Though the Porsche market has cooled somewhat from its 2016 highs, love for the German brand is still strong—especially among its most loyal fans. These days it takes the very best Porsches to achieve top dollar and that’s what Gooding & Company aims to sell with the announcement of three models at its Amelia Island auction in March. The cars up for bidding are a 1979 935, a 1987 Kremer Porsche 962C, and a 1973 911 Carrera 2.7 RS Lightweight. Gooding & Company has typically had good luck with Porsches at its annual Amelia Island auction. That includes selling a number of Jerry Seinfeld’s P-cars for upwards of $22 million in 2016, despite a pending lawsuit that one may have been less than it was represented to be.
The most valuable of Gooding’s Porsche trio is likely the 1979 935, with a pre-sale estimate of $2.55 to $3.0 million. According to Gooding, the car is one of just seven 935s built in this model year (other sources suggest as many as 13 cars were built) and is of the final specification with larger brakes and lowered floor pans, mandating that the gearbox be mounted upside down to keep the rear half-shafts in proper orientation. This 935, chassis number 930 990 0027, was delivered new to Los Angeles Times publisher Otis Chandler and raced by him just once at the 1979 Los Angeles Times Grand Prix of Endurance at the legendary Riverside International Raceway, a defunct track that is now parking lots and condominiums. Chandler is said to have kept the 935 until 1993, while its current owner is stated to have restored the car under his ownership during the past 15 years. Gooding claims the 935 to be “among the finest examples in existence.”
With an estimate of “just” $1.0 to $1.25 million, maybe a 1987 962C is more to your liking? Chief complaints about factory-built 962s revolve around lack of rigidity in the tub made from sheet aluminum, possibly due to its increased wheelbase over the outgoing 956 endurance racer. This Kremer Racing–campaigned car utilizes a stiffer aluminum-honeycomb tub commissioned by Kremer from U.K.-based John Thompson following the fatal accidents of two Kremer drivers behind the wheel of factory 962s. (Later Kremer 962CK6 models would use a carbon-fiber tub for even greater rigidity). While Kremer sold its scratch-built tubs to other racing teams, this car, in well-known “Leyton House” livery, was built for Kremer’s own use at the 1987 24 Hours of Le Mans, where it finished fourth overall and then eighth overall in 1988.
Then again, if you’d rather have a car that’s more suited for road use, Gooding estimates its 1973 911 Carrera 2.7 RS Lightweight will bring a similar $1.0 to $1.2 million. As one of just 200 2.7 RS models built to M471 “Lightweight” spec of nearly 1,600 total cars, this car has thinner body panels and glass, as well as a stripped-down interior. The idea was that these were more race-ready cars than the more popular “Touring” spec models and indeed, many owners used their Lightweights for local club-racing events while still being able to enjoy them on the road. This Lightweight is said to have had just four owners from new and has been restored while with its current owner to its original white with green accents.
Keep tabs open here at Automobile as more star cars from the upcoming Amelia Island auctions come to light.