Inside and out, this 993 Targa really does impress. The claimed mileage of just over 15,000 explains its condition to a point, but this is nevertheless a Porsche that appears to have been well cared for. The vendor Hendon Way states it has MoT documentation covering the car’s entire life, backing the low figure shown on the odometer, though the history folder was unavailable at the time of our visit. The car has apparently been serviced at regular intervals by specialists Merlin Cambria Porsche and Porsche Centre Wilmslow, has three former keepers and has been driven 3800 miles in the past four years.
The Zenith Blue paintwork has been beautifully preserved, being free from swirlmarks and scratches, while panel gaps are even throughout with no obvious signs of accident damage. A small number of frontal stonechips are only visible under close scrutiny. Glasswork too, including the targa roof, is free from chips and scratches.
The 17-inch Speedwheel split alloys are period-correct to the Targa and wear Pirelli P Zero tyres all round (205/50 front, 255/40 rear) with decent tread. If we’re being fussy, the split rim bolts show corrosion and there is some minor kerbing to the passenger-side rear, but overall the car presents well.
Inside, there’s no wear to the grab handles or steering wheel, while the seats only have some mild creasing on the bolsters and on the edges of the seat squabs. Carpets too are nicely preserved and the dashboard is free from marks and any unsightly scuffs. All of the electrics worked when tested, in addition to the air conditioning which blows ice-cold.
There’s nothing in the engine bay to suggest anything is amiss, and everything appears original. There are no oil leaks and all hoses are free from cracked rubber; the same true of the drivebelts. The plastic housings and shrouds are also undamaged.
Throughout our test the ABS light remained illuminated with additional warning lights appearing intermittently – we’re told this was a result of a charging fault which the vendor will resolve before sale. It didn’t affect the way the car drove.
Engine response is excellent, pulling keenly even from low revs, while power delivery is silky smooth right up to the higher reaches of the rev range. The engine temperature needle settled to a position just below half while cruising and remained so at idle upon returning to the dealer. The oil pressure gauge however, was inactive.
The gearbox too is a joy to quickly and easily snick between ratios. Steering is accurate and free from play and vibrations at speed, while there are no untoward knocks or clonks from the suspension over uneven stretches or mid-corner to report, likewise interior trim is free from rattles.
Condition is what sets this Targa apart from others that are currently for sale. Although the Turbo, C4S and the GT2 in particular are the most sought-after, the Targa, with its glass roof that retracts under the rear window, is certainly a popular variant for fans of the 993. The fact that the one here is a manual, rather than Tiptronic automatic, adds to its obvious appeal. This is one of four cars for sale tested in the latest issue, part of 16 pages of buying tips and advice, including Quentin Willson’s Hot Tips, Ads on Test and Buying Guide in the latest issue of Classic Cars.
Engine 3600cc dohc flat-six, L-Jetronic fuel injection Max power 285bhp @ 6100rpm Max torque 251lb ft @ 5250rpm Performance Top speed: 171mph; 0-60mph: 5.3sec Fuel consumption 24mpg Length 4260mm Width 1735mm