Ever wondered what you would you get when crossing the Porsche 911 with the 928? Well, in 1983 Rinspeed did an attempt to cook something from this receipt.
Now there has to be a note before we start the story, because the conversion on this page wasn't the first in 911 + 928 crossbreeding executed by Rinspeed. Elswhere on this website you can find an article about the 1982 "Rinspeed Eclipse" which was their first venture in this area.
What Rinspeed wanted to do was to make a Porsche 911 Cabrio in Turbo configuration. At the time, in 1983, Porsche didn’t produce a 911 Turbo Convertible. To do this Rinspeed took a regular 911 Cabrio and reinforced the car so it could cope with the extra engine-muscle. While they were at it they also added the exterior modifications that make the car so different from a standard 911. The mods included a completely new flat nose to resemble that of a Porsche 928. The tail section is also 928-like, including the tail-lights (something Rinspeed had done before, on the 1982 Rinspeed Eclipse). The front bumper is a Rinspeed piece. Customers could choose whether they wanted these new parts in Kevlar of Carbonfiber.
This crossbreeding resulted in a crossbreeded name: Rinspeed 939. The name of the Rinspeed 939 was derived from the simple calculation 911 + (9)28 = 939. The name was later changed in R39 because Porsche had already bought the 939 name and so Rinspeed was no longer able to use it.
Interiors could be made according to the customers wishes (what else is new?). Many of the Rinspeed 939s were fitted with Recaro- or König seats all in full leather and of course a high-end hifi-system was installed (Clarion G80 or Pioneer Centrate).
The Porsche Turbo-engine was left almost untouched by Rinspeed. However, because of the many plastic that replaced the original metal, the car was much lighter than a regular 911 Turbo…about 400kg lighter. Lighter, with the same power means much faster. 0 – 100km/h in under 5 seconds and a top speed of 275 km/h.
The car in the first pictures is the prototype that was unveiled at the 1983 Geneva Motorshow. The actual production 939 had some minor changes like the position of the air ducts in front of the rear wheels, in stead of on top of the rear fender.
Frank Rinderknecht, founder of Rinspeed, behind the wheel of the Rinspeed 939 / R39 prototype .
The Rinspeed 939 protoype can be easily distinguished from the production version by the missing airvents in the rear wheelarch. The production car has them, the prototype doesn't.
The proto version of the 939 has been some with NACA-ducts on top of the fender instead, clearly visible in this picture.
The Rinspeed 939 / R39 used the lights of the Porsche 928, both front and rear. This resulted in a slanted nose with 928 pop-up headlights, something that was done before by the Buchmann brothers from Frankfurt in their 930 Targa-Turbo from the late 1970s.
Allthough you might think these are Rinspeed disc-wheels, the discs are in fact a covers that are placed inside the deep 15" Gotti rims (visible in the first picture).
The interior of the first Rinspeed 939. The dark-ish red leather mixed with white inner parts and piping. The seats are König ones and when you look carfully through the holes in the steering wheel we can spot a Clarion G80 soundsystem.
The prototype was shown at the 1983 Geneva Carshow and was sold to a Norwegian customer. Now if we compare this picture to all the above except the top-most picture, we can see that the customer wanted some slight modifications to the car as it was displayed in Geneva. Apparently the new owner wanted the Rinspeed disc-wheels removed, so now only the plain 15" Gotti rims remained. A black patch reading "Turbo" over the rear wheel arch was added, basically a standard 930 Turbo item to prevent rubble from damaging the paint.
The most interesting modifications are on the inside though. For instance, one can see that the Clarion G80 has been removed and replaced with an Alpine stereosystem. You can also see there's a very small (tiny should be the word) TV installed in the dashboard.
This beautiful red Rinspeed 939 with Gotti wheels and red-white interior was shown in various magazines in 1985.
A black Rinspeed 939 was also built.
Text: copyright Bram Corts