In 2003 Porsche released the 996 variant of the inimitable 911. The 996, without a doubt, represented the biggest overhaul of the successful 911 design since its inception back in 1964. Porsche made some brave decisions including a brand new water-cooled engine, a completely redesigned chassis, and significant changes to the exterior styling.
These radical changes however were borne out of necessity. The modern motorist’s expectations for performance, reliability, and comfort, paired with ever stricter emissions regulations and safety standards meant that Porsche simply couldn’t continue any longer with the existing 911 technology.
The 996 (like all 911s that have followed since) was produced in two generations. The “Gen 1” 996 cars were styled very similarly to the new Boxster (which they shared a number of components with) and featured a 3.4 litre ‘flat-six’ water cooled engine. Following not entirely positive customer feedback, the 996 was then treated to an exterior facelift and a raft of upgrades mechanically. The “Gen 2” 996 featured a much more aggressive, purposeful front end and now looked sufficiently different to its little brother, the Boxster. Engines were also upgraded across the range to a 3.6 litre capacity, offering up 300bhp+ in the base model cars.
The most desirable 996 cars are of course, the 996 Turbo (and its beefed up sibling, the Turbo S), the 996 GT3 (also offered as a more track-focussed GT3 RS), and of course the “widow-maker”, the lightweight, turbocharged, and somewhat unhinged GT2.
We think 996 Porsches look their best when they’re low, simple and clean. Over the years their styling has aged nicely, and has taken on a real retro-appeal, and this “keep it simple” approach really complements that. Dan has taken this exact approach with his car, focussing on the natural beauty of the 996 and steering clear of wings and things. Put simply, we love it, and as a result we collared Dan to tell us a bit more!
Porsche 911 996 C2 (2003)
- The car sits stunningly low on coilovers by PB Brakes with camber adjustable top mounts.
- The front bumper has been smoothed to get rid of number plate frame.
- Dan's a bit like some women are with their shoes… he has FIVE sets of wheels for this car. ETA beta cup 2’s, ETA beta turbos, ETA beta krones, and two sets of BBS Sport Designs.
- Inside the seat backs have been smoothed and painted, the centre console painted and alcantara trimmed arm rest, side panels and steering wheel.
Interview with the owner
- When did you first purchase the car?Back in 2016.
- What made you go for a 996?Always been a fan of Porsche’s and wanted a 964 but by the time I got around to looking for one they had shot up in price.I never really considered a 996 as an option but a friend bought one and lowered it on some nice split rims and I loved it so that was when I wanted one. I opted to go for a face lifted 996.2 as I preferred the look and had to be a C2 in seal grey with black leather.
- What's it like to drive?When I first got it, it was a great car to drive and was quite fast.But as I like cars low, I fitted coilovers and slammed it which admittedly has resulted in ground clearance issues.The car drives just as good on the coilovers but it does touch down quite regularly!
- What about power, what's it running?It's the stock 320bhp.
- So when it comes to mods, what have you done?Suspension, bodywork, and a bit of paintwork, wheels & tyres, some interior changes and a few other bits!
- What have you done to the suspension?Car is on coilovers by PB Brakes with camber adjustable top mounts.
- What have you done to the bodywork?Smoothed the front bumper to get rid of number plate frame.
- What have you done to the paintwork?Front bumper smooth and paint and rear deck lid, it does need a bit more doing these days.
- What have you done with the wheels & tyres?Car has 5 different sets of of wheels and tyres…– Eta beta cup 2’s– Eta beta turbos– Eta beta krones – and two sets of BBS sport designs
- What have you done with the interior?I had the seat backs smoothed and painted, centre console painted and alcantara arm rest and side trims and alcantara trimmed steering wheel.
- What other mods have you done?Car has a bit of stereo system installed.
- Do you plan to do any further modifications to it?Yes, I have some Recaro CS seats to go in once the bases arrive and then main thing will be to tidy up the paintwork.
- Is the car a "keeper" or will you sell it one day?I'll take it to my grave.
- Do you own any other interesting cars?I have a Porsche 944 which I am also doing bit of work on and I share the wheels I use on the 996!
- Ok final question – ignoring cost, and assuming you couldn’t go and sell it for profit… what’s your dream car and why?I’m not a Ferrari guy and never have been but the Ferrari F40 will always be the car I dreamed of as a child and to this day I’ve never seen a better looking car.