As a young automotive enthusiast, one of the first cars that I fell head over heels for was Alois Ruf’s wild and powerful turbocharged CTR “Yellowbird”. By virtue of playing with the Ruf in Gran Turismo 2, and later by watching Faszination Nurburgring on a VHS passed to me at an autocross, it didn’t take much more for Ruf to become my favorite auto ‘manufacturer’. My dog’s name is Alois.
One of the CTR’s most unique visual cues can be found in the simple five-spoke wheels unique to the brand’s products. From the Yellowbird’s introduction in 1987 through the CTR2 almost a decade later, the 17" staggered wheel setup was the hot ticket for Germany’s most venerable Porsche-based manufacturer. Hell, even the bonkers CTR3 Clubsport they sell today uses a center-lock-equipped and larger diameter version of the same design.
Like many wheels beloved of car enthusiasts, the Ruf Speedline has a simple symmetric design that pairs well with many different shapes of Porsche. They were only made in 17" diameters and 5x130 bolt pattern, for obvious reasons. The above photo shows the back-side of the wheels with the reliefs cut into each spoke to help reduce weight. According to sources, both the 8 and 9 inch width wheels weigh in at 10 kilograms each.
Speedline built this design of wheel for Ruf in Italy for many years, though they discontinued production in the late 1990s after the 993-based CTR2 had run its course. The original run of wheels were all stamped with the above markings. In 2015 Ruf re-released the wheel without those markings, and continues to offer them today. Allegedly this time they’re built in Germany, though the wheels are not selling in large quantity, and nobody seems to know which wheel production facility is building them now.
This particular set, in 8" and 9" widths was scrounged up on eBay, and a 10" width was also produced for widebody fitment. Ruf says you should be able to fit these wheels under the fenders of a Carrera 3.2, but they’ll also work on a 964 or 993 model. It’s not done often, but I think these would look righteous on a tastefully modified 996 Carrera or 986 Boxster. While this set is fitted with tires, the Michelin Pilot SX hasn’t been made for ages and I wouldn’t recommend using them. If you’re looking for a 90s Euro-cool look for your Porsche, check out this listing. They’d make an excellent holiday gift to yourself.
What is your favorite aftermarket wheel from the ‘80s and ‘90s? I’ll bring you more of mine next weekend.