Porsche 911 SC: ultimate guide

You don’t need to spend long browsing the internet or flicking through the classic car publications to find commentators extolling the virtues of air-cooled 911s, and more specifically the early cars and the iconic 3.2 Carrera.

They’re not wrong, of course – both are sought after today – but there’s one model that tends to get forgotten, and that’s the car you see here. Between 1978 and 1983 the SC was the only normally aspirated 911 you could buy, its only company in the range being the legendary 3.3 Turbo.

Therefore, if you wanted something less ballistic and less hardcore than the Turbo for use on a daily basis then it had to be the SC – and that’s not a bad thing at all.

Porsche 911 SC interior

Not everyone was thrilled with the new arrival, though, and the main bone of contention was the power output. The outgoing 3.0-litre model had managed a useful 200 horsepower or so, while the SC arrived on the market with a 180-horsepower version of the flat six, and frankly that wasn’t the sort of progress most 911 buyers were looking for.

However, it would benefit from power boosts in the following years, so for now let’s concentrate on that original powerplant. The 930/03 unit that could trace its lineage back to the awesome 930 Turbo was constructed around a light alloy crankcase and Nikasil bored cylinders that were fashioned from aluminium rather than magnesium, and was fitted with a forged-steel crankshaft with eight main bearings.

Porsche 911 SC engine

The 2,994cc capacity came courtesy of a 95-millimetre bore and 70.4-millimetre stroke and there was a single overhead camshaft per bank that operated two valves per cylinder.

Also new for the SC was a duplex chain for the camshaft drive with spring-loaded tensioners, although in an effort to improve reliability Porsche introduced a revised tensioner idler arm for 1980 – the hydraulic system adopted for the 3.2 Carrera would fi nally banish the problems for good.

To read our complete Porsche 911 SC compendium, pick up issue 127 in store now. Hurry though, we’ve already sold out online. If you prefer your magazines digitally, download your copy here.

Porsche 911 SC impact bumper

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