With the pandemic now ebbing across most of the country, we can once again turn our attention to grand touring. Today’s Nice Price or No Dice 928 S should be a grand tourer par excellence, but will its price tag have you planning on staying home.
Think about the last time you yanked a tissue out of its box, honked a snot wad into it, and then immediately followed that by tossing it into the trash can. At any time did you think to yourself, “I should only use part of this, and save the remainder for a rainy — and perhaps even snottier — day?” I’m going to guess the answer is no. That never happens. Tissues are intended to serve their purpose and then be thrown away.
There’s a similar expectation with certain cars out there. Some are just expected to get used up and then kicked to the curb. Typically, these are cars that are cheap — both in cost and build quailty — so you don’t feel wasteful. Yesterday’s 1986 Chrysler Town & Country turbo wagon was one such fairly cheap car that wasn’t expected to stand the test of time. Only, it did. Having been stored for decades, it has reemerged from its Rip Van Winkle snooze to be one of the nicest and lowest-mileage K-Cars still in existence. The present owner felt that fact made the woody wagon worth $13,500, but few of you agreed with that assessment. Having originally been a “throw-away” car, the vast majority of you thought it a bad idea to now throw that much cash at it. In the end, that resulted in an 80 percent No Dice loss.
Chrysler’s K-Car may not have been intended to live forever, but that certainly seems to be the intent of Porsche for its evergreen 911 model. Not only has the 911 out-lived the K-Car, but its origin pre-dates the Chrysler platform by almost two decades. Of course, that doesn’t mean that Porsche at one time didn’t plan a palace coup in the attempt to topple the 911 from its marque-defining pedestal.
Today’s 1983 Porsche 928 S represents Porsche’s one-time attempt to kill off the 911. If you look around today, you may note that the effort was unsuccessful. The 911 has continued through multiple generations, while the grand touring 928 is no more. That wasn’t for want of trying and the 928 remains one of the most audacious and exciting designs ever to come out of Stuttgart, or anywhere else for that matter. Unloved by all but the model’s most ardent adherents for years, the 928 has only recently come into its own as a collectible. Prices are still not in the 911 fantasyland strata, but there are indications they might just be headed there.
This 928 comes with a clear title and 120,000 miles on the clock. The car looks to have picked up a few battle scars over the years but seems to be free of any major issues, aesthetically or structurally. It wears a coat of glorious metallic brown and, this being an S, rubber spoilers front and rear. The only questionable aspect here is the chrome on the factory 16-inch wheels. That’s an extra bit of bling the already extroverted 928 doesn’t really need.
The interior looks fairly amazing. While an expensive car when new, the materials in the 928’s cabin generally tend not to hold up over time. This car, with its fabulous burgundy leather with matching carpet and drapes, looks to be the exception. Oh sure, there’s some wear evident on the seats, and maybe some slight fading here and there, but overall it looks completely livable.
The ad doesn’t give us much to go on regarding the car’s mechanicals. The engine is a 4.7-liter, 234 horsepower edition of Porsche’s SOHC V8. For those of you keeping score, the four-pot mill introduced in the 944 was essentially the right-half of the 928’s V8.
Probably the car’s star attraction, however, is the dog-leg five-speed manual doing its thing in the rear transaxle. Supposedly fewer than 20 percent of 928s were delivered with the manual making them truly the odd ducks of the family. A gander at the engine bay indicates that it looks clean and without any evidence of monkey business. It even seems to have all its plastic bits intact and its original radiator.
The seller rates the car’s condition as “good” and while there are some minor flaws here and there, aesthetically, it seems good enough. The 928s dad-bod styling is still as outlandish today as it was upon its ’70s debut and that more than makes up for those few niggling blemishes. The manual gearbox and the wild interior are just icing on the cake.
Of course, cake can be expensive. Just ask Marie Antonette. We now need to decide if this 928 is also too expensive. The seller is asking $11,900 for the car as it sits. There may be additional costs lurking in the car and undisclosed by the seller, but we have to work with what we’ve got. What do you say, does this grand touring Porsche seem to be worth that $11,900 asking? Or, is that just too much for a pretender to the crown?
H/T to L. Betts for the hookup!
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