Porsche long ago switched their lineup from air-cooling to that by water. Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe 914 is playing catch up, but does that catching up come at too high a cost?
Well, I guess we answered the question as to whether the second generation Hyundai Tiburon is a future classic, and according to most of you that answer is “the what now?”
Not only did yesterday’s 2007 Hyundai Tiburon GT fail to make an impact, but an overwhelming 84-percent of you felt its dealer-set price was way out of line, earning the car a Crack Pipe loss.
And then it was instantly forgotten.
Few car enthusiasts could forget the Porsche 914. This is a car with one of the most unique tales in all of automobiledom. Once intended to replace not one model but two models—from two separate automakers—the 914 also featured polarizing styling that was unlike anything either of its parents were then producing. It also offered mid-mounted engine placement making it one of the first modestly-priced cars to do so.
The thing of it was, while the 914’s chassis was wildly capable and offered exceptional handling, neither its offered engines—the Porsche flat six nor Volkswagen flat four— could muster anything more than 110-bhp out the factory door.
This 1972 Porsche 914 has been Subie-ized to address that appalling lack of wonder-twin power. First and foremost, the Subaru engine now powering this 914 is probably not the one you are expecting. Instead of an EJ-series four from a WRX, this car rocks an EZ30D from a Tribeca. That’s a 2,999-cc flat six which was factory rated at 242-bhp. A Megasquirt ECU keeps the lights on, and the whole thing looks right at home here.
Along with that Subie mill comes an equally Subaru five speed transaxle. That’s had its rear takeoff capped, and some sort of shift linkage adapted for the long reach back behind the engine.
Now, just like visiting Australia, when you switch out your factory 914 engine for a Subaru unit, you’re gonna’ get wet, and that means adding a radiator. That’s been placed in the front trunk. No, I don’t like the term “frunk” but I do like the portmanteau of front and boot so maybe I’ll call it the froot.
Anyway, the radiator is in the froot and exhausts through a pair of large holes cut in the inner wheel arches that have been covered with perforated metal to keep out the squirrels. This video does a good job of showing off the work.
If that’s not enough the seller offers plenty more pics of the car on his Google page. The engine looks pretty happy sitting in its new 914 home, and the installation doesn’t look half-assed in the least. I am a little freaked out seeing the battery on the wrong side of the bay however, and there dosn’t seem to be a weather guard under the mesh engine cover so you’d probably want to limit driving it in the rain.
The rest of the car looks decent. There’s some waffling of the targa vinyl, and the seller admits to “minimal rust. The paint is a re-spray in a non-original color, but it looks good. Inside, there’s a pair of Scheel seats that look like they take up a little too much room, a Momo tiller, and a generally tidy air about it. Instruments have been replaced with aftermarket units to keep track on things, and the shift boot is some sort of out of place rubber affair.
According to the ad there’s 8,500 miles on the conversion and its presented as a turn-key car with no weirdness or quirky behavior whatsoever. On the downside, its froot-space has been significantly compromised, and it’s no longer factory which might impact future value. Other than that, it’s a 240-horse 914 with modern drivetrain parts availability, and that’s a good thing.
The asking price is $23,500, which yes, is a chunk of cheddar. Still, if you’ve seen prices on 914s of late, that shouldn’t pucker your butt too much. The question is, could this 914 really be worth something like that?
H/T to .jdb for the hookup!
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