Porsche 911 SC 1978-1983 – The Beginning of the Reliable Porsche 911

While the Porsche 911 series of sports cars had been fairly successful from the beginning, the company leadership made a decision to make changes that would expand its appeal. The main strategy was to trade off some of the power and speed in exchange for greater reliability. In 1978, the result was the Porsche 911 SC. While there’s some uncertainty, it’s generally believed the SC stands for Super Carrera. This new version of the 911 was originally planned to be the last year of production for this model. It was to be replaced by the Porsche 928. The public reaction to this car brought about a big change in those plans.

Porsche 911 SC 1978-1983The biggest difference in this new release, compared to its predecessors, was a smaller 3.0 liter engine. The reason behind this move was that the engine had been used before in the Porsche 930 and had proven itself very reliable. The air-cooled flat-six motor was previously combined with a turbo charger. For this model, the turbo charger was removed. The ignition timing on the engine had been altered to give it more torque at lower revolutions. This provided a smoother ride at normal highway speeds. It also resulted in an engine that produced about 180 bhp. This was 10 percent less than the previous version. The reduction in power meant less stress on the engine and even greater reliability. Some fans of the 911 series were unhappy with this change, but the strategy worked at bringing in a new crowd of enthusiasts. In fact, the first-year sales of the new Porsche 911 SC outperformed those of any other Porsche offerings. The sales boost convinced the company to continue the series. Along the way, changes were made with each new production year.

Porsche 911 SC 1978-1983The engine wasn’t the only new feature about this car. Other changes were made to improve both reliability and aesthetic appeal. A galvanized body was used to give it greater durability against winter road salt. Hydrovac servo brake assist improved braking capability. Various options offered with the car included a whale tail, front air dam, Fuchs wheels, power windows, power sunroof, stereo cassette player, and air conditioning. The inclusion of such additions pushed the vehicle’s weight up to 2558 lbs. In spite of this, the car still achieved 28 mpg on the highway. Changes to the engine brought it back up to 204 bhp by the release of the 1981 edition. Fortunately, this had no negative impact on its durability. In 1983, the Cabriolet was the first 911 convertible. This addition helped to push total sales up past 12,500 units for that year.

The Porsche 911 SC came to an end in 1984 with the introduction of the Porsche 911 Carrera. This name continued through 1989. The big difference between the two models was the switch to a 3.2 liter engine. This did nothing to hurt the car’s reputation at the time. Sales continued to grow during the decade. Looking back, though, this engine isn’t considered as reliable as its predecessor. Car collectors have noticed that the 3.2 liter often requires a rebuild after around 130,000 miles. The older engine has easily moved past the 200,000 mile mark without major problems. This has only added to the reputation it gained at the start.

Porsche 911 50 Year Anniversary – Now and Then

Porsche 911 50 Year Anniversary – Now and ThenIn September of 1963 the first Porsche 911 debuted in the IAA International Auto Show and 50 years later the legend still continues. From its inception, Porsche had produced reliable everyday sports cars and tradition continues in the current 911. The Porsche 911 is probably one of the most recognizable brand images in the automotive world.

Although the first 911 were not available for sale until 1964, Porsche is planning to celebrate its 50-year anniversary in 2013. They plan to send a classic 1967 Porsche 911 on tour as well as host several other events to celebrate this monumental event.

To see descriptions and specifications of all of the different 911s offered click here.

Porsche 911 50 Year Anniversary – Now and ThenPorsche 911 50 Year Anniversary – Now and Then
Porsche 911 50 Year Anniversary – Now and Then
Porsche 911 50 Year Anniversary – Now and Then

Porsche Service & Repair – Dealer vs Independent (Indy) Mechanics

Porsche Service Repair - Dealer vs Independent (Indy) MechanicsJust bought your dream Porsche? Who is going to repair and service it; a mechanic from a Porsche Dealer or Independent shop (Indy)?

Lately it seems the majority of owners disregard using their local Porsche dealer for service and repairs fearing huge costs, but is it true? To be fair I used to be one of those owners. Lately though I am starting to see that maybe some Porsche dealer service centers aren’t that bad.

Personally I have used my local Porsche dealer to do the annual service on my car purely on their convenient location to my home. I always felt I had been paying a bit more for convenience.

It wasn’t till recently I realized I was paying the same for my annual service as some other owners in the area have been paying at a well-known independent shop 45 minutes away. So I was actually paying less considering the transportation cost. I found this out during candidate conversation with a fellow PCA (Porsche Club of America)  member when we where discussing each of our recent service done. What was interesting was the reaction on his face when he realized we paid the same for a similar service and I went to a dealer and he supposedly was saving by going to the independent.

Enlightened by what I had discovered about the Porsche dealer verse the independent shop’s annual service cost I decided to give the dealer a chance at my needed clutch and spark plug replacement. The clutch replacement on my Porsche is labor intensive, so it required me to do my homework and shop around bit comparing the dealer verse a well-known independent in the area. The dealer quoted me a number about $700 more then the independent.

Instead of conceding that the annual service was a fluke, I called them back and asked how many hours the Porsche dealer and independent were including in their estimates. The dealer quoted 22 hours and the independent quoted 16 hours, which clearly revealed the discrepancy between quotes. It turned out the dealer was quoting removing the entire engine and transmission to complete the job, which is the manufacturers suggested safe method, where the independent was quoting a commonly known acceptable work around by only removing the transmission. My next call was to the dealer to see if they could complete the job in using the same method as the independent reducing the hours and thereby the cost, which they said they could do it but explained the dangers to the vehicle and why the manufacturer suggested removing the entire engine and transmission.

So between the Porsche dealers’ service repair and the independent mechanics quotes, they really weren’t that far off in cost just method. One last note about my experience, the Porsche dealer offered me a loaner where the independent did not.

The above scenario is not always true with every Porsche repair or service, but I think the moral of the story is that it pays to shop around and to include your local dealer in your search.