The first rumours on the plans by the mythical Porsche firm to launch to the automobile market a road version of its Gruppe B competition car featuring four wheels drive and double turbocharger, were a great piece of news for the hot cars fans who became filled up with gaiety and enthusiasm. But from the beginning it was proved that ´the non plus ultra Porsche 959´ was a terrifyingly exclusive model, both because of its price and its unthinkable performance. Very few drivers would have the privilege of its possession, since the foreseen production was limited to a total amount of 200 units. And besides, the starting price of 130,000 dollars raised very quickly to the quarter of a million dollars and even more, so it was clear that it was one of the most expensive cars in the world at that moment.
Notwithstanding, 26 American billionaires delivered their initial money deposits to their Porsche distributor for the reserve and subsequent purchase of one of these monsters. But their deposits were returned, because Porsche finally announced that it wouldn´t sell the Porsche 959 in United States, citing problems with the federal emissions and the USA regulations regarding bumpers.
Under the impressive framework and a very spectacular general aspect of the Porsche 959, there is a basical Porsche 911 design.
The resemblance is stronger in the ceiling line and windows, while in the lower part, the similarity between both cars seems to dilute, though the wheelbase is identical in both models.
The top speed of the Porsche 959 is 328 km/h and the brutal acceleration from 0 to 100 km/hour takes place in 3.7 seconds. It´s able to make the quarter of a mile in less than 12 seconds and it can reach 246 km/h in only 21.5 seconds.
The heart of the 959 is a tremendous engine featuring six opposed horizontally cylinders. Even with only 174 cubic inches, this colossal engine group, installed on the back part of the car, yields nothing less than 450 H.P.
The incredible cannon acceleration is partly due to the double phase turbocompressor, providing the engine with enough air to greatly increase the power.
Inside the cockpit, there´s a six speeds manual gear lever, allowing the driver to give the wheels the strength he deems suitable at every moment.
Like other legendary supercars, the Porsche 959 uses four wheels drive (4WD) utterly computerized. This way, the driver chooses a specific program, depending on the motorway conditions. Such programs are: Traction, Ice, Wet and Dry. The computer divides the power between the front and rear wheels, according to the highway condition. Sometimes, the share can be 50/50, with the front and rear wheels rendering the same power. But other times, the computer can decide a 80/20 power distribution, sending the 80% of power to the rear wheels. What all of this implies is that whichever may be the type of motorway surface in which you are or the driving style you adopt, the gorgeous Porsche 959 will keep its superb adherence to the floor. If it should bump into a hole, the Porsche 959 adjustable suspension system can make the car raise up to 2.5 inches on the floor. And if the driver forgets to lower the chassis on coming back to normal or flat terrain, the 959 automatically lowers its elevation grade on the asphalt at great speeds.
Its 17 inches tires have enough size to endure a vigorous and bold driving, and even punctured, they can go on working perfectly for more than 80 km.
It´s important to emphasize that the first Porsche 959 prototypes made very good performances in some very hard Paris-Dakar rallies, winning two of them and standing out specially in the toughest stretches, so you can infer that Porsches 959 can be driven on any type of road or motorway.
In a very amazing way, and having an influence on its very high price, the Porsche 959 chassis is made of Kevlar reinforced with fibreglass.
The front doors and hood are made of aluminium and polyurethane has been extensively used in the border of the front area.
All the chassis is housed inside a framework made with galvanized stainless steel.
The innards of the Porsche 959 is completely new, but not very different from the Porsche 959, with an inner leather finish matching the car framework colour.
In order to save space, the sport version of the Porsche 959 hasn´t got either air conditioning or back seats.
In a very surprising way for this sort of cars, the driving is generally easy. The steering-wheel is light and the visibility towards the back area turns out to be excellent. Even such experts have come to state that at speeds exceeding 164 km/h, the Porsche 959 acts as a normal car going across any road.
That feeling and standard of great security is precisely what Porsche wanted to do when they began the design and engineering works of the brilliant Porsche 959, back in 1980. The fabulous German concern wished to create a car sporting the performance of a world level racing automobile, but intended for a normal driver holding sway over it without any stress.