It’s no secret that here at 924S944.com we simply love the 924S Special Editions. These very unique factory editions were built in/around July 1987 at the beginning of the 1988 model year production. A total of 890 were built with about 500 or so coming to North America. We don’t know how many of them are still in running condition or are sitting in the back yards or shops waiting to be rescued, but here we have added two more to our inventory. They will be brought back to stock/as delivered spec and offered for sale later this year.
Here are some of the “facts” that we know about the 924S Special Edition.
- The +/-500 that came to North America were all black with grey/maroon cotton flannel cloth interiors.
- The rest of the world got their Special Editions in other color combinations and were known by other names such as Club Sport and Le Mans.
- SE’s were spec’ed as air conditioning delete, power window delete, radio delete, power steering delete, sunroof delete, although it is thought that the North American cars were all equipped with power steering, radios and air conditioning as extra cost options.
- The 924S was advertised at $19,995 MSRP plus shipping and other fees. The 924S Special Edition added about $5,000 to that number depending on options.
- Some dealers had trouble selling the Special Editions as they did not have power windows. It is said that in the 80’s Porsche was moving “upscale” with more luxury items, so no power windows were seen as a downgrade!
- There are a limited number of Special Editions that were produced with Sunroofs. While there is no concrete evidence of this, it is generally surmised that all North American Special Editions were produced sequentially, therefore have sequential VIN serial numbers. The cars that we have seen with factory sunroofs are higher VINs, so the “urban legend” says that the factory ran low on “slick top” bodies and finished production with sunroof bodies. Nothing around to verify that, though.
- North American cars have crank windows. From the factory, the cassette carrier/center armrest was deleted although some owners added it back in.
- There are a limited number of Special Edition cars built with the 3-speed AUTOMATIC transmissions. The exact number is unknown, but it is thought to be a very small number. The factory produced about 8% of the 924S cars with the 3-speed automatics. That would make the number less than 40 Special Editions with automatics. (We have one, but it needs everything to be rescued/restored.)
- A factory option was a right outside mirror. Most were produced without the right outside mirror. While the mirrors were, at the time, a VW part, they are no longer available. If you want to install a right side mirror, you need to locate a mirror and also locate the reinforcement piece for the passenger door that provides proper reinforcement and mounting for the mirror. These parts are no longer available. You could use a door from a power window car, but you would have to retrofit it to the crank window and get it painted. If your SE has a right side mirror, it is an inside adjustable mirror with a cable adjuster, not power, that was installed on right hand drive cars. And you’re lucky.
- The 1988 engine is the higher-compression 160hp engine. A few came with the Limited Slip transaxle, but not all.
- The true “check” to know that you have a North American Special Edition 924S is to look at the sticker in the hatch next to the driver side tail light or in the original owners manual. Look for the option code “756” in the options. That is the one for the Special Edition. You will also probably see option code “030” which is the Porsche designation for the sport suspension, sometimes referred to as “M030”. In this case the Engine Code is an “09” which means the 1988 160 hp 10.2/1 compression engine (code “10” would be the same engine in a car with an automatic. The engines are identical except one was assembled with a clutch and flywheel while the other one has a flex plate for the automatic.). “QK” indicates an open differential five-speed manual transaxle geared for the 924S. The paint code is single color “L041” which is black. The code “RT” specifies the special cloth interior. If your car does not have these codes, it may not be a real Special Edition.
So after many months of back-and-forth, we were able to purchase two Special Editions from a customer in Oregon. (We thought that we were the only brain-damaged people in the country with more than one!). Anyway, both are running and driving cars with most of the maintenance up to date, however we will do our normal “rescue/restoration” that has become the normal thing here at 924S944.com. The cars arrived by shipper last week and we have been able to transfer title, insure and tag them both. We have evaluated both and have made good progress on putting together the “to do” list on both of them to bring them back to “as delivered” status. (We do not do “trailer-queen concours restorations here. We put together nice driver-quality cars.)
Here is what we will do on both cars. This is NOT a complete list as we will find more things that need to be done as we move forward, but this will get us started.
- Both cars need the proper cloth interiors installed, so each will get seats with reproduction cloth from Werk924 in Germany.
- One will need the carpeting replaced only because there is one imperfection on the passenger floor. We will likely replace it with original carpeting from another car.
- Both cars will have NEW Porsche dashboards with NO CRACKS!
- Both will get new belts, water pump, thermostat, rollers, and associated parts.
- Both will get all new brakes including new rotors, pads, master cylinder, rebuilt calipers and new soft lines.
- Both will get new control arms, new plastic bushings, new ball joints and new outer tie rod ends.
- Both will get new fuel lines in the engine compartment (fire prevention).
- Both will get new clutch master and slave cylinders.
- Both will get new filters, lubricants and fluids as needed.
- Both will get new tires.
- Both will have the original phone dial wheels (6- and 7-inch) powder coated in Porsche Silver.
- One will definitely need a complete repaint. One is still being evaluated. (we like to keep original paint where that is possible.)
- Both will get new shift boots and knobs.
- Both will get new front and hatch floor mats in matching maroon from Lloyds mats.
- Both will have working original-style Blaupunkt radios installed with new speakers and antenna.
- Both will get new Koni Adjustable Sport shocks and struts. Originally these cars came with non-adjustable Koni’s, but they are no longer available.
- New sway bar bushings will be installed as needed.
- Both will probably get new radiators as the original radiators are normally half-full of trash now.
Upon completion, these will be for sale. One is already “spoken for” but the other will also be available. We are hoping to have them done by the end of 2023. We also have another one that is in process and will be available for purchase in the early summer 2024 if anyone is interested. It has fresh paint, the original engine completely rebuilt, and all the other things.
Porsche North America and PCA keep saying that if you want a 924S, the Special Edition is the one to have. We believe that.