Nine of the best Porsche 911 special editions
The 911 is the undisputed epitome of the sports car classification, one that has embodied Porsche's on-road presence dating all the way back to 1963. With that reputation comes a certain expectation that each new iteration will improve upon a deified automotive formula. Buy and large, the German marque delivers on that promise and then some, often going one step further by creating a generation-specific limited edition model (or several) to boot.
These limited-run cars often pay tribute to the Porsches of days past, commemorate one of the brand’s many anniversaries or celebrate its storied motorsport achievements. Whatever the occasion, there have been many of these unique ‘crème de la crème’ examples over the years and we’ve done our best to compile a list of some of their finer moments.
911 Edition 50Y
The most recent of these specimens to be released is also one of the most aesthetically pleasing. Just 750 of the 50Y were produced as a celebration of the golden jubilee of Porsche Design – a studio founded in 1972 to fulfil all of Porsche’s design requirements outside of automotive such as sunglasses and watches – the brainchild of Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, grandson of the marque’s founder Ferdinand Porsche. As a result, the 50Y is an ode to that philosophy, the bones of it is an unmolested 911 Targa GTS imbued with distinctive design queues such as period-inspired Sport-Tex seat centres and side stripes. A matching Porsche Design Chronograph I watch and a restored 1972 911 S 2.4 Targa were also revealed alongside the 50Y.
Porsche 911 Sport Classic
As one of four in the Porsche Heritage Design strategy, the Sport Classic harks back to the seminal 911 of the sixties and seventies and the 911 Carrera RS 2.7 that took the car world by storm in 1972.
But wait, there's more
Following an initial, 250-model run, 997.2 Sport Classic in 2009, a total of 1,250 992 Sport Classics were built, each of which featured an eye-catching wide body borrowed from the 911 Turbo, Sport Grey Metallic paint, a subdued, Carrera RS 2.7-esque ‘ducktail’ spoiler, stripe decals, a refined exhaust system and Pepita interior fabric along with two-tone semi-aniline leather. A 542hp 3.7-litre twin-turbo flat-six engine unique to the Sport Classic meant it was the most powerful 911 upon release.
Porsche 911 Carrera S Endurance Racing Edition
With 19 overall victories and a total of 109 class wins, Porsche is the most successful manufacturer the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans has ever seen. It was fitting then, that the German marque would select the Circuit de la Sarthe to unveil the Porsche Exclusive-designed Endurance Racing Edition. Just 235 examples were produced to celebrate Porsche’s storied motorsport history through dynamics and design.
An arresting aesthetic and performance to match
Its aesthetic was based on the official World Endurance Championship liveries of the race cars. A 420hp 3-litre flat-six, sports exhaust system, PDCC with PASM Sports Chassis and rear-axle steering all contribute to the car’s focus on track-honed technology.
Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport 25
On the endurance racing circuit, manufacturer/tuning house collaborations don’t come much more exalted than the Porsche/Manthey Racing combination. Having taken emphatic victories at many of the world’s most prestigious events multiple times over, the German marque thought the 25th anniversary of Manthey Racing in 2021 was the perfect opportunity to pay homage to one of the pairing’s more esteemed projects, the 911 GT3 R 'Grello’, now synonymous with Nurburgring 24-hour success taking a total of seven wins at the gruelling event since 2006. Although Manthey undertakes many road-car projects for Porsche nowadays, this GT2 is designed for the track and features a 3.8-litre flat-six twin-turbo engine along with a swathe of circuit-specific components and that unmistakable green and yellow livery.
Porsche 911 Speedster
As the swansong for the 991 generation of 911, the Speedster had a lot to live up to and it did just that. Limited to just 1,948 examples, this particular model was designed to encapsulate the very essence of the Porsche brand over its storied 70-year history, producing some of the finest sports cars to ever grace public roads.
A lowered windscreen, aerodynamic bodywork at the rear, 20-inch forged alloy wheels and an optional Heritage Design package are amongst its distinguishing features, they are complemented by a naturally aspirated 4.0-litre six-cylinder engine.
Porsche 911 Sally Carrera Special Edition
As the only one-off in our list, this 911 is unique in every sense of the word. Renowned animation studio Pixar teamed up with Porsche to bring ‘Sally Carrera’, a fan-favourite character from the film ‘Cars’ to life, with the proceeds being donated to two charities, Girls Inc and US for UNHCR.
What makes Sally special?
An entirely new colour was conceived, Sally Blue, bespoke silver headlights and silver 996.2-esque five-spoke wheels were also included, all of which were created to ensure this car’s aesthetic matched that of the car in the movie as closely as possible. It eventually sold for £2.5 million at RM Sotheby’s Monterey Car Week.
Porsche 911 GT3 RS Carrera RS Tribute Package
As is immediately evident by observing its vibrant green accents, the 911 GT3 RS Carrera RS Tribute Package does exactly what it says on the tin; it pays tribute to the seminal RS, the 911 Carrera 2.7 of the seventies. In the modern day, all that nostalgia brings with it a hefty price tag. Getting on for £100,000 more than a base spec GT3 RS, the Carrera RS Tribute commands a cool $314,000 off the shelf.
Plenty of bang for your buck
For all that wonga, buyers receive the Python Green decals, painted magnesium wheels, green mirror caps, an RS logo on the rear wing end plates, the Weissach track pack, and a whole heap of green stitching. Oh, and they also throw in a watch, two 1:43 models (the original Carrera RS and the tribute) and even an NFT!
2016 Porsche 911 Targa 4S Exclusive Design Edition
In yet another salute to the classic 911s of old, the Targa 4S is a suitable nod to the targa-topped sports cars that came many years before it. Of course, its retro styling elements are perhaps the biggest pull to this limited edition with the Etna Blue paintwork harking back to the 911’s predecessor, the 356 and its signature colour. The number of Targa 4S Exclusive Design Editions that Porsche produced remains shrouded in mystery.
Porsche 911 Turbo Flachbau (930)
Originally commissioned for TAG Heuer Co-Founder and McLaren Director/shareholder Mansour Ojjeh, the Flachbau began life as a road-legal version of the 935 race car and utilised the model body panels from the 935, a 930 frame and a 3.3-litre turbocharged flat-6 engine from the 934 race car. Demand for a special edition led to the creation of the Flachbau which translates to Slantnose or Flatnose. Only 948 examples of the aerodynamically superior version were ever created.