Porsche was famous for its legendary rear-engined models like the 911. However, the Stuttgart company had quite successful classic layout cars as well. In 1977 at the Geneva Motor Show the Porsche 928 was introduced.
Source: GR Auto Gallery
The 928th was known to race enthusiasts as a super-comfortable grand tourer with “320 horses under the hood”. This was the perfect automobile for long-distance travel, especially on smooth American roads. The model embodied Porsche’s handling and dynamics and was different from the 911. Of course, the results were the same, but the sensations were different. The different locations of the engine and the greater weight of the vehicle did their job. Many fans of the brand described the differences between the two legends as follows: on the wheel of the 911 of those years you were “on a perfectly controlled, but somewhat frantic stool” (always with a manual gearbox), but in 928 you were in a “comfortable club chair harnessed with a rocket”.
Source: Car and Driver
The history of the “928th” model began in 1971 when the company thought about replacing 911th. Ernst Fuhrman, the manager of the company, considered that already at that time the rear-engine layout had exhausted its potential. It was risky to build the future of the company, relying only on the “911” model. Therefore, it was decided to create an alternative for the “911th”. Ferdinand Porsche had long dreamed of a classic layout and more comfortable luxury touring model, with a V8 under the hood. Such a vehicle could attract American buyers – big fans of the “eights”. After all, after the publication of Ralph Nader’s book “Unsafe at any speed”, which criticized rear-engined cars, the demand for the Porsche 911 overseas decreased significantly. However, the development of the new grand tourer was delayed due to the oil crisis, which forced the company to launch the inexpensive 4-cylinder 924 in the first place. Another reason for the delay was the disagreement over engine installation: Ferdinand Piech wanted to combine two inline 5- Audi cylinder blocks into a 4.6-liter V10 engine, while other engineers built a prototype with a 5-liter V8 with 300 hp. Rising gasoline prices put an end to these disputes, and as a compromise between performance and economy, a 16-valve aluminum SOHC V8 engine with mechanical fuel injection Bosch K-Jetronic, 4474 cm3, and 240 hp was chosen. (219 hp in the US market). The Porsche 928 was introduced in 1977 at the Geneva Motor Show and went on sale by the end of the year.
In 1987, the new 928 S4 received a 5.0-liter V8 – as originally intended back in the 1970s. With a modernized block head and four valves per cylinder, it already developed 320 hp. The V8 engine used larger valves and a variable length intake manifold that took advantage of the resonance effect. With the new engine, the maximum speed reached 274 km / h, and acceleration to “hundreds” took 5.7 seconds. As for the body, it also received a slight stylistic adjustment. The design of the rear part had changed a bit – new headlights and a bumper had appeared. In addition, the car was equipped with an adjustable rear wing on the trunk lid. For connoisseurs of speed, they released a limited version of the S4 Club Sport. Electric drives, central locking, part of the sound insulation, and even a rear-view mirror on the passenger side were removed from the passenger compartment. The result was a weight reduction of 180 kg. The installation of special pistons and camshafts significantly increased the output of the motor. Club Sport was supplied only with a manual transmission and a 40% locking differential from ZF. But the Spartan model, due to its specificity, did not attract much attention from buyers (only 19 cars were sold). Therefore, the company decided to make an intermediate version – more comfortable than the “Club Sport”, but lighter and faster than the S4.
In 1987, the 928 reached over 290 km/h on the oval at Nardo, becoming the fastest naturally aspirated V8 production car.
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