 is a kit car that’s best described as a jacked up, off-road-ready version of SCG’s 004 supercar.

2020 Audi SQ8

2020 Audi SQ8

And finally, we had a chance to test the 2020 Audi SQ8. The Lamborghini Urus’ German cousin delivers performance and utility in a no compromise, understated package.

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Learn about Porsche’s legendary “Moby Dick” 935/78

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Porsche 935/78

Porsche has built many legendary race cars over the decades, but the 935/78 “Moby Dick” still stands out. So much so that Porsche devoted an entire video in its “Top Five” YouTube series to the car. You could say it’s a whale of a tale.

The 935/78 got its nickname from its long tail, a testament to the liberal rules in sports car racing at the time. While the 935 was based on the 911, engineers had significant freedom to alter its shape for better aerodynamics. The 935/78 also had a longer nose than other versions of the 935, with the 911’s trademark round headlights replaced by square units lower in the front fascia.

While the rules allowed for extensive modifications to the bodywork, they were more restrictive when it came to the engine. Porsche wanted the 3.2-liter flat-6 to be water cooled, but was forced to stick with air cooling, as in the 911 road cars of the period.

 

Porsche 935/78

While it’s an icon today, the 935/78 wasn’t a very successful race car. It only won a single race—the 1978 6 Hours of Silverstone. The single 935/78 built only raced during the 1978 season, but other versions of the 935 raced prolifically, with many teams continuing to develop their cars independent of the Porsche factory.

The 935/78 may not have been a success on the track, but its design made it a legend. Porsche even launched a tribute version in 2018, based on the 991-generation 911 GT2 RS. Unlike the original, the modern 935 was not homologated for racing, although filmmaker and Porsche fanatic Jeff Zwart ran one at the 2020 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.

For more Porsche lore, check out the “Top Five” videos for the 959 Paris-Dakar. Porsche also put together top-five lists of rally cars and secret prototypes.

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2021 24 Hours of Le Mans delayed until mid-August

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No. 97 Aston Martin Vantage GTE race car at the 2020 24 Hours of Le Mans

Organizers of the 24 Hours of Le Mans announced Thursday that this year’s running of the French endurance classic has been delayed until the weekend starting August 21.

The race, which serves as the highlight event of the World Endurance Championship, was originally scheduled to run the weekend starting June 12.

The organizers decided to delay the race as by the August date there is a better chance a public audience will be allowed to attend.

Last year’s race was held without spectators and sticking to the original June date for this year’s race would likely have meant another year without the public, based on the current outlook for Covid-19 restrictions in France.

No. 97 Aston Martin Vantage GTE race car at the 2020 24 Hours of Le Mans

“Holding the 24 Hours of Le Mans behind closed doors for the second year running would be unthinkable,” Pierre Fillon, president of race organizer ACO, said in a statement. “We are therefore doing all we can to avoid that happening and to give competitors a clear view of the whole season.”

While the Le Mans race has lacked some excitement in recent years due to Toyota being the only automaker in the premier LMP1 class, things will heat up this year with the new Le Mans Hypercar class replacing LMP1 as the top class.

In LMH, Toyota will go up against America’s Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus and Germany’s ByKolles this year. Peugeot is set to join the fray most likely in 2022 and Ferrari has said it will be there in 2023. Porsche will also be there in 2023, albeit in the separate LMDh class sanctioned by IMSA.

Pre-season testing for the 2021 WEC season is scheduled for March 30-31 at Portugal’s Portimao racetrack. The opening round will be held on April 4, also at Portimao.

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