An exceptional Porsche 914, SOLD by Californiaclassix.com!

Clockwork Orange:
1972 Porsche 914

By the mid-1960s, the leadership at Porsche was looking into a replacement for the Porsche 912. A worthy successor would be needed within a few years, preferably an all new sports car with a Porsche's patented Targa top and an air-cooled four-cylinder Boxer engine.

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The Porsche engineers in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen knew exactly what they had in mind: a mid-engine road rocket with impeccable handling, evoking Porsche's legendary race cars, such as the 550 Spyder, the RSK, or the 904 GTS!

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The 1972 Porsche 914 presented here must be among the cleanest examples we've had the pleasure to own; it certainly is the most completely documented 914 we've ever seen! It features a highly desirable factory color and is so correct and so stunningly preserved that you could drive it to a local show and be awarded a trophy.

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Built in April of 1972, VIN *4722915572* has lived a sheltered life. Three documented owners have been the caretakers during the Porsche's 37 years, every single one a dedicated enthusiast who kept every single invoice and receipt pertaining to the car's history. Rarely, if ever, will you find a car that is as thoroughly documented as this one. It's a collector's dream come true and adds tremendous value to this classic 914!

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Three folders, one for each owner, contain no less than 125 chronologically filed receipts for service and parts purchased. Along with the original Bill of Sale, stamped maintenance record book, original Owner's Manual, car care packet, and dozens of related documents, the full story of a pampered life is told in great detail.

  1. We learn that the first owner was born in 1913, bought the car on June 21, 1972 at Roger Penske Porsche-Audi in Allentown for the stately sum of $4,647.33 and kept it for 19 years, travelling 60,818 miles and spending $4,311,37 maintaining the car.
  2. The second owner, a Gentleman from Santa Barbara, purchased the car on November 21, 1991 for $5.014.00, actually paying more than the original MSRP! He cared for the 914 until August, 2006, adding 22,000 miles to the odometer during 15 years and spending $10,920.65 to keep his pride and joy in immaculate condition.
  3. The 914's third and last owner was a Lady from nearby Carpinteria who drove 9,500 miles in 3 years and incurred documented expenditures of $1,700.76 for maintenance and repairs.
Let's now inspect this exceptional 914 in great detail, starting with the front trunk.

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Yes, that's right, being a mid-engine car, this Porsche has two trunks: one in the front, and one in the back.
The front trunk is surprisingly spacious.

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Something you'll rarely, if ever, see: a complete, untouched factory 914 tool kit, including the valuable MESSKO tire pressure gauge in its original white vinyl pouch. Fabulous!

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Date-coded spare wheel with original MICHELIN XZX 155-15 tire rests on the immaculately clean, rust free trunk floor, below a carpeted partition. Note pristine state of preservation in details like the original wiring loom and cad-plated lock mechanism.
And, yes, this is the all original, factory applied paint!

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Turning our attention to the Porsche's brilliant exterior, we are pleased as punch to find excellent panel fit and tight hood and door gaps. There are no scratches, bubbles, signs of corrosion, dents, or any other major flaws that could spoil the perfect picture.

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Orignal, black Targa top looks excellent. This lightweight part, made from fiberglass, can be removed within seconds, anytime a topless experience is desired.

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The car has been repainted once, back in 1992, in its original color, Signal Orange (factory paint code L20E), a great period hue. The finish still is still lustrous and smooth, and there are only minimal signs of use, such as a few small rock chips and two dings in the front bumper, certainly nothing to lose sleep over.

Unmodified throughout, this Porsche still wears its original 5.5Jx15 steel wheels, topped by the factory dog dish hub caps. The latter ones are very rare items today, identical to Volkswagen pieces, but without the embossed VW logo.
Tires are close-to-new radials of the size P195/65-15.

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Minimalist 914 interior is another classic Porsche design nobody has ever been able to improve upon. There's plenty of space, so that even big and tall folks will find a comfortable seating position.

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Austere-looking door panels are covered by classic basketweave vinyl, yet there's a large storage bin on the driver's side that also serves as an armrest. Genius!

