Today we are happy to release our latest interview with Ale; a dedicated Porsche driver and car collector from Switzerland. We’ve really fallen for one of his cars since the first time we met. We’re talking about his Porsche 911 Martini81 (that’s the nickname of the car). Many wanted to shoot it or interview Ale about his Porsche but we are the first ones who were actually allowed to do so. Luckily, we were able to get Dario, one of the best Swiss car photographers, for the shoot (check his Instagram account: @dario.fontana you will not be disappointed!). At the end of the interview you can find a photo series.
TCC: Tell us more about your Porsche Martini81. Where did you buy it?
I bought the car from a friend from Solothurn, Switzerland. Actually, I grew up as fan of Porsche cars, especially the ones built in the 80’s. I bought my first classic Porsche back in 2007. It was a 1986 911 (G-series) with a 3.2-liter engine. I remember it very well. The car had a deep blue exterior color and was equipped with all white interior – such an eye catcher at that time and probably still is today.My second classic Porsche was a 1985 911 Turbo. The car was all original, from the chassis to the breaks. The car had 300 PS allocated on around 1200 kg which is quite impressive for a car from the mid 80’s. Fuel consumption was around 20 liters on 100 km – unimaginable in today’s world, right Greta? After these experiences with Porsche, I knew I want to have my own unique Porsche. I wanted to customize a 911 the way I wanted…and this is actually how the whole project started.
For several months, I was looking for a G-series 911 with Turbo look (because I love the wide fenders).So, one summer day in 2017, a friend told me he wants to sell his Porsche 911 SC Turbo look (from 1981). I saw the car with its 3-liter / 204 PS engine and knew that’s it– that’s my car. There was only one more obstacle to overcome. The car had engine damage. However, I managed to drive the car slowly to my home town in Zurich and hand it off to Wydler Motorsport.
I remember them asking me if I wanted a completely new engine from another car or if they should revise the whole engine (which obviously would cost much more). I decided to keep the original engine. So, Wydler Motorsport revised the whole engine, every little screw – they literally put the car to the acid test and to be honest – I don’t regret my decision at all. They did such a great job that even my grandchildren will be able to drive this car one day.
Furthermore, I wanted some small changes on the exterior to imitate the 3.0 l RS look. So I ordered some tailor-made 15 inches Fuchs rims in black. We replaced the original Turbo rear wing with the ducktail and changed the front bumper und rear bumper. On top of that, I added the Martini Racing sticker and my unique Porsche Martini81 was born.Wydler Motorsport worked closely with the Department of Transportation/Road Traffic in Zurich, to ensure that every change we made would still conform to the regulations. Every nut, bolt and screw are aligned perfectly to each other and this is why I have a street legal racing car.
TCC: Can you tell us about the engine performance?
Through the revision of the engine, Wydler was able to increase the power output of the engine. The overworked cylinder heads and camshafts allowed an improvement from the original 204 PS to 250 PS.
The Porsche Martini81 currently has a weight of around 1050 kilograms, which result in kg / PS ratio of 4.2. That might not be the best ratio but considering the age of the car, it is quite impressive. Especially because every PS has been attuned to every kilogram of the car.“KW Klassik Fahrwerk” dampers have been added to ensure the best driving experience.
The steering is very direct. Any little movement on the steering wheel leads to immediate wheel transmission which makes the car very agile. The driving comfort was very important to me as I wanted to drive the car not only on the race track but also in the city and trust me, it is just beautiful to drive my Porsche Martini81 on a sunny day.
TCC: What inspired your decision to choose the color and look?
The color is still the original one. I didn’t paint the car at all. In fact, you can see some small scratches from the previous owner on the roof but they’re so tiny. I took a Porsche 911 3.0 l RS as inspiration but instead of the normal rear wing, I wanted to have the ducktail.I saw the Martini branding on a Porsche group 4 vehicle. The car had a very similar color to my Porsche Martini81 and, from that point, I knew I want the Martini branding as well.
TCC: How long have you been working on this project?
Well, I bought the car in the summer of 2017 and put it directly into the hands of Wydler Motorsport. It actually took us 1 ½ years to build the car as it is now – everything is tailor-made which is why it took longer than expected. We had many back and forth discussions about different details (e.g. is 15 inches the right size for the rims? etc.). It was so much fun to be involved in the whole process and in every little step.The funny thing is we’re still not finished yet. The interior is next. But we will face this customization maybe next year.
TCC: What is the one thing that you like the most about the Porsche?
There is a lot to love about the car. I love the look in general. In particular, I fall for the vintage Michelin tires. I choose the Michelin TB5 R -Medium Compound 26/61-15 (285/40R15 87W) to perfectly match with my custom-made 15 inches Fuchs rims. I’ve been asked a few times already what kind of rims and tires I have on the car so I guess I am not the only one who likes it. The tires are racing orientated so the grip on the street is absolutely insane. They literally stick on the road.
