By David Hurth
The Porsche 911 SC is currently shooting up in value. What is incredible is just about 5 years ago, nobody saw it coming. In the world of air-cooled 911s it was one of the less desirable models. This may not be totally fair, but the 911 SC is overshadowed by the later 3.2 Carrera.
The 911 SC has performance that won’t make you take notice when compared to modern cars. However, it is an analogy driving experience that is difficult to find in newer vehicles.
Comparing a vintage car to modern cars is not fair. Technology has progressed to the point that the two are barely comparable. Because of this it is good to go back and see what reviews of the vehicle were like when it was new.
Below we have gathered a few snippets from various publications that reviewed the 911 SC when you could still get one in showrooms.
In 1978 Car and Driver said:
The new 911 SC is faithful to that tradition. It is the fastest normally-aspirated Porsche, 0–60, that we have ever driven. It does the quarter-mile in 14.8 seconds at 94 miles per hour, and the factory (which is usually conservative in these things) rates its top speed at 136. While all this sturm and drang is slowly being fed through your mental computer, you must also come to grips with the information that it gets fifteen mpg in the EPA city cycle and 27 in the highway test. It is thus terribly fast and surprisingly economical. A remarkable blending of opposing virtues. And it’s certainly a combination that deserves grateful recognition these days.
It may be the last 911. It may also be the best.
In 1978 AutoWeek wrote:
As a group the AutoWeek staff has resisted the Porsche mystique. Porsche owners in their string-backed, bepatched-jacketed hordes tend to make out teeth clench. Maybe living in Southern California, where about every third car is a poorly driven Porsche with a ski rack on it, makes one cynical.
But resisting the mystique is a lot easier than resisting the car. Frankly, we went into this thing wishing we could find that Porsche was a rich kid’s toy.
Now we wish we were rich kids.
In 1978 Motor Sport Magazine said the below about the 911 SC:
After enthusing so eulogistically about the brutish Aston Martin Vantage in last month’s issue, I feel almost guilty that i cannot instil a similar sense of excitement into this Porsche road-test. The reason is part of the Porsche 911’s strength. There was no element of surprise in that this latest fuel-injected 911 should be simply superb; it was just as expected –maybe better-by a motoring journalist who makes no bones about his enthusiasm for the traditional Porsche concept. It makes no song and dance about its performance: it simply goes, rapidly yet not searingly fast, and keeps on going, smoothly, satisfyingly, relaxingly from the morning’s first turn of the key, in a fashion which is, well, Porsche, there is no other worked for it. You either love the characteristics and learn to bow to them and appreciate them accordingly, or you hate them and buy something else. There are two such distinct camps, even amongst top-class racing and rally drivers of my acquaintance. Those who love them think they are tremendous value, those who hate them feel they are overpriced. For my own purposes, which include a lot of London driving, I found the flexible 911SC Sport to be the best 911 road version yet, although there were occasions on the open road when I itched for the extra urge of the old Carrera or Turbo. Potential customers can make up their own minds, if they are prepared to join the queue!
In 1983 Car and Driver said the below about the Porsche 911 SC Cabriolet:
In truth, the 911SC is also a fantasy from Schutz’s past. As the story goes, Schutz and Dr. Ferry Porsche were relaxing at the family villa one evening when Ferry explained that Porsche’s system of product planning back in the early postwar years was simplicity itself: “We did no market research, no sales forecast, no return-on-investment analysis whatsoever. I built my dream car [the 356] and put it on sale.” What a golden opportunity for Schutz to pipe up with a pet dream of his own. “Let’s build a 911 Cabriolet,” he said to Ferry Porsche, and so it was.
That’s what the press had to say about the Porsche 911 SC when it was new. As you can see, in its day it was considered quite a car. By today’s high standards it isn’t a fast car, but it is one that can still make a boring drive fun.