The one-of-one Porsche 935 that’s completely road-legal
You can’t mention ‘great Porsches’ without the 935 cropping up: it triumphed at both Daytona and Sebring’s vaunted endurance races six times apiece, took Porsche’s fifth win at Le Mans (of an eventual 19), and claimed the FIA World Championship of Makes four years in a row, from 1976 to 1979.
Its was so intrinsic to Porsche motorsport heritage, in fact, that the company this year unveiled a refashioned 911 GT2RS, a 70th anniversary tribute to Porsche sports cars of which the company will make 77 limited-edition examples available to long-time Porsche customers with the heartiest bank accounts.
This might just have topped it though. It’s a one-of-one perfectly genuine not-in-any-way-kit-car road-legal Porsche 935, built specifically for former Formula 1 team owner Walter Wolf by Porsche specialists Kremer Racing in 1979.
And this is no fibreglass bodge-job either, with current owners CARTIQUE by Mechatronik – who acquired the Porsche in 2013 – claiming this 935 Kremer K3 is 98 per cent identical to the Kremer Racing entry that won the 1979 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The bodywork, resplendent in those familiar ‘Wolf’ colours, features original K3 Kevlar body panels with only the slightest of regulatory mods, the whole thing riding atop Goodyear-clad BBS alloys (16 inches at the front, 19 inches at the rear). Underneath, alongside a barely tweaked Group 5-spec chassis and racing suspension, are modified Bilstein dampers to raise the ride height from 5 cm to 10 cm; and a new exhaust system than took six months to pen and fabricate.
Propulsion, all 740 hp of it, comes from an original 2.85-litre twin-turbo six-cylinder boxer engine that will rev to 8,000 rpm and send that ‘detuned’ power – yes really – to the rear wheels via a four-speed manual gearbox borrowed from a 930-gen 911 Turbo. Tests conducted by Kremer Racing namesake founder Erwin clocked Wolf’s road-legal K3 at 338 km/h at full chat. Good thing he opted for the (red-piped) Recardo seats from the 930, too.
The project, Wolf’s second after a bespoke Lamborghini Countach that also gained notoriety over the years, would cost the Canadian ex-F1 man 375,000 Deutsche Marks (around $800,000) and would stay with him until 1989, only moving on to a private collector when Wolf set his eyes on a street-legal BMW M1 Procar.
An Austrian-born naturalized Canadian born to a German father and Slovenian mother – Christ, the paperwork! – Walter Wolf first entered the F1 scene in 1976 when he purchased 60 per cent of Frank Williams’ first eponymous attempt at the sport, buying the assets of the defunct Hesketh Racing team simultaneously.
When Sir Frank, tired of being told how ‘his’ team should be run, jumped ship to start over in 1977, the team continued on as Walter Wolf Racing.
Incredibly, the Wolf WR1 would win its very first F1 race in 1977, a further two that season at Monaco and Montreal with future world champion Jody Scheckter behind the wheel, and finish 4th in the standings on its first attempt. This would be the mountaintop, unfortunately, and Wolf would be gone from the sport by the end of 1979.