Air-Cooled Porsches Adapt to the Times at Luftgekühlt 8

To a certain extent, spending hours around a Skittles rainbow of Porsches can begin to induce some sensory overload, reducing the sense of special-ness these undeniably special air-cooled cars create when spotted in the wild. And to his credit, Long seems to recognize this fact.

Typically, Luftgekühlt debuts a “LuftAuto” build. Instead, this year Long brought two of his own recent projects: a Bahama Yellow 1974 he described as “98 percent original” before receiving reseals to bring it back into the realm of reliability and a ’75 narrow body in Peru Red, under which he said, “Every single thing has been tweaked. But it’s still supposed to look like you bought it at the dealer in 1975, including sourcing the tartan from Denmark.”

At the Luftgekuhlt, vintage air-cooled Porsches ruled the day.
Michael Teo Van Runkle

Why such commonly maligned years of the 911, amid the glut of more typically desirable models?

“This is the last air-cooled car that’s the most affordable, the last accessible 911,” Long said. “I just want to tell stories with ‘em and celebrate a car that was pretty much left as the last pick of cars.”

Of course, the vast majority of Porsches at Luftgekühlt, be they pristine originals or highly modified customs, sit outside the reach of mere mortals. Outside of 911s, Luftgekühlt seems to have matured into more openly welcoming the oft-overlooked 912 and 914, both of which recently climbed in value once burgeoning Porsche fans realized their nascent potential, somewhat akin to early water-cooled cars like the 924, 928, 944, and 968—though all those are currently banned from attending Luft.

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