Country Club Sighting: Honda-Powered Porsche 914

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Here’s something you wouldn’t expect to find in your local golf course parking lot. A ratty Porsche 914 may not be that uncommon but this one has a surprise hiding under the hood… er, trunk! The owner wasn’t around to get the whole story, but the temporary tags make me think it could be a new acquisition. Or maybe the owner just completed the swap? Either way, I thought it looked interesting enough to feature. Let me know what you think in the comments below.

Normally there would be an air-cooled flat-four back here but in its place, there’s a Honda four-banger! I own a 914 and I love the way it handles but the power delivery is a bit of a letdown so this might be the perfect solution. Some guys shove V8s back there but that’s overkill. The Honda engine would rev better than the original and is probably about the same weight or lighter. The modern fuel injection would be a nice upgrade too.

I tried to get a better look inside the engine bay to see how the transmission was mounted up. I’m guessing that’s the original tranny with a custom adapter plate sandwiched in between. The front of the engine does sit pretty close to the rear bulkhead so I’m sure belt changes are interesting. I couldn’t tell if any metal had to be cut in order to squeeze the engine in there. But even if it did, this was probably a good use for a car that might not have gotten restored otherwise.

People always talk about the “hell hole” when discussing 914s. That’s the area below where the battery sits. Battery acid and water can collect down there and can rot a hole right through the chassis. If you find a car with a big hole down there (you can’t miss it), it’s probably best to move on. The area you really want to check is around the jack points near the rear wheels. Water can enter those tubes and rust that area from the inside out.

The outside of this 914 is pretty crusty with surface rust showing and lots of cracked paint. Its rough appearance actually makes it more interesting though. Add in the engine swap and you have a fun conversation piece. Let’s just hope they removed those rocker panels and checked the jack points before performing the swap. The best part about this Honda conversation is that your golf clubs will still fit in the back!

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  1. bobhess bobhessMember

    Lack of rubber bumper guards says it’s no older than a ’73. Only thing that bothers me is the 5 lug “cookie cutter” wheels that might indicate it’s a 914-6. It’s easy enough to drill the 4 lug hubs to take 5 lug wheels but pretty sad if they modified an original 6 cylinder car.

    Like 9
    • Derek

      The 6 was probably robbed to go in a 912. I like it.

      Like 2
    • Jesse Jesse MortensenAuthor

      I doubt it’s a 914-6 but if I see it again, I’ll check which side the key is on.

      Like 4
  2. Malcolm Boyes

    To me its a serious crime to put a water pumper in any aircooled car…VW, Porsche Citroen, FIAT..just MHO..I’d rip it out and put a nicely tuned Type 4 in there..

    Like 4
  3. Phipps

    man i hate Frankensteins….

    Like 1
  4. Car Nut Gig Harbor Washington

    For a car like this, I’d give it a Subaru H4 engine. Possibly an early Subaru Legacy engine.

    Like 5
  5. douglas hunt

    calling Renegade Hybrids ……..

    Like 1
  6. Howie

    Very cool, not the best color or paintjob.

    Like 0
  7. Mark RuggieroMember

    They musta squoze a rad in there somewhere up front…

    Like 3
  8. Dwcisme

    A fellow nearby has a 914 with VW diesel power. I guess he’s swapped the entire front end into the back since it’s still transverse oriented.

    Like 4
  9. Wayne

    I had my race can in the local car show this past Saturday and talked to a gentleman who just recently sold his 3 914s. All of which had V8 conversions. He did however keep his supercharged Boxter. His wife says that he is a power junkie!
    I was at an autocross a few years back in Reno and there was a 914 with a SBC there. It was really impressive!

    Like 2
  10. Frank

    Motor in the …. er….TRUNK…*****

    Like 0
    • Jesse Jesse MortensenAuthor

      Thanks for catching my typo.

      Like 0
  11. CRW

    Not a close enough shot at the gage in the engine bay, guessing coolant temp?? Armored tube leads on to forward mounted radiator??

    Like 1
  12. Jake M.

    Jesse – I am the owner of this car. I found it in a collapsed double wide in town and put the Honda motor in it. 8k redline and 200HP is the perfect combo!
    There is a radiator up front and the gauge in the back is actually a fuel pressure regulator. I’ve put about 4k miles on it so far and it is currently my daily driver while the weather is nice.

    This summer I painted it, put new wheels and some fender flares on it and I assure everyone it’s a lot more put together!

    Like 1
    • Andrew Surprenant

      Jake, I’m planning to do the same swap and I’d like to see any pics you have of the car, especially in its updated state with paint and flares! My points of interest are engine mount bracket(s), cooling system, engine wiring hardness and ecu. Any tips you can share are also appreciated!

      Like 0

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