SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA PORSCHE TECHNICIAN PAUL FARRELL has owned a lot of Stuttgart metal over the years. Everything from early 911Ts to 997 Turbos to GT3s have passed through his garage. But the variation that he’s got a real soft spot for is the SC.After all, he’s owned four examples of SuperCarrera.
“I bought my first SC in 1997,”he said. “First of all, I’m a huge fan of the three liter engine. Another thing is that the SC is an extremely reliable car from the get go.” He’s certainly not alone in his belief the SC is one of the most bulletproof air-cooled 911s from the era before the model transitioned over to the 964.
Farrell’s latest SC is a stunning example that he built up in his garage with weekend canyon carving in mind.You see, Farrell has the good fortune of living a stone’s throw away from Mulholland Drive — and not the section above L.A. but the gnarly driver’s route where it whips and winds its way through the Santa Monica Mountains.
Farrell acquired the SC in 2008 after being tipped off about it by a friend. “I was looking for a cheap SC,” he said. The relatively low, $14,000 asking price of this particular one certainly fell into the category of reasonably priced SCs. The 911 in question admittedly was a pretty tired example that was parked on the street in Hollywood, but it did come in a desirable Metallic Silver over black color combination. Wheels were standard issue 16×6s and 16×7s, and the odometer was reading a well-used 188,000 miles, which in the big picture is not bad at all for the durable SC.
After looking at the car, Farrell made a counter offer, which was rejected, so the search continued. “The guy called me a few months later and told me I could have the car for $6,000 if I came that same day and picked it up,” recalled Farrell, still surprised at the oddity of the transaction. “He left the key to his house under the doormat and told me to let myself in, leave the money and take the pink slip and the keys to the SC.” A few bizarre moments later, Farrell had his SC.
“It had been parked on the street for a few months and the owner hadn’t used it for a few months,” recalled Farrell. “The paint was heavily oxidized, and it had a pretty rough interior.” The Porsche had also been parked for so long that all four tires were perilously low on air. The 911 was limped to the nearest gas station so he could air up the tires, and was then driven in the early evening dusk with inoperable headlights to Farrell’s home in Malibu.
From the outset of the project, the target was a pared-down and beefed-up SC, with an eye towards maximizing the original components. So, there would be no monster 3.8 liter or radical coilover suspension but rather a conservative and measured approach to maximizing the 911’s performance envelope while staying within the parameters of the OEM components.This would also be a project built almost solely by Farrell in his small garage. Despite the fact he’s an accomplished Porsche technician with access to a full-size shop, this was going to be a home-built project.