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 Porsche 911 photo

1989 Porsche 911

While most automobile manufacturers were struggling with the oil crisis and increases in safety and emission regulations, Porsche was thriving. The experience gained from turbocharged air-cooled engines of their racing program were implemented and applied to the rear-engined sports cars that were built for the road. Porsche displayed the Type 930, turbocharged 911, at the 1973 Paris Motor Show.

The Porsche 930 was the most powerful production Porsche to date, powered by a 3.0-liter air-cooled flat-six engine (with roots that trace back to the 911 RSR) fitted with a KKK turbocharger. The production-ready version was shown at the Paris show in autumn of 1974, displaying both luxury and performance in a compact and elegant package. It came with air conditioning, electric windows and other various creature comforts. In the back was an enormous 'whale-tail' spoiler and a wider track meant to keep the car firmly plant and ensure all the power was delivered efficiently to the ground.

The exotic design of the 911 Turbo was perfected in the long-distance Sports Car racing program known as the 'World Championship of Makes' when these 'Flat Nose' 935s and 936s (most famously the 'Moby Dick' 935) competed in Group 6 competition earning numerous victories and podium finishes in the hands of Ickx, Mass and Stommelen and during the next two seasons. They earned four victories in eight World Championship races and a triumph at Le Mans in each year.

Although Porsche did not initially offer the Flat Nose or 'Flachbau' (translated as Low Build) to privateers, the early demand was initially catered for by 'Kremer Racing' who offered a conversion. After witnessing the enthusiasm for this setup, the factory's own Customer Department began offering this service to special order (Sunderwunschen) from 1981, becoming an official option only in 1986. The back of the vehicles received extra cooling intakes, various body modifications, different sills, and the front wings were steel, incorporating cooling vents and pop-up headlamps.

The Carrera
Porsche revived the 'Carrera' name in 1973 for its top-of-the-range 911 'homologation special.' The name had previously been applied to the most potent version of the 356 range. The name was dormant since 1977, then revived at the start of the 1984 model year, and applied to all 911 variants, co-incidentally with the introduction of the 3.2-liter engine. The engine remained an air-cooled 'flat six' unit, however it was 80-percent new with a 3,164cc displacement achieved by using the 95mm bore from the previous SC model and the 74.4mm-stroke crankshaft from the 1978 3.3-liter Turbo. The compression ratio increased and a new induction and exhaust system was added. The shortcomings of the perennial 911 were addressed with the addition of an effective cam chain tensioner and associated lubrication system. It received a more effective oil cooler system that was further improved in 1987 with the addition of a thermostatically controlled fan. The fuel and ignition system was controlled by a Bosch LE-Jetronic ECU system which marked the first use of such a system on a 911, resulting in better fuel economy and improved performance. These modifications resulted in an 27 horsepower improvement over its predecessor and allowing the 911 to sprint from zero-to-sixty mph in 5.3 seconds and a top speed of 152 mph.

The existing Type 915 five-speed was carried over from the SC series, and then in 1987, the Carrera received a new five-speed Getrag 'box (the G50) and an hydraulically operated clutch.

In 1984, Porsche introduced the M491 option, officially called the 'Supersports' but more commonly known as the 'Turbo Look.' It was a style that resembled the Type 930 911 Turbo, complete with a large rear wing, deeper front spoiler, and flared wheel arches. Mechanical improvements included wider wheels, and modifications to the suspension and brakes.

1989 Porsche
For 1989, Porsche introduced a four-wheel-drive Carrera 4, a system it sourced from the full-time 4WD system from the 959 supercar. Styling remained mostly unchanged; there were updates to the aerodynamics. The 3.6-liter engine was enlarged and now offered 247 horsepower.

The Carrera 4 came with anti-lock brakes and power steering, plus a rear spoiler that raised automatically when speeds of 50 mph were achieved.

The base Carrera models rode on 16-inch wheels, replacing the prior 15-inch versions.

The Turbocharged 911 examples had a five-speed manual gearbox instead of the four-speed units. The horizontally opposed, overhead-cam six-cylinder engine fitted with the turbocharger delivered 282 SAE horsepower. The 193.1 cubic-inch engine delivered 214 SAE horsepower which the 219.7 cubic-inch engine found in the 911 Carrera 4 offered 247 SAE horsepower.

