The Porsche 912 was introduced as a successor to the iconic 356 model in 1965. Designed as an entry-level sports car, the 912 was intended to bridge the gap between the more affordable Volkswagen Beetle and the high-performance Porsche 911 while helping to drive sales to an ever-expanding market. The introduction of the 912 offered Porsche enthusiasts a more accessible option without compromising on the brand’s reputation for engineering excellence and driving enjoyment. With its easily identifiable styling and refined handling, the 912 quickly gained popularity among enthusiasts around the world.
Mechanically, the Porsche 912 shared many components with its more powerful sibling, the 911. It was equipped with a 1.6-liter, flat-four engine, which provided a respectable amount of power and a smooth driving experience. The engine was air-cooled and placed in the rear, just like in the 911, giving the car excellent weight distribution and handling characteristics. The 912 featured a four-speed manual transmission, with an optional 5-speed transmission for $35 more, allowing drivers to enjoy the car’s performance potential fully. The combination of the lightweight chassis, responsive steering, and well-tuned suspension made the Porsche 912 a joy to drive, delivering a thrilling and engaging driving experience.
Originally intended to bridge a pricing gap and appeal to a wider market, the 912 was extremely successful in this realm. Throughout 1967 the 912 outsold its more powerful 911 sibling by a factor of almost 2 to 1. In terms of production numbers, Porsche manufactured the 912 from 1965 to 1969, with some later versions showing up in the model line in the 70s. During this four-year period, approximately 30,000 units were produced, making it a relatively rare vehicle compared to the higher-volume models of its time.
The relatively limited production numbers, combined with the car’s unique position in Porsche’s history, have contributed to its collectability over the years. Today, it still serves the same niche it did when new, a more affordable entry point into air-cooled Porsche ownership. The pricing of these 4-cylinder 911 look-a-likes may not currently reflect what they did historically, but the pricing of these are tied very closely to the air-cooled early 911 market, which has seen meteoric rises over the past 10 years. The 912 still remains a thoroughly enjoyable and rewarding car to drive, and combined with its iconic looks, it is sure to remain a staple in the world of collectible classic Porsches.
The example on offer here is a 1967 Porsche 912. It currently wears a Sand Beige exterior over a Black interior, the same combination that it left the factory with. Currently, the odometer shows 48,215 miles. However, we are unable to confirm if these are true original miles or not. It is fitted with the factory standard 4-speed manual transmission. This 912 is offered on consignment with us from a prominent and avid Porsche collector. As the car sits today, it is a driver-quality example that wears driver cosmetics and drives with some further sorting required to run even better. It could easily be enjoyed as is or have a few items attended to that would truly bring it to the next level. When the car arrived at our facility, it had been sitting for quite some time so we had the front brake lines replaced, as well as the left outer tie rod. In addition, the fuel filter was replaced as well as some of the fuel lines in the engine bay. Currently, the car runs and drives decently. There are a few items that could be attended to, such as a high idle as well as some grinding when going into second gear unless shifting extremely slow. However, given its overall solid cosmetic condition, it serves as a perfect jumping-off point should someone want to take it to the next level.
It should be noted that this 912 does feature a blank stamping on the case, meaning that it is not the original engine to the car but could be the correct type engine. This certainly does not affect the drivability and the fun factor of this car and means that it is one less thing to worry about mechanically moving forward.
Overall, this 912 presents nicely as a driver and, is finished in a perfectly 60’s colorway. Its mechanicals are solid enough that it could be driven and enjoyed as is or, with a little bit of extra attention, could truly be brought to the next level and made to be a fantastic driver.
Body And Paint
The Sand Beige exterior paint remains in good condition, with consistent finish and color throughout the body. Given the overall condition of the paint it is likely that this was a relatively recent respray of the car. In our opinion, it could benefit from a proper wet sand and buff which would leave it in great shape. There are minimal signs of imperfections in the paint itself, with the exception of some minor stone chips on the front area of the car, which is to be expected from a driver quality example. The body itself is straight down the sides with good shut gaps. There are no obvious signs of any issues with the body though we do note that there may be some body filler in the rocker areas.
Glass And Trim
It is apparent that the chrome trim was likely not redone when the body was resprayed. It is in nice serviceable condition but does show imperfections in the form of pitting and scratching throughout most of the car. It retains good shine, but close inspection shows the imperfections as mentioned. Rubber trim throughout the car remains in good condition with a nice supple nature to it and good color. The rubber strips on the leading edge of the bumpers likely show the most amount of age but still remain in ok condition. Much of the glass shows proper branding with the side and rear windows all showing Sekurit stampings with the exception of the drivers side window which has no branding. The windshield is branded Sigla. All the glass remains in good serviceable condition, with some minor light scratching and swirling, visible under direct light, but no delamination or serious issues. The headlight lens show a bit of stone pepperings but remain clean and clear. Marker lights and taillights remain in good condition with no cracking or fading.
The wheels all remain in good condition, with nice painted surfaces and good chrome hub caps with nice shine to them. Center caps are likewise in good order.
Seats And Surfaces
The interior of this 912 remains in relatively good order but certainly falls in the category of drive quality. There are a number of imperfections such as a separation of the stitching in the top corner of the drivers side seat as well as a section on the drivers side door card where the window winder has contacted the material and scratched the surface through. Some of the painted surfaces on the dash area show chipping and flaking of paint, especially around the top of the gauge cluster. There is also some general wear from use on things like the shifter knob and emergency break lever as well as the sun visors showing a bit of bagginess to the material. Despite these imperfections, the interior does present well and has many redeeming qualities. The carpets retain excellent color and texture and fit very nicely. The seat surfaces themselves remain in good order with smooth material and great color. The headliner fits nice and tight and shows no staining or imperfections. The gauges show some age, but retain good color and readability to them.
Functionality And Accessories
In our brief testing of the vehicle it appears that much of the interior items function as they should. The drivers side window winder does contact the door card, which has led to scratching of the surface material. This could either be caused from bowing of the dor card or a bent winder arm. The gauges all appear to read their requisite functions as they should. The emergency brake holds the car firmly in place and the shifter moves easily through its range of motion.
ENGINE BAY AND TRUNK
The engine bay does present very nicely and looks relatively correct thoughout with the appropriate stickers in place. Components all appear to be the correct style with the exception of some modern clamps scattered throughout. Everything looks well cared for, painted surfaces retain good consistency and there are no signs of any issues past or present. It should be noted that the case of the engine is a replacement unit and is blank, containing no engine number stamping. It is the correct 616/36 type but is a replacement unit.
The front trunk area displays nicely, with well kept carpeting that fits relatively nicely. Lifting the carpets reveals a clean and tidy spare as well as good looking painted surfaces. The spare wheel well is clean and tidy. Some of the wires and tubing scattered throughout the engine bay show their age and could likely stand to be replaced but theres are no signs of any issues with them.
The underside of the car presents as one would expect from a driver quality example. Overall its solid with no signs of any issues present, but obvious signs of age and use. There is a solid layer of undercoating to help prevent the floor pan from corrosion. In area’s where the undercoating is not present or chipped away, there is some signs of minor surface corrosion present. There is some road dirt in the wheel wells but otherwise they look solid. The suspension components show some surface oxidation on them but no signs of any pressing issues. It should be noted that there appears to be a screw driven through the floor pan on the driver’s side, used to stabilize some backing material in the foot well above. Again, the underside presents as one would expect from a driver quality example, solid with some areas that could receive attention should its next owner want to take it to the next level.
The engine is a bit slow to start when cold, taking a few cycles of the ignition and some finessing of the gas pedal. Once it fires to life, it sounds healthy but does tend to idle a bit high as the temperature builds. Out on the road it makes good power and revs relatively freely. It tends to struggle a bit under 3,000 RPM’s but once above that it makes excellent power. We spent some time chasing this down and feel that it could certainly be tied to the high idle as well. It would be our recommendation that the car have the carbs looked over before embarking on any major excursions.
The 4-speed manual transmission shifts well and holds power as it should. 1’st gear requires the car to be stopped or moving very slowly before engaging and 2’nd gear requires a very smooth and deliberate shift to engage without grinding. The clutch feels strong and takeup and feedback appear to be good.
Brakes And Suspension
When the car showed up to our shop it was having some issues with dragging brakes. We sent it to CR Cars who replaced some brakes lines and gave it a look over. It now brakes as it should with no issues, bringing the car to a smooth and controlled stop. The suspension feels compliant and responsive. Its maybe not be quite as tight as it should be, and going through suspension components is one thing we would suggest doing if a future owner wanted to take this car to the next level.
The tires are a set of Vredestein Sprint Classis, a very period correct looking tire option that fits the car well. They retain solid side walls and excellent tread on all 4 corners.
While some may snub their noses at a car that looks like a 911 but only has 4 cylinders, these people are outright wrong. The 912 may be slightly down on power but it provides almost an even more rewarding driving experience. The smaller 4 cylinder engine means you can really push the RPM’s to their upper limits without getting yourself into a dangerous spot like you might with it’s more powerful 911 sibling. The chassis and handling are all there as well, providing you the same visceral and connected driving experience you would expect from the shape of the car. Overall the 912 provides an outstanding driving experience for the dollar and combined with the fantastic looks of the body and the reliability of the tried and true flat four-cylinder engine its an all around winning combination.