After four years of 993 ownership, a sequence of events led Jones to yet another 911, but this time aimed at track use and pure driving fun. “Andy helped me find the 993, and has looked after it since I bought it nearly five years ago,” he says. “A year ago, we were discussing pre-impact bumper cars and the magazine stories that had been written about RS 2.7 re-creations built from later cars.
“I had been looking at websites like Pelican Parts and others and also saw the orange lightweight 964 Clubsport that Andy built for another client. So I asked him if he could find and build me a special car that looked period, but was more modern under the skin.”
Jones was trained as a mechanical engineer and wanted the best possible quality as well as a car that was much lighter than the Carrera 3.2 and 3.6-based replicas he had seen in the magazines. In the end, Tatlow just missed the target maximum weight of 1,000 kg (2,200 pounds) by 15kg—but only because Jones insisted on have air-conditioning fitted.
The car Tatlow found was originally white and had been restored by a local body shop. But because it had then been left for a few years, the paint was starting to lift in some places, so step one was stripping the car back to its bare shell. They quickly realized that it had lots of filler and had been patched in various places. It had no kidney bowls and the pattern sills did not fit properly. During his years in Singapore, Tatlow has located a couple of exceptional body shops that do metalwork and paint as well as the best in Europe, but for far less money. One of these artisans was entrusted to cut out all the rusty parts, weld in new metal, and prepare and paint the shell. Once the panels were primed and painted in Blood Orange, there was no sign that the car had not left the factory this way.
The build involved equipping the shell with brand-new lightweight GRP Carrera RS 2.7 replica bumpers and a GRP engine cover with rear ducktail spoiler. Replica Carrera RS sidewinder decals complete the RS illusion.
The original glass was cleaned up and re-used, with just the rear windscreen replaced with a lighter Perspex substitute. The interior was treated to a lightweight RS interior and carpets with a custom black vinyl headlining, and the instruments refurbished by North Hollywood Speedometer & Clock Company in California. The Recaro Nürburgring sport seats were sourced from World Wide Classics in the UK.
The car sits on 16-inch Fuchs wheels and Dunlop tires from a Carrera 3.2 and refurbished locally. They definitely look better than the original 15s, and give the car better grip, but are a dead giveaway that the car is not a real Carrera RS 2.7.
Also helping to give the car its purposeful stance is the more advanced suspension technology that hails from U.S.-based specialist companies. “Where the German tuners just put in larger torsion bars and antiroll bars and stiffer dampers, the U.S. tuners looked at things from a different point of view,” Tatlow says. “The fact that these specialist companies are still coming up with new ways to improve the engines and suspensions of these early cars years after Porsche stopped making them speak volumes for how much they think the 911’s old-style suspension can still be improved.”
As he is still a novice on the track, Jones did not go the whole hog with the suspension, but what Tatlow did do has made a big difference to handling and grip. The front torsion bars are stock, but the rears are from a 3.3 Turbo. The front through-the-chassis antiroll bar is fully adjustable, as is the rear bar. Koni supplied the heavy-duty front strut inserts and rear dampers, while Elephant Racing poly-bronze bushings all round contribute to greater geometric accuracy under load.