Another new addition to the 911 line was the Speedster model, wearing the 911 body with a cut-down windshield. Channeling the Avant-grade and minimalistic 356 Speedsters built specifically for the United States sport-car market of the 1950s, Porsche president Peter Schutz envisioned a modern variation built atop the 3.2-liter 911 Cabriolet. The basic concept was refined by Helmuth Bott, Porsche's technical director, adding a removable fiberglass rear tonnea cover with dual fairings, in keeping with the basic lines and design themes of the original 356 Speedster. The production version had a single-layer convertible top that fit beneath a tonneau cover. It was not a power-operated top nor did it have much padding, which was more commonly seen on the regular 911 cabriolet.

The Speedster's shape was created by Porsche's styling department, then under the direction of Tony Lapine. Porsche introduced a 'Clubsport' prototype with cut-down racing windscreen at the 1987 Frankfurt Show, signaling the design direction of the forthcoming Speedster. After further refinement, the production-ready form was eventually approved as Option M503 on the outgoing 3.2-liter 911 Carrera for 1989.

The Speedster had a lowered windscreen, wind-up side windows, was devoid of the Carrera's normal vent windows, had rear seat delete, and a manually-operated convertible top. Approximately 2,065 Speedsters were produced for public sale, all within the 'K Program' run lasting from August 1988 to July 1989 including 823 sent to the United States. 1,894 of the Speedsters received the 'Turbo Look' appearance package, based on the basic body shell of the 911/930 Turbo, with flared fenders, spoilers, upgraded suspension, 7-inch front and 9-inch rear wheels, and heavy-duty 4-piston disc brakes with cross-drilled rotors (11.8 inches in the front and 12.1-inch diameter in the rear). The 3,164-cubic centimeter engine was equipped with Bosch LE-Jetronic fuel injection and produced 215 horsepower at 5,900 RPM and 195-foot-pounds at 4,800 rpm. The power was delivered through a Type G50 fully synchronized five-speed manual transaxle. Oil-fed chain tensioners, which were introduced on the Carrera-series engines, helped to preserve the longevity of the engine.

The Speedster was optionally available with the racing 935 Turbo-style 'Flachbau' or 'Slant-Nose' front-end body style. Only the 'Turbo Look' was available for the German and American market, with prices adding $13,045 to the Speedsters $65,480 base price. Sales of the new-generation Speedster was brief, lasing from January through September 1989, and was a fitting tribute to mark the end of the long production of the 3.2-liter Carrera. It was also the final model to have been produced at Porsche's old Stuttgart factory.


by Daniel Vaughan | Feb 2012

Related Reading : Porsche 911 History

The legendary Porsche 911 is the longest production run sports car of all time. It was conceived as a successor for the highly successful Porsche 356 and from the start had high aspirations for success. Ferry Porsches son, Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, designed the 911. When it went into production it was labeled the 901 but Peugeot had claims to the name, so to avoid infringing on their naming scheme,....
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Related Reading : Porsche 911 History

Who could predict that the 911 would be Porsches saving grace and surpass the 356 in sales, longevity Quickly establishing itself as an icon of 60s cool, the iconic 911 only became more popular as the years went on. The flagship of the current lineup of Porsche, the 911 (pronounced Nine Eleven) or Neunelfer is a two-door grand tourer with a very distinctive design. The 911 is one of the oldest....
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1989 Vehicle Profiles

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0914KS173071

The Porsche 911 Carrera Speedster has a cut-down windshield and emergency-only top. Styling chief Tony Lapine transported a number of the old 356 styling cues to a limited production model, which sold for a hefty premium. Priced at $65,000, it was $1....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Coupe

Chassis Num: WP0AB0916KS120791
Engine Num: 64K03381
Gearbox Num: 2K01019

1989 was the last year for the 911's original styling. 1990 saw not only an exterior re-style but also new brake, suspension and electronic technologies. The 3124cc motor used in this car was claimed to be over 80-percent new at the time, too. 217 ho....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Targa

