The Porsche 911... It just doesn't get old. But even when it does, its design is timeless; stunning in all its variations. So each time we see one, we reflect on vehicular perfection. There are other cars we lust after, but the Porsche 911 will always be the one.
And while it can be tough to sift through the submissions we receive or builds we come across, not wanting to disappoint anybody who's poured their heart into their own car, sometimes the decision is easy. Take the 1978 Porsche 911 SC you see here, for example. It makes us want to sell everything we own simply to park it outside our office. Owner Bill Earon is a lucky, lucky guy.
Perhaps lucky is the wrong word. Bill's successful in business, which has allowed him to feed his motorsport addiction. He races a 996 Cup Car in the Pirelli Driver's Cup Series at tracks across the country, and placed second in his class last season. And while he isn't the hands-on wrenching type, Bill refers to himself as more of a "general contractor" when it comes to his 911, giving input and direction during its lengthy restoration.
As is blatantly obvious, Bill repainted his SC. But you might not be aware it matches his racecar after a bare-metal stripdown that started in 2012 at Bell's Autosport in Huntington Beach, CA.
"Before I bought the Cup Car, my SC was a very competitive racer," he revealed. "But after driving a real racecar, nothing else could compare, so I decided to turn the SC into a street car."
As a result, the race-prepped '78 was torn down and, upon its reconstruction, Bill became painfully aware that his beloved P-car needed many parts replaced. "After Bell's fixed and replaced so many parts, I eventually decided to replace everything to make it like-new," he recalled. So much for just a paint job!
The original narrow-body fenders remained intact, but the addition of Getty Design's hood, bumpers and deck lid added the racing touch the 911 needed. And thanks to Bell's, the fit and finish is factory-like, producing a stunning car.
A set of Fikse FM/10 wheels, staggered and finished in matte black, work perfectly under the 911, especially with meaty 275-section Toyo R888 race rubber poking out back.
Upon first glance, you're instantly aware this is a special car. It's not just another restoration project, and thanks to BBi Autosport around the corner in Huntington Beach, CA, the exhaust fabrication has created a symphony you want to hear over and over again.
At its heart, the 911 boasts a 270hp 3.2-liter flat-six with 964 cams. It was fully refurbished and is a stout performer, meant for rigorous track abuse and miles of adrenaline-pumping, twisty-road fun.
While Bill's Cup Car blended its "putty" paint with orange accents, he kept the SC more subtle, using black accents instead. In fact, the only orange lick is visible on the big Brembo calipers that keep the car under control.
With a peek inside, it's as minimalist as it was supposed to be. A pair of fixed-back Cobra race seats were re-upholstered, along with the headliner and door cards. A dated Momo steering wheel and tall motorsport shifter were the only other accessories it required.
After a year of work, and itching to get behind the wheel, Bill sat down with Loren Beggs at 911 Design in Montclair, CA. During their conversation, he was persuaded to permit some final touches. "Loren removed the motor to re-plate all exposed metal," Bill explained. They also fine-tuned the appearance, worked on the small details, and polished an already stellar job.
"It's funny that what was meant to be a dedicated racecar has turned into such a fun street car," Bill laughed. "People always ask what it is because you can't just buy a car like this. It's so special and unique."
Even the Porsche crest shines like new, adding color and contrast
Chubby Toyo tires, black Fikse wheels and a hint of orange from the Brembos is all it takes to understand this 911's purpose
Chubby Toyo tires, black Fikse wheels and a hint of orange from the Brembos is all it take
Looking at the '70s cluster takes us back to the good old days of minimalism
1978 Porsche 911 SC
Engine 3.2-liter flat-six with 964 camshafts
Drivetrain 915 five-speed manual transmission
Brakes Brembo four-piston calipers f&r, 323mm rotors f, 309mm rotors r
Suspension Bilstein dampers, race springs f, torsion bar r
Wheels & Tires 17x8.5" f, 17x9.5" r Fikse FM/10 wheels, 245/40 R17 f, 275/40 R17 r Toyo R888 tires
Exterior Getty Design bumpers, hood and deck lid, car painted in custom "Putty"
Interior Cobra fixed-back race seats, leather and suede retrim, Momo steering wheel, motorsport shifter