Some special edition Porsches are more special than others.
Porsche has never been shy about putting together a special edition. Sometimes it's something like the 911 Carrera GTS Club Coupe "Club Blau" edition that added $20,000 to the price for some options, special paint, and a ducktail spoiler. But occasionally it's something incredible, like a lightened Porsche 911 GT3 RS with a manual transmission, or a hand-built Turbo S with extra horsepower and an astonishing amount of aesthetic details. There have also been some excellent special editions featuring classic racing liveries in homage to past accomplishments and anniversaries. These are our favorites Porsche has built so far.
For those that like the wind in the hair, or cooling down their bald spot, but don't want a soft roof, the Targa top has long been a great alternative. The 911 Targa 4S Exclusive Design Edition is a hand-finished salute to classic Targa topped 911s, complete with retro styling elements. It comes in Etna Blue, which was a signature color for the 356 model that proceeded the 911, a 420-horsepower engine, 20-inch wheels, a Targa silhouette embossed into the center armrest, and a photo album documenting the build process. Porsche won't divulge how many were built, but the starting price was $187,000.
The Porsche 930 Turbo is the quintessential 911, and was one of the fastest and most aggressive looking cars on the road at the time. The 1983 930 LE (standing for Limited Edition) was hand-finished by the "Exclusive" team at Zuffenhausen in Germany and fitted with color-coded wheel centers, a top-tinted windscreen, rear-quarter air intake ducts, and a deeper chin spoiler. Just one example was delivered to each contemporary Porsche Center, meaning only 53 were built.
The 50th anniversary Porsche 911 was put together by longtime Porsche designer Tony Hatte. Although it came along in 2014, plans started at the 991 generation's inception. The 50th anniversary of the 911 was a big deal to Porsche and the world's Porschephiles, so the 911 50th Anniversary Edition had to be truly special. It's voluptuous hips and aggressive stance comes from the wide-body of the Carrera 4S and helped by a subtle ride-height drop of 10 mm. The Fuchs-style 20-inch wheel setup is a massive nod to the 911's past but, overall, the special edition isn't slavishly retro. Inside are throwback gauges and seats covered in houndstooth or Pepita tartan.
The 50th Anniversary Edition is rear-wheel-drive, despite what the 4S bodywork suggests, and features the 991's Power Kit option, adding 30 horsepower to make a total of 430 and matched to the standard 325 lb-ft of torque. Automakers love making the number of special editions built a reference to something. In this case, only 1,963 examples were made - 1963 being the year of the first 911.
In 1982, TAG Heuer's relationship with Porsche led to a commission for a road-legal version of the 935 race car via co-owner Mansour Ojjeh. The car began development by Porsche fitting 935 model body panels to a 930 frame along with a 3.3-liter turbocharged flat-6 engine shared from the 934 race car. It was finished off with Brilliant Red paint and BBS wheels, and demand from enthusiasts led to a factory-built special edition known as the Flachbau, translated as "Slantnose" or "Flatnose" in English. Only 948 models were built as it was so expensive, and only 160 were imported to the US. The improvement in the aerodynamics helped the Flachbau hit 60 mph in 4.85 seconds and top out at 173 mph with the WLS performance kit fitted.
As production of the 964 generation 911 Turbo model came to an end, Porsche passed a final batch of cars on to its Porsche Exclusive department for conversion to "S" specification. That meant they each gained an engine upgraded with a larger KKK turbocharger and increased boost for more horsepower and torque. Four different "Exclusive" special versions were made, including the X85 model, which came in two flavors - one of those being with 935 style Flachbau bodywork. Only 39 examples made it to the US with the unique bodywork and 380 hp engine. The cost was an extra $60,000 on top of the 911 Turbo's $99,000 initial price. Now, they go for around half a million dollars when you can find one for sale.
This isn't the most extravagant special edition Porsche 911 as it is, essentially, a 911 S with some extra equipment and the classic Martini racing livery added. However, it is infrequent to see a factory-sanctioned Porsche rocking the livery that symbolizes an intense period in Porsche's racing history. It represents some of the most memorably spectacular race cars ever made, and the iconic livery is seared into the mind of any motorsport fan alive in the 1970s. Only 80 of the Porsche 911 S Martini Racing Edition models were made in 2014 to celebrate the brands return to Le Mans racing, with 40 of them in white and the other half in black underneath.
Another racing livery special 911 that captured our hearts is the Porsche 911 Carrera GTS dubbed "B59" from 2011. It was a collaboration between Porsche and Brumos Racing as a tribute to Hurley Haywood, the man who won the Daytona 24 Hours five times for Porsche. His career led him to become one of the most decorated endurance drivers in the history of motorsports, including an incredible three wins in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and two in the Sebring 12 Hours. Like the Martini edition above, the 911 Carrera GTS B59 is a well-optioned car with factory approved classic racing livery but with vintage-look five-lug "Sport Classic" Fuchs wheels. Only five were built, making it incredibly rare to see.
The Porsche 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series Coupe was limited to just 500 units and delivered 607 hp and 553 lb-ft of torque. That made it the most powerful 911 Turbo S at the time, but the exclusivity went further than that.
The Golden Yellow Metallic paint finish was produced exclusively for this car, and detail went as far as the calipers being available in black with the Porsche logo in Golden Yellow Metallic. The front trunk lid, roof, side skirts, and the two carbon-weave strips that contour the roof and front trunk lid are all in carbon-fiber. Customers could also option a matching watch and leather Exclusive Series luggage.
The 991 generation 911 GT3 RS is a ludicrously fast car on the track. The 4.0-liter flat-six makes 500 hp and 338 lb-ft of torque, it weighs very little, and corners like a frightened cat on carpet. The only issue was that there was no manual option, but Porsche fixed that for just 991 of its customers while shedding an extra 110 lbs of its weight. That was achieved with a carbon-fiber hood and fenders as well as a magnesium roof. There's no rear wing either as the 911R was intended to be a road car more than a track car. Inside, the 911R features full bucket seats covered in houndstooth cloth and a smaller steering wheel. From the factory, it came without rear seats but they could be optioned at no cost. They cost $184,900 and, unsurprisingly, sold out immediately.
The British Legends Edition is a UK only limited edition, but its origins speak to all Porschephiles. There are three separate versions of the British Legends Edition, and were developed by Porsche Great Britain and designed in Stuttgart. Each one honors one of three British drivers who scored historic wins Porsche at Le Mans - Derek Bell, Richard Attwood, and Nick Tandy.
Bell's car is in the Rothmans Blue, white, red and gold featured in the original livery displayed on the Porsche 956 he drove to victory in 1982, 1986, and 1987. Attwood's car is Porsche Salzburg Red and White, the colors from the Porsche 917K he took the checkered flag with in 1970. Nick Tandy's homage 911 celebrates the 'DMG MORI' white Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 he claimed the win with in 2015. Each car also features the drivers signature, a Union Jack symbol, and the racing number of the car that the special edition is paying tribute to.