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The birth of the Porsche 928

2 years ago

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Peter Robinson | Journalist


26 October 2022

Even now, some 27 years after the 928’s death, Porsche still doesn’t like to be reminded that its front-engined V8 started life as a replacement for the 911. But it did. The 928 arrived in 1977 with a price tag some 38 per cent higher than that of the 911, yet Porsche still believed it could replace the classic rear-engined model.

At least until it swiftly became obvious that traditional Porsche customers didn’t see the 928 as any kind of successor at all: it was too big to be a proper uncompromising sports car, so they continued to buy the enduring 911. Porsche tried turning the 928 into a grand tourer, but it was too small to be a serious four-seater and too harsh and noisy to be truly comfortable.

Eventually, however, and despite the combination of poor packaging and a high price meaning the 928 only brought in around 10 per cent of Porsche’s business, the 928 was thoroughly and carefully developed into something unique. For those who loved its virtues of soaringly effortless performance, remarkable high-speed handling and the integrity of its build quality, even the heaviness of its controls, the 928 was close to perfection.

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