Porsche recently unveiled the 911 Dakar as a high-riding, more rugged model that pays homage to the brand's success in the famous off-road rally. In a new video, the company showcases the restoration of a 959 from the 1986 running of the event.
The team of Jacky Ickx and Claude Brasseur drove this 959 to a second-place finish in that year's rally. René Metge and Dominique Lemoine won that year in another 959, and a third entry scored sixth place. All three remain in the automaker's collection.
Gallery: Porsche Preserves 959 Paris-Dakar
Porsche Classic and the crew from the Porsche Heritage and Museum team handled the car's sympathetic refurbishment. They left the damage to the body because it tells the vehicle's story. However, all of the body panels came off to give the machine a mechanical restoration.
"As this was not an everyday thing for us, it was fascinating. Muddy dirt showed us today that the 959 Paris-Dakar went through rivers and had experienced water in its interior," said Kuno Werner, Head of the Porsche Museum Workshop.
With everything off, this 959 is in surprisingly good condition, especially considering its age. The paint is flaking in some spots, and there's some rust to repair on the underbody. Some of the oil-cooling lines also appear to be ready for replacement.
The 959's cockpit features lots of controls for the driver to manage. There are switches for managing the Motronic engine controls, picking the fuel tank, and operating the all-wheel-drive system.
The 959's twin-turbo flat-six engine has both air- and water-cooling. The road-going model makes 444 horsepower (331 kilowatts or 450 metric hp). Due to the low-quality fuel during the race, the rally car's output was 394 hp (294 kW). During the restoration, Porsche Classic overhauled the powerplant, transmission, and the rest of the drivetrain.
Porsche will display the newly restored 959 to the public at the Retro Classics event in Stuttgart from February 23 through 26.
For some discussion about the 911 Dakar, check out this episode of Rambling About Cars: