Why Magnus Walker is good for Porsche
Heard of Magnus Walker? Of course you have. The self-styled Urban Outlaw and diehard Porsche enthusiast has been on your screens via social media news feeds and YouTube links while regularly gracing your favourite car magazines for the past few years now.
As you’ll know, Magnus has captured the imagination of hundreds of thousands of motoring enthusiasts alike with his unrelenting passion for the Porsche brand, accumulating an enviable collection of Zuffenhausen metal before asserting his own eclectic stamp over a variety of classic models.
As far back as 2010, Magnus and his varying projects had been featured in Total 911 magazine, so he was a known entity to our readers, but his stock really began to soar in the wake of a short film in 2012 highlighting his zest for all things Zuffenhausen. ‘Urban Outlaw’, made by Tamir Moscovici, was a 32-minute insight into Magnus’ remarkable affinity with Porsche.
Now a long way metaphorically and physically from his first exposé to a 911 Turbo at the London Motor Show in 1974, Magnus’ Porsche escapades have taken him all over the world, regularly rubbing shoulders with celebrities and racing heroes such as Jay Leno and Hurley Haywood.
Without question, he’s now accepted and even welcomed by the corporate Stuttgart elite, rubberstamped by his official attendence with Porsche at a number of events this year including the Nurburgring Oldtimer and Goodwood Revival to name but a few.
Of course, the best thing about all this is how Magnus has stayed true to the primary clasp of his passion: modifying. Very few Porsches in his collection have remained in something akin to stock condition, and Magnus continues to champion the merits of customising cars to suit his style (think cammy engines, R-inspired body styling and even rolling on his bespoke ‘Urban Outlaw’ forged wheels, for example).
The success here is two-fold: first, Magnus has successfully added his own stamp to the Porsche brand, creating bespoke 911s that have been the lust of many of us – with projects including his ’72 STR II selling for good money at auction a case in point. Secondly (and more importantly), Magnus has proved a catalyst in the widespread shift in opinion towards the appreciation of modified 911s.
Not so long ago, fettling a flat six was deemed utter sacrilege to many, but Magnus has undoubtedly helped turn the tables of opinion among even the most traditional of Zuffenhausen enthusiasts. In fact, 911 customisation on such a large scale has arguably never been so popular, with stellar names in the wider Porsche fraternity such as Singer Vehicle Design in the US and PS Autoart in the UK making good business from this upshift in trend. There’s no denying Magnus has played a part in this, giving a glamorous edge to a custom 911 project.
An offshoot of Magnus Walker’s success is the extra appeal he brings to the Porsche brand from a newer, younger generation of petrolhead – and it’s here that he’s earned his merit with the corporate Porsche cartel.
Think about it: with the gulf in technology and even driving experience between a water-cooled and air-cooled 911, it is perhaps easy for the younger generations to become alienated as to the allure and appreciation of a classic model. Magnus has ensured that hasn’t happened.
Through Magnus’ videos and blog posts about his project builds and epic canyon runs, youngsters can pick up on more history of the 911, learning for example to appreciate what a four-speed Turbo or a 911 SC is, how they drive, and how they shaped the sportscars seen on the road today. This exposé to the brand acts as a priceless piece of advertising for Porsche, so it’s no wonder Magnus enjoys a healthy relationship with Porsche North America.
As a regular columnist in our magazine, he’s a good friend to Total 911 too, and it was our pleasure to let Magnus write the foreword to our new 911 Turbo: 40th anniversary collectors’ special bookazine this month. Magnus has committed much to the Porsche cause so far, and we look forward to seeing where his ventures take him in future.