Monday, April 20, 2015

20k Some Assembly Required: 2002 Porsche 911 Turbo

The 996 generation Porsche 911 turbo is a freakishly fast sports machine that hits 60mph in 4.2 seconds and will cruise all the way up to a 189 mph top speed.  Unfortunately, it has a reputation for popping engines as often as Anthony Wiener exposes his frank 'n' beans to transsexuals on the twitter...which in case you aren't familiar is about the same frequency as an Audi/VAG product sends its coil packs packing.  BUT, if you want a REALLY REALLY fast car for cheap...it doesn't get much better than this 2002 Porsche 911 Turbo here on eBay currently bidding for $21,250 with a few hours to go located in Pinellas Park, FL.


The 996 Turbo isn't the fastest can you can find for this kind of cash -- there are all sorts of Bonneville Salt Flats racers you can buy that will be strictly faster, what the 996 Turbo does it add a layer of clinical efficiency to going fast in every situation.  The Salt Flat racer is a knife, the 996 Turbo is a leatherman -- you can cut, saw, snipe, tweeze, and open cans with equal aplomb.


To understand where most of the speed comes from you must pop the rear trunk lid to examine the...whoa!  Where'd the engine go?  Is this some kind of Porsche special SPECIAL GT4 lightweight edition where even the powerplant is optional and the price tag is higher?


Oh no, there it is.  The glorious 3.6 liter twin turbocharged flat-6 that pushes out 415 horsepower and 415 ft-lbs of torque is sitting on a pallet ready for you to spend a few weekends on the installation. Now I understand why this thing is so cheap.  Personally, I wouldn't do the installation without chipping the ECU (Porsche offers a factory X50 tune to 450 horsepower) and disabling the front drive section of the AWD system (budget GT2!!). 


On the inside you get Porsche's optional full leather interior which is really nice if you don't mind the upkeep of regular conditioning.  This one uses the 5-speed tiptronic automatic, which won't be as nice as the 6-speed for driving on the track, but will be much better for a commute and just as quick.  Read this rennlist.com forums 996 buyers guide for some great advice on used 996s.


See a faster car for the money that isn't a C5 Z06? tips@dailyturismo.com

56 comments:

  1. "MINOR_ISSUE"...is that the same as "Like a panther in a coalmine"?

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  2. Your "witty" remark about wiener is rude an infantile.

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    1. That's why I like it. Almost as good as a fart joke. We'll done!

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    2. I thought it was hilarious.

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    3. rude and infantile.

      Anthony-- please see commandment II below, please select Name/URL in the reply as dropdown and enter "Anthony Wiener" in the Name box, and you can leave the URL field empty.

      Thanks for the comments as always!
      Vince, DT E-i-C.

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    4. Fleetwood T. BroughamApril 20, 2015 at 8:54 AM

      I agree--------wasn't it great?

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    5. It was great, and also +1 on the coil packs thing.

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    6. Humor in a wide variety is just one of the many fine offerings on DT. Lovin tha Somethin About Mary tie-in!

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    7. so many good ones... "I say don’t judge Anthony Weiner until you’ve walked a mile with his pants down around your ankles." ~ David Letterman

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    8. GUYS guys guys...Anonymous isn't saying that DT's joke was infantile. He/She/It was saying that Wiener is a rude infant who tiles for a living. He'll tile anything really; kitchens, hallways, patios...you name it.

      You guys need to read more closely before you jump down good ol' Anonynony's throat. Sheesh. No new tiling for you!

      [img]http://i.imgur.com/EhAkeXX.jpg?1[/img]

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    9. @K2MC, 39 weeks today. She's still at work, no signs of impending child arrival yet...

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    10. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    11. That kid doesn't want to show up! 39 weeks, man!

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  3. I've replace an engine in a bug, how different can this be :)

    Seriously though these cars are animals when built up. 235mph in the Texas mile.

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    1. Some see a Porsche in pieces and ponder the possibilities of reuniting engine and chassis. Like you, I have also taken the engine out of a bug, an older 911 and Corvair. I worry about my mental health because because I find myself looking at that engine and wondering if there isn't a '65-69 Corvair waiting for a new heart.

