Between 1971 and 1973, Porsche launched the E and F Series of their now fabled 911, still offering the same range of models as previously: the base T, mid-level E and top of the range S.
Whilst retaining the longer wheelbase established with the B Series two years earlier, a new 2.4-litre engine was introduced, so called to differentiate from the 2.2-litre unit that it replaced, despite displacement of 2,341cc.
Our 1973 ‘T’ is a wonderfully restored, and useable matching-numbers example from this popular 911-era, in Bahia Red with some discreet, modern convenient features, the perfect everyday classic for today’s roads.
Chassis number: 9113501561
Engine: 2.4-litre flat 6-cylinder
Gearbox: 5-speed manual
Colour: Bahia Red
First launched as the 6-cylinder replacement for the 912, the ‘T’ was lauded as a dependable and affordable gateway to the 911 range. Whilst mechanical fuel injection was introduced in 1971 for the higher spec 911E and S models, the T retained a carburetor setup in Europe, producing 130bhp – the US variant also featured MFI.
As well as the new 2.4-litre power units, all models also featured the new, improved 915 transmission, based on that used in the Porsche 908 racing car, foregoing the ‘dog-leg’ style arrangement for a traditional ‘H’ pattern.
1972 saw a well-documented attempt to cure the renowned oversteer issues; the oil tank was relocated from behind the right rear wheel to in front of it to improve overall weight distribution and an oil filler cap was installed on the right rear panel. However, the design was scrapped after just a year with reports of attendants mistaking this for the fuel tank.
Regarded by many as the pinnacle of the early mainstream 911-era, the S continued to set the bar at the top of the range, inspiring the introduction of the limited production ST (1970-71) with its increased engine capacity and output of 266bhp at 8,000rpm, delivering impressive racing success in endurance events at Daytona, Sebring, Nürburgring and the Targa Florio during the period.
Manufactured by Dr Ing h c F Porsche AG in Stuttgart, chassis number 9113501561 was completed in May 1973 to C16 UK RHD specifications, with original options listed as Bahia Red exterior and Black Leatherette with Corduroy inlays for the interior. First sold on 1 June 1973, there have been nine former keepers recorded by the DVLA since then.
It was bought at auction by regarded Porsche specialists Canford Classics at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in 2004 and subsequently enjoyed a complete, bare-metal restoration, before being sold to the present owner in 2017.
The bodywork was fully dismantled, repaired and re-painted in its original Bahia Red factory colour whilst exterior trim was refurbished and replaced with original parts as required. The car’s interior was also returned to its factory finish, featuring D’Eser replica Recaro seats and modern, retro Blaupunkt radio with MP3 connectivity.
Steering and suspension were also both fully refreshed, along with the ‘S’ braking system and Bilstein rear and Koni front shock absorbers. The original 915 gearbox was rebuilt and an limited slip differential was fitted, whilst the original engine was bored out to an increased capacity of 2.8-litres with modern cams and refurbished triple-choke Weber carburetors.
Although marketed as the cheaper, lower power and specification model from the bottom of the 911 range, the T is far from the poor relation. It is a super, everyday car in its own right, more than holding its own against its more expensive relatives.
Our matching numbers 73T in bright Bahia Red with Black leatherette/corduroy interior is a fine example, delivering those expected characteristics and more. The previous owner has taken great care throughout its recent restoration to not only produce a sympathetic and authentic finish but also shrewdly adapted the car for modern convenience, as well as upgrading the engine for a much-improved power output of over 200bhp.
The result is an extremely tidy and attractive car that performs above expectations on the road. One of the most fun 911s that we have driven in recent times, it ‘goes like hell’ and handles tidily as well. As such, it represents great value to the Porsche enthusiast looking fir an accessible, usable, quick classic 911.