LOS ANGELES — Ruf and Singer have been honing their products for years, developing instantly recognizable products with a character all their own. But Gunther Werks is the new kid in town, with a different vision — to create an air-cooled 911 GT3 RS with modern tech, using a Porsche 993 Carrera 2, the final iteration of the original air-cooled 911 as the starting point. An ambitious goal, and we’re here in Southern California to see if Gunther Werks can deliver.
The 400R looks polished from the outside, but all it takes is a corner or three to realize this thing means business. But so do Ruf and Singer, so how’s the Gunther unique? What really separates the car from the pack is the sense of cohesion that the entire project oozes. The GT3-inspired theme influenced every choice on the car. It’s not simply a modified Porsche; it’s an attempt to build a Porsche that never was. Neither money nor time were spared, and the final product shows that.
Let’s talk about the car’s roots. By the time the 993 rolled off the line, new suspension and a wider rear had calmed the inherent compromises that come with a rear-engine car. Both helped improve the car’s stability without ruining what makes a 911 special in the first place. When CEO Peter Nam decided wanted to build a modern interpretation of a luftgekühlt (that’s German for air-cooled) GT3, he thought it’s best to start with a good base. Every decision thereafter was centered around performance. Less attention was paid to luxury or aesthetic touches — the 400R is truly a form-follows-function, corner-carving hammer.