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    2. Some men see things as they are and say "why"? Hunsbloger dreams things that never were and says "why not"?

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    3. I would have used that but I can still hear Teddy Kennedy's voice breaking whenever I hear that.

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    4. As the good Senator might have said: "We'll drive off that bridge when we come to it".

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    5. And a gt 4 in need of a corvair heart.

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    6. Bobinott I literally laughed out loud on that one. Excellent!

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    7. +1 for the Delmont amphicar reference!

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  4. These turbos asolutely do NOT have a reputation for "popping engines" -- the turbos are extremely rugged and reliable engines that do not suffer from the IMS/RMS failures that the non-turbo engines do. Maintenance is definitely on the expensive side due to parts costs and difficult access for many jobs (step one: drop the engine), and if you DO somehow manage to destroy the engine a used replacement is $15K (ouch!). But risk is low and reliability is high -- this is one exotic car that won't live at the mechanic's shop. However: this car, when reassembled and everything on it straightened and sorted, is probably less than a $35K car given the history, and there is no evidence the "mostly complete" engine is OK or what it will take to get it that way. So don't buy this one; buy a running example without the risk. And then enjoy -- these cars are fabulous! Perfect evil daily driver for your commute with the tiptronic. That's how I use mine!

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    1. Yeah, I was wondering about the "popped engine" thing too. These are crazy durable---all of the variants of the GT1 engine were. I have to agree though. This has already left the bargain stage. You can still find well-maintained sub-$100k 996 turbos (with the 6 speed--my pref) for low to mid-30's. I'm willing to bet that changes overnight though in the next 3-5 years and when they are $50-60k for a beater we'll be kicking ourselves for not scooping up a $30k one.

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    2. Perhaps I should have said that the 996 has a reputation of popping engines, which is probably what has driven the price of the fried egg turbos to less than a wrecked 993.

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    3. No wait, I like where you were going. Unlike that OTHER car site which seems to do it's damndest to move the prices of reasonable cars upwards, let's do the opposite here. So in that spirit, let me just say that yes, the 996 Turbo is a reliability nightmare! You thought that engine out service on your buddy's 360 Modena was steep? The spark plugs on the 996 Turbo are $1100 EACH. Additionally they need valve adjustments every 60 miles, at a cost of $865.

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    4. Yes, FTB, yes. This is thinking outside of the padded box. While forcing down the price of everything from Stuttgart, we drive UP the prices of cars like the Maserati Bi-Turbo -- since those things are basically as reliable as a 2015 Camry and only a few bad examples have been given lots of press. Why drive up the price of the Bi-Turbo? Simple, we need to give hipsters some outlet for shredding their cash while their Coolest is on perpetual back order.

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    5. Anybody want to talk with me about the cost of German car maintenance?

      Where did everybody go? Guys....? I swear, they were here just a second ago....

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    6. We just were! German cars are NIGHTMARES! You can set your watch to their breakdowns. Why, cars like e30 M3's, 911 Turbos, Merc E63 wagons..........NONE of them should cost more than $12k based on their crazy running costs. Now cars like Volvo 850/V70's, GM F-bodies, and yes, Bi-turbos......those shouldn't cost a dime less than $50k and they should be the epitome of hipster style.

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    7. OMG k2 was right this whole time!

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    8. Now you guys get me, you really get me. :-P

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    9. Just allow me one tiny quote, "...spark plugs...$1100 EACH." Last time I checked, just about every other "normal" car under the sun was a tad cheaper. Have they gone up recently? I know I live under a rock and all...but, GOLLY.

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    10. The spark plug costs are only the beginning......the turn signal fluid is $2500/ounce.

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    11. ... and that $865 valve adjustment cost was PER VALVE! Including the tire valves! Oh the humanity!

      [img]https://c2.staticflickr.com/4/3011/2640789668_48a2a84ddf.jpg[/img ]

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  5. Fried - egg Porsches are THE sports car bargain right now.

