Mystery 911 Porsche Part 2

If you missed Part 1 of the story of this Mystery Porsche, be sure to take a look at it here before continuing! From twenty feet away I see the “Barn Find of the Year” (OK the year just started off so that was an easy call). Porsche-types will immediately recognize a rare 1992 Porsche 964 American Roadster. There were only about 250 produced. This rare model had the regular production drive train but featured Turbo fender flares and a few other unique features.

The Under-The-Hood photo reveals a big red flag. Twin three-barrel Webers don’t seem right on a 964, or a 3.2 Carrera, SC or anything else later than around 1970 when Fuel injection kicked in. Other stuff under the hood doesn’t look right either. The new owner still isn’t sure exactly what he bought and is still investigating but here’s what he thinks he knows. The title reads 1979 Porsche 911 SC Targa, (are you sitting down) “SALVAGE” Front bumper, rear bumper and side skirts are fiberglass rather than urethane. So, a six figure American Roadster barn find was not to be the case.

What is the case is a very complete, never wrecked, clean, rust free, carbureted (are you still sitting down) 1992 American Roadster….. “CLONE”. The car was possibly a theft recovery with the engine missing. While the title still matches the body VIN plates, the engine and transaxles have blue California plates showing that the drive train is not original to the car.

So what do you do with an SC Targa with the wrong drive train? A few years back when SCs weren’t worth much, it was popular to UPDATE rather than BACKDATE. That’s probably what happened to this car. You can still buy reproduction fiberglass parts to UPDATE your older Porsche 911 to look like a 964, however, with the current value of older 911s I doubt very many people are doing this mod. Certainly not the best choice now but back sometime between 1992 and 1998 it seemed like a good idea. Another major modification to this car was a conversion from a Targa to a convertible. Surprisingly this conversion looks to be quite simple with little evidence of major modifications. The fenders flairs are real steel not patched in fiberglass. I can’t see any evidence on the underside where they were welded in so if they were a later mod it was done very nicely. So, how did our readers do? Check the comments to find out. What should the new owner do with it? Clean it up and enjoy or turn it back into an SC Targa? Oh, one last thing. The engine case casing number starts with 930. I wonder what that means?

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  1. Adam Wright

    As long as he bought it right, he will be find, but he if fell for the badging, he’s doomed

    • Sid Cannon Sid Member

      My friend has been studying and researching the car for several years before buying it so I am positive he knew he was buying a Frankenstein. The drive train is still a big mystery. There are blue California DMV metal plates glued over where the engine and transaxle serial numbers should be. He is trying to decide whether to remove the tags and see what is underneath or try to determine some other way the origin of the engine and transaxle. Here’s where he needs help from some of the Porsche fans out there. From my limited knowledge of Porsche part numbers the 930 on the case could indicate a real turbo engine or maybe Porsche used a turbo case on a later non-turbo model like a 3.2 1984-1989.

      • UK Paul

        930 105 116 00 for example is the crankcase lid part number on a normally aspirated 1970 to 1973 911.
        Its confusing but 930 used a lot on parts across the range. Have seen it on parts for my 928 from memory too.

  2. 934_Jeepster

    Thanks for the follow up, really interesting story!
    Actually 326 real 964 American Roadsters were built according to Porsche sources, and those had the 964 Turbo brakes and suspension, with a regular C2 drive train…
    What would be interesting to know about this specific car is how stiff the body still is now that the Targa bar has been removed!?
    Oh and as far as I can remember all three liter class Porsche engines of that era started with 930… (?)

  3. Agneimanis

    Converted Targa with non-matching drivetrain (carbureted to boot!) and modified fenders means that the die has been cast for this car – no realistic way of turning it back to an SC Targa. Just drive it and enjoy it to help ease the sting of not getting an actual Roasdster.

  4. Michael L

    When ya see an elderly person in the barn find photo… can’t help but think the buyer paid a pittance for this car.

  5. David C

    I agree with Adam. I would drive the wheels off of it.

  6. ATL_Jeff

    Find some sun, put the top down and enjoy. Hopefully he didn’t pay the piper for it. I’m personally not a fan of any car that’s yellow, but he could always throw a few more thousand at it and fix that.

  7. Classic Steel

    May i suggest a recreation of the movie risky businesses with Joel on the dock?

    Seriously paint it black and drvie it like you stole it daily 🏎

  8. Rock On Member

    Holes between the wheel spokes really speed up the time to fasten the car down to the trailer!

  9. Cbny

    If you bought the car for investment, you can write off a huge loss on your taxes. If you bought it to impress others, you’re a fool and there’s no cure for that. If you bought it cause you love it, then get every penny you spent in pleasure driving, waxing, and enjoying it. Only a fool gets taken cause they’re never content!

  10. Jeffro

    Ok, so now I’m trying to figure out how to clone my Mazda B2500 truck into a SRT10 Dodge Ram. Suggestions?

    • Doug

      Just cram a 12 valve Cummins in it – the black smoke will hide the rest…..

    • Gray Wolf

      Jack up the antenna on the truck and drive the SRT10 under it and remount!

  11. Justo

    Haha! Great comments…cracked me up!

  12. Ron

    The only thing on that car from 1979 is the public VIN. The body -VIN and the salvage title

  13. TC

    Swap out those horrid wheels, and have fun driving the crap out of it.

  14. Richard

    I had one of these in right hand drive.
    There is nothing special about the car. The all had the same rear end.
    If you need to pull the engine put the car on a hoist and un bolt it and the engine and trans will come out as one unit. This will normally be done for a service. They are very quick and easy to remove.
    The only thing that makes this car worth something is the fact is is the last of the air cooled 993.
    However the production date will be 1996/97. The 996 came out in 1998.
    This car would sell in Asia easy.

  15. olddavidp

    How do three Webers get even fuel distribution to a flat four? Who would make a manifold to make this work? I know Porsche is renown for the unusual but this twists my brain.

    • Richard

      3 pistons flat on each side.
      This is after market.
      I would take this crap of and put it back to original.

    • Dave T

      @olddavidp – practice those reading comprehension skills and you will realize your mistake.

      • Angrymike

        Hate to act dumb, but isn’t that a 6 ?

    • saabseller

      Flat FOUR??? Good night.
      KJ in Oz

  16. John

    All of the parts to finish the conversion to a real 964 are available from the friendly local Porsche Parts Department. I can’t imagine them costing more than $100,000. Heck, while in the parts department wish book, why not order up a new 930 motor? They would be glad to install all of the parts for another $100K. Get it an intercooler, too. One could probably even unload that old VW/Porsche motor for a couple of hundred. But there’s not much market for those three-barrel carburetors — maybe save them for a flea market somewhere.

    Then drop on by my house, I have some land down near the Everglades for sale……

  17. UK Paul

    Glad i wasn’t losing it. Its a bit of fun. These sort of conversions were all the rage at one stage.

  18. RoughDiamond Member

    Hi Sid,

    Did your friend get a look at the title to see that it was a “salvage” title before purchasing the Porsche? Makes me wonder if others might have previously seen the garage door open too and inquired about the car only to pass on it?

    • Sid Cannon Sid Member

      Rough diamond
      Yes, he knew what he was getting other than the drive train (and it’s condition) is still a mystery.

  19. Andrew

    I don’t know what it should be worth but it is one heck of a nice looking car…

  20. DG

    I have never heard of anyone turning a Targa into a cabrio. Much less a SC into a 964. lol.

    • chgrec Member

      Porsche made a factory kit for dealers to convert Targas to a full convertible back in the day since the Targas weren’t selling. Used the kit on my 84 Targa way before the air cooled and originality moved prices into the stratosphere…. (not mine)

      I then did a 964 conversion to mine (bumpers, etc) with boxsters seats & 964 interior door panels…Today, I would never have done it with the money original 911 bring today.

      The buyer needs to just drive what he got and be happy with the sound of those webers!

    • The_Driver

      Then you just got to the party, as in both California and Florida it was VERY common to turn SC 911’s into late 80’s Carreras and then into 964 cars.

      • UK Paul

        Same in UK. Shed loads of them here.

  21. Copbait73

    Been active in the Porsche world for 45 years. All this stuff is/was done and nothing really special here. Leave it as is. To the right buyer this car is probably worth $20-$25K

  22. Ron

    I agree with copbait73 if it is legit that is probably the value but I don’t think it is legit with my 38 years experience

  23. Cary A Gay

    Me, it’s already a chop shopper, I’d finish the build to my liking and keep it. I feel everyone should have a top down for a sunny day. Just don’t try to pass it on for what it’s not.

  24. Frank Alexander Brauer

    I believe the correct spelling is flares…. as in flared fenders.

  25. Ron

    Hmmmm. You’re swaying me a little. I would have to see this one tho


    Update…widow knew what she had…sure all concerned are still smiling !

  27. ZeRinger

    The used to be a “customizer” out of California that built ugly updates like this. I think they are Anziano’s Bad Boy Cars or something of that nature. I suppose there were some buyers that were stone cold blind and liked their particular flavor of 911 assassination but I’d cringe and die a little inside each time I’d see one of their auctions on eBay. This looks an awful lot like their handiwork.

  28. ZeRinger

    The 930 casing number isn’t a big deal. The SC had the 180 HP 3.0 liter 930/03 engine.

  29. Ron W. Wheeler

    This reminds me of a program where persons go around buying elderly widows cars for a fraction of their worth. Just get back to finding cars and showing them to all of us. This got way to deep into Barn Finds.

    • saabseller

      “buying elderly widows cars ” – – – why would you want to buy elderly widows cars? Can’t they buy their own?

      Amazing the difference an apostrophe makes.

      Buying elderly widow’s cars.

      KJ in Oz

  30. chad

    i’m just the opposite, thnx 4 the write up/2 parts, everyone’s comments.

    I was also thinkin that: “…go around buying elderly widows cars for a fraction of their worth…” some of the ‘elderly widows’ could be praying on some of the buyers.

  31. alan

    Finally the charade is over and we all know its a fake that makes a great 10 footer. If the price was right then the pleasure factor is all the better. Just like parking a good 356 Speedster replica on the street to overhear many people tell their company how rare the car is as they walk by ogling it.

  32. Sid Cannon Sid Member

    I really enjoyed writing this story and reading ALL your comments. I think MOST of the readers liked my slight deviation from the successful standard Barn Finds formula. I especially appreciated the readers that dug deeper and offered some constructive suggestions for the new owner. Not every buyer out there is uninformed, trying to scalp the seller or trying to flip for a fast buck. This buyer loves what he got.

    • UK Paul

      I think it was a great one. Barn Finds at the core with things like this make it varied and interesting. Works for me.

  33. The_Driver

    America 964’s roadster or hardtop, did not have the electronic rear spoiler, at least not in U.S. cars.

  34. Ronald G Bajorek jr

    is that 930 motor the one that Jesse James stole out of Scott Hamilton’s Porsche?

    • Ron W. Wheeler

      I am going to close the return comments to my email. James I do not want to see angered.

  35. Fayhon4321

    The car is a reverse ruff . it was a targa converted to a Ruff wide body

  36. Eric Chavez

    I’m almost certain that is the car a old high buddy had back in 1993. He had a yellow 1979 911 convertible with 963 body and turbo fenders and turbo tail. The rims are different posted on this article and the turbo tail looks removed. I can’t imagine there’s 2 of those builds lol.

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