What’s it like to own a car for 30 years? I still cannot believe I have had a car for so many years.
I had the good fortune to live in Rome Italy from 1971 to 1973 during university time. During that time, I was introduced to a 2.2 liter white 911S. I was really impressed with the noise and the acceleration. In January 1973, I saw my first 2.7 RS on the road. I saw one that had red stripping and one that had blue stripping. I wanted one.
Upon returning to Chicago in 1973, I was visiting a friend, and her dad was a member of the Chicago Region of the Porsche Club of America. That evening, 2 nights after my arrival in Chicago, a chappy called this lass’ father, saying he had a 1966 911 and the car had some fueling problems. He was invited over, the young lady’s dad and he trouble shot the car, and later I was introduced to him. We became friends and he ultimately he offered me a job. That began me on my technical and European journey.
In 1975, I had plenty of money to buy a car, and like everyone else, I wanted a 2.4 liter 911S. Through various car friends, I was advised that the car I now own was a good solid vehicle and for sale. So I bought it even though it needed new heater boxes. This was roughly early July 1975.
YUY 169G is a 911E, 2.0 liter, sold new in Chicago in January 1969. Its SN is 119 220 162 with engine 629 0424. It came off the production line in July 1968. It has all the 911S options (delivered with hydro-pneumatic front suspension), including aftermarket AC. I am the fifth owner.
The car was supplied in red, but one of the previous owners had it painted Corvette yellow. A 1969 colour. By co-incidence, the colour is very similar to the current GT3 yellows.
Within 5 days of buying the car, one of the front hydro-pneumatic struts collapsed. Coincidently, Black Bart lived 400 meters from me. Who is Black Bart? He was a director in the Chicago Region PCA, and raced a 2.4 T. He had, again by co-incidence, the torsion bar including anti-roll bar front end from his 2.2 S, which he installed for me at a very modest sum.
In late September 1975, one of my mates and I were cold running a rally, and returning home late Sunday night, the CDI died, 50 miles from home. Within a few days, the car was again running. Not cheap, and I decided I had too many things going (like an MBA program), and did not have the time or available resources to put into the car.
So the car spent most of its time in my dad’s garage.
While the vehicle enjoyed little use, I rebuilt the windshield wipers, installed a new oil tank, installed new rear Koni shock absorbers, and Bosch EU H1 headlamps. After experiencing the infamous Porsche over-steer condition, the car still has a battle scar. This event required I purchase a new rear left hand bumper, and again Black Bart had one left rear bumper he bent racing and one good part was made from two bent units. I was unable to match the yellow paint on the bumpers, and had them painted matt black. The bumper is still on the car today.
In 1985, an expatriate program came my way and my employer moved me to the Netherlands. While in the Netherlands, I joined the Nederlandse Porsche Club. We did Zandvoort several times, and several other low speed competitive events which were great fun. I drove Zandvoort in my company car.
While I was in the Netherlands, the car began its 15-year garage exile in Chicago, spending its existence in three different garages.
Then in late 1987, my employer sold the Dutch business, and I moved to Koeln Germany.
In Koeln, I was looking for a local Porsche club. Since I had a vintage 911, Zuffenhausen referred me to the Old Style 911 Club, with its headquarters in Essen Germany. I was a member for several years, and enjoyed various events in the Ruhrgebeit.
In 1994, I came to the UK, and am still here.
So how did the car come to the UK?
I either had to sell it (which I attempted to do several times but could not find a buyer), give it away, or bring it to the UK. Someone wanted the car but was unwilling to pay my minimum price, so the car moved to the UK.
What was it like starting the car after 15 years of being idle?
Two new batteries were installed, and with some fiddling, the car started. The motor belched white smoke, but ran. Once the old petrol was consumed, and the car started running on new fuel, and the engine began to run well.
Now I have sufficient money to spend on YUY 169G, various jobs finally got done. New SSI heat exchangers, heat riser valves, a new MFI timing belt, fan belt, spark plugs, throttle pedal cable, tyres and one brake pipe. Rust in the spare tire area, and inner front fender was repaired, as was the off-side rocker panel both inner and outer. The near-side panel was not replaced but repaired. I also had the car lowered to a “fast road setting”, and had the fuel injection set.
Did the car rust?
I bought the car with some rust on the upper front wings. For all practical purposes, this rust did not worsen while the car sat. I am not fond of driving YUY 169G in wet conditions in its current body condition, and hope to have the body stripped and resprayed. This is another story.
How does the car run?
Considering the vehicle has done 65,000 miles, it still runs like it is new. The longest journey the car has taken since the CDI unit was changed, was the recent Beaulieu event. The car did some 360 miles without missing a beat.
I now have 15 X 6 Fuchs wheels, which replaced the 14 X 4.5 Fuchs on the car. The car’s handling has improved dramatically.
