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Ducktails, Whoo-hoo!


There is something undeniably sexy about a 911 ducktail from 1973 and ‘74. Also, we can probably agree that we pretty much all love the speed and precision of the more modern Porsches as the company has continued to push the boundaries of what we thought was possible in a small, street-legal sports car. Very often, more aggressive rear wings like the whale tail and chassis designs like the wide body of the wide-bodies of the ‘80s have been required to keep all of that power on the pavement. But very seldom do we get a car that combines all of our favorite 911 features into one package, so it was with great pleasure that I came across a recent Car and Driver feature about a small shop in California called Gunther Werks that specializes in custom-built 911s.

Most Porsche enthusiasts would probably say that the whale tail is the most indelible rear-end to ever come roaring out of Stuttgart. But the balance and subtly of the RS 2.7’s butt is something that Porsche has been basing its designs on for decades. So Gunther Werks decided to match a ducktail deck with the wide-body frame and air-cooled 4.0-liter from a 993. Then, they tuned the stock 993’s flat-six to 420-hp to get a 3.7-second 0-60 mph, kitted out the suspension and steering to make the tiny, nimble frame handle like like a go-kart in the turns, and slapped massive six-piston brake calipers on the front and four-piston brakes on the rear to bring everything to a shockingly quick halt - from 70 to a full stop in an entire car length less than a stock 993. The icing on the cake is Gunther Werks’ gorgeous carbon fiber body fabrication that brings the entire vehicle in at almost 250lbs lighter than the standard model. GW also claims that it’s newer projects dump even more excess weight for feather-light precision and handling.

As can be expected, all of that creativity does not come cheap. At just over $600,000 for the model that Car and Driver tested, you can outrun a modern GT3, but you might have to sell the house and the family just to get behind the wheel. For those of us who left our half-million dollars in our other pants, it is still pretty cool to live vicariously through the images and videos and to dream about what could be.


-Trey Fennell

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