CAR CUL­TURE

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What’s the world’s great­est sports car? You can prob­a­bly guess what we think. But if that’s a sub­jec­tive call, it’s surely ob­jec­tively true that the 911 tops the ta­bles in terms of sports cars as cul­tural icons. The Ul­ti­mate Sportscar as Cul­tural Icon from Gestal­ten pub­lish­ing ex­plains ex­actly how ye olde 911 be­came a global phe­nom­e­non and a sym­bol of as­pi­ra­tion and free­dom, and why the 911 con­tin­ues to fas­ci­nate and in­spire. Au­thor Ulf Poschardt sends Porsche driv­ers to the shrink and con­cludes that a lit­tle nar­cis­sism can be a healthy thing. Not ev­ery­one can, nor in­deed should, drive a Porsche, he thinks. Porsche 911: The Ul­ti­mate Sportscar as Cul­tural Icon should be a must read for those of us who are man or woman enough for the chal­lenge. Avail­able for €34.90 or £30 from bu­lan­gand­sons.com

It’s pretty much im­pos­si­ble to iden­tify the great­est ever rac­ing Porsche. There are sim­ply too many to choose from, each with a com­pelling story of its own, many with stel­lar re­sults on mul­ti­ple cir­cuits. But the 962C would surely make most short lists, es­pe­cially in iconic Roth­mans liv­ery. This gor­geous 1:18-scale model cap­tures the 962 in 1985 Hock­en­heim-win­ning spec, as driven to vic­tory by none other than Hans-Joachim Stuck and Derek Bell. It’s listed as “sold out” on the Minichamps web­site and as a lim­ited-pro­duc­tion run of 402 pieces, is prob­a­bly get­ting scarce. Hap­pily, you can grab one from our chums at se­lec­tionrs.com for €99.95, which works out at a shade un­der £90. If the 962C is in the con­ver­sa­tion when it comes to the great­est rac­ing Porsches, then the 1960 356 B 1600GS Car­rera GTL Abarth surely has a look in as one of the pret­ti­est. The Abarth, of course, was all about weight loss, with the car re­port­edly clock­ing in at just un­der 800kg. Made en­tirely of alu­minum, the Abarth’s body was smaller over­all than the 356 on which it was based and re­duced drag from 0.398Cd to 0.365Cd. This 1:18-scale model from Minichamps re­pro­duces the Abarth as it was for the 1962 in­stal­ment of the Le Mans 24 Hours, with Ben Pon and Carel Godin de Beau­fort at the helm. Just 200 in­di­vid­u­ally num­bered pieces have been pro­duced. You can get yours for €249.95 or £220 from se­lec­tionrs.com

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