Soft Window, Soft Metal: 1968 Porsche 911 Targa

Although much bally-hooing has occurred over the sudden rise in air-cooled 911 prices, there are a few variants that are either suitably rare or special enough that their high price tag is well-deserved. The “soft-window” 911L Targa is one such vehicle that falls into the rare category, as most Targas came with the fixed back glass. This example here on eBay needs everything but bidding is currently on the right side of logical; whether it stays that way remains to be seen.

The seller is quite transparent about the extent of rust and body repair needed; as such, this 911 is listed with no reserve. The seller claims the back of the car is better than the front and that it comes with its numbers-matching engine (although, it’s currently in pieces). The rust gets progressively worse as you move to the front of the car, with the door skins, rear quarters and front pan all suffering from extensive corrosion.

The interior is also rough; our guess is that the back window collapsed in on itself at some point (the downside to a soft-window, for sure) and perhaps the targa roof panel was removed. The seats and door panels look to be past the point of reasonable repair, but the highlight of the interior is likely the 5-speed manual transmission, which the seller claims to have been told is a rare find. This 911 also features a 150 m.p.h. speedometer and 6,800 RPM redline, which are claimed to be unique to the 911L models.

According to the seller, the completeness of the engine is another highlight: “Motor appears to be original: Cast 901.101.101.OR , stampings 901/1410223, *3280223. Complete with Original components: block halves, cylinder heads, rods,  pistons, carbs (410DAP3C, 402DAP3C1), linkage, generator, fan, shrouds, exhausts headers, etc.” You’ll want to do your own digging, but the tally sounds fairly complete and the components look quite clean in photos.

Here’s my favorite part: the old-school (and likely highly desirable) Chicago-chapter grill badge for the Porsche Club of America. That and the Sports Car Club of America sticker attached to the rear view mirror should tell you something about this 911L Targa’s ownership history. Soft-window Targas rarely pop up at a price point where the DIYer can potentially make some money after fixing the 911’s most immediate ills. Will this one stay cheap or will the price jump like any other 911 bubble car?

Fast Finds


  1. sir mike

    You’re kidding right???

  2. Coventrycat

    Strange that the Porsche club badge has a prancing horse…

    • Colchis

      Horse is the coat of arms of Stuttgart GE, home of Porsche.

  3. Peter R. Member

    Soft head…

  4. Dan

    I love fixing up old cars, but this just looks like more chore than fun.

  5. Jeffro

    Thinking outside the box, but what about a baja 911. Ok, I’m thinking inside a shot glass,however, seems like a good idea.

  6. bowtiecarguy

    I’d be interested to hear what Adam has to say about this one.

  7. Dave Wright

    This is a car for a rotisserie rebuild. I did a 911L in the late 70’s. They are a one year model built for the US market after the new Smog laws of 68. It is a slightly detuned 911S. A short wheelbase 911S is the grail these days, this is one 1/2 notch behind it being a better car than an E or T. It still caries the high RPM steel crank, and carbs similar to an S but has a little less radical cam. It also has the heavier S suspension and brakes. This car could be a winner for the long term collector/driver.

    • Dave Wright

      The soft rear windows were more common than hard ones in early targas, but many were retrofitted to the hard windows over the cars life. The soft ones like soft windows in a convertible top don’t hold up well and were expensive to replace so most owners at some point got tired of replacing them every couple of years and went to glass.

  8. John C Cargill

    early 911 + Chicago = extensive rust.

  9. Jorge Garcia

    Air cooled Porsche prices are in a bubble. How long can it last.

  10. DonC

    Bidding is up to $12,600. I can only shake my head ruefully. This car will require an astronomical amount of money and that’s assuming you do most of the work. To each their own, of course.

    • Keith

      If you think that’s bad, you’ll shudder to know someone paid $22,600 for this pile of junk

  11. ccrvtt

    Don’t know if anyone remembers the movie “The Big Chill” but one of the characters drove a ratty 911 targa which in my opinion was the star of the show. I love the slotted chrome wheels – far preferable to the Fuchs mags imo. However, the car in the movie was in a whole lot better shape than this skeleton. I pass.

  12. Adam T45 Staff

    Restoration of this would not be for the faint-hearted, but it is achievable. I’m the first to admit that the list of work is like the piece of string (how long is a piece of string?). However, I don’t believe that we are in a Porsche bubble. I believe that prices for older Porsches will only keep increasing. This could well be a really wise investment if the price stays below $20,000.

  13. RJ

    Soft apple. Bite carefully.

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