By   May 28, 2018

Porsche 959

Porsche 959

Automotive technology has come a long way. Much of what we see in cars today started with exotic cars from the mid-80’s. From early two-turbocharger setups, all-wheel drive setups and ride adjustment, these are all things that are common in cars today, but back about 30 years ago these were new concepts. Some of them came from a necessity to meet stricter fuel consumption and emission laws.

Today it is normal to see cars pumping out well over 300 horsepower without thinking much of it. Back in the mid-80’s when the Porsche 959 was introduced it made 444 horsepower, which was considered enormous power at the time. That figure is now bested by a Ford Mustang GT.

Automotive technology improvements have led to more efficient engines and turbocharging has allowed for more power from smaller displacement power plants. To put it in perspective, the Ferrari 328 GTS puts out 266 horsepower and can launch from 0-60 mph in about 6.8 seconds. The 328 uses a 3.2-liter V8 to achieve these numbers. The latest Ferrari 488 GTB manages 661 horsepower from a 3.9-liter twin-turbocharged V8. The 488 GTB can go from 0-60 mph in 3 seconds flat getting to that mark in 3.8 seconds less time.

The Porsche 959 was way ahead of its time. The supercar back in the 80’s could go from 0-60 mph in just 3.6 seconds. Let that soak in, about 30 years ago the 959 was nearly as fast as a 2018 Ferrari.

Horsepower and performance is available for relatively little money. Even the entry level Dodge Challenge SXT makes 305 horsepower and is quicker than the Ferrari 328 to 60 mph. The 2018 Ford Mustang GT can hit 60 mph in less than 4 seconds.

We sure have come a long way with modern car performance. Does this mean that owning an exotic car from the past is not fun? While not normally as fast as newer performance machines, the sports cars from the past offer a different driving experience. Sometimes it isn’t all about the speed, but the analog driving experience where you are in complete control. Both new and old offer something special and can be enjoyed in a different way.

Do you prefer new sports cars or vintage vehicles? Scroll down to the comments and let us know what you think.

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  • Dean Lewellen

    I drive a 25 year old Porsche 964 because it’s more visceral and real than the newer electronic controlled rides. It sounds right, smells right and you really have to drive it right to put a smile on your face.

    • Jimmy

      Sounds like you have a great ride. You just can’t get that kind of experience anymore.