Is the Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 the Best Air Cooled Porsche to Buy?

What is the best air-cooled Porsche 911 to buy if one is just coming to the air-cooled Porsche world?

Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 for Sale
Is the Porsche Carrera 3.2 the Best Air-Cooled Porsche to Buy?

Sooner or later, the aura around air-cooled Porsches eventually draws every Porsche fanatic to consider buying one and Bob is no different. Several years ago Bob bought his dream, a 2015 Porsche 911S (991) in Sapphire Blue. Bob loves the car, but now wants to experience the air-cooled Porsche experience with the addition of an air-cooled Porsche to his family fleet.

The question is which Air-Cooled Porsche to buy?

As I wrote in an earlier column, Porsche owners who come to the air-cooled world from a modern water-cooled Porsche often pursue a “modern” air-cooled Porsche that I defined as being a 964 or 993 model. Bob is no different. He first experienced a 993 and found that it was an extremely well driving car offering many of the conveniences a modern Porsche driver is used to; i.e., power steering, power brakes, ABS, air bags, etc.

The problem is that the 993 and now the 964, are expensive models. For a coupe you will easily spend $70,000 plus and this is tough to swallow as an additional play toy in the garage.

So Bob thought maybe he should experience a lesser priced air-cooled Porsche. Air Brigade has a 1986 Porsche Carrera 911 in the garage so it was offered to Bob to experience the car. In Porsche air-cooled vernacular this is a G-Series Porsche and is the model I recommend if someone wants to experience an air-cooled Porsche. Specifically, I suggest one of the 3.2 liter Carreras offered from 1984-1989.

The Carrera 3.2 is an affordable option since it is generally priced in the $40,000 - $50,000 price range. The engine is bulletproof and the car offers a tight air-cooled experience. By 1984, Porsche had evolved the 911 considerably from its first 1965 model so that the drive was smooth, powerful and road holding. Generally a Porsche air-cooled newbie will find a 3.2 Carrera to be a nice offering of an air-cooled semi-visceral driving experience without the making tremendous sacrifices of comfort and conveniences one is used to from a modern water-cooled Porsche.

So Bob drove my ’86 911 Carrera 911 on some back roads around Asheville and enjoyed the drive. He understood why I recommended the Carrera 3.2. Based on a previous test drive of a 1978 Porsche 911SC, he quickly understood the advances Porsche had engineered into the Carrera 3.2 in the evolution of the G-Series air-cooled Porsche, but he still had reservations.

The main reservation is safety concerns of buying an older air-cooled Porsche offering before ABS and air bags were available. Bob will occasionally be driving the car from Asheville to Atlanta that will entail freeway driving. The thought of driving a classic Porsche in those traffic situations raises too many concerns for his safety so the search will continue for an affordable 993 or 964.

Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2 for Sale
The Best Air-Cooled Porsche 911 to Buy: Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2

Tags: Buying Air Cooled Porsche, Porsche 911 Carrera 3.2, Porsche 993

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