Got P90 Million? You Can Make a Bid for Pablo Escobar's Very Rare Porsche
In the classic and vintage car market, rare cars with provenance usually commands a premium price. They’re even more desirable if the owner was famous. Collectingcars.com listed a very rare 1974 Porsche 911 Carrera 3.0 RSR IROC under Lot no. 05971 and as of this writing, 17 bids were made with the highest bid at $850,500 (or about P43 million).
What’s so special about this car? For one, it is so rare that it is one out of only 15 that was purposely built by Porsche for the International Race of Champions (IROC). The IROC is a race series that uses identical cars and bringing race champions from different categories of motorsports like F1, NASCAR, Indy and rally.
The car was first owned by American billionaire and retired professional race car driver Roger Penske who happened to be one of the organizers of the IROC. Penske also owns America’s most famous racetrack, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, considered the world’s largest sports venue. This car was used for the inaugural race of the IROC and driven by two-time F1 champion Emerson Fittipaldi, who made pole position in the said maiden race. During the meticulous restoration of the car done in 2010, his name and number was placed in the car, which forms part of the livery until now.
The car has been meticulously restored and refinished in its original Sahara Beige color and had all the correct manufacturer and sponsor decals of the period. After the extensive restoration work, the car won on its debut show in 2011 at the Rennsport Reunion IV competition at Laguna Seca, and has since won several prestigious awards including the coveted Amelia Award at the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. It was also awarded second in class at the 2018 Amelia Island Werks Reunion and was also a crowd favorite at the 2019 Hillsborough Concours d’Elegance.
In its current condition, there is no known bodywork damage and no evident panel damage or rust. The paintwork is still in great shape with minimal scuffs and scratches since its full restoration in 2010. Inside, the black race-spec interior is in excellent condition with a very light age-related patina on some of the interior trim items, but no evidence of wear on the seats or other touchpoints. The car still has the correct 911/75, 3.0-liter “high-butterfly” flat-six racing engine with a five-speed manual transmission.
Penske sold the car to race driver John Tunstall who raced it in many IMSA races including the 24 Hr of Daytona and the Sebring 12 Hr.
And then, in 1979, Tunstall sold it to the infamous drug lord Pablo Escobar, who raced it in Colombia. The famous drug lord heavily modified the car to look like a 935 Porsche with the “slantnose” look. It is said that Escobar raced this Porsche many times in the 1980s but because of the demands of the drug trade, it did not last long and he had to give up racing. By the end of the decade, Escorbar became the most wanted man in the world. In 1991, he negotiated a peaceful surrender with the Colombian government in exchange for a cushy luxurious custom-built prison. However, he was gunned down by the Colombian National Police in 1993 after escaping.
Unlike many of Escorbar’s expensive cars that did not survive the carnage and destruction brought about by fighting with the rival gangs that raided his property in the last few years of his reign as Colombia’s “Cocaine King,” this particular car survived.
Subsequently the car changed hands again and was sold to T&C Racing and was shipped back to the US in 1993 when it was tracked down by a Porsche expert. It stayed as a 935 body style Porsche until full restoration was carried out in 2010.
There was a previous attempt to auction the car last August at the RM Sotheby’s with an estimated price of $1.8 million to $2.3 million in Monterey, California but it failed to find a winning bidder. The car was auctioned again at Collectingcars.com but it seems it likewise failed and it remains unsold. The car is currently located at Boca Raton, Florida where it waits for its new owner.