Karl on Cars

Let's Talk Cars, Motorcycles and Other Life-Changing Events

Tag: sports car

Flashback Friday: 2009 Porsche 911 Carrera S

2009 Porsche 911 Carerra S St Patricks Day

My 2009 Porsche 911 Carerra S in gorgeous German Racing Green

If you’re a genuine sports car fan you already know the historical significance of the Porsche 911. Introduced in 1963, with an air-cooled “flat 6” horizontally-opposed engine located over the rear axle, the Porsche 911 is the most iconic sports car in the history of sports cars. It’s been made for the longest continuous timeframe (nope, that other sports car you’re thinking about missed model year 1983…), and the 911’s basic shape/proportions have never wavered, despite seven generations of 911 and a switch from an air-cooled to a water cooled engine in 1999.

Porsche 911 Carerra S Driving

My 911 was one of the best-driving, most-dependable cars I’ve ever owned.

It was this combination of facts that led me to purchase a 2009 Porsche 911 Carerra S in 2014. This was about a year before the new Ford GT was shown in Detroit. I had no idea that car was coming, and I was looking for an alternative to my 2005 Ford GT, which was and always will be an amazing car. However, I wanted a more well-rounded sports car, suitable for the mean streets of Southern California. That meant only two pedals (my 2005 Ford GT answered my manual transmission needs), a comfortable ride and, in a pinch, the ability to carry more than two people.

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Flash Back Friday: 1973 Saab Sonett III

Saab Sonett Willow Springs Track

The Saab Sonett III was more track capable than I’d have believed before trying it

My two older brothers influenced my car enthusiasm. They both owned multiple vehicles before they had their driver’s licenses, and by the time I got my license they were well into their lifelong odyssey of owning old, odd, eclectic models. One of those cars was a 1973 Saab Sonett III. This front-wheel drive, two-seat sports car was made from 1966 to 1974, and considered a Porsche 911 competitor at the time. Saab actually made the first Sonett in 1955, but only 6 units of the fiberglass convertible were built, utilizing a three-cylinder, two-stroke engine.

Saab Sonett Driving

With a modified engine my Saab Sonett was quicker than a Porsche Boxster

The Sonett returned in 1966 as the Sonett II. This time it was a fiberglass 2-door coupe, but it still used a two-stroke engine until 1967, when it switched to a 1.5-liter Ford-of-Europe sourced V4 engine. The Sonett was revised again in 1970, with a more effective rear hatch and flip-up headlights, plus a name change to Sonett III. This version went unchanged until 1974, though it gained the same unsightly oversized bumpers many small European cars suffered in the U.S. starting in 1973. The Saab Sonett III ended production in 1974

Saab Sonett Interior

Everything from the body to the interior was original and clean in this Saab Sonett

I drove my brother’s Saab Sonett several times when I was still a teenager. At the time I was a dedicated V8 muscle car fan, but the Sonett surprised me with how much fun a four-cylinder, front-wheel drive sports car could be. Fourteen years later, in June of 2000, I was at a Barrett-Jackson auction at the Petersen Publishing Museum where this particular red 1973 Saab Sonett was going up for auction. I didn’t plan on buying it, but I looked the Saab over closely and confirmed it was clean and original…

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