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Old 07-17-2019, 12:26 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 3,688
A $1,600 Boxster and two projects

I have bought a few 'cheap Porsches' before and know what to expect. When I saw this 2001 offered at $1,700, I had to check out.


Engine doesn't turn and cheap seat covers covering badly cracked leather, but Litronic lights and no serious body damage. I see plenty of opportunity to get my money back out of it, but I also see a great opportunity to build a 986 for the Grassroots Motorsports $2,000 Challenge. I offered $1,600 and the seller agreed. We did a simple trailer to trailer transfer and I parked it for a few days while I figured out what to do next.

The $2,000 Challenge is a competition with a three events: autocross, concours, and drag race. The total budget for buying and building the car is $2,000, but there are ways to manipulate the budget with trades, exceptions, and up to $1,000 'recoup' from selling parts. Parts that come off the car for recoup don't actually have to be sold. You can 'sell them to yourself' if you document the fair market value price. Starting at $1,600 I can get $1,000 recoup from Litronics, storage shelf, and headlight washers (I have cracked, yellowed junk lights I can replace them with at nominal value. That put my starting budget at $600 spent with $1,400 to build with.

Originally my thought was to verify the engine was not economically repairable, then either fix it, or swap in an Audi V8 ABZ engine ($600 complete with ECU) that's been sitting in my garage. As I did a more detailed Post Purchase Inspection, I realized that it was a nicer car than the 1999 that my daughter drives. I checked with the organizer of the Challenge and got approval to trade the chassis of the 1999 for the 2001 as long as it is clearly documented on my 'build book' budget. The concept is simple, but I'll have to be careful about the details, part-for-part, to keep it clean.
The plan emerged:
  • Pull parts from the 2001 for recoup.
  • Remove the engine from the '99 and put it in an equal state to the 2001.
  • Officially 'trade cars' with myself.
  • Fix the 2001 (install a 2.5L or buy a 2.7L engine) and install the recouped parts back on it, since it is no longer the Challenge car.
  • Strip out the 1999 to lighten it and swap in the Audi V8.
  • Figure out tires, wheels, suspension, aero, etc. with what remains in the budget.

I have no illusion that I will actually be competitive at the Challenge, but I will compete. This is about having fun and making a decent car for my daughter and a toy for me from the pile of stuff I have accumulated in the driveway.

As I write this, the 2001 is outside in the parking lot. I drove it to work today with a 2.5L 1997 engine in it. More on that with my next update.

(Here's the build thread on another forum if you want to jump ahead: )
I am not an attorney, mechanic, or member of the clergy. Following any advice given in my posts is done at your own peril.

Last edited by 78F350; 07-17-2019 at 12:29 PM.
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