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Porsche 911 GT3: based on the 956 that won at Le Mans in 1985

Pictures, cups and racing suits – the typical mementos of a motor sport career. Paolo Barilla, overall winner of Le Mans in 1985 in a private Porsche 956, has chosen a different, far more dynamic reminder of his greatest sporting success.

On his 60th birthday, he was the first customer to complete a car project together with Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur as part of the new Sonderwunsch programme. The Italian entrepreneur wanted to design a unique Porsche 911 GT3 (992) based on his Le Mans winning car and to be fully involved in its creation.

"The unique customer experience is at the heart of the Porsche brand," according to Alexander Fabig, Vice President Individualisation and Classic at Porsche AG. That's why the significantly expanded Sonderwunsch programme is another milestone in terms of customer enthusiasm worldwide. And this car project is the jewel in the crown of customisation by Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur.

"In the Eighties, I had the chance to drive the wonderful Porsche 956, an iconic car in terms of performance and beauty," says Paolo Barilla, ex-racing driver and Deputy Chairman of the Italian food company.

As Alexander Fabig, Vice President Individualisation and Classic at Porsche AG explains, the cooperation with Paolo Barilla was a very special project for Porsche too. Because not only is the handcrafted 911 GT3 itself highly individual, but its design process is also unique.

Unique from every angle

One of the special features of this 911 GT3 is its striking exterior paintwork in Summer Yellow, white and black. When used in racing, these had White aeroblades. The 911 GT3 rims are also white at the front, while the rear axle is painted in a modern gold colour.

The side plates on the rear spoiler are also influenced by the design and geometry of their historic predecessor. The modified rear wing had to prove its flow characteristics in the wind tunnel. "PB 60" is blazoned across the flanks, representing Paolo Barilla's initials and age.

Unique Interior

Black dominates the interior, as you would expect in a racing car. It combines the type code 956, the "Le Mans 1985" logo and the stylised silhouette of the racing car. The gear lever is reminiscent of the magnesium ball in the 956 racing car and is an elaborate custom-made product: the top part was milled from an aluminium block and the surface was sanded.

Within the new Sonderwunsch programme, the client assumed the role of project manager. As part of the project team, made up of experts from Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur and the Style Porsche design department, Barilla collaborated directly in the creation of his dream car.

"Many times in this project we would have had good reason to say 'It's not going to work' or 'It's too complicated,'" said Philipp Setter, Head of Sonderwunsch Customer Consultation at Porsche Exclusive Manufaktur.

Summer Yellow from the "Colour of Choice Plus" programme

"Direct contact with the customer is the best thing that you can have as a designer," according to Grant Larson. Together with Harm Lagaay, Grant Larson designed the first Boxster and is currently the Director of Special Projects at Style Porsche.

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Nov 08, 2021 at 23:43

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