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  6. Darned interweb thingy....

    [img]http://blog.smartgirlstupidthings.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/ohthehugemanatee.jpeg[/img]

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  7. I've heard that the light bulb filaments are made with the hair of the Mountain Pygmy Possum.

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    1. The turn signal yellow comes from the actual yolk of the now extinct dodo bird (Raphus cucullatus) egg. When it runs dry the only source is a guy on in Belgium who only takes bitcoins. Pelican Parts is working on getting a pelican egg based solution...but they are a few years from mass production.

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  8. By that reasoning then the 850 is a reliability nightmare as well. They need to stay cheap as I want another in a bad way.

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  9. By that reasoning then the 850 is a reliability nightmare as well. They need to stay cheap as I want another in a bad way.

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  10. By that reasoning then the 850 is a reliability nightmare as well. They need to stay cheap as I want another in a bad way.

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  11. I spy with my critical eye an opportunity to turn a negative spotlight on Volvo, the FWDs specifically.

    Personally, I think there was a bit of premium asked on the MSRP, but they were a premium offering. Nothing like a Maybach, but you know what I mean. The truth is, they devalued very quickly (which is one reason I bought it). Not as bad as a lot of the BMWs but then again (as it was pointed out), there's no chance that a FWD Volvo is ever going to be a collectible.

    Post 1999-2000 Volvos seemed to start adding stuff that was a bit fragile and maybe not as well designed as before, especially trim and little bits though there are major parts too that demonstrated a higher failure rate. The early S80 transmission suuuuucked and a perfect example of absolutely terrible and shameful engineering.

    Where these Swedish cars (American and Chinese owners aside) differ from German cars is that the part costs are generally lower. Like I said above, the 94-98 cars are relatively simple and fairly well made. Maintenance is cheaper and just about anybody can work on them, unlike a certain other Swedish car company's products that require special tools.

    Maybe they don't require more or even less repair than the German cars, but when something does happen (and it does for ALL cars, admittedly) it doesn't cost you an arm and a leg (again, OUTLIERS people - they exist).

    While this is anything but scientific, a quick search on Bavauto (please don't tell me that Bavauto is the only place that charges these prices in the entire internet) reveals $38 for a pair of wiper blades for a 98 528i. The same part (a pair of wiper blades) for a 98 S70 is $15 per pair. This is just for example, nothing more.

    Volvos have problems, just like any car. Maybe more and maybe less than some. But the 94-98s are really good cars that can be bought for cheap. The handling and the steering is not sporty. Some of that can be dealt with but the truth is that these were not designed to be sports sedans and if you're used to how a BMW handles, you ain't gonna like it. The thing you get back is that they're some of the most comfortable cars to drive and they're relatively cheap to maintain. The seats in particular are unbelievably comfortable.

    Numbers are verboten on DT, it seems. Regardless, although I've never dyno'd my car, I bought it for $7K, sunk $1K in performance upgrades and I've got a 7-passenger vehicle that's pretty much dead reliable with 285 hp and 290 ft. lbs. torque (IPD numbers). Frankly, I don't really care. It meets my needs and then some. I'm sure it won't yours.

    Back to cracking jokes.

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  12. On a roll. Stop reading...NOW. And I apologize to my pal Bolo, who drives a GT3 as a grocery getter.

    I love the 996 and I love all 911s.

    Here it comes...the 996 is a nerd car. Unless your name ends with Senna and/or you have piles of cash you just can't figure out what to do with, there's really no reason to buy a 996 when a "normal" 911 does everything the 996 does, with less chance of you killing yourself or others. The regular Joe 911 is so good, why on Earth do you need a boatload more power and traction? As if you don't already know, I'll state the obvious; genital size compensation.

    You know it and I know it and you know that I know you know it.

    Another reason you buy a flash car is to impress other people. Well, I'm gonna state the painfully obvious once again here; most folks can't even tell the difference between a 911 and a 996. In fact, other than brand loyalists, most people can't tell the difference between ANY of the 911s. New models come out and the underprivileged don't notice. No sir, not one bit. They're impressed that you drive a 911, yes. But they don't know the dif between a 996 and a 911, plain and simple.

