Porsche Classic - 911 body and lightweight parts

Body and lightweight parts

A perfect fit to the body of the car is an important aspect of the Porsche quality standard. After all, the second skin must sit like a tailor-made suit. It must be precise to the millimetre.

Through a series of wide-ranging measures, the Porsche Classic experts have managed to achieve considerable improvements in the production quality of wings and side sections for the Porsche 911 (model years 1965 to 1994). This also enabled the thin-plate parts of the legendary 911 Carrera RS 2.7 – of which only 1,580 were built in the years 1972 and 1973 – to be relaunched for the first time.

Porsche Classic redefined every single manufacturing step from scratch to permanently improve the dimensional accuracy and therefore facilitate the actual fitting of the parts to the vehicle. The original standard-production tools were re-engineered and optimised. New testing devices are used to test dimensional accuracy. For example, each of the approximately 30 wing variants was installed on a vehicle or on a test device for testing. In addition, each process step – including the intricate craftsmanship that goes into the surface finish – was documented to guarantee consistent quality.

With regard to the conservation of the value of collector’s cars, Porsche Classic is giving a clear sign – in the truest sense of the word. The relaunched Porsche Classic Genuine Parts are all instantly recognisable by the Porsche logo.

Production of body parts

Deep drawing

Shaping a spare body part from a piece of sheet metal calls for power and precision. Even the dies used by the experts are impressive. They are almost 2.4 m long, over 1.6 m wide, 1.7 m high and weigh 14 tonnes. The sheet metal is clamped using bottom dies and holding-down devices and drawn over the punch. Then up to 800 tonnes of pressing force are applied to achieve the basic shape.


One specific cut is not sufficient to separate the excess material from the basic shape. The die must be repositioned four times just to produce an exact cut and the wing section must be clamped again for punching out. Three further work steps are required for the subsequent folding and stamping. Up to ten process steps including deep drawing are required to produce a finished wing section ready for further machining.


The hot phase of wing production starts here. Experts position the front and main sections of the wing together in a special fixture. The temperature rises to 3,200 degrees Celsius during the subsequent gas welding, producing an inseparable joint with a stable welded seam.

Rough buffing of the welded seam

Any unevenness in the welded seam must be removed. The first machine used to achieve a flat and homogeneous surface is the sander. It is used to roughly buff the seam.

Finishing the welded seam

A steady hand and skilled eye are needed to complete the work on the welded seam. Any dents along the seam are removed from the wing using special tools and finished using the body plane to achieve a homogeneous surface, although more finishing is required before paint can be applied.

Surface finishing

Sanding, sanding, sanding – a lot of patience and four to five sanding processes with increasingly fine sandpaper are required during surface finishing to produce a surface that is ready for painting.

Manufacture of add-on parts

While the wing is being shaped, other experts are working on the required add-on parts. Depending on the version, a single wing can comprise up to 60 components. The most important are the headlamp casing, the tank tray and the filler plate.


The final stage is fitting key add-on parts using original devices and tools to complete the wing. During fitting, experts use traditional methods that require special skills. Spot welding, metal active gas (MAG) welding or brazing – the specialists apply different techniques as appropriate to the add-on part. Once the tank tray has been fitted and the Porsche logo attached – which sends an unmistakable message: “guaranteed genuine” and “Made in Germany” – the exclusive craftsmanship is complete. The entire wing is ready to be fitted to the vehicle.

Lightweight part production

Cutting the standard part

In order to achieve the typical RS flare at the rear, a thin-plate part must be cut into the shape of the standard side section – all by hand. The specialists do this by positioning the side section in the tool, marking the cutting points and sketching out the contours using a template. The marked area is cut off using a body saw.


In preparation for tacking, the machined thin-panel part and the flared wheel arch are precisely positioned in the tool and secured using magnets.

Tacking the side section and flared wheel arch

The secured parts are tacked by means of tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding. The welder starts by setting the tacking points at larger intervals and fills in the gaps until the distance between the tacks is just five to seven millimetres. Both parts are then continuously welded together. The new side section is measured with millimetre precision using special tools.


The highly sensitive part of production starts here. Because the thin sheet metal will show up every flaw, the welded seam must be finished by hand. Precision workmanship is required. First the experts carefully remove dents in the seams using special tools and then gently finish the seams using a body plane. Several sanding processes with increasingly fine sand paper are required to produce a surface that is ready for painting.


Producing a thin-plate side section for the 911 Carrera RS 2.7 is expert work that deserves a quality stamp. The Porsche logo is added to the light housing frame and sends an unmistakable message: “guaranteed genuine” and “Made in Germany”.