Reader Submissions: From Cards to Cars, Porsche 911 is a Lifelong Love

From Cards to Cars, Porsche 911 is a Lifelong Love

By Petrolicious Productions
December 10, 2014

Owner and photographer: Wade Devers

Year, Make, and Model: 1986 Porsche 911 Carrera

Location: North Attleborough, Massachusetts, USA

When I was seven years old, my brother and I each had a deck of automobile trading cards. On the front of each card was a picture of a car and its name. The cars were from all over the world: Lancia, Corvette, Ferrari, Peugeot, Jensen, Holden, Lincoln, Mini, Lamborghini, you name it.

The way the game was played was akin to the card game,”war”: You laid down a card, and if your opponent beat your card, he won that card, making his deck bigger. The goal being to have the largest collection of cards. Winning was all about the specs: On the back of each card were all the details: wheelbase, horsepower, fuel capacity, turning radius, etc. Say, for example your opponent laid down a Lancia Stratos and selected “horsepower”. If you knew your stuff you would look through your deck for a car that you were confident could beat the Lancia in horsepower, and win his card.

Well, one day I won a card that I just couldn’t stop looking at. It was of a Porsche 911RS in Grand Prix white with red Fuchs and Carrera spelled out along the bottom of the door. I couldn’t tell if it was ugly or good looking. But I loved it. At the time the most coveted card was the Lamborghini Countach, but for me it was the Porsche Carrera. Thirty-nine years later, I am still a car fanatic. I still look at cars virtually non stop.

My friend Darin, who’s family owns a company called The Boston Sportscar Company, is in the business of maintenance and restoration of collectible and classic sport scars. Part of his business used to be dealing in used Porsches. I called him one day to ask what to look out for if I were to buy a Porsche 944. At the time I was “between cars” as I liked to say, and was considering getting something that wouldn’t break the bank. Having recently seen an episode of one of my favorite shows, Wheeler Dealers where they bought and flipped a 944, I thought it would be the perfect car for me. And I had always liked the quirkier Porsches like the the 944, 914, and certainly the 928.

Well, Darin returned my call with a text. The text said, “You don’t want a 944. You want this…” Attached to the text was a picture of a black 911 sunroof coupe with a tail. The rest is history. But I still can’t believe I own that car.

It’s the car of my boyhood dreams. It’s also the car my wife and I drove to our wedding reception. Instead of renting a limo, we borrowed a red 1986 Carrera from a friend. On the way to the reception I said to my wife, “One day, I’d love a car like this.” And she said, “That would be cool. I’d like that too.” She’s pretty great.

The 911 is a drivers car, not a collectible. Just enough wear and tear that you don’t have to worry every time you drive to the grocery store, which I do, often. Want a jug of milk? A pack of gum? Any excuse I have to drive my 911, I will take. I live in North Attleborough, Massachusetts. This means that I get to drive as much as I want as long as there isn’t snow on the ground, which is too often. I love that my 911 is simple. A couple of seats, a gearbox, and an engine, not much else. I love to drive in the same way that my friends like to play softball or golf. There is something both calming and exciting about the act of driving. And my 911 is a pure driving experience. You feel everything. You can hear everything. It even smells like driving.

My favorite drive is a yearly ritual. Annually, for the past six years, my son and I drive three hours to Limerock Race Park in Lakeville, Connecticut to attend the Historic festival. The drive through the Berkshires and eventually down Rt. 7 through Great Barrington and Stockbridge is great. It’s great mostly because it’s just me and Finn in our Porsche. But the road is twisty and undulates perfectly for the 911. Connecticut also seems to appreciate a freshly paved road. When we go to Limerock we like to make a day of it so we go very early. The air is typically cool and the 911 eats that up. It’s a great drive through small towns and fields alternatively. As you near the track, the silence of the morning is broken by the sound of vintage race cars. We pull in and park in the Porsche corral. Perfect.

