The stereo head unit reads not ‘Blaupunkt’ in this Porsche, as you’d expect, but ‘Decca’.
You don’t need to be told this isn’t a normal 911, but it’s this detail that reveals the story of this Flachbau (slantnose) more than any other.
Owned by Mickie Most, the music producer behind acts such as The Animals, Jeff Beck, Lulu and Hot Chocolate, this is the only Carrera 2.7 MFI ever to receive the attentions of Le Mans-winning privateer outfit Kremer.
The Cologne-based racing team shot to fame when it won an outright 24 Hours victory in 1979, beating the Porsche factory team’s prototype 936 racer with its 935 (a racing version of the 911 turbo).
It was a victory that came due to no small amount of good fortune: all of Kremer’s close rivals suffered mechanical issues, while heavy rain reduced the speed differential between the Kremer car and the pursuing 936s.
Regardless, the image of the Kremer Porsche, flat-nosed, bespoilered and wearing a red stripe that flowed up and around the bodywork as if it were painted on in a wind tunnel, seared itself into the minds of marque enthusiasts in the early 1980s.
Soon, Kremer was being asked to produce road-legal versions of its Le Mans winning car, the 935 K3.
Formula One team owner Walter Wolf was one of those early customers.
His Kremer 935 ‘Le Mans’ was a genuine Le Mans-spec 935 made road-legal and painted in a blue-and-red livery that almost certainly inspired the paintwork of the car in front of us today.
Wolf’s car was an exception, however; Kremer’s street-legal cars were nearly all built from roadgoing 911s. Enter, Mickie Most.
Most, known for his talent in creating quick-selling and radio-friendly pop songs, claimed to have produced more worldwide number one hit singles than anyone else, and he certainly proved successful enough to amass a fortune that put him on The Sunday Times Rich List.
He was a car guy and a fan of Porsches in particular, buying himself a Carrera 2.7 MFI in 1974.
Featuring the same 210bhp engine with mechanical fuel injection, five-speed gearbox and suspension as the now iconic Carrera RS 2.7, but clothed in the G-series bodyshell of 1974, it was the top-spec Porsche of the regular model range until the 930 turbo was introduced the following year.
Perhaps peeved at missing out on the lairy spoiler and bodykit of the Carrera RS 2.7 that had just gone off sale, however, Most seems
to have leveraged his fame to convince Porsche to give him a special-order Carrera 2.7 MFI with the flared wheelarches and ‘whale-tail’ spoiler of the motorsport-focused – and extremely rare – 1974 Carrera RS 3.0.
Among a collection of 356s and other 911s, Most drove the Carrera 2.7, originally silver, around London for the rest of the 1970s but fell for the allure of the race-winning Kremer 935s.
Kremer offered to build Most a street-legal car based on either the 3.3 turbo or 3.0 911SC in Porsche showrooms at the time, but, already owning a selection of 911s, Most wanted the team to use one of his own cars.
Kremer wasn’t known for working on customer cars in this way, and current owner of the 911 Alastair Iles suggests Most once again pulled strings to get Kremer to agree to work on his car in 1983 – at which point his 911 was already nine years old.
The quick steering rack is the first thing you notice from behind the wheel of the Kremer.
It is straight from the MFI and unassisted, so weighty at low speeds, and only small inputs are needed to dart the Porsche from side to side.
But there is a Kremer influence on this helm: the Cologne team added thicker anti-roll bars front and rear.
The car is astoundingly flat in corners as a result, further emphasising the responsiveness of the wheel.
The front splitter, another Kremer item, helps the car to resist the front-end lightness at speed that blights classic 911s and robs steering feel as the numbers climb – there’s no trace of that.
A trait in common with all 911s, although one that is amplified here, is the immense traction under power.
With the very slightest squat, the back of the car clamps down on a heavy throttle and the 285-section rear tyres manage to put the power down with admirable tenacity – although some loose gravel on the road surface today does give plenty of opportunity for slip.
With its broad footprint – Kremer added wider 8x15in wheels on the front and 11x15s at the rear, 2in and 4in increases respectively – and nimble steering, this is a more chuckable 911 than many and one that doesn’t feel as keen to break away at the rear upon lifting the throttle.
Covering those big tyres required new bodywork, of course, and the entire Flachbau front end was added by Kremer, with the exception of the bumper bar.
Wider rear wings were added, and Most took the opportunity to restore any imperfections on the remaining bodywork – to a total bill of £9700, two-thirds the cost of an entire new 911SC at the time.
But for an oil-cooler in the new front end, however, the powertrain of the Porsche was completely unmodified, so it isn’t as savagely fast a car as it first appears.
With its 1980s race-car looks, accompanying which you’d nearly always expect to find a whopping great turbocharger under the engine cover, you have to remind yourself that this is a 911 that needs to be driven like a 2.7 RS, rather than a turbo.
It thrives on revs and heavy use of the throttle, and this isn’t a car that provides its performance effortlessly.
It is tractable enough at low revs for everyday use, but getting a brisk drive out of the Kremer takes lots of revving and is a generally frantic experience, requiring a tight grip on the small steering wheel that will kick back in the driver’s hands over bumps thanks to those large tyres.
Once you’re accustomed to it, however, the ‘935 street’ can be encouraged into impressive acceleration, pinning you to the seat while the trademark smooth howl of that Porsche flat-six blares around you in the process.
