Ads on test: Porsche Carrera 3.2 Targa

This yuppy's favourite is more roofless than ruthless – and all the better for it

Cost New £25,230 Price £44,950


ime was when Targa 911s were treated with a spot of derision by hardcore 911 types, and the market was equally frosty. Of course, things have changed a lot since then and the Targa is now appreciated.

This particular example, in stunning Guards Red, caught our eye. In the flesh it’s in fine nick – the only signs it’s been anywhere other than a yuppy’s dream is a scuff mark on a rubber sill trim and a minor stonechip that’s got past the lacquer. The panel fit is excellent, the rubber parts look fresh and the paint has an even finish across the car; we didn’t spot a millimetre of corrosion topside.

The Fulda Carat Exelero tyres have plenty of tread remaining, and the Fuchs alloys they encircle are unblemished. Inside, the seats are a pleasing mix of black leatherette with black and white pinstriped cloth inlays, and are in good condition. The dashboard and control surfaces are free from wear, and everything works perfectly.

There’s a vast amount of paperwork with this car, detailing the pampered life it’s had over 91k miles. There’s a stamped service book at a mixture of dealers and specialists, though not all stamps are there. However, later services are indicated in the many invoices. The last service was in 2017 at 89,200 miles, and it will be serviced again by the vendor before it is sold, and with original Porsche parts. A further trawl through the invoices reveals bodywork attention in 2016 at a cost of £384 and a fresh Targa roof in 2016 at £636. Head back further and you’ll find more in depth paint and body work, with attention paid to the door handles, wings, bumpers, panels and bonnet in 2015, at a cost of £4800. The same year saw mechanical refreshment at specialists for £2152, electrical refurbishment (ECU, ignition) for £1088 and brake pipes and calipers for £630. There are many more receipts too.

On the road the flat-six blare is made all the better by the exposure to the elements, and performance is keen. We didn’t experience any running faults.

This is a recently restored, perfectly working and engaging Carrera Targa that’s had all the big stuff done. And all for price that’s very nearly the same as a new four-pot 718 Cayman. Which would you rather?

Porsche Carrera 3.2 Targa

Year:     1984
Mileage:    91,000
On sale at:     Winchester Auto Barn

Engine:     3164cc, 6-cyl, SOHC
Transmission:    RWD, 5-speed manual
Power:     228bhp@5900rpm
Torque:     209lb-ft@4800rpm
Weight:     1280kg

0-60mph:    5.6sec
Top speed:    153mph
Economy:     25mpg

Choose your Porsche Carrera 3.2

1984: 3.2 launched as coupé, Targa and Cabriolet. Super Sport ('Turbo look') model had Turbo-style rear spoiler, wide rear arches and stiffer suspension.

1986: New dash and air conditioning vents.

1987: Club Sport with reduced soundproofing and comfort items. Blueprinted high-rpm engine. 53 to the UK. Run ended in 1989.

1988: 875 diamond blue CE cars built. 50 examples were made available for the UK market. In 1989, 500 25th Anniversary cars built for US market.

1989: 2104 Speedsters are put into production.

1989: Carrera 3.2 run ends.