1966 Porsche 906 Carrera 6SOLD

Ex-Works Targa Florio, Le Mans Class Winner and European Hillclimb Championship-Winning Car

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Estimate: Refer Department

Sold: £398,000

At Le Mans in 1951 a lone Porsche 356, aluminium-bodied and powered by a modest 1,100cc engine, finished 20th overall. It marked the beginning of great things to come, and throughout the rest of the Fifties the German marque continued to improve and add to its growing list of competition successes. The famed 550 series was, in particular, instrumental in building Porsche's international racing reputation towards the end of the decade.

Introduced in 1964, the 904 model, with a 1,966cc four cylinder engine, was even more sporting in appearance. Enormously successful as a works entry in the under two litre class, it also enjoyed many successes in private hands. Increasing opposition, however, was coming from Ferrari and elsewhere and it soon became clear that the transition to a six cylinder car of a more serious race orientated concept was required if Porsche was to retain its superiority. For 1966, the Stuttgart concern thus had the 906 ready to show the world. Otherwise known as the Carrera 6, this car was quite different technically to its predecessor but had been designed by the same team headed by Professor Porsche's grandson, Ferdinand Piech, in close conjunction with Huschke von Hanstein, head of Porsche's racing department.

Racing developments flowed thick and fast in the late Sixties and those from Porsche were mostly logical evolutions, and the 904's suspension and brakes were thus transferred into the 906. Fifty-two examples would be produced, 50 of which were required for homologation into the Group 4 class. It would completely dominate this under two litre category, with the 906 continuing to build the growing legend of the Porsche name.

Built around an ultra-light, tubular space-frame, the 906 was clothed in a very streamlined body with an overall height of only 38.6 inches. Similar to the production 911 unit in basic design, the flat-six engine was significantly lighter, making extensive use of magnesium and aluminium alloys. With dual ignition, 10.3:1 compression, two triple-choke, downdraught Weber 46IDA carburettors, and special manifolds and exhaust system, this 90½0 unit produced 220bhp at 8,000rpm and 145lb/ft at 6,000 rpm.

On its debut at the 1966 Daytona 24 Hours, the Porsche finished sixth, beaten only by a factory team of fleet Ford GTs and a single Ferrari. The Sebring 12 Hours followed and, although the lead car spun out of contention, 906s scooped fourth, sixth, and eighth places; in the Targa Florio the same year they ended up with first, third, fifth and eighth positions, followed by fourth, seventh and tenth in the Nurburgring 1,000km, and fourth, fifth and seventh in the Monza 1,000km.

It was in the Targa Florio in the Prototype 2,000 class that chassis 906-111 made its racing debut driven by Hans Hermann and Dieter Glemser, but only to crash out at the halfway stage. Better things were to come at Le Mans where the car, now entered in the Sports 2,000 class, and this time crewed by Gunther Klass and Rolf Stommelen, came home seventh overall behind three sister 906s in the Prototype 2,000 class and the trio of Ford GT40s that filed the top three positions; 906-111 also netted first place in class and eighth spot in the Index of Performance. It had, though, been a close thing, the Porsche almost failing to finish after Klass missed a scheduled stop and he only just managed to make it back to the pits to refuel.

After Le Mans, the 906 continued to make its impressive mark in the World Sportscar Championship: overall honours in the Circuit of Mugello, second place in the Enna City Cup, first to sixth and eighth and ninth places in the Hockenheim Grand Prix, fourth, sixth and ninth in the Swiss Mountain GP, and a clean sweep of first, second and third positions as well as fifth and sixth in the Austrian Sports Car GP. It would remain competitive in international racing the following year, results including fifth at Daytona, sixth at Sebring and seventh at Le Mans, but before the end of 1966 it had already been superceded by the 910 model.

For 1967, chassis 906-111 was sold by Porsche to Rudi Lins and with it he went on to take outright victory in the European Hillclimb Championship. The following year the car passed to Siggi Pust who campaigned it in various European races over two consecutive seasons. After passing through several owners, in 1990 it was the subject of a comprehensive overhaul, since when it has been raced in some European historic events, one of which led it to appear on the front cover of the September 2000 edition of Porsche Club Great Britain's magazine. Currently fitted with a 2.2 litre engine to correct specification, it is finished in red and comes with a photographic record of the restoration.

Offered in good condition, this rare, ex-works and Le Mans class-winning Porsche is supplied with a substantial photographic inventory of spare parts, including the original engine (no: 4180222), a complete transaxle, the original suspension wishbones for all four corners, original body panels, comprising front bonnet cover and rear clamshell, plus various other components. As such, 906-111 would be a very competitive machine in international historic events. A highly desirable and evocative racing car, it comes with FIA papers.

Reference Number 12699

as of 8/31/2007

Car 1966 Porsche 906 Carrera 6
VIN 906-111