    If you're rich enough to buy a 996 because you're going to race it, do you really think that's the best car? And you're so wealthy that you can buy the 996 but you can't afford a dedicated track car? Makes no sense and there's a logic there that doesn't jibe.

    Don't even get started on the maintenance costs of the 996. This car has run its course, it's done, forget it, run away from this one at top speed. Instead, go find a really nice 911 at a good price that fits your budget and love it. THAT would be a keeper.

    I love the 996 and I love all 911s.

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    1. "996" You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means. The 996 WAS a 911....produced for model years 1999 - 2004. Nothing more, nothing less. Boatload more power and traction? The initial base models are RWD and sub-300hp. Are you thinking the 996 designation means it's a turbo or something?

      (And seriously.......who doesn't buy wiper blades at pep boys? Bavauto???

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    2. Precisely my point. Thank you for illustrating what I was getting at.

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    3. I meant to add this to my post above but forgot. There. Fixed it.

      [img]http://i.imgur.com/I3FH6jv.jpg?1[/img]

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    4. I'm confused how I illustrated your point. Your point seemed to be "hey showoff, why spring for that 996 when all you need is a 911?" If so, the point was lost on me, as the 996 is the cheapest current way to put your butt in the seat of a 911.

      It was sort of like saying "why do showoffs spend all that money on Mercedes W211's when an E class would be just fine?

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    5. Thanks for your feedback FTB. So here's how I see it and I'm open to further feedback on the subject, of course. Pardon me for repeating what you already know. I know that you know this already.

      Anyway, you got your air-cooled and you got your water-cooled.

      Based on my experience, the late 70s SC marked a tipping point in the 911 where the thought of "normal" people actually owning it was not so strange. Not that the earlier 911s weren't spectacular too, but the reliability went way up. These were actually really good cars and even today they're more car than most people need as they sit on the 405 at a dead stop for hours or tooling down the highways and byways of a Walmart parking lot.

      Understandably, the water-cooled 911 presents an even bigger draw for brand nerds. Again, I argue that "normal" folks can't really tell the difference between an air-cooled 993 and a water-cooled 996.

      So only Porschephiles are going to know the difference and, frankly, care whatsoever. To most folks you're driving a newer 911 or an old 911. But even that isn't so important, they just see a 911.

      There's also the argument that I've heard criticizing the places where Porsche went a bit cheapo on the 996, mainly the stuff shared with the Boxster. Personally, I don't find that such a big deal.

      Stiffness went up and handling improved incrementally on the 996. Again, most folks can't tell the difference and neither can you and I at 35 mph. The bottom level 296 hp in the 996 is not that different from the 286 in the 96+ 993, I'll grant you. The previous hp of the 993 was 272 and then you go down to the beginning of the SC and you're down to 180...which is a massive difference, I don't care how you look at it.

      So my point is, the 996 does have more power and traction/handling than it's predecessors. But not enough to warrant spending thousands more. Not enough for a daily driver for pretty much 99% of the world. That's not a knock on the 996 but an endorsement of how good the SC and up are.

      And that's just my opinion. Clearly, not yours and probably not any of the other DTers. Just mine.

      On to the issue of money. It's hard to proclaim anything specifically because there are always outliers, like this dog of a 996. What we can do is look at the KBB as a basic guide and use those numbers as a comparison. Here they are, using basic stats (details of how I got these numbers upon request).

      2002 996 Carrera Coupe = $22,041
      1994 993 RS America Coupe = $15,070

      The difference is roughly $7,000. If that's chump change to you, can I borrow a couple of bucks? Again, I argue that the 993 is every bit as great a car as the 996.

      I'm not sure I'm getting how you think a 996 is the cheapest way to get into a 911. Did you mean water-cooled? If that's what you're getting at, then you're right...because other than buying a 1998 over this 2002, that's not possible (other than a #$%^&* engine swap).

