The 'Black Devil'

After RUF’s groundbreaking CTR, nicknamed ‘Yellowbird’, topped 211 mph, Alois Ruf Jr.’s firm entered a new era. What sets RUF apart from its tuner contemporaries is the level of attention to detail they put into each car. So much so that the German government granted the company full manufacturer status. While Ruf’s cars may be based on Porsche 911s, they are given their own manufacturer’s serial numbers.

RUF tackled the 964-generation Porsche 911 with aplomb. With the Type 964, RUF started with a car that already had streamlined styling, a comparatively neutral coil-sprung suspension, an upsized 3.6-litre flat-six, anti-lock brakes, and available 959-derived all-wheel drive. The 964 was a massive advancement over its 911 predecessor.

Porsche did not immediately follow up on the 964 with a new 911 Turbo, so RUF filled the gap with a new model available for order that it called CR. Available in rear and all-wheel drive, the RUF CR started life as a body-in-white 911 delivered from Porsche, but without a Porsche serial number.

Ishida Engineering, the Japanese RUF distributor with a knack for ordering unusual cars, commissioned two nearly identical left-hand-drive models finished in Satin Black—save for one major mechanical difference. One would be a CR2, with rear-wheel drive, and the other was the all-wheel-drive CR4 featured here. They were built with the obligatory RUF styling kit that included a bespoke front spoiler with inlets and vents plus an RS-type rear spoiler. Eighteen-inch versions of RUF’s signature five-spoke alloy wheels wrapped around upsized cross-drilled and ventilated brake rotors. Under the big RS spoiler sat a 290bhp version of Porsche’s 3.6-litre engine teamed to a modified version of the G64 transmission. A limited-slip rear differential muscled the power to the ground.

Inside, the RUF CR4 was fitted with the company’s own three-spoke steering wheel, sports seats up front, jump seats in the rear, an upgraded centre console with a storage bin, and special RUF gauges, including an 8,000-rpm tachometer and 300-km/h speedometer. RUF’s custom touches extended beyond cosmetic and performance enhancements to a high-power audio system. So smitten with the black CR4 was Alois Ruf that he christened this car ‘Diablo Negro,’ or ‘Black Devil.’ He even signed the underside of its front bonnet saying so.

RM Sotheby's will be offering this 1991 RUF CR4 ‘Black Devil’ at their upcoming Amelia Island auction held between the 8th-9th March. For more information on this and other vehicles at the sale, click on the link below. Photos: Darin Schnabel ©2019 Courtesy of RM Sotheby's.