PORSCHE 911L SWB (SOLD) (1968)



Make / Model: Porsche 911 SWB

Variant: 911L

Colour: Bahama Yellow

Year: 1968

Engine Size: 2.2

Transmission: Maual



Porsche first launched the new 911 in 1963 to replace the 4 cylinder 356 Series. Initially known as type 901, this quickly had to be amended after Peugeots trademark objections, so in October 1964 Porsche simply re numbered it 911. And so, the most famous three numbers in the sports car world were coined.

With its new flat six 2.0 engine producing 130BHP mated to a type 901 5 speed gearbox, the new 911 was able to punch well above its weight in period road tests, although` the on the limit` handling from its short wheelbase chassis met with a mixed reception at the time. In 1969 Porsche answered these criticisms by lengthening the wheelbase by 2 inches. However, in doing so they changed the character of the original 911 concept forever. Whilst the original SWB cars may have bitten a few inexperienced drivers through over enthusiasm, any competent driver will relish in the adjustability, purity and lightness of these early cars, a testament being the recent success of the 2.0 Cup series, specifically for this era of car where up to 40 examples can be seen on the grid together at any one time. A front running car built by an established team will cost you circa £300,000, possibly more if the car has an interesting provenience.

This 911L

Which brings us to this example, being built in 1968 it makes it one of the last SWB cars to be produced, so initially arguably not as desirable as an early series car, but then things get a little more interesting with it being an original UK RHD 911L, complete with a certificate of authenticity from Porsche confirming it was supplied by AFN Ilsworth on the 12th of June 1968 and finished in Bahama yellow with a black interior, the colour combination it is still presented in today.

The L was a one year only model that proceeded the E and was essentially in European form, a 911S in specification, but with the 130BHP motor installed instead, which neatly placed it between the T and the S in terms of performance on its Weber IDA carburettors. We are unsure exactly how many RHD cars were UK registered but it will be just a handful, of which even fewer will remain today.

Not much is known about the early history of this car, however it has been with the current registered keeper since 2010 until our purchase in 2023. The maintenance during this time has been extensive as the car has been used as intended for light road rallies both in the UK and Europe and has been maintained to be reliable throughout. It is currently fitted with lightweight seats and bumpers and weighs under 1,000kgs, although it could be refitted with its original bumpers and interior if required.

The engine was totally rebuilt along with the gearbox in 2012 with 85mm JE pistons suggesting an increase to 2.2 litres, the cylinder heads were ported, crank and rods were lightened and balanced, lightened flywheel fitted, new chains and bearings etc, S cams, new valves and guides and carburettors rebuilt. A rolling road print out in the history file suggests the engine was producing 211.9 BHP when completed, that sounds a little optimistic, however, it certainly feels like it’s got a strong 190-200 ponies in there.

So how good is it really? On the road it is a hoot to drive, the bodyshell is rock solid and the car has been well set up for its intended role. The engine is actually very flexible and well suited to the 5 ratios in the 901 box, offering a good spread of torque and power allowing swift progress to be made. The weber carburettors are beautifully set up, the car starting on the button every time and working well with the S cams that have been fitted. All 5 gears and reverse work fine, although care needs to be taken when selecting first and second from cold suggesting the synchro’s are a little worn. The exterior is smart in appearance whilst the best way to describe the wheels and interior as perfectly functional, but `shabby chic` in appearance, the fully functional Brantz rally timer adding to the charm. So, to answer, perfectly useable as it is to continue on a number of road rallies such as Scottish Malts, Tour Auto, Modena Cento Ore etc. With further modifications, it would be suitable for several historic race series including the 2.0 Cup. Other options would be to turn it back to a standard or Sports Purpose type road car.

In Summary

Whilst not a complete blank canvas as such, this unusual and rare RHD example does offer many exciting options for road or race, starting from enjoying it exactly as it is and knowing you haven’t spent £300,000 plus for a bespoke build when blasting down your favourite road.


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