Chassis Num: WPOEB0911KS160603

The Carrera 3.2 was launched in 1984 as a coupe and a cabriolet. A 'Turbo Look' coupe was an option in the beginning but fell into regular production along with the Targa in 1985. A Carrera Club Sport, an Anniversary Carrera and then open Speedster f....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0913KS173191

Porsche celebrated one of its most legendary road cars, the 356 Speedster, for the 1989 model year, by introducing a limited-production modern variation based on the 3.2 911 Carrera platform. The car captured the character of the original with a ligh....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0916KS173315
Engine Num: 64K05823
Gearbox Num: 2K01342

The original Porsche 356 Speedster was built between 1954 and 1957. It was a less-expensive model and more a pure driver's car. The 1989 Carrera Speedster continued that tradition. It endured a long and difficult gestation, which began in 1983 with a....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WPOEB0912KS173568
Engine Num: 64K06171

Porsche built 2,104 examples of the new Speedster between January and September of 1989, and of that total, just 823 were delivered to the United States. The Speedster, option number M503, was the last version based on the outgoing K-program chassis.....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0912KS173716

The Porsche Speedster was styled by Tony Lapine and featured a cut-down, sharply slanted removable windshield and a thin fabric folding 'emergency' top. They had no rear seats, as that area was now covered by a fiberglass tonneau. Porsche offered a l....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Coupe

This 1989 Porsche 911 Carrera is one of only 300 Special Edition Anniversary Coupes built to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the 911 production in Stuttgart, Germany.....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0915KS173287
Engine Num: 64K05848

Porsche re-introduced the Speedster nameplate in 1989 as a one-year-only model. The classic 356 Speedster elements were penned by stylist Tony Lapine. The windscreen was shortened and raked back an additional five degrees, and an unlined manual soft ....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Certainly one of the most recognized automobiles of all time, the Porsche 911 will never be mistaken for any other car. Over the years, there have been many variations, but the Speedster models will always be among the most desirable.....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Just 2,104 examples of the new Speedster were built between January and September of 1989 and of that total only 823 were delivered to the United States. It was a single model year offering that coincidentally was the 25th anniversary of the 911. The....[continue reading]

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0916KS173721
Engine Num: 64K063338

The 356 Speedster had proven to be a popular option in the early 1950s and in 1983, the name was revived. Several thousand, based on the 911 SC platform, were built at the direction of Porsche CEO Peter Schutz, and the project was supervised by Techn....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Some automobiles are considered collectible from their debut and Porsche has sold many such sports cars in its fabled 65-plus year history. This Speedster, one of only 823, not only celebrates the end of the First Generation's Air Cooled 911's dating....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0918KS173770
Engine Num: 64K06482

Porsche 1989 Speedster was both a fair-weather tourer and a weekend track car. It was a performance-oriented model that had a sharply angled, cut-down windshield and the rear of the cockpit covered by a fiberglass tonneau cover. Power was from the H-....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Targa

Chassis Num: WP0EB0914KS160742
Engine Num: 64K03695

Porsche revived the 'Carrera' name for use on the top-of-the-range 911 'homologation special' in 1973. The company had previously applied the name to some elite versions of the preceding 356 range. The name continued until 1977 when it became dormant....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0918KS173607

The 1989 Porsche 911 Speedster was a one-year-only model and the spiritual successor to the iconic 356 Speedster. 823 examples were imported into the United States and were based on the G-Series 911 platform that was in production from 1974 through 1....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Cabriolet

Chassis Num: WP0EB0919KS170800

1989 was the last year of the G-Series, impact bumper 911. This particular example is a 25th Anniversary 911 Carrera Cabriolet, one of just 200 Cabriolets so-equipped. It has the G50 manual gearbox and the optional Silver Anniversary package. The pac....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Coupe

Chassis Num: WP0AB0913KS120943

1989 was the 25th anniversary of the 911 and the final year of the G-Series. In celebration, Porsche offered an optional Silver Anniversary package in black or silver exterior color with color-keyed Fuchs wheels, unique Silk Gray leather upholstery a....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0914KS173605

