It was just over a year ago that Porsche unveiled its 935 tribute. Despite a lack of mechanical upgrades to the GT2 RS lurking beneath the throwback exterior, the 77 examples built were priced at £750,000 a piece. This lead to some initial skepticisproducing such a model. But far from being a quick money grab, the 935 represents quite a fitting tribute to the car which inspired it. Sam certainly enjoying his brief spell behind the wheel at this year's Goodwood Festival of Speed, at least. In order to correctly pay tribute to the iconic 935, however, you don't want a road-legal Porsche turned into a track-only monster; quite the opposite, in fact.
In the annals of outlandish motoring, the name Walter Wolf crops up more than once. Having left Eastern Europe with nothing in the aftermath of WW2, Wolf emigrated to Canada. By the 1970s had worked his way to the very top, the self-made oil magnate garnering quite the playboy reputation along the way, occupying himself at various times as an Olympic skier, deep-sea diver, helicopter pilot and F1 team owner, as well as founding his own ranges of Wolf cigarettes and cologne. It isn't so much how he spent his time that interests us today, though, but rather how he chose to spend his money.
In a back catalogue that includes a custom-built Lamborghini Countach LP400 S, a road-legal Procar-spec BMW M1 and a Ferrari 288 GTO, it's pretty hard for a car to stand out. Then again, it's pretty hard for it not to when it looks like this week's absolutely staggering Showpiece.
Built for Wolf by Kremer Racing of Cologne, this 935 'K3' is described by Kremer itself as being 98 per cent identical to the car which won the 1979 Le Mans 24 Hours. Powered by the same 2.85-litre, twin-turbo, six-cylinder engine - detuned here to produce a more road-friendly 740hp at 8,000rpm(!) - the K3 also retains the same ratios for its 4-speed gearbox as were used to reach top speed down the Mulsanne Straight. A feature which may not make for particularly friendly Knightsbridge kerb crawling, but allowed the car to hit over 210mph on the Autobahn during testing.
The bodywork is comprised entirely of original K3 kevlar body panels - with indicators being the only necessary addition for legality at the time - while the original BBS race wheels are wrapped in custom-built Goodyear tyres. A new exhaust system took six months to develop, the Bilstein dampers doubled ground clearance from 50 to 100mm to enable more practical road use, and a vehicle registration certificate was procured from Alberta, Canada, allowing Wolf to drive the car anywhere in Europe.
Inside, components including the Recaro seats were borrowed from the 930 Turbo. The cabin is trimmed in dark blue leather with red piping, and Kremer even went as far as developing a new speedometer mechanism to satisfy Wolf's request that the dial be capable of displaying the full range of those Le Mans gear ratios. According to the ad he did draw the line at the addition of a passenger air-con unit, however, telling Wolf that it would be better to simply wear a polo shirt while driving in the summer months.
All in, the transformation cost 375,000 Deutschmarks, over £2,000,000 in today's money. Which, if the K3's stunning looks, unbelievable performance and one-of-a-kind rarity didn't already, goes some way to justifying hefty price tag. With only 10,124km on the odometer and still wearing its original front tyres, perhaps the K3 proved to be a step too far for even Wolf to use as a continent crosser, the ad laying down the gauntlet for a buyer "man enough to bring it back on the street." Should tomorrow's bumper Euromillions jackpot come in, we'd wager there'd be more than one PHer ready to give them a call.