The history of the Porsche 911 is mostly one of steady evolution. Each successive model incorporates substantial portions of its predecessor, and makes subtle improvements and changes to adapt with the times. However, the transition from 993 to 996* was less like evolution, and more like a whole new species. The 996 was controversial, and not without its flaws. [Read more about the 996 in “A Driver’s Dream."] This Porsche, however, is a 997, the generation that succeeded the 996. With the 997, Porsche returned to its evolutionary model, learning from the predecessor, implementing all important changes, while carrying over the basic DNA of the prior car. (Two notable changes for the 997 include a totally redesigned interior, and a return to round headlights, bringing sweet relief and better sleep to many Porsche-philes).
In an effort to homolgate it's 911 touring car, in the late 1990s Porsche introduced a series of cars slotted above the then top-dog performing Turbo. They are known as “GT” cars. They define the essence of Porsche, and the 911 in particular. They are street worthy cars that are at home on the track. They are cars that demand a capable and experienced driver, and offer commensurate rewards.
Shown here is a 2008 Porsche 911 GT2. With just 2,500 miles, fewer than 200 produced for the U.S. market, and all the right options, this rare Porsche is worthy of centerpiece status in many Porsche collections. In fact, with the (relative) proliferation of current GT models, the very low number of 997 GT2s produced may make them one of the rarest Porsche road cars out there.
The original options on this example include (but aren’t limited too):
- Hard backed sports seats (388)
- 19” GT2 Wheels (420)
- Sport Chrono Pack (640)
- Carbon trim (EZA, EZB, XMJ)
- Red tailights (XXF)
The original owner, an Idaho resident, purchased this car for use in the Sun Valley Tour de Force, an annual gathering in and around Sun Valley, Idaho of exotic cars both on display and in motion. The event features an unlimited speed run down some of Idaho’s best roads. Money raised goes to local charities. (www.sunvalleytourdeforce.com). The original owner made subtle modifications both for performance and appearance. The current owner removed some of those modifications and replaced them with original equipment. Removed modifications include a high-torque multi-plate clutch, race exhaust, and GMG anit-roll bars. The Remaining deviations from stock are subtle, and easily reversible. They include GIAC engine mapping through a handheld module, GMG bolt in roll cage, aluminum pedals, and GMG carbon accents on the rear wing.
Like all 997 GT2s, this car has a manual gearbox, with power sent to the rear wheels only. With variable cam timing (“variocam”), and variable turbine geometry in the twin turbos (known as “VTG”), the rear mounted 3.6L flat six was factory rated at 523 hp, and 505 lb-ft of torque, starting at at only 2,200 rpms, and holding through 4,500. That is a truly jaw dropping torque curve. While the GT2 shares much in common with the Turbo model, including the legendary engine known as the “Mezger” engine, it is more focused and sharper in almost every regard. With more power, more torque, a revised and adjustable suspension, and huge carbon ceramic brakes, this car refined the formula for future Porsche “GT” cars. Also, it can go 200 mph.
This car sold at auction on Bring-a-Trailer, $174,000 plus buyer's premium of 5%.
*A brief note about Porsche nomenclature: Porsche’s core model has been the 911 since it replaced the 356 in 1963. However, that model has had different incarnations over that time period, and for the last several generations they have been identified by Porsche’s internal numbering system. Thus 1994 to 1998 cars are called “993s”, 1998 to 2005 cars are “996s” and 2005 to 2012 cars are “997s.” Each generation has some overlap in build dates for different sub models and markets, thus these dates are approximate.