Car photographer Richard Pardon: “I’ll never sell my Porsche 911”
How a Porsche toy car sparked a 911 urge
A dark green Porsche 911 (964) parked beside a field
Ex-Porsche Formula E official photographer Richard Pardon fulfilled a childhood dream when he bought a Porsche 911 (964)
A toy Porsche with long-lasting memoriesI had a model of a Porsche 911 (964) when I was a child. It was purple and looked exactly like the car from the film Bad Boys. I loved that toy car and would spend hours driving it across the carpet, making engine noises. I had a supercar poster on my bedroom wall, too. And you guessed it, it was of a 911. Even back then as a kid, I knew that one day I wanted to own one.I’ve owned three Porsche cars before this, starting off with a Cayman S, then a Cayman GT4 and then another GT4. They were great cars, but none of them quite scratched that itch of owning a 911. Then this car came up for sale last summer and I just knew I had to have it, so I sold the GT4.
Porsche 911 (964) parked beside a field, photographed from above
Field of dreams: for Richard Pardon, buying a 911 was a lifelong goal | PHOTO: Richard Pardon
Porsche 911: the attainable supercarWhat I love about the 911, unlike many other sportscars, is that they are attainable. I still honestly thought I would never have one, but I just kept chipping away at it and somehow found the money.For me, the 911 is just a classic, timeless design. Whether you’re a car person or not, if you showed somebody a silhouette of a 911, most people would know what car it is. It’s just so iconic. I particularly love the 964 as it is now a true classic – a classic that’s actually worth some money at the moment.I think that mileage is irrelevant. For instance, with my GT4, the prices were high compared to what they were new, so I shied away from driving it as I didn’t want to put too many miles on it. I thought it would devalue the car. It’s the opposite with the 964. My challenge is how many miles can I put on it. Because it’s a classic, it’s not really going to devalue that much so it just means I can drive it and have fun.
Close-up of front of a dark green Porsche 911 (964)
With its timeless design and an iconic silhouette, the Porsche 911 is instantly recognisable, says Richard | PHOTO: Richard Pardon
Fortunately, through my career of working as an automotive photographer, and then more recently for the Porsche Formula E team, I’ve had a lot of experience and involvement with Porsche, and that just reinforced my love of the brand and its cars.As for my 911, it really is the fulfilment of a lifelong dream. My 964 is a very special car to drive. To me, it’s a modern classic that you can still daily drive because it doesn’t have so many quirks that it needs a lot of maintenance. It’s literally turn the key and go.
Porsche 911 (964) parked outside a diner with neon sign
The Porsche 911 (964) is the true definition of a modern classic | PHOTO: Richard Pardon
Modern cars are getting so quick these days that you can’t use them to their full potential on the road. A Porsche GT4 is extremely fast, but I couldn’t fully exploit them unless I took them to a circuit. The 964 is almost the opposite. The car has bags of character. It does it all for you – that is, if you drive well. Get it to flow nicely and the car rewards you. It’s very involving. It’s very road focused. You have to shift correctly. You have to read the road. If you don’t, you will upset the balance and it could bite you. That means you can have more fun at slower speeds. You can easily drive this car within the legal limit and still have fun. It’s involving because it’s exhilarating. Driving my 964 genuinely makes me happy. I get out of the car and look back at it and smile and think, yeah, that’s my car. If everything goes well financially, I will never sell my 911.
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