Porsche’s magazine-of-record Christophorus has been slowly trickling out their featured articles for a few years now, and this is perhaps the greatest one we’ve seen in all that time. This odd-looking mid-70s 911 Turbo is a unique piece of RennSport heritage that we’d not heard of prior. It was commissioned for long-time Porsche driver, company supporter, and friend of past Porsche CEO Ernst Fuhrmann, maestro Herbert von Karajan. Karajan was not a large man, but his list of accomplishments was imposing. He was only satisfied with perfection, and that helps explain this phenomenal car. One of the first Special Wishes built Porsches, this early production 930 sounds like a heck of a ride, and was built to Karajan’s exacting standards.
As many know, the early 3.0-liter Carrera Turbo Type 930 was built to bring Porsche’s 911 into a new level of performance. With 260 horsepower from a turbocharged flat-six, and a 1140 kilo weigh-in, there’s a reason the 911 Turbo is an icon of performance. In its day, it was counted among the quickest and fastest cars in the world. The maestro requested that his special order 911 Turbo weigh less than 1000 kilos and produce more horsepower than standard. It wasn’t an easy task, and the resulting car shares more with Porsche’s motorsport models than a standard 911 Turbo.
How it Was Done
Starting with a fresh Carrera RS body shell, Porsche attached control arms, uprights, and sway bars from the motorsport department, and fitted a chassis-stiffening roll cage. Much of the Porsche’s weight loss was conducted inside, as this Turbo RS was built with much of the interior left on the shelf; sans radio, door handles, carpeting, or regard for comfort. In the engine compartment, the 3-liter received a larger turbocharger and camshafts to produce around 100 horsepower more than a stock 930. As a special addendum, Porsche requested the blessing of Count Rossi to use his famed Martini livery from their 1974 Le Mans effort on this special customer car. It’s certainly a unique finished product, but certainly not one we’re opposed to.
Karajan only racked up a few thousand kilometers on the Turbo RS odometer during his tenure at the wheel from 1975 through 1980. We cannot imagine driving such an amazing Porsche so little, especially when his house was nestled in the mountainous terrain of southern Bavaria. He was said to get up before dawn and drive up into the mountains to greet the day. Perhaps because this 911 shared garage space with several other Porsches it was not driven as much, because the maestro had to share his time with each of them. Regardless of why, this 911 retains a very low odometer tally. It’s practically criminal that such a unique Porsche has not been driven as frequently as it should be, but with an alleged value of nearly three million euros, we’d have a hard time risking that for a drive as well.
To read much more about this car and its unique first owner, check out the full article in Christophorus Issue 382, or click this link.