Racer Randy Pobst recently brought a 1970 Porsche 914/6 GT to Jay Leno’s garage, and the resulting video provides an in-depth look at the rare entry-level version of the 1970s Porsche sports car.

While the 914 itself was quite common, only 16 examples of the racing version of the 914/6 GT were produced. This particular example is still racing; Pobst recently drove it at Laguna Seca and claims to have overtaken the much newer 911 GT2 RS.

914 was the result of a partnership between Porsche and Volkswagen who was looking for a Karmann Ghia replacement. At the time, Porsche was still a small company, and projects like this helped it stay afloat. VW later withdrew from the partnership, but the 914 entered production under the Porsche banner in 1969 and was still sold with VW-Porsche badges in Europe.

The base version also had a VW engine. Although this was a smart cost-cutting move, the 1.7-liter flat-4 engine produced just 79 hp. But Porsche also offered the 914/6 with a 2.0-liter 6-cylinder engine of its own production and a power of 108 hp.

Some Porsche fans scoffed at the VW connection, and the styling, which was a big departure from the 911, also took some getting used to. But the mid-mounted engine is much easier to get to than the current one 718 Cayman, Pobst noted, and the 914 still sells in respectable numbers. Porsche built 115,631 4-cylinder models between 1969 and 1975 and 3,338 6-cylinder models between 1969 and 1972.

To make it competitive on the track, the 914/6 GT was upgraded with a more powerful 2.0-liter flat-six engine from the Porsche 906, producing around 220 hp, and it was mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. The car also weighed just 1,940 pounds — even with the added boosters in the back of the trunk.

1970 Porsche 914/6 GT in Jay Leno’s garage

The Flat-6 was powered by a 26-gallon fuel tank mounted under the front hood. According to Pobst, it provided great range and helped balance the weight distribution when it was full, but that will obviously change when the tank is emptied and the front end is lighter. But the mid-engine design still made it better balanced than the rear-engined 911, Pobst noted.

While other Porsche racing cars usually attract more attention from enthusiasts, the 914/6 GT enjoyed some success in competition, including finishing 6th overall at the 1970 24 Hours of Le Mans. And 914 itself laid the foundation for the next one Porsche Boxster and Cayman.

You’re unlikely to see a car with Le Mans pedigree driving on public roads, especially one of the 16 built. So be sure to watch the video to see this 914/6 GT on the streets of Los Angeles.


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