Oliver Collins’ 1995 911 Carrera

AFTER I MISSED THE CALL for 993 owners to write about their cars for the 25th anniversary article, Editor-In-Chief Dave asked me to do a write up for Provinz on the three 993s I have owned. I find it uncomfortable to blow my own horn in a publication, but here goes.

What may seem odd to read in a Porsche magazine is that I am actually an Alfa guy. I have owned over 20 Alfas over the years, only one from new in 1974, the rest mostly dating from the ‘40s to the ‘60s. They have brought me awards from Pebble Beach (two), Villa d’Este in Italy, and many other concourses. I vintage-raced with VSCCA in the northeast USA for 35 years in a ’59 Maserati OSCA and a ’59 Stanguellini F Jr.

Having said that, I have loved my Porsches, all three. They were all 1995s — two Guards Red and one black. They were considered my “modern” summer cars. I purchased the first red C2 coupe in 2004 and enjoyed it for eight years until it was totalled in an accident (no one was injured). Once I stopped crying, I started the hunt for another, found a black one in 2013 but sold it after six months when I found a rust bubble at the edge of the windshield. A year later I came across Terry Orr’s PCA ad for a C2 coupe and headed out to Oakville for a look. Terry, a long-time PCA member, and I first sat in his kitchen for a chat about Porsches and cars in general and then I knew I would buy his car before I even saw it. We enhanced the deal to include his RUF 18-inch wheels, which complemented the other subtle improvements he had made to the car. It was immaculate. So much so that I was awarded third in the 993 preservation class at the 2015 National concours at Parade the following year. I needed to put the original wheels back on for the preservation class.

I have only had my Porsche to one PCA track event, a DE day. I guess I have had my fill of track adrenalin in my days of wheel-to-wheel racing.

In 2016, along with three other couples in Porsches, we had a nice country-roads drive to Parade at Jay Peak in Vermont. Later that year we also went on Jason Figueiredo’s terrific five-day Smokey Mountains UCR road tour with 10 Porsches. It included some great hotel stays, a visit to the Biltmore mansion in Asheville, North Carolina, and, of course, driving the Tail Of The Dragon (318 curves in 11 miles) as well as the Devil’s Triangle in Tennessee. The trip included a blow-out on the Interstate but fortunately there was a tire store at the next exit and we were back on our way in a couple of hours. The best part, as usual, was the people. I commented at a dinner that I had never before spent time with such a big group when there wasn’t at least one of them that pissed you off. A wise cracker said, “Maybe this time you’re the one!”

Why a 993? As a retired designer, aesthetics has always played a big part in my vehicle choices. I am not alone in considering the 993 the best-looking of all the 911s. It has very clean lines, no fussy add-on wings, scoops or unnecessary curves. The bumpers were finally incorporated into the coachwork shape in 1995 and it is also the last Porsche with mostly analog controls and gauges. You drive the car, not the other way around.

I still love the romance of the old Alfas but you can’t beat a 993 for a road tour. </>

Story and photos courtesy of Oliver Collins

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