Porsche 911 R Heritage: Built to Race
The Porsche 911 R Gulf Story: One of a Kind, Worldwide
If you thought the Porsche 918s were exclusive, the breathtaking Porsche 911 R takes the term to a whole new level. And, if we are talking exclusive, vehicles don’t get any more exclusive than Vaughn Wyant’s factory authorized, Gulf livery, 2016 Porsche 911 R in Heritage racing colours.
The One-of-a-kind Gulf Livery Porsche 911 R
Only 991 of the 2016 Porsche 911 Rs were built—991 (not 911) due to the fact that the vehicles belong to the 991 generation of models. Porsche 918 Spyder owners were given the first right of refusal on the 911 Rs. To put this exclusivity into perspective, only 918 Porsche 918 Spyders were ever produced. In the United States alone, the 300 U.S. Spyder owners were offered up the 911 Rs. Only a few of the U.S. allotment of 911 Rs were purchased by non-918 owners. The result? The ultra-exclusive Porsche 911 R.
The “Twins” and the “Triplets”
Not only did Vaughn commission two unique 918s in heritage racing colours, he also ordered the bespoke 911 R in heritage racing colours as well. Affectionately coined the “twins”, the 918s are a fabulous commemoration to the famous Porsche 917 Ks that raced at Le Mans in 1970 and 1971. These are the only two factory authorized, Gulf livery, period correct, 918 Gulf Porsches in the world.
An addition to Vaughn’s factory authorized Gulf livery family, the 911 R Heritage is the only factory authorized Gulf livery 911 R Porsche with documentation. The colours are paint-to-sample, meaning that the car cannot be reproduced. In short: the 911 R in Gulf livery colours is the only vehicle of its kind in the world… and isn’t she grand?
Creating the most unique Porsches in the world
Vaughn is a true blue (and orange) fan of Porsche as well as the Heritage colours. It may come as no surprise that he is a Porsche collector and, in fact, Vaughn owns several Gulf merchandise items— which he can be seen wearing— including Gulf t-shirts, shoes, watches, and more.
How did it come about that Vaughn would eventually own three Porsches in Gulf livery colours? Well, it all started when he approached Porsche AG to ask if they would build two cars to commemorate the famous Porsche 917 Ks. Unfortunately, Porsche told him that it wasn’t possible since they are no longer associated with Gulf and did not have permission to use their team livery.
However, impossible is not a word in Vaughn’s vocabulary. He approached Porsche AG again to ask if he were to obtain permission from Gulf, would they build him the cars. They agreed. He then approached Gulf Canada through a letter. Ultimately, all was approved and his request was forwarded to Gulf Oil International.
After negotiations and specific guidelines from Gulf, Vaughn was granted final approval. The road was lengthy but proved worthwhile: after two years the result is three beautiful racing machines that pay homage to a legendary era in international racing history.
Once approved, Vaughn hired assembled a team to design a replica of the 1971 Porsche 917 on the Porsche 918. Porsche ultimately approved of the Canadian-based team’s design of the 918s and agreed to build the cars. But the story doesn’t stop there, he also received permission for the Porsche 911 R to be designed with the very same paint-to-sample Gulf livery colours. The detailing, intricacies and customisation of this 911 R truly add to the exclusivity of the vehicle.
Vaughn’s 2016 Gulf 911 R features (non-exhaustive list):
- exterior paint-to-sample
- leather interior with GT-silver stitching
- 90L fuel tank
- single-mass flywheel
- lifting system front axle
- fire extinguisher
- air conditioning
- luggage net passenger footwell
- Smoking, Light Design, and Sport Chrono Packages
- Bose Surround Sound System
- carbon floor mats with leather edging
- paint to match vehicle key
- automatic dimming interior and exterior mirrors
- Interior Porsche Communication Management
- LED main headlights in black including Porsche Dynamic Light
- headlight cleaning system cover painted exterior colour
- door sill guards in carbon, illuminated
- fuel filler cap with Aluminum Look finish
More About the 2016 911 R
Porsche Driving the Way it Used to Be
Over the past several years, Porsche vehicles have been said to focus on improvements in terms of lap times, which of course pleases the need-for-speed Porsche driver. This has left out the traditional Porsche driver that likes to feel the shifts in every hand and foot movement, hear the engine whisper sweet nothings, and experience a true rugged connection with the machine. “Porsche driving the way it used to be,” as some would say it.
