Ruf Automobile and the Return of the Tyre Kicker

I went back to doing some magazine work earlier this year, with my friend Simon Jackson at GT Porsche magazine. Having run a few of my features through 2017, Simon asked if I fancied writing another regular column and I was happy to say yes, so the January 2018 issue has at least one page written by me.

Elsewhere in the latest issue is the story of my road trip to Ruf Automobile Gmbh last July. I made the trip as a passenger in Jonny Hart’s Delphi Green 911 SC, to demo the Classic Retrofit air conditioning system and give Alois and team a tour of the other Classic Retrofit products. The visit was a great success: so much so that the stop-off at the Porsche Museum the following day was a slight anticlimax. When a genuine Porsche hero takes you to lunch, the experience is hard to beat.

Ruf CTR versus Singer/Williams

After our trip, Jonny became part of the project team on the new Ruf CTR and has been working away on the development of the heating and ventilation system for this incredible car. I’ve seen lots of progress photos and they are pretty exciting – such a brave project from Ruf. No chance to share anything for the minute, but they will all come out eventually.

Jonny is also working on the new Singer, as are a few more of my friends, and that is another quite interesting project. Comparing the two from a static driver’s seat is interesting. The Ruf is built on a completely new body shell, all in carbon and with slightly bigger dimensions from the original, while the Singer retains much of the 964 floorpan with additional composite elements. Having seen both up close and sat in the Ruf, the slight shifts in scale give a different feeling from one driver’s seat to the other and that will be interesting to compare on the road. I probably won’t get to drive either of them, but no doubt the big boys will have much to discuss.

GT Porsche: my Tyre Kicker column

I first started working with GT Porsche editor, Simon Jackson, back in 2009. At the time, Simon was running Retro Cars magazine and my creative partner of the time, James Lipman, had already done a few features with him. The three of us went on to do a few bits together and I really enjoyed being in that magazine.

Like all good editors, Simon is easy to work for: he is not shy about speaking his mind on certain contradictions in the world of classic Porsche and is happy to let his contributors just go and get on with it. I like what he is doing at GT Porsche, especially given the operational pressures all magazines face nowadays. Check out the latest issue if you run across it.

My new GT column is called Tyre Kicker. It seemed highly appropriate, given how I spend most of my days at the minute. Feel free to tell me if it is rubbish!

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