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A $31,000 Porsche 964 C2 Coupe: A Bargain or a Money Pit?

Updated: May 2, 2020

The Bring-a-Trailer auction web site is featuring a 1991 Porsche 964 C2 Coupe that is currently bid to $21,356 with less than eight hours in the auction. This caught my eye as a potential bargain in this stressed economy period of selling. The median price for this model according to The Sports Car Market Price Guide is $62,500.

NOTE: The article was originally written forecasting a sale price of $40,000. The auction has ended and the final sale was $31,019.

So, it begged the question; is it too good to be true?

The answer: yes.

Let’s take a look at this Porsche 964 C2 that reeks of a bargain, but is not the case.

Here are the 1991 Porsche 964 C2 specs:

  • 1991 Porsche 964 C2

  • Tiptronic Transmission

  • 85,000 miles

  • Selling Location: Hawaii

  • Modifications

  • 17” Cup 1 Wheels

  • Bilstein Adjustable Shocks

  • Dansk Exhaust

  • Color matched raised rear spoiler and brake ducts

Condition of this 1991 Porsche 964 C2

  • Repaint from Guards Red to Metallic Red

  • Top-end service completed

  • Rust bubbling at base of windshield

  • Crack in windshield

Thoughts on the Sale and Purchase

As of this writing, there are eight hours left in the auction. It’s current price of $21,356 will climb as the end of the auction nears. This probably becomes a $40,000 Porsche 964 Coupe; and at first glance would be considered a bargain.

What looks like a bargain is not going to be a bargain. First, most of the bidders are probably not Hawaii based and will need to ship the car from Hawaii to the mainland United States. I was surprised when doing a quick Internet search to see that the cost for shipping from Hawaii to Los Angeles is approximately $1,000. There is also a shipping cost to one’s location in the US; at least another $1,000.

Second pricing consideration is the Tiptronic. This is a major sales deterrent in 964 Porsches and reduces the price by at least 10% – 15%, bringing the median price of this model down to $54,687 if we split the difference and reduce the price by 12.5%.

There are two other major red flags with this car; rust bubble and a repaint to a non-factory color. Who knows what that repaint is hiding in other rust lurking. Mechanical fixes are one thing, but coming from Michigan where salt-laden winter roads and rusted vehicles were the norm when growing up it is always hard to fix rust repairs right and to stay ahead of rust once it starts.

The positive with this Porsche 964 is that it has had the top-end service completed that is a weak point and service requirement on pre-owned 964’s. It also features adjustable Bilstein Shocks and a Dansk exhaust. Since this car is not an original, the buyer will most likely appreciated these performance enhancements without worry about lack of originality.

The reality of performance enhancements is that you never get your money back and in many cases it can hurt the pricing. My estimate is that the non-original performance-enhancements drop the price to $50,000.

Add in the need to replace a windshield ($1500), a repaint to a non-original color and rust lurking and at best the seller can hope for $40,000 in my estimation.

To me, this is a car to stay away from, as the bargain will probably be cash drain in the future. We’ll watch it and see how the auction ends.

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