“Wow” is not the kind of thing people usually get paid to write. “Wow” is the kind of thing you say when you’re staring, slack-jawed, at someone or something that has snuck past all of your genteel civilities and highly educated vocabulary and triggered something planted in you by a billion years of evolution and natural selection. “Wow” is the kind of thing a certain kind of person cannot help but say when faced with a screaming green vintage Porsche restored and renewed to the nth degree. Just – wow.
The finished car, by California-based Singer Designs, is the kind of thing car guys talk about building when they’ve had too much to drink or just turned 30 (or 40, or 50 – you get the idea). It’s based on an early 70’s Porsche 911, not unlike the ’71 911T that lurked in my family’s garage while I was a kid growing up, but unlike it in almost every way … and when you see the before, well –
– yeah. The “after” is almost beyond imagining when you see that.
The point of this post, however, is not to listen to a wordy car-guy grunt and drool over a classic, air-cooled 911. Sure, that’s gonna happen – but the real goal is to drive a point home: you can go green and still have a lustworthy ride – be it a Jeep, a classic Porsche, or an Airstream trailer. The greenest car is the one that’s already built. The greenest oil is the oil that’s already been drilled. Etc. Etc. Ad nauseam.
I want to keep pushing the point, though – especially in the faces of those who buy a new sportscar every spring or lease a new Prius or Insight ever 24 months. There are literally millions of old cars out there that can be retrofitted with modern emissions equipment, modern flex-fuel technology, modern amenities, modern safety and performance hardware, and which – it must be said – will ooze class, style, and sex in ways that many modern “jellybean” cars and over-styled “supercars” simply cannot match.
That’s my opinion, of course – but which would you rather rock? A relatively generic “you’ll see 3 on the way to the mall” 996 or 997 Porsche, or one of these resto-mods (restoration/modification) by Singer? A new “slide-out” shoebox-lookin’ RV, or Matt Hoffman’s streamliner? A faithfully restored and renewed 50+ mpg Honda CRX HF, or the new 40 mpg (ish) 2011 CR-Z? What would a mid-80s CRX even look like if you spent the CR-Z’s $19345 base price to renew and restore it? What would that CRX look like if you spent half that amount? More importantly, perhaps: which would you rather have?
I know what my answer would be.
Check out the gallery, below, and see if you’d rather have the Singer or an over-priced and plasticized P-car “fresh” off the showroom floor. If it helps you decide, know that the Singer uses the same modern materials – like carbon fiber throughout the car to reduce weight and improve performance, as well as a restored 3.8L Porsche 6-cylinder engine tuned to nearly 400 hp, as well as specially-machined mirrors, filler caps, instruments, headlight bezels, and a hundred other lovingly pored-over details … that new Porsche? Most of that stuff is from an entry-spec. Audi, and it ain’t impressin’ nobody.
Source: Singer Designs.