Featured: This Is The Privateer Porsche 928 That Raced At Le Mans

This Is The Privateer Porsche 928 That Raced At Le Mans

By Michael Banovsky
November 9, 2015
13 comments

In 1983, this Porsche 928S lined up dead last for the start of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Running but unclassified, it finished some 238 laps behind the winner. At the race again in 1984, it finished again, in 22nd place. And no, it wasn’t as fast as the factory-supported or privateer Porsche 911s.

Frenchman Raymond Boutinaud was behind the idea, team, and entry that found the 928S classified as “Group B” car… In other words, it wasn’t going to be picking up a win, or even a class win.

So besides its great liveries, what’s so special about this car? For starters, it shows what might have been, had the 911 been replaced by the 928. As one of the few “modern” Porsches to not be extensively raced—or developed by the factory into a race car—it’s also a rare example of a privateer entry that was able to keep up with the world’s best machines by campaigning a largely “stock” car.

Sure, its outright pace couldn’t match the more developed 911s, but few other GTs in the early ’80s could have added a roll cage, stickers, and qualified for Le Mans. Would you have wanted to see more 928s hit the race track?

Image Sources: 24h-lemans.com, proboards.com, tumblr.com, flickr.com, seriouswheels.comfavcars.com

Join the Conversation
Related
0 0 votes
Article Rating
13 Comments
newest
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
grahamsaul
grahamsaul
3 years ago

Love this history. This is my 928GTS 5 speed race car

Dale McConnell
Dale McConnell
5 years ago

I have been a 928 fan since I saw weird science as a little kid. The body is unique but very cool.

Justin
Justin
5 years ago

What about the 928S that won the Willhire 24 hours at Snetterton in 1983?

Tony Anderton
Tony Anderton
6 years ago

Taken at the time…sorry it’s “Grainy”, but was from an old colour negative

Rob Edwards
Rob Edwards
7 years ago

When a 928 does undergo some development for the track, it ends up fairing reasonably well against privateer 911s. 🙂

[code type=”xml”]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P29nHru4fvI[/code]

braunwagen
braunwagen
7 years ago

Great to see Petrolicious shitting all over anything thats not a 911, as per usual..

Matthew Lange
Matthew Lange
7 years ago

Learned something as I never knew a 928 ran at Le Mans. Would love a manual 928 S or S2 but trying to find one in the UK that’s in half decent condition or the vendor has unrealistic ideas about what it is worth is really tough.

Porsche928s4
Porsche928s4
5 years ago
Reply to  Matthew Lange

These cars are now at the point where you have to be committed to the cause to have a nice one. Either buy a project and build your own, or pay what it take have the best. I know, my wife want to get me committed because of this:)

Justin Harp
Justin Harp
7 years ago

The 928S, S4 makes a great platform for a race car. There is no doubt about that. To add a bit to this article a 928S won the 24 Hours of Willhire in 1983. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willhire_24_Hour The 928 is really a robust and powerful car in any variation. They get a bad reputation from nonmechanically inclined people who can’t afford their expensive parts and maintenance bills. If you have deep pockets and can get the problems sorted out they really are a reliable car. One of the problems surely had to have been the synchronized transmissions in the early 80’s 928’s. There were also very few 5 speed 928’s as most of them were Mercedes 3 and 4 speed automatics. It is always great to read a new article about the 928 though. I applaud you for covering Porsche’s flagship supercar of the 1980’s.

Robert Stone
Robert Stone
7 years ago

I own a 1986-1/2 Porsche 928, which I have been restoring with an expert of these cars, also a member of the 928 Club. I attended the “Frenzy” last year and saw some great looking cars. The great thing about the club and websites like Rennlist is you find guys who have designed and created new parts for these cars, which improve them further. Many of these cars are a steal now because as used cars they were neglected and the new owner will have to refurbish them. However, they are getting noticed so I’m not sure how long the bargains will last! Body wise, they are pretty robust. Some of the interior plastic needs attention and many guys are now covering their cracking dashes and pods in leather. My car has a short shifter kit, clutch, new Koni adj. shocks, high pressure fuel regulator ,high pressure hoses, a new clutch(yes mine is a five speed), new master & slave cylinders,new motor mounts, is “chipped” producing over 300 hp. I replaced the oil pan gasket and the timing belt with the Audi tensioners, spark plug wires and the next thing is to replace the cam cover gaskets, etc. Once I’m done, I’ll have a very reliable classic. You sit very low in this car, it has a lot of heft but handles excellently. The styling is pretty timeless and remember my car is nearly 30 years old. I would highly recommend this car to any prospective collector, especially if you can do a lot of the work yourself!

Jim Nance
Jim Nance
7 years ago

I love my 928S, I have a Jaguar XJS , (2) Alfa Romero spiders , I always go back to my Porsche 928S.

geelongvic
geelongvic
7 years ago

The 928, Porsche’s “Daytona”, has been an unloved and underappreciated Porsche, far more capable than most believe, in time like the 914 its reputation will grow and will finally get the recognition that it deserves. Understand that the current generation of water cooled 911’s is virtually similar in size to the 928, a tacit validation of the concept and sizing of the 928 back to time of its introduction in 1978. Drive a 928 and be surprised at how modern and relevant it is now, let alone how advanced it was in the late 70’s .