Don’t worry, Porsche fans. There’s something for everyone. The 2016 Porsche 911 R was not only built for speed, it was also built for driving enjoyment. The 911 R features a 6-speed GT sport manual transmission with performance-oriented gear ratios and rev matching function. With short shift travels and exact gearshifts, a lot of hand and footwork are required to give the feeling that the driver is driving the machine and not vice versa.
It may be fast… but is it safe? Thanks to the excellent fading stability, you bet it is. The brake discs are a cross-drilled ceramic with a 410 mm front diameter and 390 mm back diameter that allows for optimal braking power. The 911 R has very high, constant brake pressure during deceleration due to yellow six-piston aluminum monobloc fixed calipers on the front axle and four-piston aluminum monobloc fixed calipers on the rear axles.
Designed for Speed and Ready to Race
The 911 R’s body shell is shared the GT3 and Carrera 4, the front splitter is from the GT3 RS, and the tires are shared with the GT3. The 911 R’s engine is designed for speed and delivers a maximum 8,800 rpm. The large-volume flat-six naturally aspirated engine sits nicely in the rear of the vehicle. Its 4-litre displacement delivers a resounding 500 HP with a maximum torque of 338 lb.-ft.
The 911 R was built to be as lightweight as possible to ensure a more dynamic response. With a total vehicle weight of only 3,021 lbs, mission accomplished. Contributing to the lightweight construction are:
- a magnesium roof
- a carbon fibre-reinforced plastic luggage lid and fenders
- an omitted back seat
- an omitted climate control and infotainment system (but can be available at no extra charge upon request)
- lightweight door panels with reduced insulating elements
- door opener loops in lieu of door handles
- a low weight ceramic brake system
The History Behind Gulf Liveried Porsches
While Gulf Oil has been associated with motor racing since the 1930s, the world became aware of and infatuated with the blue and orange in the late 1960s.
It began in 1966, Gulf Oil vice-president Grady Davis bought a Ford GT40. It was here he became friends with automobile racing engineer and team manager, John Wyer. In the nine years that followed this commercial partnership involving Ford GT40’s and Porsche 917’s ignited three world championships, three victories at Le Mans brought forth by some of the world’s greatest drivers.
Pedro Rodriguez’s and Jo Siffert’s races in the Gulf Porsche 917 at Brands Hatch, Le Mans, Spa Francorchamps, the Nurburgring and Daytona (basically everywhere they raced) set new records. In 1970, the film Le Mans with Steve McQueen made the Gulf Porsche 917 iconic.
Derek Bell returned to Le Mans again in 1994 driving a Kremer Porsche K8 to sixth place. The Gulf Racing story continues as the iconic blue and orange going back to the World Endurance Championship and Le Mans with Porsche.
Today, the Gulf Porsche 917 is still one of the most admired race cars. After forty years, the 917 holds the record of the fastest Le Mans 24 hours race ever with:
- an average speed of 222 km/h (138 mph)
- a total distance covered of 5,335 kilometres (3,315 miles) in the 1971 edition
- the highest top speed of 387 km/h (240 mph) at the Hunaudières straight (6km out of 13.329 km
A Contagious Porsche Gulf Livery Passion
These outstanding automobiles pay homage to a romantic era of racing while capturing the beauty and excitement of a high-performance future. Vaughn’s passion and appreciation for the premiere luxury automaker are truly contagious. It’s obvious that he (and the entire Wyant Group) has a love affair with the Porsche brand and it’s elegant and storied history.
In case you were wondering, no the vehicle is not for sale. The 911 R will remain in Vaughn’s personal car collection. Keep your eyes peeled though, you may see it out in the wild on the streets of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and it has been the object of a few blogs (Carscoops, Autoevolution, 4wheelsnews) as well as Instagram posts.
Are you also a Porsche Heritage Livery fan? Which one is your favourite? Tell us your story in the comments below!