Although it’s not listed in the specification sheet, we suspect Kremer removed some of the car’s original soundproofing and the result is a pretty noisy cabin, both in the pleasant sense of the bark from that glorious engine and, unfortunately, on hearing every piece of gravel bouncing around inside the wheelarches.
The interior is otherwise standard Carrera, which means a reasonably small three-spoke steering wheel and a precise but rather long-throw gearshift, angled out of the floor via an accordion-style plastic boot.
All of the ergonomic idiosyncrasies of a G-series 911 are here, such as the tightly grouped, floor-hinged pedals, long in travel and far too heavy.
The clutch in particular is quite unpleasant until you get used to it, and the 911 feels as if it has been laid out for someone taller than my 5ft 11in, and with larger feet.
But drivers of all shapes will appreciate the classic Porsche five-instrument layout, purposeful and readable in black and white with red needles.
The original trim, in impressively good shape, is Midnight dark blue, one of the rarer and more desirable options today, as opposed to the many garish colours fitted to Porsches in the mid-1970s, although it was actually a bog-standard offering in the 911.
Then there’s that Decca sound system. While Most’s own RAK Records never branched out into audio hardware, he’d worked with Decca (one of London’s longest-running record companies) in his earlier days as an artist, and fitted the car with a radio/cassette and speakers from the company – even though he’d sell RAK Records to Decca rival EMI in 1986.
The Kremer is hardly anonymous and soon became a regular sight around Most’s Totteridge, north London, home, and was a calling card for the man who drove it until his death in 2003, after which his family kept it for a further 13 years.
The car’s original registration number, RAK 8, stayed with the family, but ‘7 RAK’ has since been acquired by current owner Alastair.
With the occasional stone-chip, scuff and scratch around the bodywork, it is clear this is both still the car as Kremer built it 40 years ago, and that it has hardly been a garage queen.
It is a slightly strange mixture: a practical road-car drivetrain on semi-race suspension and with about as close as you can get to race-car bodywork while still being street-legal.
Those of a truculent nature might call it a sheep in wolf’s clothing, but the Kremer drives with an even greater sense of agility and purpose than the 2.7 Carrera MFI upon which it is based, and a big part of that comes from the wider rubber, which necessitates the dramatically flared body.
If any detail could be accused of style over substance, it’s those front-wing louvres, but we can’t help loving them all the same.
For all that Porsches offer by way of supreme driving pleasure, very rarely do they delve into joviality or outrageousness for the sake of it.
Stuttgart is just a bit too serious.
But for the king of 1970s radio pop, in concert with the racing team that beat the Porsche factory at its own game, that’s exactly the direction in which this car went.
It doesn’t make rational sense, but it’s a Carrera 2.7 turned up to 11 – never a bad thing – with bodywork that turns even the Norfolk airfield on which we find ourselves today into midnight on the Mulsanne.
Images: Luc Lacey
Thanks to: Alastair Iles, Trofeo Cars
Beating Porsche at its own game
Cologne-based brothers Manfred and Erwin Kremer had already been racing modified Porsches when they founded Kremer Racing in 1962.
The following year, Kremer scored a credible eighth in a 911 Carrera RSR. But it was Porsche’s turbocharged era, which arrived in showrooms via the 930 in 1975, that would be the team’s making.
Porsche happily sold racing variants of the turbo, the 934 and 935, to privateers such as Kremer, and the team found particular success with the more extreme 935, which, via a partnership with DP Motorsport, it was soon modifying so extensively it was named the 935 ‘K1’.
Further developments brought the K2 and then, with new bodywork, the K3, which replaced Porsche’s air-to-water intercooling set-up with a superior air-to-air one.
The K3 would achieve the team’s greatest success, winning Le Mans in 1979.
Kremer continued to develop the K3, which became one of the most successful Group 5 cars of its era – both under the team’s own auspices and in customers’ hands – while a K4 followed, although Kremer soon switched to prototype cars for its Le Mans entries.
It was one of many privateers running 956s in the mid-1980s, and bagged a third place in 1983.
The racing team’s last big win was the 1995 Daytona 24 Hours, won by Kremer’s 962-based K8, and it hasn’t competed in a major international race since 2001.
The Kremer workshop remains active in Cologne, however, and the team regularly attends events such as the AvD Oldtimer-Grand-Prix.
Porsche Carrera 2.7 MFI
- Sold/number built 1974-’75/2144
- Construction steel monocoque
- Engine all-alloy, sohc-per-bank 2687cc flat-six, Bosch mechanical fuel injection
- Max power 210bhp @ 6300rpm
- Max torque 188lb ft @ 51000rpm
- Transmission five-speed manual, RWD
- Suspension independent, at front by MacPherson struts, longitudinal torsion bars, anti-roll bar rear semi-trailing arms, transverse torsion bars, anti-roll bar; telescopic dampers f/r
- Steering rack and pinion
- Brakes ventilated discs
- Length 14ft 1in (4291mm)
- Width 5ft 5in (1652mm)
- Height 4ft 4in (1320mm
- Wheelbase 7ft 5in (2271mm)
- Weight 2370lb (1075kg)
- 0-60mph 6.3 secs
- Top speed 149mph
- Mpg 15-20
- Price new £8408 (1974)
- Price now £85-200,000*
*Price correct at date of original publication
Enjoy more of the world’s best classic car content every month when you subscribe to C&SC – get our latest deals here