928: The Grand Touring Porsche
Hefty, luxurious, and effortlessly fast, the front-engined 928 steered Porsche toward a new type of customer.
Though Porsche’s 928 was a fabulous grand-touring car, it was never a best seller for the marque. Just 57,998 were built during 19 years of production, 25,105 of which came to the U.S. The single-year production peak came in 1979, when 5,438 928s were built, although single-year production exceeded 5,000 once more, in 1984. Compare this with 57,890 911 SCs built over six years.
Why wasn’t the 928 more popular? Price was one concern — the 928 was quite expensive, with the GTS commanding a six-figure price tag — but the bigger issue was that this large, heavy 2+2 with its front-mounted, water-cooled engine simply didn’t appeal to a large number of traditional Porsche buyers. That’s a shame, because those Porschephiles missed out on a fantastic experience: The 928 was fast, refined, well-built, and extraordinarily composed at high speeds.
In their day, these Porsches were probably the best GTs available anywhere. Today, they can be very good buys, particularly when compared to how much they cost new. However, it is important to remember that while 928s may no longer be expensive to purchase, they are still pricey to maintain and repair. But if you buy a good, properly-serviced example, you’ll be rewarded with an exceedingly pleasurable car.
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