At $17,999, Is This 1999 Porsche 911 Carrera A Drop-Top Deal?


The seller of today’s Nice Price or No Dice 911 says not to be fooled by its overworked odometer as the engine was replaced along the way. That still leaves a lot of the car that has gone the distance, which will have to be taken that into account as we judge its price.

Based on the 68 percent No Dice vote yesterday’s 1998 Toyota 4Runner received, it’s safe to say that few of you are as yet comfortable with the current state of the used car market. Yes, that Toyota did have a banged-up body and a lot of miles under those dents and dings, but its $7,000 asking reflected that and honestly was at the low end for the market. Still, the people have spoken.

Today, let’s keep speaking. In fact, I’d like you all to speak specifically to me. The reason for so intimate a request is because I am giving serious thought to buying this 1999 Porsche 911 Carrera convertible. Yes, I know I already have a black Porsche Boxster that serves me very well. That’s kind of why I want this one. I mean, who wouldn’t want two black Porsches of approximately the same age but with very different personalities? Maybe you’ll be able to talk me out of it. First off though, let’s take a look

Right off the bat, it needs to be noted that this Carrera has a lot of miles under its belt. That’s 165,000 to be exact. The ad, however, claims that not all of the car has come along for that whole ride. The paint was redone at 100K and the engine was replaced at 130K. The clutch was done at that same time, and the seller says the car has “No IMS issue” although it’s hard to interpret just exactly what that implies.

Other impressive updates include new struts all around, reupholstered seats, and an update to Xenon headlamps with later, less eggy lens covers. The expensive hydraulic motors for the roof have also been replaced.

Overall, the car looks to be in presentable shape. The black paint holds a shine and there’s no evidence that the respray job was done by a high school shop class. The headlamps are un-yellowed and there appears to be minimal pitting on the nose and none evident on the windscreen. A bit of curb rash can be seen on the factory Sport Design wheels but on the plus side, those are wrapped in Pirelli P-Zero tires with what looks to be plenty of tread.

The top seems weather-ready and there’s no evidence in the pictures of the common rear window winder failure. The interior beneath that doesn’t look to need anything other than a butt in the driver’s seat.

This is a six-speed car and the shifter, along with the steering wheel and e-brake handle shows only minimal wear. In the close-up of the instrument cluster, however, there does seem to be some pitting and scratching of the plastic lens covers. I’m not sure how that happens, but I’ve seen that on other cars too.

The re-upholstered seats somewhat make up for that and look to be in great shape and a decent color match. An aftermarket head unit and amp have been installed, and while those may provide better sound and greater function, there’s something nice about having the original Porsche-branded Becker in the dash.

Moving to the engine bay, you would never know that the car carries a replacement mill. That’s a good thing as it implies the install was professionally done. Don’t be put off too much by the aftermarket intake in there as the seller says the original comes with the car. Regular oil changes have been done and the seller claims the car comes with all the receipts.

A clean title is requisite for me, and this car meets that standard. The question for all of you is whether my standards should extend to the car’s $17,999 price. The seller says that’s firm, and in this crazy car market, that is on the low-end for a well kitted 996. This car does have a ton of miles on it, regardless of the seller’s admonition that those should be discounted due to all the major updates and replacement parts. What do you think, is that an equitable bargain? In your mind, is this 996 worth that $17,999 asking as it sits? Or, should I hang on to my cash and stay out of the doghouse with my wife?

You decide!

Los Angeles, California, Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

Help me out with NPOND. Hit me up at rob@jalopnik.com and send me a fixed-price tip. Remember to include your Kinja handle.



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