There’s something particularly alluring about a street-going version of a race car. Among those is this near one-off example of the Porsche 964 RSR, the ultimate iteration of the new-fangled 911 made from 1989 through 1994. Known by Porsche followers as the 964 series, that model generation was more than a face-lifted take on the original 911, whose familiar shape was made from 1964 through 1989. While resembling its predecessor in almost every way, except for the soft front and rear bumper covers, the 964 was 87 percent new (and now a favorite donor car for top-tier Porsche restomods).
Both the 964 Carrera 2 and Carrera 4 shared a flat-six engine, enlarged from 3.2 to 3.6 liters, developing about 240 hp in U.S. street trim. The rare 3.6-liter 964 Carrera RS was a lightweight variant, never brought stateside (though the RS America, a stripped-down Carrera 2, and an RS in name only, did). The RSR was an altogether different animal, with a 3.8-liter engine that developed about 375 hp. With Turbo-style bodywork, it left little to the imagination.
Including a prototype, only 51 examples of the 964 RSR were built, each supplied direct from the factory as a turnkey race car for privateer racers. That car’s accomplishments were impressive, taking outright wins at the Spa 24 Hours, the Nürburgring 24 Hours, and the Interlagos 1000 km. Along with those, it took class wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the 1000 km of Suzuka, and the 12 Hours of Sebring.
Every Porsche follower knows that secrets lurk within Stuttgart’s factory build records. Exactly two Strassenversion (Street Version) RSRs were built by Porsche Motorsport, making this example nearly unique, and with matching numbers. Basically untouched, No. 107 shows only 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) on the odometer. And to say that this Porsche has an interesting provenance is an understatement.
Built to the original owner’s specification, it was delivered by Porsche Cars Great Britain on May 25, 1996, and was sequestered away in a collection. Painted Polar Silver Metallic, it is extensively trimmed in Guards Red leather, extending to the headliner, dash, steering column, steering wheel, door caps, and even the roll cage. This silver-and-red color scheme was nothing new for the owner, who apparently ordered four 3.3 Turbo S Lightweights to the same specification.
Other features of this particular race car include a passenger seat, air jacks, a locking differential, a 120-liter fuel tank, and a Le Mans-specification twin-plug engine. Three-piece Silverline alloy finished in Amethyst Metallic, and brake calipers painted in contrasting gold, are additional touches that suggest the client’s fastidious and uncompromising attention to detail.
This vehicle, acquired by the consignor in 2017, has not been driven in nearly 30 years, and will thus require recommissioning, the euphemistic equivalent of being raised from the dead. Most notably, it retains its Cosmoline protective coating applied by the factory. Those old enough to have encountered the waxy brown goop may have even undertaken the ritual of removing the obstreperous material from cars made from the 1970s through 1990s. Back then, European carmakers, eager to ensure that their precious cargo would not rust during the boat ride across the Atlantic, liberally and haphazardly sprayed the tenacious product into wheel wells, on every suspension component, across the underbody, and occasionally onto body panels deemed susceptible to rust and corrosion.
That this Porsche retains its original Cosmoline coating is a recipe for exciting the most obsessive collector—it’s akin to finding a G.I. Joe action figure in his original cardboard box with yellowed cellophane. The question for the next owner is whether to liberate this glorious car, returning it to a pristine state, or to leave it embalmed forever. The unicorn Porsche, estimated to fetch as much as $2.5 million, will be offered at the Bonhams Abu Dhabi sale at the Yas Marina Circuit, taking place on November 25.
Click here for more photos of the 1993 Porsche 964 Carrera RSR 3.8-Liter “Strassenversion” Coupé.