Tuesday, 19 April 2011

The Porsche 944...

We've been rubbish, haven't we? Sorry about that, we've been busy with other stuff, thus preventing us from putting finger to keyboard and hitting you with another dose of Not £2 Grand goodness. Forgive us, we love you, we'll never do it again!

So, what automotive treat do we have in store for you in this update? Well, it's the Porsche 944 of course - one of those little gems that often gets overlooked despite being full to the brim with potential. It's not a bad looking little swine either...



...and it was a bit swish on the inside, too.



The problem with the Porsche brand is the 911, mainly because most people forget that the 911 isn't the only bloody thing they have built - they built other cars you know! These other cars were good, too. If anyone tells you a 944 is crap, don't listen to them, they're wrong. Just because something isn't a 911 doesn't mean it's rubbish, far from it in fact. It does, however, mean that should you buy a 944 (and we strongly suggest you do) you'll spend your life trying to convince people that it is actually a Porsche.

Ignore the uneducated - the 944 was treated to just as much time and development as the 911s of the time, it was a car taken very seriously by Porsche.



Introduced in 1982, the 944 was a harder, better, faster and stronger evolution of the 924 (though it's worth nothing that they 924 continued to be produced up to 1988). It was wider, looked better, had more kit and thanks to a 2.5l 150bhp engine, it was quicker too. Once the media got their hands on it the story took an interesting shift: the 944 was better than Porsche themselves claimed it to be! It claimed that the 944 was capable of a (albeit modest) 0-60 time of 9 seconds was actually proven to be more like 8.3 seconds by the motoring press while the 130mph top-speed was raised to 137mph in one instance. It really was an awesome bit of kit. It boasted near 50/50 weight distribution too, and with a slightly wider track and wider tyres than its smaller capacity 924 sibling it was an incredibly capable car - some people still regard it as one of the finest front engine, rear-drive chassis ever built.


Hmmm, nice chassis...ahem.

The 944 was a hit, and throughout the 80s Porsche dealerships were filled with people lining up to get one, just like this dapper fella...



...look at that phone, it's big enough to house a family of three!

Success was at the 944s disposal throughout the 80s, earning the car a facelift in '85. After that though, thanks to a change in the market and the birth of the 968 things soon started to go south for the once popular 944, including its value. The ever increasing popularity for the 911, a brace of 944-rivalling cars from other manufacturers and poor residual values began to paint a bleak outlook for the 944, despite its awesome chassis, great looks and cheap running costs.*



Thankfully, things have picked up for the 944 preventing it from slipping into the annals of forgotten cars. Good 'Turbo' and 'S2' variants can fetch damn good money, but that'sof little consequence to us. What is, however, are the great many surviving 2.5l 944s that can be had for under £2000...



Yup, you can be a Porsche owner for under £2k - who'd have thunk it? It won't be perfect, it'll probably be rusty and it WILL break down. It'll probably also be an early car with brown seats and the electrics will have a tendency to do whatever they want whenever they want, but who cares - it's a Porsche. As long as all the oily bits have been looked after it should be a rewarding and enjoyable machine to drive. They might be old, but trust us, that chassis is still amazing. Show it a winding ribbon of A-road perfection and it will reward you with the most fun you can have with your clothes on. Don't take it off-road though, they don't do that very well...



...and if you feel the need to try and jump your monster truck over it, don't, it won't go well either...



...do buy one though. If you've got £2k to spend and you want a sporty car, this is it. It is a Porsche after all, and that's got to be reason enough to have a punt, even if all your mates will say it's not a Porsche, despite your best attempts to convince them.


*they're not, you'll have to sell your children to fund a service. If something breaks, say goodbye to your house.