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Beetle Powered: 1970 Porsche 911T

This 1970 Porsche 911 is a terrific reminder that at one time, old, European cars were all at risk of becoming a cheap project after years of expensive maintenance bills piled up, and the owners that actually cared moved onto greener pastures. This sad 911 has been in Texas for some time and as such, the sun has done a number on the paint job. But the bigger sin is the Volkswagen Beetle engine that now powers it and provides a clue into how this one particular air-cooled was kept on the road in a MacGyver-like fashion. Find it here on eBay for $25,000 with the option to make a best offer.

The 911 doesn’t look like a 1970s model because it has been updated to the later impact bumpers. Man, if this car could talk. Was it loved at one time, as the period-correct BBS wheels seem to suggest? Or did it become a basketcase early on, with a previous owner buying it as a totaled project car, bandaging it back together, and grabbing whatever free and cheap resources he could to drive a real-deal Porsche for a nominal investment? Who knows, but this clearly did not belong to a judge from the Porsche Club of America in recent years. The cheap aftermarket spoiler looks awful as well, but that’s the least of your worries at this point.

In some respects, I do like that this 911 is a rolling wreck. It goes to show you that not every air-cooled specimen has to be a work of art subject to a six-figure restoration. The beauty of this car is that you can bring it back to working order and restore the interior but leave the rest scruffy. I would absolutely replace the bumpers with the period-correct assemblies, and perhaps find some OEM sport seats to throw in the interior. I wouldn’t necessarily go back to the original steering wheel, but I might spec a better three-spoke job than this one. Check out the white door panels – what color do you think the interior was when it rolled out of the dealership?

The best news of all is that the original engine is included. This, for me, is the most interesting detail, because even with this 911 effectively being left for dead, a previous owner kept the correct engine with the car even though it was likely pulled for a rebuild or at least a re-seal. Perhaps the Beetle engine was a temporary solution to keep the 911 mobile while the factory engine was refreshed, and then the project stalled out. With that in mind, you can see how you can whip up any number of scenarios, so perhaps the truth of what happened is a fairly boring story. Either way, this 911 deserves to come back to life and the current asking price makes that a reality for more buyers than usual when it comes to an air-cooled carcass.


  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    The AC compressor tossed into the interior did it for me. This mess would be worth $4,000 max to me if I was interested in what appears to be a solid chassis and a pile of parts. Pretty much junk.

    Like 12
  2. mike

    I bet this mess will really upset Porsche owners/lovers.

    Like 8
    • Kurt Member

      The asking price is upsetting. One too many zeroes.

      Like 9
  3. Big C

    I remeber when Hot Rod magazine installed a 455 Olds Toranado drivetrain into one of these. Ah, good times!

    Like 3
    • Malcontented Misanthrope

      An 84 model, I think, had a Cadillac engine and transmission. Over 500 CI. The whole mess was hidden by phony luggage. On the plus side, it was very well-insulated. Last I recall, it was on Ebay motors for 25K.

    • douglas hunt

      I think I remember that story, or at least a similar one.
      Didn’t they have to run it backwards, ala a reverse spinning cam etc.

  4. Ward William

    You can actually buy custom built aftermarket 2.5 liter aircooled 4 cyl boxer engines that will bolt straight in and give you the same, if not better performance than the original Porsche 6 cyl engine.

    Like 8
  5. Fred Seelig

    I’m more interested in the Land Rover Defender in the background.

  6. jim

    Does it even have seats?

  7. Charlie

    ls swap !

    Like 1
  8. James c single

    I Am not an expert on air cooled Porsches But those are not bumpers nor headlights for a 1970. I think it might be a 1980, just a little typo, I am not interested

  9. jwaltb

    Fright pig.

    Like 1
  10. Phipps

    The lister needs to not post an ad HAMMERED,,, $25 grand, ya gotta be kidding me

    Like 2
  11. Howie

    The seller has many other 911’s for sale and a Pantera.

    Like 1
  12. Squigly

    Oh, this is so cool! Keep the VW engine and tell people you are a “purist”. Of course, that is also with a full bore down to bare metal repaint. Drive her into the country club and see if anyone notices the different sound. I bet not, and if they do, tell them it is an ultra rare experimental model and it is not for sale.

    Like 3
  13. Kurt Member

    While there are a few companies making 356 replicas and Spyders, no one that I know off has made a 911 replica. So I guess this is the answer to that, take a 911 and drop a Beetle engine in it. Frankly, I would have gone to rebuild the original motor but that is expensive. Subaru anyone?

    Like 2
  14. Ken Member

    There is a story here.
    Maybe stolen & stripped?
    Purchased for salvage &
    Slowly ever so slowly put back together with whatever parts you could find. Backyard Highschool. Been there

  15. shelbyGT500 Member

    Guys, are you sure this is a 1970 ? it looks like 1974.

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