Anyone who is into cars can tell you that it is by no means a cheap hobby. Over time cars have gotten more and more expensive, and so have parts. This is all while the actual value of the car continues to depreciate. But, there are those rare instances where the value of a car actually appreciates over time. The two most notable brands when it comes to appreciation are Ferrari and Porsche. Although Ferrari easily takes the victory in terms of appreciation (the most expensive car ever sold at auction was a Ferrari 250 GTO which sold for $48.4 million) Porsche has some ultra rare, valuable cars of its own. Here are the 5 most expensive Porsches ever sold at auction.
Number 5: The Porsche 917/30 Spyder
The Porsche 917 needs no introduction. It is one of the most successful racecars ever made winning races in all sorts of classes. Of all the 917 variants, the 917/30t Spyder was the craziest one by far. The 917/30 was built in the early 1970s to compete in the North American Can-Am Racing Series, which it dominated. Part of the reason why it was so good was its other worldly powerplant. The 917/30 remains one of the most powerful racecars ever built making around 1500hp from its 5.4 liter twin turbo flat 12 which propelled the car to 60 mph in just 2.1 seconds and onto a top speed of 227 mph. Keep in mind though, that this was an old school turbo engine, meaning the car was overrun with turbo lag. This and the fact that there was over 400 liters of fuel on board made the 917/30 Spyder one of the scariest racecars to drive. Chassis No. 4 was recently sold for $3,000,000 at auction.
Number 4: The Porsche 550 A Spyder
Among other things, the Porsche 550 was Porsche’s first ever purpose built racing car, and boy was it special. This car was nicknamed “The Giant Killer” because it completely walked its competition with about 1/3 of the horsepower. The 550 was powered by a 1.5 liter air cooled flat 4 which made around 135 horsepower, so powerful I know. But what the 550 lacked in power, it made up for in handling 10 fold. This car was much lighter and more agile than its competition. So much so, that it won races like the 1956 Targa Florio and the 1953 24 Hours of Le Mans with ease. This car has built such a great legacy, that one (Chassis No. 145) was sold recently at auction for a staggering $5,170,000.
Number 3: The Porsche 911 GT1 Strassenversion
The 911 GT1 Strassenversion (meaning street version) was Porsche’s homlogation special for its legendary GT1 racecar. (Click here to read all about the legend that was the 911 GT1) Limited to just 20 units, the GT1 Strassenversion was built for the sole purpose of Porsche being able to meet requirements to race their GT1. Just by looking at it, you can tell that the GT1 is something special. With its radical design, mid engined layout, and more wings and scoops than you can count, you know it means business. Under the hood though was even more special since the GT1 came powered by a slightly detuned version of the racecar’s 3.6 liter twin turbo flat 6 designed by the legendary Hans Mezger. In fact, this engine was basis for the famous “Mezger engine” that powered the 996 and 997 911 Turbos and GT cars. In the Strassenversion, this engine made 536 hp and 450 lb/ft of torque which propelled the car to 60 mph in just 3.9 seconds all the way to a top speed of 191 mph. A GT1 Strassenversion recently sold at auction for $5,665,000.
Number 2: The Porsche 956
Like the 917, the Porsche 956 was known for its dominance in motorsport. The 956’s specialty was 1980s Group C racing, you can imagine how that went. The 956 was powered by a 2.65 liter twin turbo flat 6 that made around 635 hp which could take the 956 all the way to speeds of around 227 mph without breaking a sweat. More importantly though, the 956 was one of the first racecars to feature “Ground Effect” Styling which meant that the car’s body was designed in a specific way to maximize downforce. The 956 took aerodynamics very seriously and won a lot of races as a result. It also set the overall Nurburgring lap record at 6 minutes and 11.13 seconds; this record was held for 35 years until being beaten by Porsche’s own 919 Evo. The most famous of the 956 fleet though was Chassis No. 3 which won many races including the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Chassis No. 3 is widely considered to be one of the most successful racecars ever and it fetched a whopping $10,120,000 at auction.
Number 1: The Porsche 917K
If there is one car that sums up Porsche’s racing history, it’s the 917, the most popular of which is the 917K. For those that don’t know, the 917 was the car that gave Porsche its first overall win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1970. The 917 came powered by Porsche’s legendary flat 12 engine developed by none other than Hans Mezger. In it’s most powerful configuration, the engine was 5.0 Liters and produced a maximum of 630 hp. The 917 also pioneered “Ground Effect” Styling which made the car very stable, stable enough to take the Mulsanne Straight at speeds in excess of 220 mph. In fact, drivers even reported being able to take their hands off the steering wheel at speeds of over 240 mph, that’s how stable it was. Along with its incredible speed and handling, the 917 was also one of the best (in my opinion, THE best) sounding Porsche ever made. Steve McQueen’s 917 from the movie, Le Mans, broke the record for the most expensive Porsche ever sold, selling at $14,080,000, the best for last.
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