Resto-modded Porsche models are a dime a dozen, but most builds are based on the air-cooled 911. Fifteen Eleven Design, the vintage car-focused arm of British World Rally Championship (WRC) team Mellors Elliot Motorsport, hopes to stand out from the crowd by bringing the often-forgotten 914 into the 21st century.
Built from 1969 to 1976, and developed jointly with Volkswagen, the 914 is on the same branch of the Porsche family tree as the modern-day Boxster. It was positioned as the company’s entry-level model. Renderings released by Fifteen Eleven Design reveal that its stylists made several changes to modernize the roadster’s lines, like replacing the pop-up headlights with clusters of individual LEDs integrated into the space reserved for the turn signals, fitting a deeper front bumper, and extending the wheel arches. They also made the removable roof panel transparent, a feature never offered on the original car, and they added a spoiler to the trunk lid.
Vents added to both quarter panels channel cooling air to the engine bay, which is directly behind the passenger compartment, and they’re not there just for show. While most 914s received an air-cooled flat-four, Fifteen Eleven Design shoe-horned a water-cooled 3.4-liter flat-six sourced from the Cayman into the little roadster. It makes 325 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque in its standard configuration, though we don’t know if the builder increased those figures. Regardless, it’s powerful enough to justify fitting bigger brakes on both axles.
While suspension upgrades are also found on the list of modifications, all of these changes are theoretical for the time being. Fifteen Eleven Design is in the process of making its dream 914 a reality, but it exists only in computer-generated renderings as of writing. It has nonetheless started taking orders for the model.
Pricing information and availability haven’t been published. Deliveries should begin later in 2021, meaning enthusiasts looking for another option in the resto-mod world won’t need to wait long to see this 914 in the metal.
Bringing a classic car into the 2020s is a trend that’s picking up steam. Well-known Los Angeles-based builder Singer has surfed this wave for years, and it recently transformed a 911 into an all-terrain racer. Across the pond, Swedish racing team Cyan built a Volvo P1800 that’s lighter than a Miata and more powerful than a RS3.