Porsche’s Off-Road 911 Won’t be A Safari After All


A new Porsche 911 variant is in sight, but it won’t be another special track, but rather made to keep going when the pavement ends. After watching the aftermarket capitalize on decades of Porsche 911 “Safari” trends, Porsche has finally built an off-road 911 that you can buy from the factory. Rumor has it that instead of calling this new trim the 911 Safari, Porsche may choose to call their off-road creation the 911 Dakar.

Rally racing is ingrained in Porsche’s DNA. In the early days of Porsche and especially the 911, rally racing was the brand’s forte where it would send lightly modified cars to take on the toughest races in the world. One such event is the East Africa Safari Rally. In 1972 Polish rally driver Sobieslaw Zasada drove a lightly modified Porsche 911 to second in this extremely harsh environment. Zasada only had one backing mechanic and many in the crowd thought the Porsche 911 had no chance of finishing let alone on the podium. Instead, this tenacious 911 became iconic.

Porsche’s rally prominence was extended to the creation of the 959 Supercar built for Group B rallies. The Porsche 959 Dakar was built to take on the grueling Paris-Dakar rally that spanned more than 8,000 miles and covered some of the most inhospitable places on earth. In 1986 the Porsche 959 finished first and second in the Paris-Dakar rally with the 959 third finishing in sixth place.

When it comes to building an off-road 911 capable of paying homage to Porsche’s rally past, it’s hard to really care about the name because the car itself is so catchy. 911 Safari or 911 Dakar? For us, it doesn’t matter as Porsche has enough racing heritage to warrant bot names for separate models if so desired.


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