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The Prognosis

First impressions and assessment of the car’s road worthiness

Following a somewhat slapdash purchasing experience I was in possession of my first Porsche. It was in my garage and I was very happy indeed. Happiness derived from a new toy, a hopefully great car, but largely for the task that lay ahead. I knew the 924S was a non-runner when I bought it, but not why. I needed to investigate and also gauge of the car’s general condition, although at glance I could see it was quite poor.

Most immediately I wanted to see how much life there was in the engine. Alas, my first turn of the key in the ignition revealed the battery to be completely flat. Removing it from the car I took my first step back, I sheered the [rusted] bolt that holds the battery in place in half. Pah. The battery went on charge and I begrudgingly went to work.

Home from work and the battery was still on charge. Back at the garage and out with the inspection lamp.

What’s up front…

While the front of the car was sporting a dent in the badge panel, badly filled, and cracked bumper, the rest seemed in good order. The engine itself looked okay – there were a few perished hoses in there, but ultimately tidy looking. Most encouragingly the strut mounts were nice and clean, no sign of corrosion. And when checked, the oil looked brand new.

924S Inspection Engine Bay  924S rear quarter view
…out back

The back wasn’t in bad order. The boot release is a little sticky, but it does still work! There’s a small dent just below the near side light cluster, again sadly there has been an attempt at filling. The panels are a little scrappy too, all bar one had been dinged by a previous owner. And, just for completeness, there is some corrosion on the exhaust.

Teledials baby…

The car was supplied with the original iconic Teledial wheels. The wheels themselves aren’t in too bad condition – there is some corrosion and peeling lacquer, but next to no kerbing. The tyres are poor though, while tread is good the rubber looks like it’s been on the car since new, very badly perished. The wheel arches look in good condition, no sign of the rusty stuff, rust. Disks are a state, but should scrub up with use, these were new on the car in 2008.

924S Teledial Wheels  924S Inspection Interior
…on the inside

Inside the dash is cracked, but that’s a common problem. The seats are split, badly, but for now I can sit in them so will get by. The steering wheel could be tidier, but has lasted a lot better than most modern cars I’ve seen. Finally, on the condition of the interior, the whole thing has the most magnificent odor, an authentic classic car mustiness. Not a fault of condition, but the seats are quite high, or the wheel low, I’ll have to see how I go with that one on the leg clearance front. While it isn’t quite clear in the photo, the rev counter is upside down which is quite simply fantastic!

Red or white…

This shot illustrates nicely condition of the paintwork. It is meant to be red however in reality it is currently more milky white. It was looking slightly redder in some shots where the paint had gotten wet. Also, I have a sun roof! Hurrah. But then, I am too scared to open it in case the seals are gone and it leaks afterwards. Maybe one to try in the summer with [optimistically] less rain and when I have the funds to replace the seals if they are shot. The original roof case is supplied and in the boot.

924S Roof and bonnet faded  924S Rev Counter 800RPM
It’s a non-non-runner!

Finally, in the mix somewhere after the battery went back in, I’d been going through the engine unplugging, checking and cleaning pretty much everything I could unplug or disconnect. One day sitting in the passenger seat I reached over, turned the key and, almost without hesitation, the engine fired and after a short time the needle settled at 800rpm. The idle was a little rough, but still, pretty sweet.

All in all the car was what I had expected, although to be honest slightly worse than I’d been dreaming in the days before its arrival – hadn’t anticipated someone would have managed to put a dent in nearly every panel. Also, the car was advertised with 76k miles, the odometer reads around 120k miles. With the car only costing £400 I was more focused on starting it than complaining about such irregularities. My biggest fear to this point was not being able to start the engine, so when it did I was ecstatic. I needed to do a sort out one of the rear lights, replace the front wiper blades and fix the windscreen washers. Otherwise, as far as I could see, everything else was as it was when it passed the MOT in 2008, so should pass again. The one thing I couldn’t test was the emissions but hoped the drive to the MOT station at revs in a low gear might blow out the cobwebs. My mood was jubilant.

I booked it into a local garage for an MOT and early victory.


3 thoughts on “The Prognosis

  1. Following this with interest. I especially like your comments on smell; I have the same sentiments on the subject. I also wrote some short thoughts covering the 924 here: http://carquiz.wordpress.com/2011/10/03/porsche-924-and-armchair-critics/ if you like that sorta thing…

    Posted by CarQuiz | December 8, 2011, 8:06 pm


  1. Pingback: MOT Time « #Project924 - December 9, 2011

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