2004 Porsche 911 GT3
After literally decades of depriving enthusiastic American customers of the most exciting driver’s cars produced by the company, Porsche finally relented with the 996.2 generation of the 911. The 1973 Carrera RS (and its 2.7 liter MFI and 3.0 liter CIS impact bumper replacements), 964 Carrera RS, 993 Carrera RS, 993 GT2, and 996.1 GT3 were all noticeably absent from the company’s biggest market and stateside enthusiasts were forced to observe the most enticing Porsches be gleefully consumed by international buyers from a distance.
What American consumers were missing, as it turns out, is quite special. Functionally the replacement of the long and illustrious RS line, the original GT3 was named for the production car-derived racing class in which racing variants competed, and served to homologate the car for racing use. The car is powered by a completely different engine from the standard Carrera, the legendary Hans Mezger-designed engine that descended from the dry sump water-cooled 962 and GT1 racing engines. To mate up to this engine, a different transmission is also used.
In this case, the engine is naturally-aspirated and revs with alacrity to is 8200 RPM redline thanks to stronger and lighter internals, allowing the engine to produce more than 100 hp per liter in the case of the 996.2 GT3, which was the first GT3 to come to the United States. The now familiar GT3 formula was applied from the outset, with significant weight reduction from removing soundproofing and rear seats. Upgraded brakes and wheels, in addition to revised suspension and aerodynamics round out the package. The resulting car has a level of directness and playfulness that proves to be the missing link between the hyper capable GT3 of today and the effervescent character of a well set up air-cooled 911. In short, it is every bit a high-performance 911, a hugely entertaining and enjoyable car that can be driven from the back axle just as easily as it can the front, capped off by superb brakes and an outstanding, high-revving naturally-aspirated engine.
One of the most common criticisms of the 996 is its interior, and this particular car has been equipped with a number of custom tailoring options that resolve most of the common complaints. Equipped with full leather with deviated red stitching on the dashboard, door panels, shift boot, steering wheel, and seats, red seatbelts, and aluminum/carbon shifter and emergency brake handle, the interior is an appreciably nicer place to spend time than the standard 996. It also has silver painted instrument panel surround, dash trim, and upper center console trim, Porsche crest on the center console armrest and headrests, as well as Xenon headlights.
This is a three-owner car that was sold new on the East Coast and remained there until its current owner purchased it in 2017. The temptation to use a GT3 on track is natural, but this car surprisingly retains its original 2003 date coded Michelin tires which don’t appear to have ever seen track use. Indeed, the entire car is in excellent condition, both inside and out, and increasingly rare find as the years pass. The car comes with service records from the current ownership period showing a major fluid service (air filters, oil change, transmission oil, brake fluid) was performed at 9500 miles in 2019. It also comes with both keys as well as the book set.