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1979 Porsche 935 news, pictures, specifications, and information

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Peter Gregg won six IMSA GT Championships and notched 41 victories during the 1970s. 1979 was his final and perhaps finest season as he drove his famous number 59 Porsche to eight victories (Road Atlanta, Laguna Seca, Lime Rock, Brainerd, Mid-Ohio, Sears Point, Portland & Road America) and a record-setting eight straight pole positions - Hallet, Lime Rock, Brainerd, Daytona, Mid-Ohio, Sears Point, Road America and Road Atlanta. That record still stands today. It also posted a then-record 100% Top Ten finishing positions.

The Porsche 935 was the final evolution of the legendary 911 Carrera as introduced by Peter Gregg's Brumos Porsche Team when they won an upset victory at the 24 Hours of Daytona in 1973. The 935 is a 700-plus horsepower, twin-turbocharged racer capable of speeds above 200 miles per hour.

This vehicle is shown exactly as it was when it won the 1979 IMSA Championship. Victories were achieved in 53% of the races it entered carrying Peter Gregg to 20% of his 41 IMSA race wins.

The Brumos 935 is though to be the last remaining unmodified 935 in existence, and is totally authentic in every detail, right down to Peter Gregg's distinctive Black Watch tartan seat upholstery.
The Porsche 935 racing cars were the dominant car worlwide for many years. And Indy stars like A.J. Foyt and Bobby Rahal drove Porsche 935's. In 1976 a turbocharger gave the modified flat-6 590 bhp.
Coupe
Chassis Num: 935 0090030
 
Known as the 'Old Warhorse,' 935 0090030 was purchased by Dick Barbour in May, 1979, as a replacement for the 935/77 that was wrecked by Bob Garretson at the 1978 24 Hours of LeMans. Also known as the 'Made in Mountain View, CA by Garretson Enterprises' car, chassis 0090030 was entered by Dick Barbour in the 1979 24 Hours of LeMans race, where it won the IMSA class, and was second overall, with Paul Newman, Dick Barbour and Rolf Stommelen driving. In 1981, this car won the 24 Hours of Daytona with Garretson, Bobby Rahal and Brian Redman as the 'Red Roof Inn' car. In 1983, this car won the 12 Hours of Sebring with Wayne Baker, Kees Thierop and Jim Mullen. Besides having many top-three podium finishes, Porsche 935 0090030 was raced for over 70,000 miles.
Coupe
 
In 1979, the Porsche factory supplied Brumos Porsche with what would be the last Peter Gregg-driven Porsche 935. This special 935 TT was modified with a 'Moby Dick' type nose and aerodynamic rear bodywork and wing. Jack Atkinson of Brumos Porsche designed many of the significant changes to this 935. Peter Gregg did extensive testing in this car, and drove it in the finale at Daytona in 1980. It was to be the last Porsche 935 owned by Peter Gregg prior to his untimely death. This car has just completed a ground-up restoration.
Coupe
Chassis Num: 009 0029
 
Only 13 customer 935s were built at Porsche in 1979. Porsche then stopped production to concentrate on prototype racing leaving the development of the 935 up to private teams such as Kremer and Joest. This particular car was the last 'Werks' car built by the factory. It was only raced five times in 1979 and 1981 and as a result is the most original 935 in existence.

Bruce Canepa was quite successful racing his 934.5 against the newer 935s in IMSA. He finished third overall at the 24 Hours of Daytona with Rick Mears and Monte Shelton in 1979. The Porsche factory was quite impressed and offered Canepa a new 935 and 'Werks' support. The car was delivered to California just prior to the eleventh round of the 1979 IMSA Championship at Sears Point. Driving a 935 for the first time, Canepa qualified the car tenth and finished fifth.

In his first visit to Portland International Raceway and only his second time in a 935, Canepa qualified on the front row with Peter Gregg. With a lap and a half to go in the race they had a one-lap lead over Hurley Haywood when Canepa began to run low on fuel. Canepa crossed the finish line on fumes just as Haywood passed him for second place. Canepa finished third beating veteran drivers such as David Hobbs, Danny Ongais, Gianpiero Moretti, Milt Minter, and Jim Busby. At the Laguna Seca Trans Am in October Canepa finished fifth overall.