Service history up to 1981 (note all are Chicago based dealers except noted below)
Date Where Reason
5 Feb 69 Loop Import Motors 600-mile service
7 July 69 Loop Import Motors Install AC
16 June 70 Shoreline Porsche Audi 12,000-mile service
19 June 70 Shoreline Porsche Audi AC repair
26 May 72 Porsche Audi at O’Hare Minor oil leak repairs
20 Feb 73 Porsche Audi at O’Hare Tune and minor repairs
29 June 73 Porsche Audi at O’Hare Alignment check
25 Nov 73 Bob Habestad Porsche Audi Denver Replace chain right tensioner
26 Nov 73 Bob Habestad Porsche Audi Denver Replace chain tensioner
1 July 74 Shoreline Porsche Audi Replace clutch, 1st, 2nd Synro
23 Sep. 75 Porsche Audi at O’Hare Replace CDI
8 Mar 77 Unknown source Koni shocks rear purchased
7 Feb 80 Lee Klinger Porsche Audi H1 Headlamps Purchased
9 May 80 Lee Klinger Porsche Audi New batteries purchased
11 July 80 Lee Klinger Porsche Audi Ansa exhaust, valves adjusted
2 Apr. 81 Lee Klinger Porsche Audi New brake pads purchased
12 June 81 Lee Klinger Porsche Audi New brake lines purchased
From 1981, I did nothing on the car until it came to the UK.
The greatest event in which the car participated was the 17 June 2005 Porsche Club Track Day at Castle Donnington. This co-incided with a big birthday, a track I wanted to drive, and an opening for the event The day was spectacular, warm, and I had great fun. My car was the oldest and the slowest car. The next oldest and slowest Porsche was a 2.7 RS set up for racing (not bad company !!!).
Considering my car was not serviced for 4 years, it ran well for 1 hour, but it did develop an engine misfire. Taking it to a local Porsche specialist, I expected the worst, failed tensioners, burned valves etc. It turned out to be a bad ignition wire.
Doing more investigation into the car’s condition, the valves were never properly adjusted, the fuel system was way out of adjustment, the rear brakes died, and a few other smaller jobs had to be done. The car runs like it should and naturally is more fun to drive.
On Castle Donnington’s back straight, with the car running not to full form, and with the brake pads rubbing on the disks, I still saw 90 – 95 MPH (140 HP motor), while the new GT3 RS’ and Turbos were only doing 120 – 130 MPH. Not bad for a car that is worth 10% of a GT3 RS and is 37 years old.
Would I do it again?
My investment is not huge by today’s standards(the car cost me £1.20 per day for the past 30 years), and the car is still great to drive. It drives like a modern car. Only issue is the rattles, and wind noise. This will be corrected once the new body gaskets are in place.
Under throttle and at 5000 RPM, the engine comes on the cam, and very few cars sound that great !!! I still want to purchase a 911S, 2.4 liter, and hope one day to find one in silver for a fair price.
Rebuilding a Suspension System (2006):
A thank you to Steve Weiner for making some great recommendations, and the car drives better than new.
I did not do the disassembly or assembly on the car. I sourced all the components and installation information and gave the job to a local shop to complete.
The car was previously lowered to ridiculous levels by a local firm. All previous work was documented in this link. The car bottomed out regularly. Despite the bottoming the rear shock valves were not destroyed.
All bushings were ancient, and the car suspension settings were way out of adjustment.
I replaced the rear spring plate with the ER poly bronze bushings. There were first installed without the torsion bar. The required force to move the spring plate was less than 1 kg force.
I replaced the red shock absorbers with the gas filled yellow shock absorbers because the yellow shock maker has better customer service and warranty. Two tow hooks are installed onto the shocks.
The car has no rear anti roll bar.
This all went together well, new red shock inserts where installed into the struts, new turbo tie rod ends onto the steering rack, new rubber drop link inserts, and the ER bushings. For the most part, assembly went well. Front anti-roll bar is a 15 mm Porsche bar.
Chris, the technician, showed me some photos of how Porsche Zuffenhausen set 928 suspensions. They literally did a drag race start over a series of speed bumps. The bumps were hit at speed, and believe it or now, the car was then ready for its final adjustments. He used a similar technique here.
A road going to a local supermarket is loaded with speed bumps. Chris drove the car over the speed bumps and found the car absorbed these very well. I tried the car and hit the bumps at a speed lower than he did, and found the car absorbed the bumps far better than I ever expected. I did a quick 360 degree turn in the car park with the car accelerating, and the car went around as if it is on rails. The steering is direct, toe in remarkable.
I think that the car’s driving performance is better than new. All I need to do now is get the body redone, and with the underside sealed, and I will have a new car. What else can I buy in today’s world, for what I have spent over 30 years, that is this good and still worth its money.