1987 Ruf CTR Yellowbird: 100 Cars That Matter

Generally Cinderella will get the prince and nothing has to show right into a pumpkin. 

In 1987, a Porsche tuner referred to as Ruf competed in opposition to the highest supercars of the day and beat all of them with a automotive that was formally referred to as the CTR however grew to become higher often called the “Yellowbird.”

Ruf had spent a decade modifying common Porsches with turbochargers, stroked engines, and enhanced suspensions, then it determined to go full hog on a 911.

Ruf didn’t begin with Porsche’s prime canine to create the Yellowbird. As a substitute of the 930-generation 911 Turbo, Ruf opted for the 911 Carerra 3.2 as its place to begin as a result of it was a lighter automotive. That left a manufacturing facility turbocharger out of the equation, and Ruf started working enhancing a lot of the 911 that the corporate certified in Germany as a producer reasonably than only a tuner.

Every CTR (a reputation derived from Group C Turbo Ruf) began out as a manufacturing facility 911 3.2 that Ruf purchased from Porsche. To chop weight, Ruf changed the doorways, engine cowl, and frunk with aluminum parts and altered the entrance and rear bumpers to fiberglass. Within the title of aerodynamics, Ruf eradicated the rain gutters, and opted for only a single 935-style facet mirror. The rear wheel arches needed to be flared to suit bigger wheels and tires, and NACA ducts had been added on the prime of the rear fenders to chill the unbelievable powerplant that was to return.

1988 RUF CTR Clubsport

Ruf bored out the inventory 3.2-liter flat-6 to displace 3.4 liters, added a customized twin turbo system with twin intercoolers, and put in Bosch gas injection. Ruf quoted 469 hp and 408 lb-ft of torque, however proprietor Alois Ruf mentioned these had been worst-case situation figures and the automotive possible made greater than 500 hp. The curb weight, beneath 2,600 lb, gave the automotive a power-to-weight ratio that rivals right this moment’s 911s. How detail-obsessed was Ruf with its Yellowbird? It deemed the then-current 5-speed wasn’t adequate and created its personal beefier 5-speed, partially to deal with the ability and partially to design the gear ratios.

The suspension additionally acquired an improve, and a roll cage added structural stiffness. The brakes had been swapped out for 13.0-inch Brembos, and the automotive wore bigger Speedline wheels and Dunlop tires. 

The entire work translated to a world-beating, however little-known supercar. Highway & Observe examined the automotive at Volkswagen’s 15.5-mile Ehra-Lessien analysis oval in Germany within the spring of 1987 as a part of the journal’s “World’s Quickest Vehicles” function. The CTR Yellowbird clocked a prime pace of 211 mph, making it the quickest automotive on the earth. It additionally put up a 3.7-second 0-60 mph time and a 7.8-second 0-100 mph dash. The CTR emerged because the victor in opposition to the likes of the Porsche 959, Ferrari Testarossa, Lamborghini Countach, and Mercedes AMG Hammer. R&T editors famous the automotive regarded like a yellow chook dashing throughout the horizon. The colloquial nickname has caught to today, with many followers merely calling Ruf’s supercar “Yellowbird.”

The underdog journal win, teamed with a raucous video referred to as “Faszination on the Nürburgring” that confirmed take a look at driver Stefan Roser sliding the automotive across the Nürburgring, made the Yellowbird the stuff of goals for a technology of younger automotive fans. The automotive has even appeared in a number of video video games, together with the “Forza” and “Gran Turismo” franchises.

Ruf constructed solely 29 CTRs from factory-fresh 911s, and 20-30 extra had been transformed from buyer automobiles. The corporate adopted up the CTR with the CTR 2 within the mid-Nineteen Nineties and the CTR 2017 in, effectively, guess which yr. These automobiles had been engineered feats in their very own proper, however they had been by no means capable of sneak up on the established supercar makers just like the CTR Yellowbird did in 1987.

—Sean Szymkowski contributed to this story

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