The Original 996 GT3 Is A Bonafide Modern Classic, But The Trick Is Finding A Good One
The 996 series 911 was a controversial model when it was released, featuring divisive styling cues and Porsche’s first-ever water-cooled flat-six. It may have saved the brand from financial ruin but it took some time for fans of the marque to appreciate the virtues of what was the first of a new generation of 911s.
Thanks to those looks and some mechanical frailty concerns, it has taken more than two decades for the standard Carrera models to start rising in value again. But one variant that has never suffered any image problems is the sublime GT3. Intended for serious track use, it is an example of Porsche at its very best. But finding a decent early 996 GT3 is not the work of a moment.
While the 996 GT3 may look like a Carrera 2 with a body kit and huge rear wing, the changes under the skin make it a completely different animal. The 3.6-liter Hanz Mezger-designed motor was a very different design to that of the standard model and at 360hp was 20 percent more powerful too. Paired with a slick-shifting six-speed manual transmission and a 7200 rpm redline it, was as immersive and engaging as Italian sports cars costing twice as much.
In addition to the motorsport-derived engine, it also got an adjustable suspension set-up, numerous weight-saving features and a set of more supportive sport seats. The GT3 proved to be an instant hit with both owners and journalists praising its virtues, and unsurprisingly these track-focused variants have become an integral part of the 911 range ever since.
While each successive version has become quicker and more powerful, the inherent rightness of the original MK1 GT3 makes it a very desirable modern classic. RM Sotheby’s is offering this beautifully maintained example for sale at its upcoming auction in London on 24 October. Offered from the Forests Collection, this 2000 MK1 GT3 comes with an extensive service and maintenance record with all work carried out by either the main agents or reputable specialists. With 74,941 km (46,838 miles) registered on its odometer, this car has clearly been driven as intended and hopefully it will continue to be enjoyed by its new owner.
Images courtesy of RM Sotheby’s