For the 1980 season Canepa began driving for the MOMO team with Gianpiero Moretti and did not race his 935. In the 1981 IMSA season he had mechanical problems at Laguna Seca but qualified sixth at Sears Point and finished ninth overall. At the end of the season the car was retired from active competition.
Coupe
 
This 1979 factory Porsche 935 was owned and driven by Giampiero Moretti of Momo, Italy. The car competed in numerous IMSA and FIA series races, winning multiple times. This 935 was fully restored to original Porsche factory specifications, including a 3.2 litre, twin-turbo, factory engine and factory upside-down transmission.

This 935 was later owned and restored by former Porsche driver and designer, Reinhold Joest.

The most recent restoration of this Porsche 935 was performed by Paul Willison of Willison Werkstatt, Lake Park, Florida.
Coupe
 
Porsche first started turbocharging their tried-and-true six cylinder engine in 1973 and what followed for the next eight years was complete dominance of Group Five racing by this engine, most notably as the power-plant within the 935 model

First introduced in 1976 with a single turbo, the 935 won races in Europe as well as in the IMSA series in the United States.

Arguably the most successful of any 935 to ever race, this example competed in a total of 62 races, competing at the Le Mans 24 Hour four times, and 12 Hours of Sebring five times. This car was second overall at Le Mans in 1979; finished 1st overall at the Daytona 24 Hour in 1981 with 2011 with Bobby Rahal driving and won at Sebring in the 12 Hour event in 1983 re-configured to 934 specifications.
In 1976, Porsche introduced a racing version of the Porsche 930/911 Turbo which they dubbed, the 935. It was designed for FIA-Group 5 competition and was constructed in similar fashion to the Porsche 934, which was used in Group 4 competition.

The works team, with sponsorship by Martini, entered the 935 in the FIA World Championship for Makes with team drivers, Jacky Ickx and Jochen Mass in one car and Rolf Stommelen and Manfred Schurti in another car. The Porsche 935 was an evolutionary process, as its original nose was later replaced with more aerodynamic versions better suited to high speed competition. The bodywork changed and a large wing was added to the rear of the vehicle. The rear fenders were expanded and the car was given a wider axle. The Porsche 935 won all of the major endurance races that included LeMans, Nurburgring, Daytona, Sebring, and Watkins Glen.

Group 4 competition was created for production-based GT cars and the Group 5 was for race cars based on production models. For the 1976 season, the FIA declared that the World Champion of Makes would be won from the Group 5 class, which Porsche won with their 935.

For the 1977 season, the Porsche 935's were sold to privateer teams, such as Georg Loos and Kremer Racing. The single turbo was replaced by two KKK units and the body was again changed. The privateers were using the older cars while the factory raced with the newer machines. This left the privateers unhappy, but since the Porsche 935/77 machines were not as reliable, they could be beaten.

For 1978, the famous 'Moby Dick' styling of the Porsche 935 appeared. The Porsche 935/78 had a long tail, and a frontal area that had been lowered by 10cm. The car had been optimized for low drag and its appearance earned it the nickname, Moby Dick. Powering these cars were a 3.2-liter, water-cooled, four-valve cylinder head engine capable of generating 895 horsepower. The cars reached speeds of 360 km/h at LeMans and were capable of passing the prototype cars such as the Renault and their own Porsche 936.

Throughout the seasons, the FIA, SCCA, IMSA, and CSI continued to modify the rules, which had the teams struggling to maintain a compliant group of cars. The 935, over the years, came in many different configurations powered by a wide variety of engines that included a 2.0-, 2.2-, 3.0-, and 3.2-liter size.

Factory development of the 935 slowed and eventually stopped, and tuner development continued where they left off. The most famous iteration came from Kremer Racing of Cologne, Germany. They were powered by twin-turbocharged 3.2-liter six-cylinder engine capable of producing 740 horsepower.

In 1982, the FIA discontinued Group 5 competition. The 935 continued its racing career in the IMSA GTP category. They continued to race until 1986, though their racing career had ended in 1984. Privateers entered the car in 1985 and for two races in 1986.

From 1976 through 1984, the Porsche 935 won over 150 races which includes over twenty class victories. The 935 was the overall victor at the 24 Hours of LeMans, the 12 Hours of Sebring, and the 24 Hours of Daytona.

