Road Werks

Monaco resident Claudio Roddaro bought 917-037 back in 2016. An avid collector, and driver, of rare Porsche racers, he immediately set about getting it registered for road use. Now this is not an easy thing to achieve with a 40-something Le Mans sports prototype. But, crucially, there was a precedent. In fact, there were two. A pair of genuine 917s had previously been road-registered, one, chassis number 917-021, a long time ago, and only briefly. The other the famous no. 030 car, owned almost from new by the late Count Rossi, the Italian nobleman who masterminded Martini’s famous sponsorship tie-in with Porsche. Via a highly suspect loophole, this all-silver, leather-trimmed Behemoth has remained road-legal ever since it was retired from racing duties in the early 1970s. And it was this car that would come to Claudio’s rescue.

In order to get his 917K approved for road use, Claudio had to prove that it was identical to the Rossi car. This was no easy feat, but after two months of painstaking bureaucratic procedure, mountains of paperwork sourced and sorted, endless hoops jumped through, the job was finally done. Claudio’s 917K, resplendent in authentic Martini racing livery and period sponsor decals, now also sported a very fetching pair of number plates.

Its 4.9-litre air-cooled flat-twelve engine was, and still is, good for in the region of 600bhp, serious stuff even among today’s lofty supercar hierarchy. But this is a car that weighs just 600kg, well under half the weight of a current 911 GT3. And that, of course, means achieving the hallowed 1000bhp/tonne. On the road. In a car almost half a century old. Source: Porsche / Speedster Magazine (France).