Paris

8 February 2017

Offered from an exceptional Swiss Porsche Collection

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Lot 131

1988 Porsche 959 Sport

  • Chassis no. WP0ZZZ95ZJS905011

Sold for €1.960.000

Documents: Bill of Sale


515 bhp, 2,848 cc DOHC horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine with twin KKK turbochargers and Bosch-Motronic Electronic Fuel Injection, six-speed manual transaxle, four-wheel independent suspension with double wishbones and coil-over shocks, and front and rear ventilated disc brakes. Wheelbase: 2,270 mm

  • Offered from an exceptional Swiss Porsche collection
  • One of just 29 built
  • Purchased new by Vasek Polak Jr.
  • Just three owners from new
  • Highly original; still retains its original paint


Rocketing Porsche into the 21st century, the 959 showed the world just what was possible in terms of technology and performance from an automobile and what the public could expect from the automobile industry in the years to come. Adjustable suspension, an intelligent four-wheel-drive system, tyre pressure sensors, and super-lightweight hollow-spoke magnesium wheels made it nothing short of a game changer. Even with a price tag of $300,000, it is said that Porsche lost money on every single one as a result of the extraordinary costs of construction, research, and development.

While the silhouette and interior might have resembled that of a 911 produced at the time, there was no doubt that this was an entirely different animal. With 450 brake horsepower on tap, the 959 could leap from 0–60 mph in less than four seconds, do the standing quarter-mile in just over 12, and reach a maximum speed approaching 200 mph.

Just 284 production 959s were built. The more luxurious 959 Komfort model made up the vast majority of production, with only 29 959s built to Sport specifications. Of course, the difference between the models is instantly discernable from their nomenclature. The 959 Sport boasted a full, leather-wrapped road cage with four-point racing harnesses and cloth upholstery, instead of the leather upholstery seen in the 959 Komfort. Mechanically, it boasted a more conventional coil-over suspension and was stripped of the 959 Komfort’s air conditioning and stereo. This helped the 959 S come in at approximately 220 pounds lighter than the 959 Komfort.

The 11th 959 S built, the car presented here has a fascinating story, and it can be argued that it is the finest example of its breed. It was purchased new by noted California Porsche dealer and racer Vasek Polak's son, Vasek Polak Jr. Polak picked the car up personally from Stuttgart and drove the car around Europe before returning to America.

Of course, Porsche aficionados will know that 959s were never delivered new to the United States, as they were not compliant with United States Department of Transportation importation laws or emissions standards. However, Polak and one of his friends managed to find a way to import the car to the United States.

Parting with the car some years later, Polak sold his 959 S to a noted collector who later sold the car in 2008 to its current custodian, a Porsche collector based in Switzerland. Since then, the 959 S has been the crown jewel of his collection. The car recently spent six months at the Porsche Museum in Stuttgart, where it was on display in a special exhibit of Porsche super cars, celebrating the launch of the 918 Spyder. Furthermore, the car has never been modified from its original format and even still retains its original paint.

The pinnacle of Porsche performance and technology in the 1980s, the 959 S is nothing short of an automotive legend. With only 29 Sport models built, they remain by far and away the most desirable 959s and command a substantial premium over the ‘regular’ Komfort models. Chassis number 011 boasts a fascinating ownership history, having been delivered to one of the most influential figures in the Porsche world and its status as the first 959 to be registered in the United States.

Presented in exceptionally original condition, this 959 S is a true collector-grade example, worthy of the best Porsche collections in the world.





Moteur six-cylindres à plat, 2 848 cm³, 2 ACT par banc, 515 ch, deux turbocompresseurs KKK et injection électronique Bosch-Motronic, transmission manuelle six rapports, boîte-pont, suspension à quatre roues indépendantes à double triangulation et combinés ressorts-amortisseurs, freins à disque ventilés sur les quatre roues. Empattement : 2 270 mm


• Issue d'une exceptionnelle collection Porsche en Suisse
• Un des 29 exemplaires produits
• Voiture achetée neuve par Vasek Polak Jr.
• Trois propriétaires seulement

En propulsant Porsche vers le 21e siècle, la 959 a simplement voulu prouver au monde entier ce qu’il était possible de rassembler sur une automobile en terme de technologie et de performances, donc ce que le public pouvait attendre de l’industrie automobile dans les années à venir. Une suspension réglable, une gestion "intelligente" de la transmission intégrale, des capteurs de pression des pneus, des jantes creuses ultra légères en magnésium, elle ne faisait rien moins que changer complètement les règles du jeu. Malgré son prix de 300 000 $, la rumeur affirme que Porsche perdait de l’argent sur chaque modèle compte tenu des coûts exorbitants nécessités par la recherche, le développement et la fabrication de cette voiture d'exception.

