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Lot 606: Porsche 912 Targa

Exceptional Motorcars And Automobilia, Bonhams & Butterfields (13 August 2010)

An underrated 'modern classic' if ever there was one, Porsche's 4-cylinder 911 variant, the 912, arrived in 1965. A replacement of sorts for the aging 356, the 912 provided the Stuttgart manufacturer with a product worthy of comparison with the finest small-displacement sports cars from Britain and Italy. One year after the coup´┐Ż's introduction, an open-air-motoring version of the 912 - the 'Targa', named in honor of Porsche's numerous victories in the Sicilian classic - arrived in late 1966. Expected US safety legislation had prompted an ingenious approach to the soft-top 912, the Targa sporting a hefty roll-over bar to protect the occupants in the event of an inversion, together with removable roof and rear hood sections, which were stow-able in the trunk. For 1969, the final year of 912 production, a quieter and less leak-prone fixed rear window in most cases replaced the less than perfect rear hood, and the ever-popular Targa would continue in this form well into the 1990s.

This 1969 912 Targa, in the care of its present owner since 1993, is presented strikingly in Royal Blue set off by Fuchs-style wheels, with inviting tan upholstery and a black dashboard. The car has received a considerable amount of attention during this period of ownership, with well over $25,000 spent on documented mechanical and cosmetic restoration. An extensive mechanical overhaul in 1996 included an engine rebuild incorporating resurfaced cylinder heads and rebuilt carburetors, while the transmission was replaced with a newly rebuilt four-speed unit.

The car's appearance was freshened both in and out, with paint and bodywork receipts to the tune of $12,000 provided by the vendor. In addition to the extensive repaint, many rubber components such as weatherstripping were replaced, and the undercarriage was sealed, all of which causes this 912 to visually impress. The interior is a lovely driver's office with rebuilt and reupholstered front seats and headrests in tan leather. Virtually every interior component was similarly recovered, including the rear jump seats, door panels, and rear side panels. With the added benefit of elegant tan carpets replaced at the same time, this interior beckons the willing motorist.

The 912 is regarded by an increasing faction of Porsche enthusiasts as a very much worthwhile alternative to a more powerful 911. With its lighter 356-style mechanical components and inherently better weight distribution, the 912 is regarded by many as a more balanced drivers car than the 911. With only 2,562 912 Targas produced according to the 912 Registry, this is a rare opportunity indeed to acquire such an attractive and well cared-for example.

Lot Details
Auction Exceptional Motorcars And Automobilia
Bonhams & Butterfields, Quail Lodge, CA
TypeCar
Lot Number606
Estimate$35000-$40000
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price$18500
Hammer Price (inc premium)$21645
Year1969
Condition rating0
Registration number
Mileage-
Chassis number129010661
Engine number
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors