“I actually don’t know what all the fuss is about,” remarked the owner when standing next to his 993 GT2 BPR championship contender. My jaw nearly dropped to the fl oor. He was referring to his beautiful black with orange 997.1 GT3 RS. Fortunately, he continued to explain his opinion: “Once you’ve driven a 911 race car, even the good road cars simply don’t feel that special. They are less eager to turn in, you can’t brake that late.”
He does have a point, but this is coming from a collector that fully enjoys his 993 GT2 Clubsport on the road and the track – and why not? The other reason is that part of his collection is a very special 993 GT2 race car. He has owned it for the past 13 years and in his own words describes it as “as good as it gets”. The main reason for his opinion is the fact that since the 993 GT2 race cars, Porsche has never again developed a turbocharged 911 race car. This specifi c car was built in 1994. A year later, it started its long racing life and participated in the BPR Global GT Endurance Series, which included races in Europe, China, and Japan. The BPR Series of the mid-1990s (1994 to 1996) was surely one of the racing world’s highlights. To witness cars, which today are valuable beyond belief, race against one another was an event that is almost difficult to comprehend. Think of it as almost the same league as Porsche 918s racing against McLaren P1s and LaFerraris. Fortunately, there are hours of YouTube videos that allow us to relive these races of some two decades ago.
The race series was founded in 1993 by Porsche’s Jürgen Barth, Patrick Peter and Stephane Ratel. The first year of racing oicially started in 1994 and included cars such as McLaren’s F1, Ferrari’s F40 and Callaway Corvettes to name a few. The aim of the BPR Series was to use production cars as a starting point that could be developed into racing cars. The cars that were eligible for this GT series were also allowed to compete at the 24-Hours of Le Mans in two classes: GT1 and GT2. During the first season of 1994, Porsche did well with its 964-based RSR. However, during the European winter of 1994/95, Porsche developed the wide-arched GT2, now based on the 993 Turbo. The M64/81, 3.6-litre, twin-turbo engine was almost identical to the 993 Turbo, but featured turbos that ran a higher boost pressure of up to 2.1 bar. In 1996, with the addition of ‘Evolution’ M64/83 camshafts, power is said to have increased to 465bhp at 5,700rpm (up from 450bhp), producing torque of 670Nm at 5,000rpm. In the 1995 season the GT2 Group was ruled by 911 GT2s entered by privateers. At that year’s Le Mans race they took a very respectable sixth, seventh and eight place. But, as an overall winner, the 911s could not beat the very expensive McLaren F1 GTRs and Ferrari F40s.
The result was that Porsche ofered a further development of the GT2 to actually compete in the GT1 class. The GT2 came equipped with larger 40.4mm air restrictors, the catalyst was removed, the exhaust system was completely unrestricted, and larger turbos were also fitted. To feed the engine, the fuel system was also unique to these upgraded cars, which featured no less than five fuel pumps. To put all this power down, wider tyres were used, while the car also had a few upgraded visual elements and was decreased in weight to 1,100kg. Overall, the new GT2 Evolution was a faster car, developing over 600bhp at 7,000rpm, with the redline at 8,000rpm.