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1965 Porsche 911 Coupe - Early Short Wheel Base

Make: Porsche
Model: 911
SubModel: Sunroof Coupe
Type: Coupe
Year: 1965
Mileage: 100,000
VIN: 301814
Color: Green
Engine: 2.0 liter flat 6
Cylinders: 6
Fuel: Gasoline
Transmission: Manual
Drive type: RWD
Interior color: Black
Vehicle Title: Clear
Item location: Salt Lake City, Utah, United States

1965 Porsche 911 Additional Info:

The car is a 1965 911 – VIN no 301814, no. 1814 off the 911 assembly line–with the short wheel base and a manual 5-speed transmission. I bought the car in 1984 in Nevada and drove it regularly for several years. From 1984 to 1985 it went up and down the Alaska Highway and to the east coast and back, before settling into Park City, Utah. The engine is out of a 1967 911S (no. * 960348 *), and I rebuilt it in 1986, 5 years before the car went into the first of three or four body shops for a new paint job in 1991. That first guy sand-blasted off all the old paint, then sat on the project for several years, then moved and passed it along to a colleague. The colleague finished the body work, then got himself thrown out of his shop space, leaving the car behind. The landlord refused to release the car to me and held it for past-due rent. I contacted the local police, and they got the car “set free” for me, and it went to another shop where it sat again. I finally got it to a fourth shop that finished the work in two weeks in 2008.

When I finally got the car back with a new paint job in Irish Green, the original color, it went into my garage. It took me six or seven years to get it running again (mostly fuel & oil changes and thoroughly disassembling and cleaning out the carburetors), put all the body pieces (fenders, doors, etc.) back together, replace the old headliner, put in new carpeting, and put new (actually used, out of a late-80s 911) front seats in it. At this point the car was far from concours, but it was pretty darn nice. It was running, but not really running well.

Meanwhile the value of early 911s – particularly the first-year, short wheel base 1965s – had skyrocketed. I collect older sports cars – besides the 911 we have a 1955 Ford Thunderbird (very nice), a 1979 Intermeccanica Speedster (a factory replica of a 1958 Porsche Speedster on a shortened 1967 Karman Ghia pan), a 1967 Intermeccanica Italia Coupe (a very nice “survivor” needing some serious refurbishment), and a 1984 VW Vanagon Westfalia Wolfsburg Edition camper (that I put a 2.5 liter Subaru engine in last year). I love the 911, but I really can’t afford to own, insure and drive a car of its value. It’s time to find it a new home where it will be loved and properly cared for.

In 2015 I concluded that the value of the car was such that it really needed to be professionally cleaned up. I took the car to Lundquist Restorations in Sandy, Utah, initially to have the paint cut and buffed and the carburetors rebuilt. What was supposed to be a $6,000 to $8,000 job turned into about a $20,000 project as some remnant rust was discovered in both the body and the pan. Recognizing the car’s increased value, we did everything the car needed. Work done included the cut and buff on the paint; professionally refitting pretty much all of the body panels; installing a new deck panel and repairing and repainting two rust areas below rear windshield; straightening, refitting and repainting the left front fender; removing the fuel tank, and cleaning it out and resealing it; rebuilding the carburetors; replacing the battery box support and refitting the A-arms. Plus they installed an essentially new interior including a new rear shelf panel and several miscellaneous parts.

This car is not 100% original. First off, the engine obviously isn’t the original one. But the relatively fresh160 h.p. 1967 911S engine with the Weber carbs is a vastly superior engine to the original 1965 135 h.p. engine with the Solex carbs. Lundquist tested compression, and it showed 120 to 130 p.s.i. compression all around on their instrument. In 1975 the car had an electric “American Sunroof” installed; it looks like the factory Porsche sunroof and works perfectly. I have the serial number and decal from the installation, and the company was still in business in California last time I looked. The engine lid is from a '67 or newer 911. The new front seats from an ’87(?) 911 are leather and electric adjusting and much more comfortable than the originals. But I have retained the old seats, of course, and while they need to be reupholstered, they will come with the car if the buyer wants them. The wheels currently on the car are 15-inch polished aluminum wheels from a mid-1960s Porsche 356 “Outlaw”; they are 5 inches wide (vs. 4.5 inches on the 911’s original wheels) to better accommodate a modern wider tire. And they are much lighter. Of course I have the original chrome wheels and hub caps, and they are available to the buyer. There are ¼-inch spacers inside the front wheels and the lugs there have been replaced with slightly longer ones. The rear lugs still need to be replaced. I also have the original radio and the original (broken) steering wheel, along with other miscellaneous original parts. And I have most of the receipts for work on the car over the past 30-plus years, including the engine rebuild (yes, it was rebuilt as the 911S engine) and all the Lundquist work. The original Webasto gas heater is still in the car; it worked back in the 1980s, but we haven’t tried to get it working (and I don’t intend to – it was scary and loud in the 1980s!). And only a fool would drive the car in cold weather now (and to think I used to take it skiing daily!).

Prior to leaving the second body shop (where it was held hostage), most of the chrome from the car “disappeared.” So I spent several years picking up trim, mostly on eBay. Some it is new; some of it is pretty good older stuff. But it all is pretty nice for a 50 year-old car and 95% of it is original.

I have a Porsche Certificate of Authenticity for the car (pic attached). It is titled as a 1966, but per serial number and the COA, it is a 1965 and came off the assembly line on July 20, 1965.

Today the car runs pretty well, but I think the carburetors should still be worked on by somebody who really knows Webers. Also the alignment needs to be checked (Lundquist replaced the battery box support and reset the A-arms, but didn’t reset the alignment). One or two of the gauges aren’t working properly, but one by one I am getting them working. If I don’t sell the car first, I will put some time into it and drive it a fair bit to get everything smoothed out. I'm an excellent mechanic and have done the vast majority of the work on the car over the past 30+ years. Right now the car is in winter storage in Salt Lake City, Utah. It could be examined and driven at any time by a serious prospective buyer (only driven in good weather, of course!).

This is a very nice early, short wheel-base, very early 911 in excellent condition. You won’t find a nicer one unless you look in Monterrey and plan on spending $300K! With the 1967 911S engine and the upgraded seats, I think I can claim that it just might be the finest 1965 911 “driver” in the world.

Feel free to contact me (Dave @ 435-901-1486) with any questions. I can also be reached by email thru eBay and can return calls.

The reserve is set at $185,000 for this auction.