It’s been a while since I’d driven a Porsche 944, so when I got behind the wheel of a late S2 example, I was pleasantly surprised. The built-quality feels astonishing solid, with a refreshing lack of squeaks and rattles on this 20-year-old Porsche. The interior still feels fresh and modern, and this is a car you could easily use every day.
The big 3.0-litre four-cylinder engine may be a bit lumpy at low revs but it makes up for that with shedloads of torque and a decent, if not mindblowing, display of power. The front-engined 944 has the gearbox positioned between the rear wheels, giving a near 50/50 weight distribution which means surefooted and neutral handling. It may not be the most nimble car around but its handling certainly inspires confidence.
The 944 is a good looking car, too, with those macho wheelarch extensions, long bonnet and purposeful stance. It’s a lovely piece of eighties retro.
For years, the 944 was dismissed by many Porsche enthusiasts as not being a ‘real’ Porsche, but that’s changing now. Prices of good examples (which are getting hard to find) are rising as people begin to appreciate the 944’s many qualities. And yet you will still struggle to spend over £10,000 on 944, which brings it well below 911 money.
So if you want a Porsche and your budget is tight, a 944 could just fit the bill.