Total 911’s ultimate Nineties Porsche 911 garage
For the Total 911 team, the Nineties was a defining decade. The air-cooled Porsche 911 reached its zenith ahead of a brave new era, with a raft of iconic models that have since been immortalised in the history books.
We all grew up lusting after Zuffenhausen’s output during this ten-year stretch, making it the ideal decade from which to cherry-pick our ultimate Porsche 911 garage.
Lee (Editor), Josh (Senior Staff Writer) and Steve (Senior Designer) all picked their top eight Nineties Porsche 911s, with the results combined to form Total 911’s definitive selection of the era’s eight finest cars:
Fittingly, our selection kicks off with the first Porsche 911 released in the Nineties. The Porsche 964 Carrera 2 followed the four-wheel drive version of the previous year. It helped start Zuffenhausen’s process of modernising 911 and has since been lauded as one of the most rewarding 911s to drive, as seen by the rapidly appreciating values.
One place ahead, the Porsche 964 Carrera RS took the C2’s excellent starting block and lightened it by a dramatic 120kg. Along with a blueprinted flat six yielding an extra 10bhp, the 964 Carrera RS was the first true Rennsport 911 since the legend began in the early Seventies.
Only voted for by one Total 911 team member, the Porsche 993 Turbo makes this list by dint of designer, Steve placing it at the top of his list. The 993 Turbo was the first Porsche 911 Turbo to feature twin turbochargers, dramatically helping to reduce drag and modernise the driving experience. Good examples are currently selling for north of £100,000.
Built in ridiculously low numbers (194 left Zuffenhausen), the Porsche 993 GT2 was the first 911 to carry this fearsome turbocharged badge. Built to homologate the forced-induction, rear-wheel drive race car that Porsche wanted to take to Le Mans, the 993 GT2 was a 430bhp, 1,290kg missile that demands the greatest respect from any Porsche 911 driver.
Just 22 Porsche 964 C4 Lightweights were built by Weissach, using surplus parts from the successful 953 Paris-Dakar Rally project. Jürgen Barth’s team stripped an incredible 350kg from the standard Carrera 4. A four-way adjustable differential and short-ratio gearbox meant this Porsche 911 was a thoroughbred rally machine, though most ended up with collectors.
Is it a true 911? The board at Zuffenhausen decided to give this mid-engined homologation special the most famous three numbers in motoring, so it makes our definitive Nineties garage. The Porsche 911 GT1 Straßenversion is the ultimate embodiment of FIA’s GT1 formula, with an evolution of the original 911 GT1 winning at Le Mans in 1998.
The Porsche 993 Carrera RS would likely top a lot of people’s lists when asked to think of the ultimate Nineties Porsche 911s. As the last air-cooled Rennsport, the 993 Carrera RS is the zenith of traditional Porsche 911 formula. Lee felt it was most beguiling car he has ever driven in issue 119, while Josh and Steve also placed it highly.
Aptly, our list is topped by the last Porsche 911 released during the Nineties. The Porsche 996 GT3 is the only water-cooled car in our Nineties garage but it is more than worthy of its place. While the 996’s looks were less keenly accepted, the GT3’s heady mixture of Weissach technology, track performance and that wonderful Mezger engine has landed it a place as one of the greatest 911s ever, starting a new model variant that exists to this day.
Here’s how everyone scored; Eight points for first, sevent points for second right down to one point for eighth:
|993 Carrera RS||2nd||2nd||5th||18|
|911 GT1 Staßenversion||1st||3rd||N/A||14|
|964 C4 Lightweight||3rd||4th||N/A||11|