The Porsche 914, introduced in September
1969, was a sporty, mid-engined two-seater with a targa top and a
4 cylinder boxer engine.
The idea for the 914 originated in
the mid-sixties, when the presidents of VW and Porsche collaborated on
an idea to produce a new sports car for each of their companies. Volkswagen
wanted a new, sportier model to replace the Karmann-Ghia and Porsche would
also use the car, but with all the components coming from the 911 series.
VW would take 914 bodies and finish
them as 914/4s, and Porsche would take their portion of the body shells,
and build 914/6s. When sold in North America, however, all 914s would be
Great looking 1970 914-6
When looking at a 914, you don't see
the likeness of any other Porsches. The big round headlights and long,
sloping rear were gone. 914's have the pop-up headlamps, and a vertical
rear windshield, with a flat deck lid covering the rear trunk and engine.
The 914's have absolutely NO backseats--the firewall is pressed against
your back. When you sit down, you're practically sitting on the floorboard,
which is practically the road.
The interior is rather spartan, quite
simple, but with all the necessities. The big tach is still there, as in
all the 911/912's. The transmission is like the 928's with 1st down and
to the left. The steering is pretty tight, and the suspension is hard--the
car rides so low. Other than the passenger seat, there's not much more
in the cockpit. The 914 has a targa top, and like 911's, it stores in the
trunk. Take off the top, roll down the windows, and you've got a
nice little roadster.
for the 1970-76 914-4
Horizontally opposed flat-4 cylinder,
mid-mounted 1.7, 1.8, or 2.0L engine
Bore and Stroke: 90x66mm; 93x66mm;
Displacement:1.7L (1679cc); 1.8L (1795cc);
Horsepower: 80 (1.7L), 79 (1.8L),
Compression ratio: 8.2:1 ; 7.3:1 ;
5 speed manual transmission
Independent front with lower control
arms, spring struts, anti-roll bar
Independent rear, with semi-trailing
arms, transverse torsion bars, anti-roll bar
Curb weight: 2,892 lbs
Track front/rear: 58.2"/57.1"
Ground clearance: 4.9"
Brakes and Wheels:
mpg (city) mpg (hwy)
The 914-4 (boxer 4) has a nice little
engine. My favorite is probably a 1973 2.0L. Over the years, Porsche
offered 1.7, 1.8, and 2.0L engines. The 2.0 has good power and a good rpm
band. It's a lot of fun to wind that little engine out in each gear,
the sound is great, too.
The 914-6, assembled almost entirely
at the Porsche factory, had a very short life with only about 3360 examples
produced between 1970 and 1972. All base sixes came with a 2.0 L
flat six motor, similar to that found in the 1969 911T.
Porsche went with the 2.0 liter motor
as opposed to the new 2.2 found throughout the 911 range in order to maintain
a distinction between the "cheaper" 914 model line and the upscale 911s.
Additional characteristics unique to the sixes included: larger 911 brakes
and five-bolt wheel hubs; a larger brake master cylinder; front suspension
transplanted directly from the 911 model line; gauges calibrated to the
higher performance six cylinder engine; a 911 based steering column; dual
Weber carburetors; electric windshield washer; different gear ratios in
the transmission, and an assortment of smaller details.
A handful of 914-6 GTs were also produced
in this time period, the actual number of which is still uncertain. These
cars typically were given higher performance 911 - based engines and corresponding
suspension tweaks in order to compete on the race track.
Most also had the fender flares similar
to those of the 916. A high point was a class win
at Le Mans in 1970 and 6th overall in the race. The performance of the
914-6 can best be described as agile. They are quick in acceleration and
exhibit handling and braking characteristics considerably superior to those
of the 911 of the period due to the mid-engine design. Driving feel is
very similar to that of the 914-4s but with an extra punch especially in
the upper r.p.m. range.
The 914 is a cool little Porsche to
own, but you MUST be careful about the condition of one if you're buying.
The #1 problem of the 914 is it's battery. It tends to corrode quite easily,
since rain comes in right on top of it through the engine vent. Acid will
drip down, eat up the battery tray, and then fall right onto the chassis.
Rust damage will be abundant in un-cared for 914's.
Nice example of the final version
of the 914
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