Tuesday, October 20, 2009

History of the Porsche 944

The 924:

In 1977, Porsche introduced the 924. They had made arrangements with Volkswagen to produce a sports car who, in the end, decided to back out on the deal. Porsche took the opportunity to buy the car back from Volkswagen and called it the 924. It was a huge change for the company. A Volkswagen on the inside, Porsche on the outside? A front, water-cooled engine? Porsche on a budget? Sound backwards? This was the Porsche 924.

Porsche 924

Although it had Porsche badges, this was a mix of different cars. It had an Audi engine and parts from a Volkswagen van! But it was a rear-wheel drive hatchback, it was stylish and was a fun little car to drive and it still is. Porsche introduced the 924 just before they launched the more beefy Porsche 928 and just a few years later, the 944.

The 928:

The 928 was introduced a year later than the 924. Porsche doubled the cylinders, widened the stance, added some of the coolest pop-up lights, to make a powerful 220 horsepower V8 that was nicknamed "the land shark" from its distinctive front end. Porsche later added 'S', 'GT', and 'GTS' models to the line-up. The 928 cost about as much as a house when it was first introduced.

Porsche 928

The 944:
The 944 was a great midpoint between the 924 and 928. Porsche took the 924 platform and built a brand new car on it. They planned to replace the 911 but 911 fanatics protested. The 944 came in naturally aspirated, turbocharged, and cabriolet models. It came standard with a 2.5L 4-cylinder, powerful yet efficient engine and an optional limited-slip differential which is now a rare find. In prime conditions you can get upwards of 34mpg. In mid 1985 the 944 was updated with a modern dash and door panels, a radio antenna embedded in the windshield, and phone dial wheels. In 1989 it was upgraded to a 2.7L engine. There was also a 944 S with slightly more horsepower and the turbo (also called the 951) was inter cooled and produced 220 horsepower to achieve a 0-60mph time of 5.5 seconds. The 944 was given optional wider fenders, more Porsche parts and more power than the previous 924. Optional equipment included a club sport package, limited slip differential, headlight washers, automatic speed control, central locking system, power windows, power mirrors, power seats, alarm system, airbags, leather interior, power sunroof and plenty more.
The 944 was and still is a great little car. Although naturally aspirated models only have 150 horsepower, there is plenty of torque and thanks to great Porsche engineers, the weight distribution is next to perfect making the handling amazing around corners. It is now considered a classic Porsche and has a huge consumer base with plenty of followers, online forums, and part suppliers making it a great and somewhat affordable classic car to own.

Porsche 944


Sunday, October 18, 2009

Welcome to Motoriginal

My name is Jeff Butler and I've had an obsession with extraordinary cars my whole life. Whether it be an Italian exotic super car, an American muscle car, or any car that stands out amongst the rest, I've always had a desire to get behind the wheel. In the past I've tried to ignore this obsession, but there's no use, it just comes back stronger so, I've decided to run with it.
I went to school for Industrial Design because there was a very slim chance I'd make it into the auto industry designing the next Ferrari. My dreams still include designing the next Ferrari, hell, I'd be happy designing the next Toyota Corolla, but I've decided to create an opportunity rather than wait for one. Industrial Design is a great field and I plan to incorporate what I've learned into 'Motoriginal'.
'Motoriginal' is what I've decided to call my new mission. 'Motor' stands for the cars I will be working with and 'original' for the results in which I'll be striving. When dealing with cars if you hear the word original it generally means the car looks and drives like it did when it was brand new.
In the time to come I'll be buying, restoring, and hopefully selling modern classic cars for a profit. I'll be looking at cars built between 1975 and 1990. Late 60's and early 70's cars are great but they're hard to find and now they cost too much to buy and restore. What I'm aiming to do is restore and sell a car that will be a valuable classic in the future, making my own and the next buyer's time an investment.

I'll be blogging about different aspects of the restoration phase. I'll be sharing photos, videos and passing on things learned along the way. There's going to be a lot to learn and a lot to plan for if I want to make this into a career. For one, I need a garage. Two, three and four, I need lots of tools and equipment, lots of help and lots of money! But for now let's forget about the small stuff. It's time I get my hands dirty on the first project: The Porsche 944!

Please feel free to comment with any constructive or destructive criticism. I am always looking for ways to improve so any suggestions with a car, my blogs, or just general comments are welcome. Please keep it clean and focused. Check back soon for new posts and be sure to follow me. Enjoy!