Yep, Porsche is recalling a 20-year-old car.
Porsche is recalling the 2004-2005 Porsche Carrera GT supercar over the "spherical joints that connect the wishbone suspension components on the front and rear axles." According to the NHTSA report submitted on April 5, 2023, 100% of the cars in the US are affected, and that's 489 units.
It's surprising that a car that went into production in late 2023 is being recalled. Still, the report says that Porsche discovered "an isolated case" in 2019 when one of the cars was in a dealership for an unrelated service. The customer hadn't noticed any problem, but Porsche went ahead and checked other cars over the following year.
Cars over 16 years old are well outside their warranty period, but the eventual conclusion from Porsche is that the material used in the components doesn't have enough corrosion resistance over their service life. It's worth remembering few of these cars, which cost $440,000 new when released and now fetch well over $1 million on the collectors market now, have many miles on them. It's also worth pointing out that the recall from Porsche is voluntary and "out of an abundance of caution."
The problem is that replacement parts don't exist yet. Porsche is pulling all the cars in for inspection, and if everything is ship-shape, it will declare the cars okay to drive. If not, the recall notice says Porsche will "advise customers not to use the vehicle until the retrofit is completed and will offer alternative transportation upon request."
That "alternative transport" likely won't recreate the experience of driving a turn-of-the-century mid-engined supercar born from a Le Mans prototype class project, including the 5.5-liter V10, that hit the road with minimal driver aids. Not even the highest-spec 911 GT3 will be comparable.
It's impossible to avoid the fact that Porsche was sued following the death of Paul Walker and Roger Rodas in 2013 when the Carrera GT they were in crashed. However, a court rejected claims that the Porsche had suffered a mechanical failure, and it is generally accepted that the car's nine-year-old tires were the major contributor to the crash.
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