Introduction to the Porsche 924
The Porsche 924 began it's life as a concept vehicle. Volkswagen had contracted Porsche to design a car so that an Audi-VW joint venture might enter the market with a mid-priced sportscar. However difficulties between VW and Porsche plus the end of the world oil crisis caused the idea to be dropped. Following this Porsche aquired the rights to the car and the 924 was born. The 924 differs from earlier Porsche desgins in a number of significant ways. The most obvious is the use of a front mounted water-cooled engine as opposed to the rear mounted air-cooled design of the 356 and 911. Also the engine is not bolted directly to the transmission as in the rear-engined cars, instead it is connected via a "drive tube" to the transmission/axle (transaxle) assembly at the rear of the car. This gives the 924 a near perfect 52:48% weight distribution and enhances the handling. A number of variations of the 924 were manufactured to suit different markets the U.S. having the most variations due to the strict emission control laws, however the basic 924 design remained relatively unchanged from 1976 until 1985 with the introduction of the 924S which featured a new 2.5 litre engine which powered the 944. The only major design change was the introduction of a turbocharged engine "924 turbo" and a special racing version with intercooled turbo engine the "924 carrera GT". Other options included 5 speed transmission and rear disc brakes as well as the usual items such as air conditioning and power windows/steering. Most of these item are absent on earlier models but were added as time progressed. Most of the "convenience" items were standard from about 1980 onward.