      But I can't logically agree otherwise. Any 911 from the SC up to the 993 is going to be a great way to get into a 911. I can already hear the cries of, "Have you SEEN what SCs are going for these days?" Oy vey. That still doesn't mean the 996 is a better car, a more logical car or even a car that today's enthusiast MUST buy over the others. No way, no how.

      Aw heck, just by a Cayman.

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    6. K2 - you had me until using KBB as a price guide. KBB is generally on the high side for most cars, but they are WAYYY off on a few cars on the low side (any 911, Turbo MkIV Supra) and particularly exemplified by the RS America. Those were $30k-$35k for a driver about 2 years ago, but prices have gone Battle of the Bugle Nutz and RSA pricing starts around $75k.. Seriously out of control.[img]http://i.imgur.com/t3JiosV.png[/img]. So the best thing to compare an RSA to is probably a 997 Turbo.

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    7. Yeah, i was thinking K2 left a zero off of his RS America price, or maybe he can find me one at $15k... ;-)

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    8. I'll repeat myself, "Oy vey." Just because the market has gone nuts that doesn't mean these (94+) 911s are anything more than used cars. I'll grant you the older cars are classics and collectibles, that's a given. But have you asked yourself why the newer cars are worth so much? I bet you have and your conclusion was probably, "Because they're awesome!" That's PRECISELY why, you're right! But you're wrong in realizing why. Middle-aged guys (oh no, now somebody's gonna write how their aunt drives one), who have money, want a relatively practical supercar that they've dreamed about since they were a kid. Not everybody wants the torture of owning a finicky Italian spaceship, displaying the gold-chained, chest-carpet, middle-life crisis that is the Corvette (sorry, I love that car too, but...) and there are only so many NSXs (talk about high parts prices!) to go around.

      The funny thing here is that the old wisdom about buying the best car you can afford certainly applies to the 911. That still doesn't change the fact that parts costs are generally higher than they should be in comparison to a majority of the companies for no other reason than they can get away with it. This you don't seem all that willing to argue because that would take too much work. Which is fine because it's your money and you can spend it any way you want.

      Take leasing for example. For a majority of the world, leasing a car makes less than zero sense (outliers, I know!). It's literally a waste of money, more often than not for folks that can't or shouldn't really afford it. That's a crime in my book and so is charging more for parts than they need to...exactly what the Germans have done historically and continue to do to this day. Since I'm a crime fighter (literally), of course I'm going to find this unacceptable!

      That could be changed if people made a fuss but they don't because they're dazzled by the rest of the car. Understandably so. I've been there too, with my 951. After I sold it, I sifted through all of my records and realized that the car -a fairly simple four-cylinder- cost me far more than just about any other car I've ever owned for no other reason other than they could just charge more for OEM. Personally, I think it's important to keep a low mileage original condition collectible as OEM as possible. AGAIN, I understand not everybody feels this way (swap! swap! swap!).

      It's been an interesting discussion. I do feel more caught up on the current state of 911 values now, which I honestly haven't looked at since the 90s (when I almost bought an SC). It's a problem with part costs, you see. They're just too high for me. Let me explain my thoughts...no? Where did everybody go?

      Let me also say, as this generation of dudes (didn't I mention the 911 is a nerd car? I meant to write dude-nerd) fades away, the next gen is likely to not care much about them and they'll drop in price. Or maybe they won't and they'll want them as much as we do. I hope so. But probably not. I'm thinking anything to do with video games that looks a lot more exotic than the 50 bloody year old 911(!). Even Porsche knows this, that's why they've been introducing new models like crazy (relatively) lately. Fortunately, they've been bigger hits than the 924 and 928. Unfortunately, those new models are mostly S/CUVs...which is a sign of doom for 911 values. Uh oh, I probably just caused another argument there.

      Your mental mileage may vary.

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    9. BTW, I appreciate you humoring this raving lunatic that I call me. Your efforts are not unrecognized. At least I'm entertaining, hmm?

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  13. BTW, my mega-generous M3 offer still stands. I promise to be open-minded.

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    1. You'll have to find another donor, alas, mine has been gone for 2 years now.

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