Kurt Verlin
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Porsche Spent 1.5 Years Restoring This Legendary 962 C

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Restored Porsche 962 C on the track 03
Photo: Porsche

Porsche routinely demonstrates it is one of the best brands in the business for restoring classic and historic cars, and this latest project may top them all. After a year and a half of work, the automaker has restored the legendary 962 C prototype to its original 1987 condition, down to the last detail — and then invited Hans-Joachim Stuck, the man who twice won the 24 Hours of Le Mans at the wheel of this incredible machine, to get strapped in.

When he was half his age, Stuck was testing the car’s new-at-the-time PDK dual-clutch transmission, today regarded as the standard in the auto industry. In addition to winning Le Mans in 1986 and 1987, the Porsche 962 also powered Stuck to overall victory in the 1985 World Sportscar Championship. In fact, the car was utterly dominant, winning consecutive titles across a variety of series across the world from 1985 to the early 1990s, even winning Le Mans once more in 1994.

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  • Hans-Joachim Stuck, 962 C, Supercup, Norisring 1987
  • Porsche 962 C, ADAC Wurth Supercup, Nurburgring 1988
  • Restored Porsche 962 C on the track 02
  • Restored Porsche 962 C on the track 01
  • Restored Porsche 962 C 02
  • Restored Porsche 962 C 01

The 962 C is specifically the version of the car that adheres to Group C prototype regulations, and that’s the one Porsche elected to restore, down to its iconic two-tone, red and yellow livery. After Stuck was done racing it in the ADAC Würth Supercup, the car was retired from competition and repurposed for aerodynamic testing. Stripped from its livery and fitted with a different rear wing and nose, it eventually made its way to Porsche’s corporate collection.

Armin Burger and Traugott Brecht, from the company’s Historic Motorsport division, said they “kept passing this car in the warehouse” until they decided, about a year and a half ago, to restore it. That involved rebuilding numerous parts that were no longer available anywhere, including the entire underbody. When the project was finally completed, they presented the car to the media at the Weissach Development Centre, and invited Stuck to step inside and strap in.

  • Restored Porsche 962 C with Hans-Joachim Stuck
  • Hans-Joachim Stuck with helmet, Porsche 962 C, 2021
  • Porsche 962 C being disassembled
  • White disassembled Porsche 962 C, 2021
  • Rob Powell, Livery Designer, Porsche 962 C, 2021
  • Armin Burger & Berthold Brecht inspect the 962 C
  • Porsche 962 C pushed out of the paint shop
  • Painted Porsche 962 C, 2021, no logos

Unlike some of the other 962 models, this particular chassis had been exclusively driven by Stuck, and set up to his liking. To keep it a surprise, Stuck had not been told about the restoration — and he was clearly emotional about the 35-year reunion. “It feels like coming home,” he said. “You sit down, you get in, you automatically know where which button is, where the boost pressure is adjusted. It’s unbelievable how I remember everything. It’s just like coming home.”

To mark the 40th anniversary of its first year of Group C competition, Porsche will tour the restored 962 C at events throughout 2022.