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Bjorn (@ambiance)
7 years ago

Good story, and the 911 with the better air cooled engine! Reminds me of my first 911, it had the same collors as yours inside out. Enjoy the smiles on the way with your son, it will create good memories and ceep him on a healty path!

Robert Hiermeier
Robert Hiermeier(@robhimes)
7 years ago

Awesome car. I have an 85 Targa Carrera, which I have taken to track days at TWS in College Station and MSR Houston.
Here in Texas cars over 25 years don’t have to go through emission tests and thus decided to take out the original huge and heavy muffler and catalyst converter and install a cat bypass and a Bursch muffler, it makes a great sound without being too loud. By the way I have also installed a “Momo Prototipo” steering wheel. I disliked the looks of the original wheel.

Micah cooper
Micah cooper(@captainmicahp)
7 years ago

I watched the 944 episode of Wheeler Dealers this week and said to myself “I should buy a 944”. Luckily that impulse only lasted a second before I came to my senses.

Charles Vasta
Charles Vasta(@chasv)
7 years ago

Beautiful car, and wonderful story! I remember fondly my trips to Limerock Park back in the mid-seventies to watch the Memorial Day races and the Brumos Porsche Racing team with Peter Gregg and Hurley Haywood. Made the roughly 5 hour trip from South Jersey driving my clapped out 1966 VW Beetle. I would park in the grass and spend the time watching the races and walking around the parking area ogling fellow spectator’s exotic and not so exotic sports cars. I know I had a non-stop grin on my face the entire day, just taking it all in. It’s great that you are able to share the experience of attending Limerock with your son. Sure to make for some wonderful memories for you both down the road.

Thanks again for sharing your story!

Jimmy Arata
Jimmy Arata(@aratapuss)
7 years ago

Great pictures and story. My 87 is almost identical, except for the black interior. Looks like we are both on the same wavelength as far as driving, and have much to look forward to once the weather improves. Time to “count our blessings . . .”.

Todd Cox
Todd Cox(@mc70)
7 years ago

The iconic Porsche. I’d love to have one just like that, and a 356 replica in the stable. One of these days…

I really enjoyed the story of the car, and the background of the owner. Thanks for giving me a nice read!

7 years ago

Glorious looking machine, and I love the last shot – fan turning, cam chain whine… Great stuff!

Roland Alfonso
Roland Alfonso(@fb_100005134686779)
7 years ago

Perfect. Indeed. And a very merry Christmas to you and yours. ( It’s great that the engine was running when you took the picture. There is nothing like an air-cooled 911…)

Sterling Vernon
Sterling Vernon(@sgvri)
7 years ago

Great car. Hope to see you on the roads around Lime Rock one of these days. Or come on down to a great autocross at Quonset Point in RI some time and let your car get her exercise!

Wade Devers
Wade Devers(@wadeforit)
7 years ago

Haven’t been to Quonset Point in years,
I didn’t know they held autocross events there. Ill have to check that out. Love the Martini stripes on your 911.

7 years ago

It`s a realy great story,remind me of my annual drive from joliette que. to mt-tremblant to see the incridible `sommet des legendes` a 2 hrs drive on little mountain road that make you feel like your on the track….I did that for the last 10 years, whit odder big fan of vintage racing like my all time partner: my father.i always enjoy my day at the track , and the drive , like last summer ,we ad some kind of ..little chase with my friend in is MG. imagine an MG vs a Triumph….so much fun!

Doug Miller
Doug Miller(@sportscarfan)
7 years ago

Great story. As a fellow Carrera owner (’88) I can relate. I bought mine in 2001, with 34k miles on it, & I plan to drive it until I can’t get in or out of it. A friend & I drove it “the long way” from Ann Arbor, MI to Elkhart Lake, WI to the vintage races at Road America this past summer. North to the Upper Peninsula & down into Wisconsin – 1,400+ miles & it ran flawlessly!

Thanks for sharing your story. Happy motoring!