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The interior is in excellent condition throughout. Dash top is original and has a few hairline splits; also original and defying its age to the fullest is the dark gray Schlingenware carpeting.
Transmission is Porsche's legendary Type 901 5-speed manual unit, with its racing-derived shift pattern.

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Dominant, white-on-black 911-style gauges are housed in a binnacle positioned right in front of the driver. They all work. Actual mileage of 95,028 is fully documented by the aforementioned records. This 914 was driven just around 2,500 miles annually, on average, during its lifetime.

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The correct high back sport seats feature black leatherette upholstery with basketweave inserts, in perfect condition, free of any rips or tears.

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So, where's the engine?
Well, it's visible by opening a small hatch right behind the rear window, resting in a narrow compartment between the cockpit and the rear trunk. Incidentially, it's an area that requires a very close inspection, as it contains the battery.

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Acid spillage is any 914's worst enemy, able to corrode important sections of sheet metal, all the way down to the car's structural support! Even a factory recall in the 1970s did not manage to curb the inherent problem. Only with dedicated care and concern can major corrosion damage be avoided. We are happy to report that this particular 914 has been spared the dreaded battery area rust and passes close scrutiny with flying colors.
Note the original black bakelite battery cover, usually missing, which can prevent these nasty spills from occurring.

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914's engine is in a perfect state of health. Factory equipped with BOSCH fuel injection, this 79hp power plant is able to propel the 1,900lb. 914 to a factory-indicated top speed of 109 miles per hour. The motor starts easily and revs willingly from idle to redline. There are no untoward noises, no fluid leaks, no surprises.
Reasonably priced spares and ease of maintenance make the 914 a real bargain for those who desire to own a Porsche for Volkswagen money. An annual average of $500.00 was sufficient to keep this 914 in pristine condition. Recent repairs include installation of a new battery, starter, front and rear brake pads, rear brake cables, air hose, and fuel pump.

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German engineering genius: lightweight Targa top is designed to stow away safely inside the trunk, still leaving plenty of space underneath!

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Rear trunk floor is clean and dry, thanks to excellent, still supple weatherstripping and life-long dry storage.
Note factory tire jack, working trunk light, and original, gray felt trunk carpeting.

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Let's elevate the 914 now and have a look from the frog's perspective.

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This engine doesn't need any diapers! There are no annoying oil leaks.
Note the stainless steel heat exchangers.

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Floor pans are original, clean, dry, and free of corrosion; thankfully, Penske Porsche-Audi added a protective layer of undercoat, back in '72. No burdensome rust repair work is needed!

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Close-up look: there are no hidden issues, anywhere!

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Rocker panels, inside and out, are straight as an arrow and precisely "as delivered."

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Rear bumper and rear valance display perfect fit as well.
Are you ready for a test drive?
Okay, then, let's go!

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Monday, December 14: another warm and sunny day in Southern California, perfectly suitable for removing the Targa top and heading for the hills.

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Piloting the little Porsche is a delight!
914's seating position is low, like that of an Alpine A110, Mini Cooper, or racing monoposto, but there's plenty of room. Steering, shifting, brakes: no problems at all to report.
The car feels very docile and has enough power to turn every drive into a fun experience.

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914's mid-engine configuration provides very neutral handling characteristics. It's the perfect road and track synthesis!

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Chided during its seven-year production span as a junior Porsche, the 914 is finally being recognized as a very collectible model; it's still the most affordable air-cooled Porsche one can buy, especially in regard to its excellent gas mileage.

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Relaxed freeway driving, made possible by the 5-speed transmission: at a steady 70mph, the tachometer registers just 3,000rpm.

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Returning home, we are utterly fascinated by the 914's abilities. Here's a truly unique, mid-engined sports car that is as enjoyable today as it was four decades ago. This one features one of the most desirable factory colors, has never suffered from any kind of neglect, and boasts low miles, as well as a full provenance, with all documents since day one.

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They say "buy the best one you can find," and we heartily agree. You would have to search long and hard to discover another 914 of this caliber; it might be virtually impossible to find another car with such an unassailable pedigree. Why take a chance?

Addendum:
We sold this Porsche in December 2009.


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