Most motoring enthusiasts fall into one of two camps – purist or modifier so its unusual to find a Porsche lover, who is keen on both and is taking his 911 to a new level. South Californian car enthusiast Michael O’Neal shares his story…
I consider myself a Porsche purist. After all, I became addicted to working on them since I built my 1969 911 RSR clone powered by a 3.6 Porsche 993 motor in 2005. That car took me four years and 2000 hours to build by myself, and it was recently featured in Total 911 magazine for its ‘Built Not Bought’ October 2020 issue.
A couple of years ago, I started thinking that these cars (meaning the pre 1974 911’s) had become a bit to ‘precious’ in the eyes of the Porsche cognoscenti. Which is a real shame, because as beautiful and practical and simple as they are, they are more than 50 years old, and there are some technology upgrades that the muscle car and veedub enthusiasts have been using for years that we have not really participated in.
I thought, “what if I built a car that was completely blasphemous in the eyes of the Porsche purist, but offered a ton of modern convenience and tunability without losing its vintage Porsche character?”
Things that I consider synonymous with a ‘pure’ Porsche 911:
- A Porsche flat-six engine
- Brembo ‘big red’ brakes
- Guards Red paint
- Fuchs wheels
- ‘Period correct’ upgrades
Now…I’m a fan of all of these things. In fact, my grey 911 has most of them, barring the red paint. But if I’m honest they bore the hell out of me. I’ve been to so many Porsche events and car shows here in Southern California and I’ve seen so many perfect, unmolested, stock, vintage 911’s, that they really don’t interest me at all. I wanted to build a car where I had a blank canvas to do anything I wanted, including outfitting it with some of the latest aftermarket technology available today.
So, I went out and made a wish list of what I might want to have in a vintage 911 that I had to take on a 3.000 mile road trip. Or, like Formula 1, what ‘modern tech’ could I integrate into a vintage car without looking like a JC Whitney catalog. Meaning, could I execute it in a way where, the more you looked at it, the more you would discover versus ‘shouting at you from the rooftops’ the whole time.
Here was my initial wish list:
- 400hp plus: I don’t know why I chose this number exactly, other than I heard a story that some of the modern super car builds like the singer in the Gunther works had 400 hp engines that cost over $150,000. So I thought I’ll bet you I could build one a lot cheaper than that.
- Twin turbos: I wanted to harken back to the Porsche 935, but I didn’t want to get rid of the entire rear bumper, so I thought of going with a ‘peekaboo’ twin turbo concept.
- Modern engine management and other critical functions of the car that I can control with my iPhone.
- A wide LCD dashboard that I could use to replace the analog gauges of the car
- Electric air conditioning and power windows, including smart features like Alexa or Siri.
- Adjustable coil over suspension, and if someone makes it, on the fly damping control and sport modes.
- Integrated 911R tail lights, and a couple of other surprises I don’t want to give away just yet.
- Subaru EZ30R Flat Six motor
I had posted on Instagram looking for someone who could do a rendering, and a gentleman DMd me. We had a brief phone chat, and a couple weeks later he sent me these incredible renderings of what I’m calling Lastern, (Lastern means blaspheme in German) the Blasphemy Build.
It’s worth noting I’m not an engineer, or a restoration specialist, or a shop. I’m just a guy in a garage that buys his tools at Home Depot and Harbor Freight, watches a lot of YouTube videos, and isn’t afraid to take some chances. I found a killer donor car that was a 1969 911s race car that I’m converting into a street car, and I’m doing it all on YouTube at my rennch.com/youtube channel. I’ve done approximately 30 videos on the build so far, and am mating the Subaru EZ30R flat 6 with the Porsche G96 transmission. My goal is to entertain, then inspire, then teach if I can. If I can get one person to finish the car in their garage, or pick up that project car on the internet, then it’s all been worth it.
This car is set to debut at SEMA 2021, and I couldn’t do it without a number of sponsors that have believed in me and supported the project. Restoration Design from Canada for their exceptional body panels and expertise on how to assemble them, Haltech for the ECU ‘Brain’ of the operation, Classic Retrofit for their innovative electric A/C units, CSF Radiators for their incredibly efficient radiators, Numeric Racing for their incredible Porsche shifters and expertise, Guard Transmission for the adapter plate, marrying the Subaru motor and the Porsche trans, TRE Motorsports for hard to find parts and the working knowledge of all things cool and Porsche, and Autobahn Parts Dismantling for a bunch of OEM stuff I’m trying to get to work together. This car is going to be a really badass Frankenstein.
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Porsche Club GB
Want to share the story of your car? Get in touch by email at Hello@mikebrewermotoring.com