By Daniel Vaughan | Apr 2007
A development of the 935/77 racer, the Porsche 935/2.0 Baby was built late during 1977. Both of these vehicles were very highly modified Group 5 racing versions of the road going 911. Beginning in the mid 1970's, a silhouette vehicle, the original 935s bore a close resemblance to the 911 Turbo Carrera. As the development on the 935 progressed, a bit of freedom was taken with the CSI regulations in which an allowance had been made for modifications to the front fenders. As a way to incorporate larger wheels and tires, the rule was that ‘the material and shape of the fenders is free'.

The 935 was then modified so that it didn't feature the near vertical headlamp housings, a feature that was unmistakably a 911 characteristic. Completely new fenders that now curved in unison with the shape of the bonnet replaced the housings. These new fenders improved the airflow at the front of the car, and multiplied the downforce significantly. Now incorporated into the front air dam, the headlamps were positioned more effectively, and coincidentally, in a more elegant placement.
The dominant vehicle in endurance races of the World Championship for Makes, the Porsche 935 was the prime factor in Porsche's success from 1976 through 1981. Porsche made the monumental decision to leave the battle for this World Endurance Championship for Makes to focus instead on their private tuners and customers with the only exception that the 935 would be entered once more in the 1978 24 hours of Le Mans.
The radical looking first version of the 935/78 was a product of a broached idea by Norbert Singer, the Porsche factory team's chief engineer. His plan involved cutting the side panels of their front-engined vehicle to allow the exhaust to run through. Singer presented this idea at a meeting of the FIA Technical Commission during the end of 1977, and following some discussion, the decision was made to pass this amendment. The plan was to counteract the advantage that rear-engined vehicles had over the front engined ones.

Now that Singer had an in, he went farther and created the perfect vehicle for the high-speed straights at Le Mans. The team was already planning a light aluminum-framed ‘Baby' and by cutting the panels would allow the car to become even lower by 8 or 10 cm. Definitely lower, the vehicle now looked wider. Completely new bodywork was installed to highlight the lower profile with an extended tail that went much farther beyond its rear wheels.

New features installed on the 935/78 included Singer's ‘additional rear aerodynamic aid', which was as wide across the doors as across the bonnet and tail, and was a continuous fair that ran the length of the vehicle. An uninterrupted flow of air to the rear end of the body was resulted by this ‘double-door' which also permitted the inclusion of a slippery low-mounted and full-width rear aerofoil. Along with the addition of larger brakes, and an ‘upside down' transmission which was utilized to reduce the severe angle of the rear drive axles by lowering the vehicle just as much as they had with the larger diameter 19 inch wheels and tires were new mechanical modifications that were added to the vehicle.

At first, Porsche heads were disturbed at the sight of the car, especially after so much money was invested in the vehicle, afraid that during the races it would be considered illegal. But, along with the FIA, they were pleasantly surprised at the design of the vehicle.

Following concerns about the door fairing, alternative configurations were tested by Singer. The end result was cutting the original fairing vertically so that only the front part of the door was faired-in over a length of 470mm. The classic 'Moby Dick' shape was born in the combination of a higher and slightly narrower rear wing with deep side fences.
The model from the year before, the new 935 had a bodywork with a more favorable aerodynamic shape that achieved lower wind resistance. For the first time in Porsche history, this was the most powerful version of their classic six up then which used water-cooled cylinder heads with four valves for each cylinder. Able to achieve a top speed of 350 km/h, the ‘Moby Dick' had a 3.2 liter, water/air-cooled, four-valve, six-cylinder engine with two overhead camshafts on each bank that produced 750 hp and with cylinders that cooled themselves with air.
Unfortunately, even with the new nickname, the new 935 was unable to repeat its past success at the Le Mans of the previous year. The Coupe was driven by Stommelen/Schurti to the eighth place in the overall standings.

The 935/78 had been race-tested in the 6 hour event at Silverstone before Le Man, which Ickx/Mass had won. Though it dominated the 1976 and 1977 World Championship for manufacturers, the 'Moby Dick' was retired to a museum in 1978 following the lack of success achieved at the Le Mans effort.
A handful of 935 vehicles were found in private ownerships, without the super-powerful, four-valve six that continued to capture countless national and international victories and championships. During the 1980's, the 935 Porsche continued to prove their durability and efficiency. This feat helped Porsche win every single World Championship for Makes up until 1981. The successful racing tradition continued for the Porsche 956, which was built to new motor racing regulations.

By Jessica Donaldson
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