If you’re at all familiar with the current car channels on YouTube, you might have noticed a new trend in the past couple of years. Creators like Samcrac, Hoovies Garage, Tavarish, Rich Rebuilds, and B is for Build have been buying salvage title cars at auctions with the intention of rebuilding them. Sometimes the goal is to bring the cars back to their former self, other times it's to make them look like they're straight out of Mad Max. Back in January, I featured Samcrac's 996 Porsche 911, and finally, it's ready to hit the road.
Earlier in January of this year, Sam won himself another German sports car on the salvage auction website, Copart. This 2001 Porsche 996 had a multitude of issues when it arrived on the flatbed after buying it sight-unseen. Frame damage, suspension, bodywork, and just general maintenance on an eighteen-year-old car; the list cast wide across all facets of car repair. Since we first checked in, Sam cranked through the entire list of issues, doing the work entirely himself—and the end result for the overall investment is impressive.
Starting at the front of the car, this is where the damage was most apparent. From the previous article, you can clearly see that the car must have gone up and over something. The underside of the "frunk" was damaged as well as the front bumper. Sam was able to straighten and flatten this out enough to make everything fit back together the way it should, but for the picky among us, it could still be straightened out further. While that area is out of sight and easy to obscure with the carpets, the front bumper needed serious repair to bring the 996 back to looking how it should. This ended up being a major hassle, as the replacement was damaged during shipping and required extra repair. And although it still needs a little more adjustment to tighten the panel gaps, it's all back together and looks really good for an at-home job.
Behind the bumper are the two brand-new radiators since one was broken entirely upon arrival. While everything was apart anyway, Sam replaced a good portion of the cooling system with all new components. We were able to help him out and get everything to him quickly, so the project wasn't held up any longer than it needed to be.
As Sam intends to autox/track this 996, brakes were another major issue that needed to be addressed. Again, we were able to help him out by shipping him some brand new Zimmermann cross drilled rotors (which look great behind his new wheels) and Akebono brake pads.
The other issue and the most daunting (at least in my eyes) was the bodywork. Anyone who has attempted body work and paint on their own knows that it's an art that takes years to master. I applaud Sam for even trying to take on bodywork this extensive, even purchasing a stud welder to pull out panels. Although there admittedly are some stand out issues, overall it was an amazing first attempt into the art. He plans to go back and address these issues at a later date.
Overall, Sam is into this 996 Porsche 911 for just shy of $9000, spending about half of that on the initial purchase, and the other half on parts and tools. With the values of these 996s beginning to skyrocket, this is a crazy deal for a running and driving example that after all the work, doesn't look half bad. We can't wait to see Sam out on track and see what projects he has in store for us next. Hopefully, it's European so we can be involved again!
If you want to see more of what Sam's doing, you can check out his channel below. Don't forget to subscribe to get all new videos pushed right to your inbox.
Writer/Editor at FCP Euro and owner of a daily R53 MINI Cooper, a track-built R53 MINI, and a 1997 Dakar Yellow E36 M3 Sedan. ••• Instagram: @evan.madore