Total 911’s top seven pre-impact bumper Porsche 911s of all time
The pre-impact bumper generation are revered as the purest era of Porsche 911, their silhouette unsullied by the unsightly ‘concertina’ bumpers of post-1974 and their driving dynamics unspoilt by the numerous electronic aids seen today. The 911 range was much simpler too but, that hasn’t stopped us from ranking our top seven long-nose Porsche 911s:
The 911L is a rare beast. Only 1,603 were ever built with the model only lasting for the duration of the A Series cars (1967-68). As such, we have never photographed a stock example, with the above photo taken from the Porsche Archive. This alone justifies its place in our lucky seven pre-impact bumpers 911s.
This is the car that started it all. Without the Porsche 901 there would be no Porsche 991s sitting on show at your local OPC. Upon its release in 1964, it was a revelation, with its short wheelbase embuing the 901 with spritely handling, matched by its 130bhp flat six. Less than 90 now remain in existence.
The 2.0-litre Porsche 911S is far from the perfect car however, without Zuffenhausen’s first attempt at a performance 911 in late 1966 there would be no heritage of extracting ever more speed from the rear-engined sports car. For water-cooled fans, that means no GT3. It is, therefore, a pretty important model.
Released towards the end of 1969, the 2,195cc brought a noticeable boost in performance for the flat six. The 911S may have had a range-topping 180bhp but its delivery was peaky. Therefore, many chose the fuel-injected 911E. Its smooth revving 155bhp motor proved popular, as did its plush interior.
Probably the ultimate embodiment of the pre-impact bumper ‘S’ (as Josh finds out in issue 120). Built between 1972 and 1973, the 2.4-litre Porsche 911S was quick and comfortable. As classic-shelled 911s go, the Porsche 911 2.4S only sits behind the 2.7 RS in current auction values, with good examples going for nearly £200,000.
‘What? Only at number two!’ We can hear you crying from here. This list wouldn’t be complete without the most iconic long nose Porsche 911 ever built though. In fact, the 1973 Porsche 911 Carrera RS is probably the iconic Porsche 911 built full stop. We’d all have one in our dream Zuffenhausen garage.
There will never be a Porsche 911 as light as the 911R. Built to go racing, only 20 production Porsche 911Rs were ever built, forcing it to race as a prototype. It has inspired many people to replicate both its look and its ethos yet it is a lesser-known legend than the 2.7 RS. For that reason it tops our list.