Bien que sa silhouette et son intérieur aient pu rappeler les 911 contemporaines, il ne fait aucun doute qu’il s’agissait là d’une toute autre machine. Avec 450 ch disponibles à volonté, la 959 pouvait accélérer de 0 à 100 km/h en moins de 4 s, et sur 400 m en à peine plus de 12 s. Elle atteignait une vitesse de pointe de près de 200 mph (321 km/h).

Seulement 284 exemplaires de la 959 ont été fabriqués. La 959 Komfort, plus luxueuse, a constitué l’essentiel de la production, puisque seuls 29 exemplaires ont été construits en spécifications Sport. On discerne immédiatement les différences entre les deux modèles en fonction de leur équipement. La 959 Sport propose un arceau de sécurité habillé de cuir avec harnais quatre points, et une sellerie en tissu au lieu du cuir que l’on trouve sur la 959 Komfort. Sur le plan mécanique, elle est équipée d’une suspension plus conventionnelle comportant des combinés ressorts-amortisseurs et se trouve dépourvue de la climatisation et de l’installation audio présentes sur la 959 Komfort. Ces modifications permettaient à la 959 Sport de peser environ 100 kg de moins que la 959 Komfort.

La voiture présentée ici, la onzième 959 S construite, a une histoire fascinante, et l’on peut considérer qu’il s’agit du meilleur exemplaire de cette lignée. Elle a été achetée neuve par l’agent Porsche californien et ancien pilote Vasek Polak. Polak est d'ailleurs allé lui-même récupérer sa voiture à Stuttgart, puis l’a utilisée en Europe avant de la rapatrier aux Etats-Unis.

Les aficionados de la marque savent bien que les 959 n'ont jamais été livrées neuves aux Etats-Unis, car elles ne répondaient pas aux normes de pollution et d’importation en vigueur. Avec l'un de ses amis, Polak a toutefois trouvé le moyen d’importer la voiture dans ce vaste pays.

Se séparant de la voiture quelques années plus tard, Polak a vendu la 959 S à un collectionneur connu qui, a son tour, l'a cédée en 2008 à un collectionneur de Porsche basé en Suisse et qui la détient encore aujourd’hui. La 959 S a pris la place de joyau de sa collection. Elle a récemment passé six mois au Porsche Museum de Stuttgart où elle était présentée lors d’une exposition consacrée aux supercars de la marque, à l’occasion du lancement du Spyder 918. On notera que la voiture n’a jamais connu la moindre modification et se présente toujours avec sa peinture d’origine.

Au pinacle de la performance et de la technologie Porsche dans les années 1980, la 959 Sport n'est rien moins qu’une légende automobile. Avec seulement 29 exemplaires produits, les modèles Sport sont indiscutablement les 959 les plus désirables et de ce fait leur valeur est nettement plus importante que celle des 959 Komfort, moins exclusives. Le châssis n° 011 possède une histoire assez fascinante, ayant été livré à l’un des personnages les plus influents de la "galaxie Porsche", et détenant le privilège d’avoir été la première 959 immatriculée aux États-Unis.

Se présentant dans un état d’origine exceptionnel, cette 959 se montre digne de figurer dans les meilleures collections Porsche du monde.

Alexander Weaver

aweaver@rmsothebys.com

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

bruprecht@rmsothebys.com

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

Cameron Smyth

csmyth@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Cameron Smyth joined RM Sotheby’s as a Car Specialist in 2015, working out of our corporate office and providing assistance on c... read more

David Swig

dswig@rmsothebys.com

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

drose@rmsothebys.com

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

dgould@rmsothebys.com

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

gduff@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Ian Kelleher

ikelleher@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Ian Kelleher began his automotive career immediately following his graduation from Oberlin College with a Bachelor of Arts in Politica... read more

Jake Auerbach

jauerbach@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

kforry@rmsothebys.com

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

mmalamut@rmsothebys.com

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

msquire@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

ocamelin@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

pdarvill@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

pfisher@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Peter Wallman

pwallman@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Peter Wallman joined RM Europe in 2007 following nearly two decades in the international advertising industry, where he was based out ... read more

Shelby Myers

smyers@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

tvandervelden@rmsothebys.com

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more