This Porsche 911 Carrera Speedster was sold new at Sun West Inc. of St. Petersburg, Florida, through Joe Vatter. The original owner was Kent Rawson who used it sparingly. It was briefly owned by a European owner who never took delivery but sold it to....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Cabriolet

Chassis Num: WP0ZZZ91ZKS173618

Due to fears of not complying with United States federal safety regulations, Porsche's first open-top 911 was not a full open-top - instead it was a Targa model introduced in 1965. By the early 1980s, they introduced a full open-top model of the 911.....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0916KS173217
Engine Num: 64K05779

This Porsche 911 Speedster was completed at the Zuffenhausen plant in June 1989. It left the factory finished in Guards Red over a black leather interior. It was equipped with the U.S.-market emissions system, a Blaupunkt Charleston radio, steering w....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Cabriolet

Chassis Num: WP0EB0930KS070599

This Porsche 930 Turbo Cabriolet left the factory finished in Guards Red with a full leather Champagne interior and a black power top. Options included a Monterey radio, locking differential, sport steering wheel with elevated hub, and shorter gearsh....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0912KS173229
Engine Num: 64K05691

The Porsche 911 Carrera Speedster was released in 1989, reviving the Speedster name of the late 1950s. In similar fashion to the Speedster model that preceded it, the 1989 Speedster had a windshield that was lowered and more raked than that of the st....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

The Speedsters were a tribute to the 'Fifties' 356 Speedsters. The 911 Speedsters were built on a 930 Turbo chassis with the lower removable windshield and 'clamshell' covering the removed back seat area.....[continue reading]

1989 Porsche 911 vehicle information

Speedster

Chassis Num: WP0EB0917KS173128
Engine Num: 64K05584

The Speedster Model was introduced in 1989, just prior to the release of the 964 generation of the 911. The Speedster name originated with the 356 and represented the purest and sportiest variant of the model. The 3.2-liter Speedster were endowed wit....[continue reading]

Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0914KS173071 
Coupe
Chassis #: WP0AB0916KS120791 
Targa
Chassis #: WPOEB0911KS160603 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0913KS173191 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0916KS173315 
Speedster
Chassis #: WPOEB0912KS173568 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0912KS173716 
Coupe
 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0915KS173287 
Speedster
 
Speedster
 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0916KS173721 
Speedster
 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0918KS173770 
Targa
Chassis #: WP0EB0914KS160742 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0918KS173607 
Cabriolet
Chassis #: WP0EB0919KS170800 
Coupe
Chassis #: WP0AB0913KS120943 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0914KS173605 
Cabriolet
Chassis #: WP0ZZZ91ZKS173618 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0916KS173217 
Cabriolet
Chassis #: WP0EB0930KS070599 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0912KS173229 
Speedster
 
Speedster
Chassis #: WP0EB0917KS173128 

Recent Vehicle Additions

Performance and Specification Comparison

Price Comparison

$16-$51,200
1989 911
$85,100-$177,500
1989 Porsche 911 Price Range: $51,200 - $85,100

$36,360 - $46,000

Model Year Production

#1#2#3Porsche
1994Ford (1,220,512)Chevrolet (651,647)Honda (650,105)
1993Ford (1,026,338)Chevrolet (692,116)Honda (608,149)
1992Ford (922,488)Honda (648,745)Chevrolet (647,227)
1991Chevrolet (895,569)Honda (659,659)Buick (544,325)
1990Ford (912,466)Chevrolet (785,918)Pontiac (641,820)
1989Chevrolet (1,275,498)Ford (1,234,954)Pontiac (801,600)9,479
1988Ford (1,331,489)Chevrolet (1,236,316)Pontiac (680,714)
1987Nissan (1,803,924)Chevrolet (1,384,214)Ford (1,176,775)
1986Chevrolet (1,368,837)Renault (1,305,191)Ford (1,253,525)30,471
1985Chevrolet (1,418,098)Renault (1,322,887)Oldsmobile (1,192,549)54,458
1984Chevrolet (1,655,151)Renault (1,429,138)Ford (1,180,708)44,017

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