The Porsche 968 Clubsport Is the GT3 You Never Knew About

The Porsche 968 Clubsport Is the GT3 You Never Knew About

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00:00
this is a 1993 Porsche 968 Club sport and it's a very special Porsche it's also a very rare Porsche most people who freaked out about the stitching on their gt3 RS parking brake handle have never heard of this car but today I'm going to review it and you are going to hear about it I've borrowed this car from a viewer here in the San Diego area and
00:33
I'm gonna start with a little overview the 968 was the entry-level Porsche model sold from 1992 to 1995 it followed up on the popular 944 of the 1980s and it was the predecessor to the Boxster which came out for 1997 back in the early 90s this was the Porsche you got if you couldn't quite afford a 911 unlike the Boxster though the 968 was front-engine and it used a four-cylinder
01:04
here in North America you could get the 968 as a coupe or a convertible than 968 Cabriolet and with manual or automatic transmissions it had about 240 horsepower and about 225 pound feet of torque and ended 0-0 6 second range with the manual and then there was this this is the 968 Club sport which is sort of the gt3 version of the 968 it was a
01:33
lightweight track focused model that was never offered in North America now Porsche made a lot of changes to the 968 to create the club sport which I will show you but the net result was 200 pounds lighter than the standard model for a total kerb weight of around 2,900 pounds and only around two thousand examples made for the entire world and today I'm going to show you around it first I'm gonna take you on a tour of this car and I'm gonna show you all of
02:04
the interesting perks and features of a little-known 1990s Porsche then I'm gonna get it out on the road and drive it and then I'll give it a dug score alright I'm gonna start the quicksand features of the 968 Club sport by discussing some of the changes Porsche made to the regular 968 to turn it into the club sport and that means discussing some rather unusual white savings measures that you might not think of for example this car has no rear wiper you
02:43
can see the back window on a regular 968 there's a rear wiper not here now you lose the rear wiper the washer the assembly the motor that is some weight savings so it makes sense they did it but they didn't want to create a whole new rear glass just for the club sport model so there's a hole in it that they've plugged with this little plastic plug reminding you where the rear wiper would be on a normal model this little plastic plug is like a big signal to other nine six eight owners that this
03:16
nine six eight is cooler here's another rather unusual weight savings decision there's no way to get into the tailgate from the back you can see there's a keyhole back here but if you look closely you can see it's been plugged up it doesn't operate that was to save weight there's still a way to open the rear tailgate from inside the car Porsche figured why do you need two ways to get in the back so there's no second latch like interesting weight savings decision and next up another
03:47
interesting weight savings decision back here this car does not have a third brake light in the center this would not have worked in the US market which required three brake lights by the late 80s but this car was sold new in a market that didn't require three brake lights and removing the brake light saved a little weight so they took it out and next up let's move on to the interior of the club sport and discuss weight savings in here and I want to start with opening that rear hatch now I already showed you that they removed the rear keyhole and latch in back so the
04:18
only way to open the tailgate is to open the driver's door reach your hand in next to the driver's seat and back to this little tab you pull that and that opens the tailgate that's it there's no release in the drivers footwell you can't do it on the key that's all you get tremendously inconvenient but that's the price you pay for weight savings and speaking of weight savings there are many more examples in the interior for one thing this car doesn't have rear seats other
04:51
nine six eight models did have rear seats but not this one removed to save weight and next up how about this one there's no radio look in the center control stage you can see blanks where the radio should be most cars these days that claim to be focused on saving weight still have some complicated touchscreen infotainment system but you know you're going really hardcore on saving weight when you don't even have a radio like this car and next up here's another one regular nine six eight models had a center console storage area with a nice lid where you
05:22
could put stuff but not the clubsport in this car you just have this little tray no lid that no storage compartment removed to save weight sorry and of course there are other items in here removed to save weight as well for one thing there's reduced sound deadening throughout the interior so you can hear more of the road and rocks getting kicked up that shouldn't matter if you're driving the lightweight track focused version this car also has no sunroof most 968 coupe models did but not the club sport in this car has a
05:53
slick top as they call it now with all this said it's worth noting that you could have removed even more weight than the person who ordered this car decided to do that's because you could get this without climate control and air conditioning but it was added back into this car as an option you could also get the club sport with manual crank windows but again that was added back into this car as an option as well so this one isn't as pure and lightweight as possible but it's pretty close especially with no radio but probably my
06:23
favorite weight savings measure in this car came to the engine now you open up the engine bay and for one thing there's less engine trim under there basically stuff to deaden sound and keep vibration down anything that was deemed unnecessary was removed but that isn't the only thing they did up there listen to some of the other measures Porsche took to get weight out of this car for one thing it has a smaller battery than the regular 968 probably say barely any weight but they did it has a smaller wiring harness than the
06:56
regular 968 has a smaller alternator than the regular 968 and it has a single radiator fan compared to a dual fan like the regular 968 each one got a little bit more weight but they took them all out except if you chose air conditioning as an option then that brought back the larger battery the larger wiring harness the larger alternator and the other radiator fan so getting the car with air conditioning kind of removed some of the ridiculous lightweight charm under the
07:27
hood although it did make the car more tolerable and reasonable now beyond the weight savings there were other changes to this car compared to the standard 968 one good example is the seats this car has these really tight Recaro racing bucket seats way tighter than what you'd get on a modern gt3 RS or gt3 they are really really grippy especially in the waist section like you'd expect from a track oriented car it's also worth noting that this car has revised suspension compared to a regular 968
07:57
this car had stiffer springs for sporty or handling and just sporty or suspension in general and this particular example also has an optional limited slip differential for even better handling for a sporty ER driving experience but anyway I want to move on to some more interesting quirks and features and that means discussing one of the single strangest controls I have ever seen in any car ever all right check this out in the middle you have the climate control vents and they look pretty standard and you have the little plastic things on them that you can use
08:28
to move them around and position them where you want that's all normal but then on the left you have this rather small vent and it has one of these little plastic vent movers too and if it seems a little strange that such a small vent could be moved well that's because it can't and it isn't a vent instead that little plastic piece is the trip odometer reset button you can see I push it and the trip odometer resets the mileage I have never before seen a car where the trip
08:59
odometer reset button is intended to blend in with the climate vents but this is such a car and next up maybe even stranger than that is the headlight situation in this car take a look at the headlights and they look like fairly normal headlights especially for a Porsche circles the front of the car nothing weird here but they have an interesting secret all right go to the left of the steering wheel you have the headlight dial there turn it once and nothing happens I'll come back to that in a second turn it a second time and
09:31
the headlights pop up this car has exposed headlights but their pop-up headlights now usually pop-up headlights are concealed under a cover when they're not in use to make the front end of the car look cleaner that's the whole point of having pop-up headlights but not in the 968 they're both exposed and they pop up which is such a bizarre way to do it but anyway back to that headlight dial turn it to that position earlier that didn't do anything and you can see that the
10:03
headlights are now off but they are still popped up this is a little easter egg of the 968 once you've turned the headlights on if you go back to the middle position in the dial you can have them up but off which is kind of strange but maybe it's what you do if you were cleaning the headlights now turn the headlight dial again and they go right back down so they're popped down but still exposed very strange now it's worth noting that you don't have to pop up the headlights if you just want to turn on a little bit of light in front
10:35
you can run with the fog lights on more interesting to me is the brights the high beams if you turn on the high beams when the headlights are popped down you can see they turn on in the bumper next to the fog lights but if you turn on the high beams when the headlights are on and popped up you can see even more high beam appears in addition to the ones that are already going on in the bumper I think the theory here is you'd use the bumper ones if you just want to flash your high beams whereas you'd want the full array of high beams if you actually
11:06
wanted to see more at night and next up another quirk in here this car has a pretty old design dating back to the 9 24 in the late 1970s and so there are some things that feel rather outdated in here one of which is the fact that the steering wheel doesn't move it doesn't tilt it doesn't telescope that's just where it is and they hope that it's comfortable and in my case it isn't really fortunately even these sport bucket seats move forward and backwards and the only way you can get a little bit more room in this
11:38
interior and next up another old feeling item you go to put on the turn signals and the gauge cluster doesn't have individual cutouts for each turn signal it just tells you that generally speaking the turn signals are on and you should be able to figure out the rest and next up another club sport quirk comes in the center console where you can see next to the gear lever you have just a bunch of blanks this car has a lot of features that are not included in the club sport model again in the interest of making it as lightweight and sporty as possible the only non blank in
12:09
this panel is the headlight leveling dial which you can use to lower the headlights if you have a heavy load and your suspension kind of pushes up in front but that's it no other luxuries in here and next up another interesting quirk of this car you can see in the center control stack you have a clock there and underneath the clock there are three buttons which are unlabeled why exactly do you need three buttons for a simple clock like this because it is not just a clock it is also a lap timer if you play around with the buttons you can figure out a way to get it to time as a
12:41
stopwatch which you can use as a lap timer on the racetrack I guess this is the predecessor to Porsches modern sport chrono system which is a far more advanced timing and stopwatch system for race track laps on it's modern cars and next up another organ ama quirk in this car is the location of the parking brake which is not in the center like basically every other vehicle especially cars from this era instead it's to the left of the drivers seat between the drivers seat in the door you pull it up and now the parking brake is on you push it down and now
13:12
it's off again it's kind of hidden out of place and next up one of this cars strangest quirks especially in a Porsche fans is where you put in the key that would be on the steering wheel to the right basically every Porsche has the ignition switch over to the left of the steering wheel going back to the racing days where they put it there to make it easier to start the car and get going in a race but in the 968 it's on the right very unpolite but that's what they've done and by the way speaking of the key if you look at the top of the key you'll see this black panel similar to all keys
13:44
from this era but it also looks like one giant circular button so what is that to see if you look closely next to the piece on that key you will see a little light and the thinking was you were walking up to your car at night you couldn't see the keyhole to unlock the door so you would press that button and the light was right next to the key and it would illuminate the door-handle area to help you guide your key precisely into the slot so you could unlock your door this was smart thinkin in the days
14:14
before remote keyless entry and next up moving on to the outside of the 968 clubsport first I want to talk about the cargo area which is quite large there's a lot of space back here in part because this car doesn't have the rear seats that the other 968 models have so one added benefit of the club sport in addition to the lightweight stuff is the fact that it's more practical if you want to carry cargo and large items this was the pickup truck version of the 968
14:46
but anyway beyond the cargo area let's talk about one of this cars most striking exterior details and that would be the color matched wheels now the 968 club sport was offered with regular silver wheels but color matched wheels were available too and most people chose to do it and it has kind of become a signifying element of the 968 club sport and frankly I think it looks kind of weird but kind of cool and definitely distinctive and next up another exterior item I like back here is the badging 968
15:17
si s Porsche either didn't want to or didn't have the room to actually write out the words club but sport it's kind of strange not too often you see an automaker name a car something and then abbreviate the name that they themselves gave it but that's what you have here perhaps it was done to save weight and finally we move under the hood in the 968 which is interesting because this car has a rather unusual powertrain and as a four-cylinder which
15:48
is unusual in itself for Porsche but the strange bit is it's a 3 litre four-cylinder runner unusually large engine now this is also the engine that the Porsche 944 used at the end of its model run in the late 80s and early 90s meaning that it was on sale at the same time as the Ferrari f40 and I bring that up because I've always found it interesting that Ferrari was making a 2.9 liter v8 in the f40 at the same time that Porsche was making a 3 liter 4
16:19
cylinder in the 944 and the 968 you will not find many situations where a four-cylinder engine is larger than an 8 cylinder but that was exactly the case for that little period of time with those cars at the end of the 80s in the early 90s now despite all of the weight reduction measures that the 968 club sport had over the regular model and the exact same engine no additional power so about 240 horsepower in this car this was not about more power and more speed it was about simplifying and making it
16:50
lighter and that's why they decided to do that and so those are the crooks and features of the Porsche 968 club sport now it's time to get it out on the road and see how it drives alright driving the Porsche 968 club sport now I'm actually kind of a 968 fan I like the fact that it's like an underappreciated Porsche and I've always wanted to check out one of these because this is really the ultimate 968 there are certainly some drawbacks to the 968 it definitely
17:21
feels older than it is I just showed you the steering wheel fixed in place it definitely doesn't feel like the 90s car but I've always liked how it looked and I always thought the engine was kind of a curiosity a big 4-cylinder like that it has the same great transmission that other Porsche models of this era had with a great smooth easy clutch really good shift lever it just makes you feel like you want to shift gears and I love
17:51
that regarding this car specifically it's certainly an improved version of the 968 the steering definitely feels lighter and the car definitely feels like it changes directions a little quicker but some of the flaws of the 968 more highlighted even still here as much fun in this car is it's just not quite as precise as a lot of the stuff that costs what this does this is a 70 $80,000 car and that's fake money especially for a 968 a regular one is
18:21
like 15 to 20 so to me even though the ride is quite a bit different still doesn't feel that precise or that sharp although it is more fun than your standard 9 6 8 this car also has a limited slip differential which benefits handling a little bit and it does it handles well it just isn't it's not as tight as at 993 911 it certainly feels like a larger car I was thinking that the club sport might have the upgrades to kind of put it on 911 level but it's just not quite there it's surprisingly fast especially for Carl only 240
18:51
horsepower now all the weight reduction was helpful to this car if you had everything out of it putting the a/c which this one doesn't but if you did you were down to like 2800 pounds thank if Nazir 260 time to prove by like three-quarters of a second like five point eight seconds zero to sixty with all the way down and that's not so bad especially for a 90s four cylinder it's not slow and it's good linear power delivery truthfully I find this to be a pretty fun car I've always liked the 968 and I really like this one it's cool I
19:24
love the color magic wheels I love how it looks and I like the fact that this is the opportunity to have a 968 and still get kind of a special Porsche at the same time this is a cool car it drives reasonably well they can handle a little better and it could be a little faster but it's rare and it's fun and it has the charm of you know 90s Porsches the way it drives the acceleration the feel and so that's the Porsche 968 clubsport I've always really liked the
19:55
968 it's kind of unusual and I think it looks good and it drives well and the club sport is an even more exciting more thrilling version of the 968 than the standard model that we got in North America anyway with that now it's time to give the 968 Club sport a dug score starting with the weekend categories and styling I personally always loved the look of the 968 although most people think it's merely fine I'm splitting the difference with a six out of ten acceleration does zero to 60 and five point eight seconds and it gets a 4 out
20:27
of 10 handling is fine relatively spry but not as fast as I expected and it gets a 5 out of 10 fun factor is ok it's reasonably quick and reasonably sporty but not tremendously exciting in either area and it gets a 6 out of 10 cool factor is a bit higher as it's a special rare older Porsche and it gets a 7 out of 10 for a weekend score of 28 out of 50 next up are the daily categories and features it's pretty low on stuff as a result of its weight reduction but it has enough for a 2 out of 10 comfort is OK and it gets a 4 out of 10 quality is good it's reliable and well built
20:57
although the materials are average and it gets a 6 out of 10 practicality is OK 2 seats is a demerit but it has a big cargo area and it gets a 3 out of 10 finally value in this car is pretty expensive for what it is it's a special and rare Porsche but seventy to eighty thousand dollars is big money given the performance and relative similarity to other 968 models and it gets a 5 out of 10 for a total weekend score of 20 out of 50 added up in the dug score is 48 out of 100 which places it here against some other sports cars from this era
21:27
the 968 clubsport doesn't quite measure up to most of these but none are really close rivals except maybe the rx-7 which is more nimble and cheaper overall though the 968 Club sport is a fun rare Porsche that Porsche geeks will appreciate [Music]

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