In the metal
This lovely Guards Red 930 Turbo is a late 1980s model. 1988 to be specific, meaning I'd have been 10 when it was made and that it misses out on the G50 five-speed transmission. Its 3.3-litre blown six gives 300hp in a car weighing 1,300kg. The official figures say 0-60 in a whisker over five seconds. Top speed just the other side of 160mph. Not that far above hot hatch territory these days, but at the time, pretty epic. The shape, clumsy impact bumpers aside, is wonderful. Curvy, muscular, pure. Gorgeous Fuchs wheels and set off by the mother of all rear spoilers to let you know that this one was the boss.
The car fires instantly and settles into a relatively muted idle with just a hint of bassline throb. The dinky steering wheel is just where you want it, the pedals barely offset. OK, the seemingly random placing of minor switchgear leaves a lot to be desired but, hey, it's all part of the charm.
There is always some surprise at the heft required to manoeuvre at low speeds. Chunky rubber and no power assistance on the steering equates to a brief forearm workout until up and running.
half the gears of a new BMW 5 Series.
So you need to pay attention to the rev counter, made easier by it taking pride of place directly in front of you in the constellation of VDO dials (and bright red in this machine to match the bodywork - not standard issue, I hasten to add).
Below 3K there is naff all, by three and a half you can feel the storm building and the boost gauge at the bottom of the rev counter is swinging in to life. By 4,000rpm the KKK 'charger is boosting at 0.8 bar and the acceleration goes ballistic.
Still got it
Don't be tempted to shift up early - do so under 6,000rpm and you risk dropping back out of the power band. Be brave, use the whole of the tacho before grabbing the next cog and the acceleration is seamless and potent. Of course a current Turbo would blow it into the weeds but make no mistake: even in 2013, this feels like a very fast car indeed.
Get your braking done early, feed the car and power into the apex smoothly and hook up those massive rear boots you can feel the car sit and grip. As you accelerate traction increases still further as you apply more power, sitting the car even harder onto its rear tyres.
Junk in the trunk
As the nose lightens the wheel chirps and chatters to you over the texture of the road surface in a truly unique way. The volume and clarity of information being relayed from tarmac to fingertip is remarkable and an integral part of the experience.
As is that whiff of danger that always hangs over any older 911. Stir in the laggy delivery and the sheer on-boost thrust and you can understand how the Turbo might have punished the unwary or overambitious. Keep it smooth and unless you brake too deep or spool the turbo up suddenly mid-corner, you are unlikely to have problems.
The brakes are fabulous, too. The pedal is firm but the action linear and outright stopping power is pretty impressive - this setup was adapted from the 917. You can't just brush off the speed with a dab as in modern 911s, but you can measure your braking effort perfectly, right up to the limits of the tyres' performance.
Is there a hint of rose-tint to my Turbo drive? Probably. It's a beautiful day on terrific North Yorkshire roads and this is a car I have drooled over since childhood. It's not the first one I've driven but nor is it, I hope, the last.
It is also, in today's market, a conspicuous bargain. OK, the £45K asked for this caris hardly pocket change, but when you compare it to the money being fetched by RS models and even boggo 993s and 964s, it seems pretty low. And I simply can't imagine that it won't increase significantly over time - just look where Testarossa and Countach prices have been heading. A wonderful investment that you can use and enjoy in the meantime. A poster-boy for a generation. A game-changing motoring icon. And I'll wager it's aged a darn sight better than that tennis player...
Porsche 911 (930) Turbo
Engine: 3,299cc flat-6 turbocharged
Transmission: 4-speed manual, rear-wheel drive
Torque: 318lb ft@4,000rpm
0-60mph: 5.1 seconds
Top speed: 162mph
Price (used): c. £45,000