The seller of today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Porsche calls it “probably the most significant 914-6 find in recent years.” He’s certainly priced it as such, and we’ll now need to decide if we find that price to be too significant.
Are you old enough to remember when popular entertainment offered up the habitual alcoholic as comedy fodder? There was Otis the drunk on The Andy Griffith Show, and Foster Brooks, a comedian who made a career out of playing a lush. Hell, even Dean Martin, the Italian crooner, used to host his TV show as though he was functionally lit.
That’s all way in the past though and today I don’t think many people find drunks all that funny, and definitely not behind the wheel. Yesterday’s 1987 Ford Bronco was on the market owing to a teenager’s DUI, and while there’s nothing funny about that, a lot of you found cheer in the classy truck’s price, which earned it a 60% Nice Price win to kick the week off.
Have you ever heard the phrase “nobody’s perfect?” It’s pretty common and addresses the fact that pretty much everyone and everything exhibits some flaw. The hamartia may be something small, and in fact, may add character and nuance to whatever it blemishes. Alternatively, it might be huge and ultimately relationship-nullifying like being a neo-nazi or fervent supporter of supply-side economics.
In the case of the VW/Porsche 914, the major flaw was the VW side of the equation and the engine that implied. Pulled from the 411 the fuel injected 1.7-litre that powered the four cylinder edition of the car at its introduction was admittedly a bit lackluster. The Porsche version, powered by a 109-bhp 2-litre flat six, offered go that was better matched to the design’s impeccable handling. It too however, was tainted by being almost indistinguishable from the lesser four-pot version, at a price that played far too near that of 911 territory.
All told, Porsche built a little over 118,000 914s over the course of its seven years. Of those, only about 3,300 of them were the mostly Porsche 914-6 models.
Here we have one of those 3,300, a 1970 914-6 and one that’s described as all-original and matching numbers. The seller even points out that it carries its original tools and era-correct blue and gold California plates. That all being said, the 160,000-mile car is maintained to have been in storage for years, and it shows.
The exterior presents the best. The bodywork looks straight and the panel gaps appear even. I don’t know what’s going on with that big black swath on the left rear, however. Five-lug Fuchs underpin it all, which, by the way, is one way to tell an original six cylinder car from a four. Another way is by the ignition switch placement—on the dash to the left of the wheel on the sixes, and on the right-side of the column on the fours.
The key here is where you would expect it on this six, and that’s about all there is to like about this interior. There’s an icky floor covering, cracked and moldy dash cap, and seats that are in need of recovering. In fact, pretty much everything inside needs attention. At least the adjustable foot brace (for the non-movable passenger seat) is still with the car.
On the plus side, the ad notes that the car is rust-free, which is a big deal on 914s of either ilk. There is no shot of the battery tray or “hell hole” but the pics of the frunk and trunk show what appears to be a solid car. Does it run? According to the ad it not only runs, but “runs well.”
The engine shot shows a complete mill with no apparent major flaw visible and very sexy sextet of stacks over the Weber 40 IDF carbs. Assumed is that the air cleaner housing is simply removed for the pic and is not missing. By the way, there’s no rain tray on a 914-6 as there’s no room for one with the down-draught carbs.
Okay, so this is a restoration project albeit one that seems to be a pretty solid foundation for such a venture, just what should something like that cost in today’s world of crazy Porsche prices? Well the asking here is $79,000, which is a hell of a lot of Benjamins, maybe in fact all of them.
As point of reference, there’s a place in East Los Angles called the Beverly Hills Car Club and they have a 1971 runner for less than half this car’s price. Now, they say that one has a 2.7-litre engine which is either a typo or an indication that it doesn’t have its original mill, but suffice to say unless it’s a fright pig or a scam, it’s a better deal than this one.
But, does all that make this car and its $79,000 asking price a Crack Pipe fait accompli?
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