1973 Porsche 911 Carrera 2.7 RS Touring (M472)
This UK supplied right hand drive, matching numbers RS Touring is a desirable ‘first 500’ example, this first production run of 500 RS’s featured lighter weight body panels and a hand built bespoke spec which inevitably had to be compromised for later production cars. The car has remained faithful to its original specification throughout its life and has been very well looked after by each of its four owners as the extensive history file testifies. It is in superb order in all respects and has featured extensively in the motoring press.
Chassis 0286 was ordered when new by the oil giant BP, they placed the factory order choosing Grand Prix White with French Blue decals with the options of sunroof, electric windows, Recaro sports seats and driver’s door mirror. It was completed at the factory in November 1972 and was despatched from Stuttgart to AFN Isleworth in January 1973 and was supplied to BP on the first of February that year.
A senior employee at BP obviously liked the RS as it was retained by them as a company vehicle until 1980 covering 60,000 miles during this period. A friend of the second owner worked at BP and was a recipient of the list of company vehicles it was about to sell off. The RS duly popped up on this list priced at £5,250 and following negotiations with wife and bank manager the RS was his. This detail comes courtesy of an article on this car and second owner Gordon Bruce which appeared in Christophorus, edition 347, the magazine of Porsche Cars Great Britain.
Gordon Bruce clearly fell in love with his new RS and kept it for the next 33 years. He described the RS as a little tatty on purchase but over the years he ironed out all the faults, this is detailed in the many invoices on file from Porsche specialists Autofarm and Francis Tuthill. In addition to the full service history all MOT certificates are in file from 1980, as are tax discs.
The RS was chosen to feature as the cover car for David Vivian’s authoritative book Porsche 911 The Complete Story and 1988 was a busy media year for the car, featuring in weekly publication Motor on the 5th March in which it was compared to the then new 911 Carrera 3.2 Club Sport model. Gordon got the chance to drive both cars back to back and as the magazine concluded “he expected to find his old car wanting but drove it home a happy man”. Later that year in August the RS again featured on a magazine cover, this time Classic and Sportscar as part of a headline group test of the best drivers car ever. The RS won the day against stern opposition including Ferrari 250 SWB, E Type, Muira, and Bugatti Type 35B. Indeed, the Porsche was only half a second slower around Crowborough than a then new Lotus Elise. John Surtees who conducted the test described the RS as “there’s never been a better driver’s 911”. Once again the proud owner left the day with a smile.
The RS took a well-earned media rest until January 2007 when it featured again on a front cover, this time it was EVO Magazine and their “Greatest Group Test Ever” issue. Again, the car acquitted itself well showing a deftness and precision lacking in the albeit faster but less tactile modern opposition.
In 2013 Gordon Bruce sold his beloved RS to dealer Hexagon Classics who immediately despatched the car to Porsche specialists Fearnsport for a full evaluation. They confirmed it to be an extremely original and good usable example that would benefit from a full engine and gearbox refresh. This work was duly completed as detailed in a letter and invoice on file.
Later that year Hexagon sold the RS to the third owner, a Porsche collector from Bury St Edmunds. Following purchase, he had the car inspected by nearby Porsche specialist Maxted Page & Prill (then). As before it was found to be good and original albeit a little tired in places. At this point the new owner, a perfectionist, decided to embark on a full rebuild to the highest standards. Copious invoicing on file from Maxted Page and Prill during 2015 documents this work, suffice it to say the car was completely stripped and rebuilt to original specification and without regard to cost with every area being addressed. The engine and gearbox had recently been rebuilt but whilst removed were fully checked and any ancillaries found wanting were dealt with. The cost of this work amounted to nearly £120,000.
Following this work this third owner continued to enjoy the RS in fine conditions and returned it regularly to Maxted Page for maintenance and any remedial work required, again invoicing on file details this.
In 2017 Maxted Page offered the car for sale, this was exactly the car I had been looking for on behalf of an enthusiast who wanted a particularly fine example with a clear provenance and unmodified history. A trip to Maxted Page and good look at the RS and its history made it clear that this was the right car and it was duly purchased.
It has since been stored within the owners small private collection in perfect conditions and has been used sparingly in fine dry conditions only. It has been correctly maintained as required by Porsche guru Steve Winter at Jaz Porsche. Although 47 years old, it looks now as it must have when first leaving Stuttgart in 1973 and wants for nothing. It comes with the extensive above-mentioned history file, spare keys in their original wallet, tools and owner’s manual.
Chassis 0286 is the RS Touring one always hopes to find but rarely does.