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Christopher Bruce2012-05-18 16:10:36

Bill Gates' 1979 Porsche 911 Turbo Up for Auction

The car was restored by Porsche in 2011

Shortly after Bill Gates founded Microsoft with his partner Paul Allen and moved the company to Washington, he bought himself a PorschePorschePorscheGermany, 1931 > present43 models
4654 photos
29 videos
, specifically a 1979 Porsche 911 Turbo911 TurboPorsche 911 TurboGermany, 1977 > present1 photo
. The car is now for auction in Austria complete with two Washington registration stubs signed by Gates showing that he owned the car in 1988 and 1989. 

Regardless of the previous owner, this 930 appears to be in fantastic shape. It has 81,089 miles on it with the original 3.3l, 300hp engine and four-speed manual. The Austrian owner sent the car to Porsche in 2011 and had the engine and bodywork restored and painted in the original color. The car was restored to US specs with a 87mph speedometer (140km/h) that was meant to keep drivers from speeding. 

Dorotheum, the auction company, predicts the car will sell for €39.000-€50.000 ($55.500-$71.000). The opening bid is set for €15,000 ($21,500)

According to a 1997 article in Time Magazine about Gates, he owned a string of several sports cars around this time, seeming to prefer Porsches. He bought a Porsche 911911 SCPorsche 911 SCGermany, 1978 > present1 photo
while Microsoft was still headquartered in New Mexico, and once it moved to Washington, he bought a 911 Turbo, likely this one, a MercedesMercedes-BenzMercedes-BenzGermany, 1924 > present197 models
9900 photos
33 videos
, a Jaguar XJ6Jaguar XJ-S 3.6United Kingdom, 1983 > present, a Porsche 911 Cabriolet 964911 Carrera 2Porsche 911 Carrera 2Germany, 1989 > present1 photo
, one of the very few Porsche 959959Porsche 959Germany, 1986 > 19891 photo
in the US that was impounded for a while by US Customs and a Ferrari 348348Ferrari 348Italy, 1989 > 19956 versions
11 photos
with the nickname 'Dunebuggy' because Gates spun in the sand. 

Source: Hemmings and Dorotheum

911 Gen.1911 Gen.1
911 Turbo911 Turbo
Flat 6
183 cu in
Top Speed
155 mph
4, Manual
Maximum power
274 hp @ 5800 rpm
Fixed-head coupé
Fuel consumption (combined)
annual ownership cost


I like the anecdote about the 87 mph speedo ;-)
19.05.2012 @ 12:19
The US had a 55mph speed limit on freeways (motorways) from 1974 to 1995. It was initially done to save gas during the oil crisis and was never repealed. In 1979, a law was passed that limited speedom...
19.05.2012 @ 19:21
Did not know that about speedo's, even if I lived in Tennessee in 1996. Also I had a 1959 car, but that was a car from before the law you mentionned. Interesting to know.
19.05.2012 @ 20:47


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