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A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

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Don’t let this rather sedate looking 996 fool you… It’s in fact a 600bhp sleeper ready to pounce at any moment!

Introducing the 996 GTR 600, build by the one and only Gemballa.

Turning the key you immediately realise this is no ordinary 996. When turning the key the three additional gauges in the interior come to life, and with the far right gauge showing boost pressure you know this is going to be a bit special!

The 996 GTR 600 is like no other Porsche I have driven – the closest comparison is a 650bhp 996 GT2, but the GTR 600 feels faster and a lot more fun to drive, possibly because it’s an all out sleeper, has a narrow body and narrower tyres.

Although sitting pretty low it rides extremely well and is actually quite manageable on the country lanes, but don’t get me wrong, when you plant your right foot it does turn into an all out animal and you really have to concentrate – that’s what driving is all about though, isn’t it?

The power is really progressive and I can’t fault the mapping. It’s nothing like an old turbo where you have all or nothing, you can feed the power in allowing you to have more control of the car without it completely biting your head off!

Greig very kindly let me take the car for a test drive and I was smiling from ear to ear the whole time. It’s a real buzz and I would highly recommend this car to anyone who wants something a little different, with a shed load of power and a bit nutty! We made a very short video so you can have a listen to how good this car sounds!

A full write up will be featured in this months Total 911 Magazine.

You can view this Gemballa for sale in the showroom.

A little bit more about the car:

Supplied new to Germany in 2000, this Mk1 GT3 is a rather special machine. In 2001 the car was purchased at 1300 miles by a German gentleman who wanted something unique that attracted very little attention but had the firepower to outgun anything he came across. The car was dispatched to world renowned tuner Gemballa for a special project including their GTR600 engine conversion (600bhp).

The customer however requested the engine wasn’t swapped with a 996 Turbo unit, rather he requested to retain the GT3’s original engine but convert it to twin turbo. Allegedly the owner was well connected with Weissach (Porsche research and development/ Motorsport site) and special development pistons, rods, crankshafts were purchased for the internals to create this one off engine (this could now actually be reverse engineered for replacement parts if ever required). It is supposedly the only one running water-cooled intercoolers and a completely independent cooling system for both turbos, this also necessitated a revised front end to the 996 Mk2 to allow room, whilst they we’re doing this he took the opportunity to de-spoiler the rear for a full Q car look. The car is running Gemballa suspension and brake setup. The total cost for the build and car weighed in at circa £200,000. The car was sold to a German dealer in 2009 who kept it in his personal collection until 2015 where it was then registered in the UK.

The GTR600 has been maintained by Gemballa throughout its life, without regard to cost and has a huge file of receipts detailing all works. The car has had a major service and inspection and is ready for the next owner to enjoy.

Written by Marc Smiddy

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