Like all incarnations of German sport cars from Porsche, the 959 has its own cult of gearhead followers. A new book from automotive publisher Delius Klasing explores the history of the car and its worshippers.
In its history, the 959 won the Paris-Dakar rally and took Le Mans as the first all-wheel drive race car — all while becoming a popular road-going supercar amongst Porsche lovers. It was ahead of its time with all-wheel drive, a bi-turbo engine and a top speed of 195 mph — a staggering number even now.
The Porsche 959 book exploring the car is a three volume box set covering technical data, history and creation. The latter uses a large-format illustrated tome that shows the 959 in all of its trims and custom versions — complete with photos.
The idea behind the 959 in the early 1980s was to build a car that was race compliant on the traces or in rallies. Then, the car was adapted for road legal use by fortunate private owners.
Only about 300 Porsche 959s were completed. When racing series evolved (or devolved, depending on your point of view), the 959 retired from racing. However, the car remains a prized collector’s item to this day.
Author Jürgen Lewandowski was involved in the development of the Porsche 959 more than 30 years ago. His contributions to this large-format book include details only an insider could include. Those insights don’t necessarily come cheap, but the books $149 price tag should hurt a true 959 loves too severely.