Porsche 914

October 26th, 2006 by William

Original sales brochure by provided by Patrick Casey.

The 914 was the ugly duckling of the Porsche lineup when it came out. Scoffed at as a re-badged Volkswagen (which is partially true), the 914 wasn’t given much of a chance by Porsche enthusiasts. But time has shown that the mid-engine sports car is both durable and fun.

Production of the 914 started in 1969 and continued all the way through 1975. Originally it was offered with a 1.7 liter fuel injected air-cooled Volkswagen engine that produced around 80 horsepower. The boxer 4 cylinder was compact and kept the weight low in the car. This same engine was eventually bored out to 1.8 liters and even more powerful (95hp) 2.0 liter Bosch injected motor also became part of the lineup.

The less affordable more collectable 914/6 was a hotrod version of the little Porsche that sported a 2.0 liter 6 cylinder motor and used a similar suspension and brake setup to the higher end 911. This package made the 914/6 a really exciting car on both road and track.

However a base 914 is quite capable of holding its own on a good twisty road and the 2.0 liter 4 cylinder car is downright quick. With a five-speed transmission cruising on highways is an easy task unlike most vintage cars. With four wheel independent suspension and four wheel disc brakes it is easy to drive briskly in the low slung Porsche. Despite its low ride height and ground clearance the 914 also soaks up bumps amazingly well.

Styling is perhaps the 914’s biggest weak point. It is definitely an example of function before form. From a distance with the headlights down you can’t tell which direction the car is pointed. Fortunately Porsche offered the car in some sweet 70’s colors that are loud enough to make most onlookers completely miss the oddball styling.

With 108,000 cars produced there are still plenty of good 914’s floating around. Prices for 914’s are all over the board. If you look hard you should be able to find a nice example for between $4000-7000, with projects being a bit less and perfect condition cars fetching up to $10,000. When buying one beware of the usual old car faults, rust, worn suspension, and previous owners who have tampered with an otherwise perfectly good car.


-Bill Mertz


2 Responses to “Porsche 914”

  1. Tracey Says:

    ohhh, i love porsches. c4 carrera, drop top. black on black. my hair blowing in the wind. and you are right. those 914’s we butt ugly. what do you think about that new cayman?

  2. William Says:

    The Cayman looks better in person than it does in photos, and it looks pretty damn good in photos. I’m hoping to get a hold of one some time this year and do a little write up on it. Stay tuned for that.

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About William

I am a twenty something car enthusiast. I spend most of my days working in a small restoration shop in Northern California that specializes in vintage Alfa Romeos. I also manage to do some freelance writing for a handful of automotive publications. When I'm not at the shop I can usually be found working on one of my own project cars, out driving on a good windy road or good jeep trail. Despite what my girlfriend says cars aren't what defines me, they are only what I do. When I have a chance I also love to go camping, play sports or generally do any type of outdoor activity. I don't take myself to seriously, so I hope you don't either.

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