SVD puts away its redesigned original 911, with a focus on the new Turbo Study
While you won’t be short of options when it comes to choosing a classic “reimagined” or modified Porsche 911, you won’t be able to get one from Singer Vehicle Design anytime soon.
Speaking to Top Gear, boss Rob Dickinson confirmed he had discontinued the reimagined ‘Classic’ 911 range – the heart of the business since its inception over a decade ago.
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“We actually stopped taking orders for ‘Classic,'” he said. “We capped it at around 450 [cars]. We have lots of Turbos to build! I would like to say there is a master plan…there is not really a master plan. There was no master plan 12 years ago when we started, we are inventing it as we go.
“We kind of took a break from the Classic,” he added. And his not as the world is rapidly depleting its reserves of unmodified 964 natural resources. “There are tens of thousands of 964s! And there are plenty of seedy ones that we don’t feel too bad about reinventing.
Dickinson pointed to the fact that capping production would preserve the values of existing cars. “We’re just trying to be respectful to the guys buying the cars. We want to retain the values of the cars if they subsequently change hands, of course, which I think has more to do with the perception of Singer as a “brand” beyond the quality of the cars.
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“We pay attention to that, and we have to grow a bit. We still have this rock ‘n’ roll culture that I’m desperately trying to hold on to! Dickinson, remember, was a singer and guitarist himself.
“It’s a balance,” he said. “I don’t know if 450 is the right number. We just moved into this mega new building in Torrance, CA. It’s all under one roof for the first time, and we feel like we’re putting a proper process into building the cars, and then we’ll see.
The development of the air-cooled flat-six naturally came to an end. “I think we went as far as we could go. Our attempt with the Design and Lightweighting Study (DLS) was to build the most extraordinarily wonderful engine anyone had ever seen. I don’t know if we have or not!
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“It’s time to try turbocharging, synonymous with Porsche in many ways. Making a refined car, really chasing the NVH and making the car – dare I say it – luxurious and something that makes you feel super good while also being fast and super refined was another challenge for us after the DLS and the Classic , which we have been doing for 12 years.
Indeed, the purpose of the Turbo study was to rectify some of the “problems” that Dickinson always had with the original car. “The position, mainly,” he told TG. “Wheel arches making promises the wheels can’t deliver was a phrase that was buzzing in my head. To take this opportunity to put bigger brakes on the car, improve mechanical grip, and just get away from iconography and celebrating the good bits…and editing some of the not so good ones.
What about turbo lag? “Turbo lag has always been a conversation with 930 Turbos,” Dickinson said. “This engine [in the Turbo Study] has no lag at all. Nothing. We could introduce some lag – count three seconds, then it comes, which we could do for a little fun.
Dickinson noted that the engine in Singer’s Turbo study is “an absolute monster” with “shocking” levels of torque. “We’re going to have to lower it a bit.” The development process begins over the next two months.