This Porsche 914-6 lives in a pedal-powered world

AGR_PorscheAs a longtime purveyor of slightly odd looking, boxy, mid-engined European sports cars, the Porsche 914 has always held a special place in my interests. I’ve long considered it a big brother to my Fiat X1/9 (surely the first person to ever regard a 914 as a big brother to anything), and I’ve long spruiked the handling and packaging benefits to anyone who will listen. These benefits are most certainly at the expense of classic good looks, but in black and white terms the 914-6 is definitely a better, faster car than the 911 of the time. Heresy? There, I said it.

AGR_Porsche (14)So with my antennae permanently piqued for said boxy, mid-engined cars at all times, you can imagine my surprise to pass a track ready, period GT inspired 914-6 parked in a North Adelaide driveway one rainy Saturday morning a few months back. When I noticed, in a narrow but deep garage behind the 914, what looked like some kind of clandestine bike shop operating around a G Series Targa, it was pretty much mandatory to stop and investigate.

AGR_Porsche (3)AGR_Porsche (2)I introduced myself to the owner, Kim, who invited me in to have a look around. As a cyclist myself, and an enthusiast of old steel Italian road bikes too, this place was the most unexpected of surprises. Old Porsche’s and old bikes in the one place? Incredible.

AGR_Porsche (4)I didn’t know where to look. On the floor there were boxes of old Porsche parts…

AGR_Porsche (10)… and the walls were lined with priceless Campagnolo components I was coveting for my old Guerciotti road bike restoration.

AGR_Porsche (7)The Targa sat patiently down the back of the shop while Kim and some customers discussed the fine tuning adjustments on one of their bikes. What a perfect environment.

AGR_Porsche (5)AGR_Porsche (6)AGR_Porsche (9)A Subaru engine sat on one side in preparation for a Volkswagen project Kim has happening in another workshop. What was that about Heresy? At least it isn’t destined for a Porsche!

AGR_Porsche (8)AGR_Porsche (1)Back outside, and it was time for a closer look at the 914.

AGR_Porsche (12)The car was clear with its track intentions, but I love the fact that vague notions of streetability had not been discarded. Whilst the 914 is primarily a track toy, it still does see regular time in the hills during the midweek when the roads are clearest. Kim started the 3.4 flat six up for me, and I can confirm that it is far from stock. It wasn’t at its best at a stone cold idle, but I can confirm it sounds suitably gruff and must be quite a bit of fun up closer to that orange tacho marker.

AGR_Porsche (13)AGR_Porsche (15)AGR_Porsche (11)A huge thanks to Kim for showing AGR around both the bike shop and the 914. I’m sure we’ll be back!

Words and photos by Andrew Coles

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