In its last year of production, only 4,075 units of the Porsche 914 were produced for the US market, this is one of them.
It features the 2.0 litre engine with Bosch L-Jetronic, which sends drive to the rear wheels by means of a 5-speed manual gearbox. Owing to its low kerb weight of 950 kg and its mid-engine layout, the 914 2.0 always had and continues to have a very sporty feel to it, which often has been described as being superior in handling and smoother to drive than the early 911 and 912 models.
This 914 was re-painted in its factory colours, not long before being re-imported into Germany. It arrived back in its country of birth only this year, with a low unwarranted mileage of 37,500 mls on its odometer. The car shows no obvious traces of accident damage and displays very favourably outside and in. Its black leatherette interior is devoid of cracks, as is the dashboard.
The positive general impression is enhanced by the door panels and fibreglass Targa roof in good shape. As a US model, it also features the rubber-coated safety bumpers which were designed to withstand an impact of up to 8 km/h without structural damage to the chassis.
The 914 comes with the original driver’s manual and a record of service and repair receipts.
A lovely mid-seventies sports car that can be a lot of fun to drive.
The Porsche 914 – or VW-Porsche 914, since it was a cooperation between the two companies – was launched in 1969 as an entry-level model for Porsche, replacing the 912. It was also considered a potential successor to the Karmann Ghia as an upmarket sports model from the Volkswagen point of view.
Technically, the very lightweight car – curb weight < 1 ton – was very much up to date and offered extraordinarily good road handling owing to its mid-engine layout. It was available as a VW version with a 4-cylinder engine, called 914/4, or as 914/6, which accordingly had a 6-cylinder engine installed and was sold with a Porsche badge. The 914 has often been described as unsuccessful, but this is really only true for the German market.
In the US, where all models were sold as Porsches, at least the 914/4 did remarkably well for a number of years. A production span of 7 years and a total output of 115,646 vehicles built is not a figure to be scoffed at for a 1970s sports car. The 914/6 suffered from its hefty price tag, it was only slightly cheaper than the base model of the 911 and was phased out as early as 1972 after only 3,332 examples.
The mid-engine layout was only resurrected by Porsche in 1996 for the Boxster.