Luckily, we live in Switzerland and have the Swiss mountains so close. There is nothing better than driving my Porsche on a Swiss mountain pass. It’s so much fun.I also have other cars such as the Lamborghini Murciélago, but it’s hard to drive such a beast in Switzerland. You get a ticket for speeding so easily.
TCC: Did you ever go on the racing circuit with this Porsche?
Yes, I have been twice, and it was amazing. Once I went to the Nürburgring in Germany and once to the race circuit at Autodrom Most in the Czech Republic, close to the German border. Both have been Track Days and I was invited by personal invitation through a friend of mine.
TCC: You are more into racing cars, super cars or classic cars?
Tough question as I love every beautiful car regardless the age or, brand of the vehicle. It doesn’t matter if it’s a racing car, a super car or a classic car.
Mainly, I prefer cars from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s because, back then, it was more about the masculine design. When the car was designed, it was all about the shape and the lines of the car. Nowadays, everything is meant for performance which, in my opinion, can negatively impact the design.
There are always exceptions like the recently revealed De Tomaso P72, which I really like, but I am talking here in general.I am an 80’s boy so of course I love the design of a Ferrari Testarossa which was the epitome of a masculine car back then. Did you know that Ferrari built a mirror in the glove box of the car? Malicious gossip suggests that it was for cocaine usage – “The Wolf of Wall Street” style. Luckily I changed my taste in clothes since the 80’s but my taste in cars is still the same as it was back then.
TCC: Others collect watches or art. You are collecting super cars. Why did you choose cars?
It all started when I was kid. At the age of seven, I started to drive go-carts. Back then we were living in Mexico so my brother and me, we only knew all those fancy Porsches and Ferraris from posters hanging in our rooms.
My father took us with him to Switzerland when he had longer business trips. When we arrived here, we saw the cars hanging on our bedroom’s walls in real life. So my brother and me stared at the Porsches and Ferraris for hours. The shape, the lines of the body, the sound of the engine; this all fascinated us every time.
So when we went back home to Mexico and drove our go-carts, we would imagine ourselves sitting in one of those Ferraris and Porsches we saw in Switzerland.
TCC: What made you start collecting?
Good question. I have never been that kind of guy who wanted to own one car that I would use for everything. I wanted to drive a different car on the weekends to the one I would use during the week.
And obviously when I was younger, I had a limited amount of cash. So, I literally bought and sold so many cars because I always wanted to have newer, wider, louder cars etc. When I started to have more cash, I started to keep some of my cars for a longer period.So, at the end of the day, I can say that quite an impressive number of cars have already gone through my hands.
TCC: What’s your favorite brand? And Why?
Ferrari and Porsche … I grew up with the brands. Lamborghini is nice too but has never such a history as Ferrari or Porsche. You see many old cars of the two brands on the streets, and this is obviously a sign of high quality.
TCC: What’s your favorite car in your collection? And Why?
My favorite car might be my Ferrari 360 Challenge Package (roll-over bar, carbon seats and black rear grill). I am personally attached to that Ferrari and I guess this is why it’s my favorite car. My Porsche Martini81 is also one of my personal top-tier cars as I have been involved in its process from the beginning until the end.
TCC: And one that is not in your collection?
From design point of view, it’s definitely the Ferrari F40. There is no doubt.
TCC: If you could only keep one car from your collection for the rest of your life, which one would you pick?
Definitively my Porsche Martini81. With that car, I can go anywhere. It is much better than other cars I have for the daily life. You can go easily shopping with it or do your groceries with, but at the same time it is still a nice looking racing machine. Never in my life have I had a car for which I’ve received so many compliments. Even the police sometimes give me a thumbs up! Whereas with the Lamborghini, it’s almost a 100% chance of being pulled over.
TCC: What do you think will be the next addition to your collection?
I don’t know yet. I am not looking for any specific car. As always, I’ll decide when my gut feels it’s right. Maybe it will be a Porsche 964 Turbo which you’ve seen in the Bad Boys movie with Will Smith and Martin Lawrence.
TCC: Do you see your cars as an investment or as a hobby?
Definitively as a hobby. Maybe when I was younger I bought some cars as investments. But now I see them as a hobby. You should never buy a car with the hidden agenda to make money from it. NEVER.
TCC: It if wasn’t cars, what would you be collecting?
Haha please don’t ask me questions like this … for me there is nothing comparable to cars. I don’t want to imagine myself in a world without cars. So, I am sorry, but I don’t have an answer for this question.
Ale, we thank you so much for your time and for your insights. It was such a pleasure to get to know more about your unique Porsche 911 Martini81, as well as about you as a collector. During the whole interview we felt your passion for the car and how much time and effort you put into the project. I am pretty sure we will have the chance to shot one of your other cars very soon.
In case you have any questions or want to know more about the Porsche 911 Martini81, please contact us.
© Pictures by Dario Fontana for The Collectors Circle