Ads on Test: 1976 Porsche 911 3.0 Targa

Porsche 911 Carrera 3 litre

by Dale Vinten |
Porsche 911 Carrera 3 litre
©Classic Cars magazine

£69,500. This Porsche is in incredible condition, as our tester Dale Vinten reports. It’s a shame that’s not backed up with service history

This was once the cheapest way into Porsche 911 ownership. But with little more than 1100 Targas having been produced over the Carrera 3.0’s short, two-year production cycle, this model is now looked upon as an incredibly rare and desirable survivor; the market has priced it accordingly.

The Carrera 3.0 doesn’t appear to have lost any of its performance over the last 46 years. It’s still a very fast car and it pulls strongly in every gear, especially past 4500rpm. Everything about this example still feels generally tight and well put together. There is a small amount of play in the steering, but the car does go where it’s told. The five-speed manual gearbox is solid and gear changes are precise and smooth with no synchromesh issues. The brake pedal feels reassuringly firm underfoot and the anchors themselves work well – stopping isn’t an issue at all.

The original silver paintwork is in great condition and the bodywork still presents well. The black exterior trim is in good shape with only a small loss of paint to a section of the rear offside window surround. There is no rust on the car, including underneath, which looks almost factory fresh with no damage, and the aftermarket Dansk exhaust system is in top condition.

All of the body panel gaps are flush, and the Targa top itself is in good condition and fits well. The signature rear spoiler is also in good condition. The Fuchs alloy wheels are spotless with no damage, and all four are wrapped in Firestone Firehawk tyres that are wearing evenly and have plenty of tread remaining.

The interior is a mix of cloth, vinyl and leather and the entire cabin has clearly been well-maintained. The door cards and dash are in good condition and all of the carpets are clean and dry. The seats are similarly good and remain incredibly supportive especially during hard cornering. The only minor faults we could find were a slightly loose steering wheel centre pad and a somewhat bouncy oil pressure gauge needle, although it jiggles around the centre of the dial rather than suggesting overly low or high pressure, with figures of between 100 and 140psi on the oil pressure gauge under load and around 50 when cruising.

Engine temperature stayed in the 160-170°F range (71-76°C) and the OEL (engine oil reserve) gauge stayed bang in the middle.

The Bilstein rear dampers still look and feel fresh and the engine and drivetrain are free from any leaks. Sadly, the Porsche’s previous owner has misplaced much of the car’s history file but the vendor asserts that money and care has been lavished on it, including a professional engine rebuild in the mid-2010s which included replacement of the original failure-prone cylinder head bolts with upgraded alloy replacements.

This 911 is in great condition and is a joy to drive. Its 81,424 mileage is attractively low by Porsche standards but that lack of maintenance history may prove to be a useful bargaining point. It's one of four cars for sale tested in the latest issue.

Engine 2994cc horizontally-opposed six-cylinder, sohc per bank, electronic fuel injection Power 197bhp @ 6000rpm Torque 188lb ft @ 4200rpm 0-60mph 6sec Top speed 143mph Fuel consumption 16-31mpg Length 4291mm Width 1775mm

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us