Recreating Parts for a 1980s Supercar Upgrade
The upgraded Porsche 959SC will approach a staggering 800 horsepower, 75% more than the original stock version. Canepa has relied on Broadview to recreate several components, implementing design tweaks and stronger materials to hold up to the crazy amount of power now being produced.
Even if you know nothing about cars, you probably still recognize the Porsche 959. Way ahead of its time in 1987, this was the first production supercar to hit public roads. At the time, the Porsche 959 was the most technologically advanced road-going sports car ever built, becoming the gold standard for the sports cars that followed it.
With only 337 built in total including prototypes, and only 200 of those being street-legal, it is a true collector’s item. Jerry Seinfeld was rumored to have dropped $700k on an original if that tells you anything.
Retired American race car driver, designer and restoration expert, Bruce Canepa, was one of the first people to experience the original Porsche 959 back in the 80’s, and also the first to modify the vehicle for street legalization in the US.
Ever since, Canepa has continued restoring and upgrading Porsche’s legendary automotive icon. Just last year the company announced that a 3rd generation of 50 cars was in the works. The Porsche 959SC will approach a staggering 800 horsepower, which is 75% more than the original stock version, putting it in league with modern hypercars.
In order to get there, all mechanical systems of the original car are disassembled, inventoried and inspected before they can be rebuilt and restored. This often includes upgrades, design tweaks and stronger materials to hold up to the crazy amount of power now being produced.
That’s where Broadview comes in. Canepa has relied on us to recreate several machined parts for the 959SC–a stronger water pump impeller, a new e-brake caliper that leaves room for the larger custom brakes, a center-locking wheel ring to fit the larger custom wheels, a valve cover with beefed up side walls, and a new cap that allows for replacement of the distributor with a computer-controlled timing system.
There are a dozen other machine shops right in Canepa’s backyard, but they come to Broadview because they know they can rely on us for quality and customer service, and because we’re a one-stop shop. They send us an original component. We scan the part into CAD and turn it into a workable 3D model, making whatever engineering changes are needed, and then our master machinists write the cutting program, make a prototype to check dimensions, and then reproduce up to 50 more pieces.
The race car enthusiasts in our shop have been like little kids on Christmas anytime we get a new project for this program. We’re really proud of our work, and lucky to be involved on a concours d’elegance such as the Porsche 959SC, which by the way, is selling for $2M a piece. No big deal, right?